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Thread: BOOK OF EQUANIMITY. Case 13

  1. #1

    BOOK OF EQUANIMITY. Case 13

    Hi.

    Jundo asked me to present this Koan, so although i'm just an humble man not of big words, here is the next case.

    Main case:

    Attention!
    When Rinzai was about to pass away, he charges Sansho: ”After i depart, do not let my True Dharma Eye be extinguished.”
    Sansho said, ”How could i let your True Dharma Eye be extinguished?”
    Rinzai Countered, ”If someone suddenly asks you about it, how will you reply?”
    Sansho gave an shout, and Rinzai remarked, ” Who would have thought my True Dharma Eye would be extinguished upon reaching this blind monkey?”



    This koan has many facets and points, but let's focus on a few.
    The first line in the preface says ”Devoted entirely to others, oneself is unknown”.
    This is one of the main reasons i like to go to the Treeelaf teaparty every sunday, it gives me an opportunity to give myself, to just be be there completely for others, listening to other's stories, forgetting myself and devoting me to them.
    Rinzai's question is an dobleedged sword, as it is sometimes not answerable, sometimes just a trick and sometimes...

    Questions:
    Treeleaf Angoperiod is coming up, in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?
    Do you have any examples of people devoting themselves entirely to others, and if so what are they and what have you learned from them?

    No need to tell if you do, just keep it to yourself, but do you have an answer to Rinzai's question and how does that feel?

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen
    Last edited by Fugen; 08-30-2012 at 11:09 AM.
    Treeleaf Unsui
    Blog: http://fugenblog.blogspot.com/

  2. #2
    Who would have thought my True Dharma Eye would be extinguished upon reaching this Swedish blind monkey?
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  3. #3
    I think he said blind donkey, but it doesn't really matter!

    Mother Teresa comes to mind.

    /Pontus
    In a spring outside time, flowers bloom on a withered tree;
    you ride a jade elephant backwards, chasing the winged dragon-deer;
    now as you hide far beyond innumerable peaks--
    the white moon, a cool breeze, the dawn of a fortunate day

  4. #4
    ”Devoted entirely to others, oneself is unknown”.

    Not so often. There is usually a subtle checking in . So long as there is intention in devotion to others, it is done with a subtle hook. it is still a good thing, and better than selfish intention, but it is not truly ”Devoted entirely to others, oneself is unknown”. That has only happened spontaneously in my experience. It is situational. it happens, but can't be predicted. It just happens, no intention, no hook. It is evoked by a situation... meets the situation.. perfectly. Is of the situation. It is kind of an uncomfortable topic to be honest.. it scatters when talked about.

    Gassho, kojip
    Last edited by Daizan; 08-31-2012 at 06:11 AM.
    大山

  5. #5
    Indeed! I completely agree Kojip!

    I once said this about compassion:
    Compassion can be an act of kindness, the effort to do good and no harm. Nothing wrong with that but it's often ego driven.
    True compassion is something else. In my view, true compassion is the natural result of being aware of true nature. When we see clearly, there's no longer any self to put above anything else, no delusion, no need to do harm. Saving all sentient beings becomes completely natural, because there's no separation between you and all sentient beings. So to me, true compassion is the effortless expression of enlightenment. No trying, no effort, no direction, no expectation, no evaluation, no discrimination, no premeditation, just the natural functioning of Bodhi mind.


    And I think Dogen's words from Genjokoan fit too (this is the Cross/Nishijima translation):
    To learn the Buddha’s truth is to learn ourselves. To learn ourselves is to forget ourselves. To forget ourselves is to be experienced by the myriad dharmas. To be experienced by the myriad dharmas is to let our own body and mind, and the body and mind of the external world, fall away. There is a state in which the traces of realization are forgotten; and it manifests the traces of forgotten realization for a long, long time.

    Gassho,
    Pontus
    In a spring outside time, flowers bloom on a withered tree;
    you ride a jade elephant backwards, chasing the winged dragon-deer;
    now as you hide far beyond innumerable peaks--
    the white moon, a cool breeze, the dawn of a fortunate day

  6. #6
    Treeleaf Unsui rculver's Avatar
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    I sometimes overlook the value of small acts. I want to be the one to "solve" the problem. The smile at a stranger, the pat on the back are what is needed. Just being there. All I can do is try and do/be a little better day by day. Forget the finish line.


    Shugen
    As a priest in training, please take everything I say with a pinch of salt

    Meido Shugen
    明道 修眼

  7. #7
    In what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?

    I hope I will find in my heart the desire to practice whole-heartedly, without thought of personal gain (but I don't expect that I will). Indirectly, this would be devoting myself entirely to others, making myself unknown.

    I can do my best to be a decent husband, father, colleage, sangha member, doctor, neighbour and so on. To make the right choices when I'm forced to make choices. And vow to save all sentient beings.

    What I can not do, is to devote myself entirely to others by choice, thus making myself unknown. Maybe Mother Teresa could, or maybe it only seemed like she did. If I were to say: "From now on, I devote myself entirely to others", that would be an unrealistic, idealistic dream. I would be deluding myself. I would be creating a division between my view of myself and reality, thereby creating a problem, a conflict, a cause for suffering. I'm a mostly egotistic person and I accept that completely. I can work from there. No goal, just work. Not just work either, since a lot of it is effortless, but you know what I mean!

    I'm sure that my actions from time to time have been entirely pure, unselfish, enlightened. The problem is, I don't know much about those moments, because "I" wasn't there when they happened. As soon as we're self-conscious about doing something good for others, although doing good is better than doing bad, the ego is involved and the action is tainted. Two moons, not one. Sometimes someone else may tell you that what you did was wonderful, and you go "Huh? Did I do anything special?" There's the magic of bodhi mind, action free of ego, greed, hate and delusion. Trust that when you don't actively make a choice, you will do good.

    Gassho,
    Pontus
    Last edited by Omoi Otoshi; 09-01-2012 at 06:10 PM.
    In a spring outside time, flowers bloom on a withered tree;
    you ride a jade elephant backwards, chasing the winged dragon-deer;
    now as you hide far beyond innumerable peaks--
    the white moon, a cool breeze, the dawn of a fortunate day

  8. #8
    Senior Member galen's Avatar
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    It seems, a true essence ultimately cannot be denied, much like a flowing stream.
    Last edited by galen; 09-03-2012 at 09:43 PM.
    Nothing Special

  9. #9
    Senior Member galen's Avatar
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    Devoted entirely to others, oneself is unknown.

    This seemingly is not a choice to be made, an intention to plan, no where to go.

    It may be, that devoted entirely to self, all others are known. No separation, no others out-there, no where to be.

    Nothing to ad, no toys needed, in true essence of what Is.
    Last edited by galen; 09-03-2012 at 09:45 PM.
    Nothing Special

  10. #10
    Senior Member AlanLa's Avatar
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    When teaching there are times when I completely disappear. There is just teaching, the dharma of my subject matter just flows out of me for the benefit of the students receiving it. I am completely spontaneous in those moments; there is no gap between students/subject/me. But at the very same time, I have to wonder if the complete opposite isn't also true. Maybe what's going on is the complete and total expression of ego. In some ways my teaching is the ultimate expression of self-ness. After all, all eyes are on me (at least theoretically, because some are on their phones, lol) and they are completely dependent on me, and I feed off of that.

    When self and no-self are completely balanced - that's cool, and rare, because so often we are just trying to either keep our balance or catch it when we find ourselves falling.

    Do my students extinguish my subject's dharma eye? Hmm, that cannot be captured on any simple test. Only their practice will tell.
    AL (Jigen) in:
    Faith/Trust
    Courage/Love
    Awareness/Action!

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Fugen View Post
    Treeleaf Angoperiod is coming up, in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?
    Do you have any examples of people devoting themselves entirely to others, and if so what are they and what have you learned from them?

    No need to tell if you do, just keep it to yourself, but do you have an answer to Rinzai's question and how does that feel?
    Thank you Fugen,
    thank you everyone for their replies. I let that sink in, and somehow it seems that perfectly know when and how often I take care of myself, but rarely about my devotion; it seems that the being there for others, with other is somehow just happening without being noticed while being there for myself leaves more traces. Anyway ... Rinzai's question ? The True Dharma Eye, understood as the reality a is, cannot be extinguished, but forgotten. Or overlooked. So in a sense I feel I need to keep the light, even with my small possibilities. If we not carry it, it needs to be found again. The privilege of the master is to call the student a donkey, the privilege of student is to call himself a donkey.
    _()_
    Myoku (the deaf donkey, and thats no praise)

  12. #12
    Oh, I thought rinzai was disappointed in sansho's response.

    Things are rarely what you think they are.

    Sansho's shout cuts thru all that.

  13. #13
    I'm not sure what I will say answers correctly to the question but I've noticed that many folks in my life, almost 95percent go away (even close friends) after a few time and I was helping them in a sense or other.
    To forget myself is to notice they come in my life like in a temple, and I let them go without running after; telling me as soon as new folks come that they will go away soon.

    Gassho

    Yang Hsin

  14. #14
    Senior Member Heisoku's Avatar
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    Questions:
    Treeleaf Angoperiod is coming up, in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?

    Good question! However as my wife is now in 4th year dentistry I tend to do the housework.....and invisibly so she doesn't feel guilty about it too much. So that's me this year 'Dobby'.

    Do you have any examples of people devoting themselves entirely to others, and if so what are they and what have you learned from them?
    Most teachers I admire are able to almost absorb themselves into the child they are trying to help. This is a step more than empathy, as they are trying to figure out the muddle that can happen in children's thinking. When I have trouble diagnosing a learning barrier it's usually because I haven't given the 'me'/ 'teacher' bit up enough! When it does happen the 'I' and the child have the same mind and you have to use this moment to open the child to their misconception. There very best teachers do this so easily! These moments are also very temporary as you have to give the 'I got it' moment back to the child so they realise that learning creates a sense of joy and self esteem.

    Do you have an answer to Rinzai's question and how does that feel?
    ????
    Heisoku
    平 息

  15. #15
    Treeleaf Angoperiod is coming up, in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?
    Revisiting this question.... Day to day, devoting yourself to others is a necessity for a brother, son, father, and husband. The "making yourself unknown" part.. is what makes the difference between being effective or not. Tripping over yourself is good for no one. I still say you cannot make yourself unknown, there is a trace of self (or self-ing) in the making, usually more. But in the day to day.... in the effort, the are times when, like grace, there is truly "self unknown". Perhaps practice is not picking "yourself known" over "yourself unknown".. what comes comes by effort and grace.. the whole thing.

    Gassho, kojip.
    Last edited by Daizan; 09-04-2012 at 01:47 AM.
    大山

  16. #16
    Treeleaf Angoperiod is coming up, in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?
    Since last Ango I have been volunteering to help abused/neglected animals....in some ways I started this last Ango to honor my little dog (Snickers) who we had to put to sleep and just never stopped after the Ango period. This year I am putting extra effort into this work and I am focusing on one dog who has aggressive tendencies.

    Working with dogs is like second nature to me......I'm gone when I working with a dog. I can walk in where we have dogs and I just start teaching them....we use clicker training. I don't even think about it, I just start doing it. There are many...many wonderful teachers I could talk about. The dogs themselves being teachers....and people who I have run into who have had losses in their lives who, instead of focusing on themselves, they work with these animals to help them.

    There is a "gotcha" with all of this. People talk about me and how "great I am with the dogs." I must watch my ego not getting the better of me and, instead of becoming unknown, I become inflated! "Look at me....look at me!" "Wow am I not wonderful and so talented!" I think I'll sit with this for a bit.

    Gassho,
    Jisen/BrianW

  17. #17
    Senior Member galen's Avatar
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    "in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?"

    Seemingly, from a historical sense, that idea is a very noble concept. From an ultimate sense, it seems like the-two of dualism. From the ultimate perspective, how can there be a separation of devoting yourself 'entirely' to others, by letting (making) yourself be known? In its entirety, if so, you would not be known. It seems in `the making, it is already to late, ultimately. In a historical sense, it seemingly is a very noble idea/concept, and well stated.
    Last edited by galen; 09-04-2012 at 04:16 PM.
    Nothing Special

  18. #18
    Treeleaf Angoperiod is coming up, in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?
    I have been looking into certification for my dog Bodhi, so that we can go into care facilities for the sick and elderly to bring them some cheer. I just spend the long weekend in Vancouver spending time with my very sick granny and I took my Bodhi into see her and the others ... it was meant to be ... smiles and joy.

    Gassho
    Michael

    p.s. This is a photo of my buddy Bodhi

    2012-05-21 15.08.59.jpg
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  19. #19
    Oh This dog seems so kind Michael.
    I like when I can do purring a cat, at this time all is for the animal happiness, not for mine (heu ok a rest of selfish pleasure ^^)

    Gassho

    Yang Hsin, D

  20. #20
    Thanks Yang Hsin .... he sure is kind and gentle. :-)

    Gassho
    Michael

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 2
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  21. #21
    I tutor students with learning difficulties. I also tutor my great nephew and his best friend. I will easily say, with no shame, that I do so hoping that they will have better futures, but I am also willing to let the future go whatever way it will go after giving it my all.

    "Myself" is probably not completely unknown in this, at least at the beginning, but oftentimes, during the tutoring session, everything does disappear for awhile. You are there completely for the student—you become the student and the learning and the teaching when you are completely immersed in the learning/teaching experience. I noticed that there have been quite a few members who have expressed this and that it seems one of the more common ways of experiencing devoting yourself entirely to others and making yourself unknown.

    Finally, I suppose that whatever my students do in life, in some way, my dharma eye is extinguished and yet in some way it is also passed on. I can identify with Rinzai in that. Gassho, Grace.
    Last edited by Graceleejenkins; 09-05-2012 at 01:27 AM.

  22. #22
    To devote myself to others, I've been trying to help others at work on projects completely outside of my job. I'm still trying to figure out how to forget oneself; as Kojip said, and I concur, "I" always check in. That validation, hungry self. At the same time, there is something very fulfilling in helping others, so it is natural to feel good about it. I mean we are built to help each other out. I'm not letting that validating and credit taking self deter me. I'm just trying to focus on little things here and there that can be of service to others where I'm at. Opening a door, picking up trash where I see it, smiling. Helping people even if "I'm too busy" at work. Of course there are bigger things too. I"m going to be looking into volunteer opportunities. This is a challenge for me. I don't really volunteer much.

    Gassho,

    Risho

  23. #23
    Senior Member Nenka's Avatar
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    A short and (I think) on-topic story . . .

    One time I was standing on a crowded bus when this high school girl dropped her wallet. At least, I'm pretty sure it was her wallet--it was stuffed with a lot of photos and little papers and cards peeking out and you could hear change rattling around inside it. If she lost it, you could tell she'd really miss it. And we were coming up on a stop and she was getting ready to go. So without even thinking about it, I picked it up and tried to give it back to her. I kept nudging her with it until finally her friend noticed. Then the girl just absent-mindedly took it without saying anything and turned her back again. For a minute--well, maybe longer--I stood there thinking wow, what a jerk, I should have just kept it. Then I realized that in that few seconds I had to give this girl her property back, it hadn't even occurred to me to just grab and keep it. I really wanted her to have this thing.

    Of course, there have been times when an ethical decision wasn't so automatic and easy. But we've been talking about forgetting the "I"/self, and for me, that instance was it. Come to think of it, I don't care that she didn't thank me anymore; I was a teenager once too. But I'd like to be that way more often, helpful to others without thinking twice about it.

    Do you have any examples of people devoting themselves entirely to others, and if so what are they and what have you learned from them?

    I see them all the time, or at least I think I do. Perhaps they'd be surprised to learn someone considers them "entirely" devoted to others. Maybe they struggle with the self as much as anyone. I've learned to be grateful to them but not to compare myself to them, although I keep having to learn that one over and over and over . . .

    Gassho

    Jen
    The result is not the point; it is the effort to improve ourselves that is valuable. There is no end to this practice. --Shunryu Suzuki

  24. #24
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fugen View Post
    Questions:
    Treeleaf Angoperiod is coming up, in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?
    This morning I was reading Aitken's Taking the Path of Zen and I read a passage about forgetting yourself. A quote that stuck out was this:

    "See how particularly himself the mime Marcel Marceau becomes when he forgets himself in his work... Forgetting the self is the act of just doing the task, with no self-consciousness sticking to the action."

    I also thought of this:

    Quote Originally Posted by Omoi Otoshi View Post
    And I think Dogen's words from Genjokoan fit too (this is the Cross/Nishijima translation):
    To learn the Buddha’s truth is to learn ourselves. To learn ourselves is to forget ourselves. To forget ourselves is to be experienced by the myriad dharmas. To be experienced by the myriad dharmas is to let our own body and mind, and the body and mind of the external world, fall away. There is a state in which the traces of realization are forgotten; and it manifests the traces of forgotten realization for a long, long time.
    This is how I would like to approach others and everything else.
    迎 Geika

  25. #25
    Senior Member AlanLa's Avatar
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    I find that there is no greater expression of ME than when in some activity (such as being devoted to another, or whatever) ME entirely disappears.
    AL (Jigen) in:
    Faith/Trust
    Courage/Love
    Awareness/Action!

  26. #26
    Senior Member galen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Risho View Post
    To devote myself to others, I've been trying to help others at work on projects completely outside of my job. I'm still trying to figure out how to forget oneself; as Kojip said, and I concur, "I" always check in. That validation, hungry self. At the same time, there is something very fulfilling in helping others, so it is natural to feel good about it. I mean we are built to help each other out. I'm not letting that validating and credit taking self deter me. I'm just trying to focus on little things here and there that can be of service to others where I'm at. Opening a door, picking up trash where I see it, smiling. Helping people even if "I'm too busy" at work. Of course there are bigger things too. I"m going to be looking into volunteer opportunities. This is a challenge for me. I don't really volunteer much.

    Gassho,

    Risho


    It seems you are already volunteering much...
    Nothing Special

  27. #27
    I'm trying to ease into it.. just like with my Ango commitments. I know I can't uphold them all all the time, but baby steps. The first step I've found is realizing how selfish I am. I don't mean this as a self-deprecating statement ot garner attention or anything. I am sincerely stating it. It's interesting how self centered I am...Shikantaza has really shown me that... .all the swirling drama and thoughts. hahaha it's actually kind of humorous when I'm cognizant enough to step away from the drama, but most of the time I'm sucked right in.

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Risho View Post
    It's interesting how self centered I am...
    I wouldn't call realizing how selfish you are a baby step!

    To me it seems like a life-changing leap!



    /Pontus
    In a spring outside time, flowers bloom on a withered tree;
    you ride a jade elephant backwards, chasing the winged dragon-deer;
    now as you hide far beyond innumerable peaks--
    the white moon, a cool breeze, the dawn of a fortunate day

  29. #29
    Senior Member galen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omoi Otoshi View Post
    I wouldn't call realizing how selfish you are a baby step!

    To me it seems like a life-changing leap!



    /Pontus

    Agreed.

    It seems, realization is the first HUGE step, many baby steps to this leap.
    Nothing Special

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Omoi Otoshi View Post
    I think he said blind donkey, but it doesn't really matter!

    Mother Teresa comes to mind.

    /Pontus
    Hi.

    No, in essence it doesn't but one should be mindful of such things...

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen
    Treeleaf Unsui
    Blog: http://fugenblog.blogspot.com/

  31. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by rculver View Post
    I sometimes overlook the value of small acts. I want to be the one to "solve" the problem. The smile at a stranger, the pat on the back are what is needed. Just being there. All I can do is try and do/be a little better day by day. Forget the finish line.


    Shugen
    Hi.

    _/\_
    Yes, so true.

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen
    Treeleaf Unsui
    Blog: http://fugenblog.blogspot.com/

  32. #32
    Hi.

    Reading all your responses reminds me of when i read about one of the last talks Aitken roshi did, and was asked to present an koan as well as an answer to it.
    It's in the book, "After the ecstacy, the laundry" by jack kornfield.

    At one of his last teachings before retiring at the age of eighty, Robert Aitken Roshi talked to a gatehering of a hundred Buddhist teachers about his half century of Zen practice, starting in prison in Japan during World war II. At the end he was asked if he would offer an koan and be willing to give us an answer. He told us this tale: In 1951 when he was practicing in New York under Master Nyogen Sensaki, Master Sensaki held up an elegant bowl painted with a spiral from the rim to the center. He asked, "Does this spiral go from the rim to the center or from the inside out?This was the koan, and we quietly contemplated its solution. Then came the moment to offer an answer. Aiken Roshi stood up from his cushion, trembling slightly, and extended his arms outward like a great frail bird, making the shape of a bowl with his whole outstretched body, First he turned one way, as if spiraling in. Then he turned the other way, as if spiraling out. He became the bowl with his whole body, his whole being, inside and out.
    Thank you for your practice.

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen
    Last edited by Fugen; 09-08-2012 at 09:58 PM.
    Treeleaf Unsui
    Blog: http://fugenblog.blogspot.com/

  33. #33
    Senior Member galen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fugen View Post
    Hi.

    Reading all your responses reminds me of when i read about one of the last talks Aitken roshi did, and was asked to present an koan as well
    as an answer to it.
    It's in the book, "After the ecstacy, the laundry" by jack kornfield.



    Thank you for your practice.

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen

    Hi Fugen,

    In your responses to others, it would be nice if you posted the poster, otherwise we have to search (poor me, i just became a victim ). Thanks for your responses here, and for taking the high seat on this koan, well done.

    ps... woops, i just noticed on the others you have........ proceed
    Last edited by galen; 09-08-2012 at 08:55 PM.
    Nothing Special

  34. #34
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    The whole Universe
    Spiral in a boundless bowl
    And the bowl itself
    迎 Geika

  35. #35
    If Sansho had replied, "OK, I won't," all would have been lost.

    An example of someone who has given herself entirely to others: my Mother comes as close as anyone I know. I don't think she has a selfish bone in her body. Everything in her personal and professional life is directed to serving others. I don't know how she does it. I sadly did not get those genes and struggle with selfishness. She is my Bodhisattva of Selflessness.

    Gassho, Mom
    _/\_

    Gassho, Kaishin / Matt
    Gassho,
    Kaishin

  36. #36
    Friend of Treeleaf Myozan Kodo's Avatar
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    Hi Fugen,
    Being a parent is teaching me a bit about forgetting myself in service. Many days that is hard.

    I think the entire universe gives itself selflessly at every moment. I also think that most people are selfless at many instances during the day ... Some more so ... Those that devote their lives to service.

    And isn't everything extinguished and made new at each instance that the Dharmakaya pulses with its unknowable life?

    Gassho
    Myozan
    Myozan Kodo
    Ordained Soto Zen Priest in Training
    Dublin, Ireland

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.
    "Here the way unfolds."

  37. #37
    Friend of Treeleaf Daido's Avatar
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    To give yourself freely and expect nothing in return. A gift given with no expectations. No extra. I think Myozan's example of a parent and the universe are a beautiful ones. A listener during zazen. A parent to yourself. A complete listener.

    Gassho,

    Daido
    Jiken Daido - Unsui at Treeleaf's Brother Sangha, the Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage.

    Do not just accept what I say. Decide for yourself if it rings true for you

  38. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by Myozan Kodo View Post
    Hi Fugen,
    Being a parent is teaching me a bit about forgetting myself in service. Many days that is hard.

    I think the entire universe gives itself selflessly at every moment. I also think that most people are selfless at many instances during the day ... Some more so ... Those that devote their lives to service.

    And isn't everything extinguished and made new at each instance that the Dharmakaya pulses with its unknowable life?

    Gassho
    Myozan
    Beautifully put,

    _/\_

    Pontus
    In a spring outside time, flowers bloom on a withered tree;
    you ride a jade elephant backwards, chasing the winged dragon-deer;
    now as you hide far beyond innumerable peaks--
    the white moon, a cool breeze, the dawn of a fortunate day

  39. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by Myozan Kodo View Post
    ... the entire universe gives itself selflessly at every moment ...
    Beautiful ... thank you.

    Gassho
    Michael
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  40. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by Myozan Kodo View Post
    Hi Fugen,
    Being a parent is teaching me a bit about forgetting myself in service. Many days that is hard.

    I think the entire universe gives itself selflessly at every moment. I also think that most people are selfless at many instances during the day ... Some more so ... Those that devote their lives to service.

    And isn't everything extinguished and made new at each instance that the Dharmakaya pulses with its unknowable life?

    Gassho
    Myozan
    Hi.

    Yes, that is one very good example.
    There was an sit-along on the topic of parenthood some time ago:
    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...ghlight=parent

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen
    Treeleaf Unsui
    Blog: http://fugenblog.blogspot.com/

  41. #41
    Parenting is a big life change that way. That I would sacrifice my own life for another being without hesitation... it's like a billion years of evolution, without hesitation. Our guy was born at 27 weeks and spent months in the hospital... at one point weighing just under 2 lbs. That vulnerability... awakens something.


    Gassho, kojip.
    大山

  42. #42
    Treeleaf Unsui/Engineer Kyonin's Avatar
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    Treeleaf Angoperiod is coming up, in what ways can you devote yourself entirely to others, making yourself unknown?
    Like Alan said, there are times when I just disappear. When I talk about the dharma and when I'm teaching something. When I help people I simple poof out of this planet.

    Do you have any examples of people devoting themselves entirely to others, and if so what are they and what have you learned from them?
    I have many heroes in my life. Some of them are known, some of then aren't, like Friar Storm, a Mexican Catholic friar that needed money to raise his town's orphans. He didn't know how to do anything other than to preach, so he decided to put on a luchador mask and stepped into an arena.

    He has risen about 200 kids into adulthood and they have become medics, engineers and so on.

    He's an inspiration because he has gone against everything to help kids.
    Please remember I am only a priest in training. I could be wrong in everything I say. Slap me if needed.

    The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one. Mr. Spock

  43. #43
    Member Thane's Avatar
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    On first reading i thought Rinzai was not pleased with Sansho's response to his questions. However i see now that he was pointing to something deeper.

    Gassho

    Thane

  44. #44
    Hi Thane and others reading this.

    Yes, one thing about koans is that they sometimes include a lot of refences to other cases and sayings.
    I'm not saying that you need to know them, but it can give you an opportunity to get an wider understanding of it if you do.
    In this case it might look like he's not pleased with what he responded, but in further investigation you discover that it doesn't have to be so.

    Thank you for pointing this out.

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen


    Quote Originally Posted by Thane View Post
    On first reading i thought Rinzai was not pleased with Sansho's response to his questions. However i see now that he was pointing to something deeper.

    Gassho

    Thane
    Treeleaf Unsui
    Blog: http://fugenblog.blogspot.com/

  45. #45
    Member Thane's Avatar
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    Hi Fugen. Thanks for your reply. I like this koan but it took me a while to see what it was pointing at. This is one of the reasons why i am so grateful for this book club

    Another interesting line and perhaps one i struggle with is in the preface to the assembly. It reads"mean treatment, like breaking a wooden pillow, should be used. What about when its time to depart?"

    Interesting phrase. I stuggle with the idea of being mean. I presume this is trying to stop us trainees from setting up ideals about how things should be, hence why some of the treatment dished out at monastery's in the east seem cruel to a western softy like me! But maybe this is being cruel to be kind so that we are not holding on to ideals and false views when the time does come to depart.

    Gassho

    Thane

  46. #46
    Senior Member galen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thane View Post
    Hi Fugen. Thanks for your reply. I like this koan but it took me a while to see what it was pointing at. This is one of the reasons why i am so grateful for this book club

    Another interesting line and perhaps one i struggle with is in the preface to the assembly. It reads"mean treatment, like breaking a wooden pillow, should be used. What about when its time to depart?"

    Interesting phrase. I stuggle with the idea of being mean. I presume this is trying to stop us trainees from setting up ideals about how things should be, hence why some of the treatment dished out at monastery's in the east seem cruel to a western softy like me! But maybe this is being cruel to be kind so that we are not holding on to ideals and false views when the time does come to depart.

    Gassho

    Thane

    Thane,

    I took it as tough love (even the mean part). Loving, but not so soft as we may miss the lessons to our true nature (even the use of the stick was seen as loving compassion by many seeking enlightenment; many sitting, even requested it to startle them back into full concentration). 8th century zen is sometimes hard with many levels going on with hidden meanings and lessons... it seems. I thought the last line of `when its time to depart' pointed at the same thing, still pressing to get It now, because there is not `time to waist in This life. Thank you for bringing this up!

    This is upside down and going backwards , but it seems the first line (probably different then most here looked at it) could mean, if you give yourself up completely to others without truly knowing your own true nature, what do you really have to give? Many in that context are co-dependent to others (esp in todays Western societies), and are psychologically problematic with their own well being. You can give all you want to others and if thats your whole life cause, you may lose, or never find yourself in that resolve. Also, without the Dharmas, you should be fine on your own, because no teaching or person (in phenomena) is needed if you are in your own true Buddha nature. For me, that is what this opening represents. Get it while its hot, baby , no time to spare.... Right Now!!
    Last edited by galen; 09-21-2012 at 04:07 PM.
    Nothing Special

  47. #47
    Hi Thane and Galen.

    Excellent posts, let me just add that being mean is not the same as being evil, and as you both talked about, tough love is what is pointed at here.
    And yes, tough love is sometimes needed, sometimes not appropriate.

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen
    Treeleaf Unsui
    Blog: http://fugenblog.blogspot.com/

  48. #48
    Senior Member galen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fugen View Post
    Hi Thane and Galen.

    Excellent posts, let me just add that being mean is not the same as being evil, and as you both talked about, tough love is what is pointed at here.
    And yes, tough love is sometimes needed, sometimes not appropriate.

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen

    Thank you, Fugen. My thoughts on mean here may have been out `there somewhere, after I had thought about it. My question for you is, when is tough love not appropriate?
    Nothing Special

  49. #49
    Quote Originally Posted by galen View Post
    Thank you, Fugen. My thoughts on mean here may have been out `there somewhere, after I had thought about it. My question for you is, when is tough love not appropriate?
    Hi.

    In general i would say when the receiver is not ready for it, or otherwise unappropriate by for example bad language or harmful acts.
    If anyone has an good example of this be free to say so.

    Mtfbwy
    Fugen
    Treeleaf Unsui
    Blog: http://fugenblog.blogspot.com/

  50. #50
    Can you know beforehand when something will be appropriate? Isn't it determined by the conditions in that moment? Dancing with life as it unfolds?

    Gassho,
    Pontus
    In a spring outside time, flowers bloom on a withered tree;
    you ride a jade elephant backwards, chasing the winged dragon-deer;
    now as you hide far beyond innumerable peaks--
    the white moon, a cool breeze, the dawn of a fortunate day

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