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Thread: The KISS principle.

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  1. #1

    The KISS principle.

    I am a fan of the KISS principle.

    Keep
    It
    Simple
    Stupid

    Has anyone come across something like this as an aid to studying Genjo Koan?

    1. Relative and absolute, don't get stuck in either.

    2. It's not about the self and no separation.

    3. Fully engage in whatever you do.

    4. There is a process to practice. We don't start at the finish.

    5. Practice is not near or far. It's always where you are standing.

    6. Impermanence. Illusion of fixity.

    7. Don't worry about the future.

    8. There is no hindrance with each person.

    9. Do not fix reality because it is not always as it seems.

    10. There is no limit to this life.

    11. Start here. Do one thing and that's mastery.

    12. This life is more than cognitive.

    13. An actualization.

    Gassho,

    John

  2. #2
    Hello John,

    I am a fan of the KISS principle as well, however IMHO texts like the Genjo Koan have to express their worth mainly through actively lived life. The fact that they are hard to understand is part of the "chewing" process that kicks us a bit in the right direction without allowing our intellect to create another object to grasp...even if the object is called "understanding the essence of the Genjo Koan". When drowning in Samsara, analytical thinking will not stop our sinking.

    Which does NOT mean to lose one's critical faculties mind you. Living Zen does not equal having a lobotomy either.

    Gassho and may your chewing be long and fruitful,

    Hans Chudo Mongen
    Chudo Mongen, Ordained Novice Priest-in-Training

  3. #3
    Thank you John,
    I think that one should not try to summarize the "essence" in something like Dogen's writings. A few years ago I was much into finding the core, the essence and writing it down in simple words. I even dreamt of a "Shobogenzo in a nutshell", so you get all the essence of it right on a silver platter. But in fact I feel that would "intellectualize" it only, put it into boxes and suddenly its dead knowledge and not alive. Anyway, there are some points you wrote which I think are good ideas to do or to be aware of.
    _()_
    Myoku

  4. #4
    Friend of Treeleaf Daido's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Myoku View Post
    A few years ago I was much into finding the core, the essence and writing it down in simple words. I even dreamt of a "Shobogenzo in a nutshell", so you get all the essence of it right on a silver platter.
    Something I generally do will all things. How can I make this info useful? How can I make it a tool to work for me? Deeps bows for your clarity to help me with mine.

    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

  5. #5
    My first real job after college was in sales and that's when I learned about the Kiss principle. It can be helpful but returning to not knowing is what I settled with.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Sydney's Avatar
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    Genjokoan is maybe a bit like a really experienced sparring partner. Engaging with it regularly can gradually impart skill as a part of one's training program.
    Diligently attain nothing. Sort of. Best not to over-think it.
    http://gplus.to/sydneytinker

  7. #7
    Genjo Koan must be walked and breathed as much as read. If you purify tea too much you just get water. Essential to life, necessary, but little taste.
    Keep
    It
    Simply
    Sitting
    Last edited by JohnsonCM; 02-24-2013 at 12:32 AM.
    Gassho,
    "Heitetsu"
    Christopher

  8. #8
    Thank you all for your insight.

    Gassho,

    John
    治 Ji (Healing)
    心​ Shin (Heart-Mind)

  9. #9
    I am reading 'Dogen's Genjo Koan: Three Commentaries'. Seems like a good book. Anybody read it too?

    Gassho,

    John
    治 Ji (Healing)
    心​ Shin (Heart-Mind)

  10. #10
    Senior Member Daisho's Avatar
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    I've just begun reading Realizing Genjokoan by Shohaku Okumura. It's my first exploration into Dogen's writing. I'll find something memorable, hi light it, and then forget it in the time it takes to read the next 2 pages! That does concern me, but I think someone here said he'd read many Zen books and thought he'd forgotten it all, later realizing some of it came back and helped clarify later teachings he encountered in his practice. I just hope that happens with me.
    Gassho,

    Daisho


    (Jack K.)

  11. #11
    Daisho,

    Just finished reading a couple of chapters of 'Realizing Genjokoan by Shohaku Okumura'. Sounds like a good book. 'Dogen's Genjo Koan: Three Commentaries' is good too but it's going to take me several reads to understand it better. I read a couple of chapters of the book Jundo recommended and I will have to re-read the book too I am sure. I am just a zen dummy when it comes to understanding what I read.

    Gassho,

    John

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Daisho View Post
    I've just begun reading Realizing Genjokoan by Shohaku Okumura. It's my first exploration into Dogen's writing. I'll find something memorable, hi light it, and then forget it in the time it takes to read the next 2 pages! That does concern me, but I think someone here said he'd read many Zen books and thought he'd forgotten it all, later realizing some of it came back and helped clarify later teachings he encountered in his practice. I just hope that happens with me.
    Me too Daisho (re: high lighting then forgetting) - I reckon learning in Zen is a bit subliminal and after a while certain teachings come back into mind/life-mind with a strong resonance.

    Gassho

    Willow

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by John C. View Post
    I am reading 'Dogen's Genjo Koan: Three Commentaries'. Seems like a good book. Anybody read it too?

    Gassho,

    John
    On Order, but the folks in it mean it has to be good.

    Also, I am in the middle of this new one. For Dogen fans, some wonderful commentaries. The title is misleading because these are just wonderful riffings on Dogen, beyond boy or girl.

    Receiving the Marrow Teachings on Dogen by Soto Zen Women Priests
    Victoria Shosan Austin (Author), Teijo Munnich (Author), Josho Pat Phelan (Author), Jan Chozen Bays (Author), Shotai De La Rosa (Author), Seisen Saunders (Author), Grace Jill Schireson (Author), Byakuren Judith Ragir (Author), Shinshu Roberts (Author), Jisho Warner (Author)


    http://www.amazon.com/Receiving-Marr.../dp/0985565101

    Gassho, Jundo
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  14. #14
    Daisho,

    I am like that too when it comes zen literature. In one ear and out the other. Nothing sticks. I think that is okay. It's designed to be confusing, at least in my case. :-)

    Gassho,

    John
    治 Ji (Healing)
    心​ Shin (Heart-Mind)

  15. #15
    Jundo,

    I am to lazy to read anything that is hard cover any more. No iBook format for the book you are reading but they have a bunch of others that I am eyeballing already.

    Gassho,

    John
    治 Ji (Healing)
    心​ Shin (Heart-Mind)

  16. #16
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  17. #17
    Got the kindle app for for the iPad and now I got the book too. Thanks for spending my money for me!

    Gassho,

    John

  18. #18
    Senior Member ZenHarmony's Avatar
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    Wow, that's incredibly reasonable for a Kindle book on the .ca site!

    Gassho,

    Lisa

  19. #19
    Senior Member Daisho's Avatar
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    Just followed the link to Amazon and found out I can borrow the book for free because I've got Amazon Prime. Such a deal!!!
    Gassho,

    Daisho


    (Jack K.)

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