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Thread: What do we mean when we say "take refuge"

  1. #1
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    What do we mean when we say "take refuge"

    Alana's selection of an excerpt from the Platform Sutra over at Dailyzen.com this month is very timely for the ordainees in the upcoming forth Tree Leaf Shukke Tokudo ceremony. It also is good reading for those who aspire to Jukai this year and all the rest of us beginners who may have forgotten who we are.

    http://www.dailyzen.com/zen/zen_reading1304.asp
    Our nature is pure like the clear sky above, and our wisdom is like the sun and moon. Our wisdom is always shining, but if externally we become attached to objects, the clouds of delusion cover up our nature, and we can't see it.
    Taking refuge is not just a passive acceptance of a belief system, but rather a very active engagement each day in awareness and the actions based on that awareness.
    gassho, Shokai
    Last edited by Shokai; 04-17-2013 at 01:25 PM.
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  2. #2
    Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest Taigu's Avatar
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    Taigu
    Taigu, teacher at Treeleaf Sangha, was born in 1964, started Zazen early and received Shukke Tokudo in 1983 at age 18 from Rev. Mokusho Zeisler of the Deshimaru Lineage. Received Dharma Transmission from Chodo Cross in 2002. Now resides in Osaka, Japan.

  3. #3
    Very nice Shokai, thank you.

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

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

  4. #4
    Perfect Shokai!
    Much needed and thank you!

    Gassho
    Shohei

  5. #5
    Thank you!

    Gassho,

    Risho

  6. #6
    Friend of Treeleaf Myozan Kodo's Avatar
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    Thanks Shokai. Every time I come here I learn something from my many teachers.
    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."

  7. #7
    Senior Member Juki's Avatar
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    Thank you. These are things I cannot be reminded of often enough.

    gassho,
    william

  8. #8
    Treeleaf Unsui/Engineer Kyonin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by William Anderson View Post
    Thank you. These are things I cannot be reminded of often enough.
    Agreed!

    Thanks, Shokai.

    Gassho,

    Kyonin
    Shuso and Ango leader for September 2014.

    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

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    Willow

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    Senior Member Heisoku's Avatar
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    Taking refuge is not just a passive acceptance of a belief system, but rather a very active engagement each day in awareness and the actions based on that awareness.
    Thank you Shokai. Gassho.
    Heisoku
    平 息

  11. #11
    Treeleaf Unsui Yugen's Avatar
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    Thank you Shokai - deep bows

    Yugen
    Please take all my comments with a grain of salt - I am a novice priest and anything I say is to be taken with a good dose of skepticism - Shodo Yugen

  12. #12
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    I had forgotten about that website. Thank you for posting, Shokai. Very good reading.
    迎 Geika

  13. #13
    Thank you for sharing, Shokai.
    Gassho,
    Kaishin

  14. #14
    Thanks so much, Shokai. I have been reflecting on the meaning of "refuge" a lot lately but have been struggling to articulate a sense of some deeper meaning I have been feeling for some time. Interestingly enough, the idea of refuge being very active kept coming up. With your help I now have a bit of clarity on what I have been feeling. So my new found understanding of taking refuge is as follows:

    Refuge is not simply a part of practice that occurs in a discreet moment each day, for example when reciting the Refuge Vows in the morning. It is truly the entirety of our practice. The entirety of our life is taking refuge; is living our vow, embodying our vow. Therefore, we are taking refuge when we sit, when we comfort a crying loved one, when we respond to the needs we witness in the world.

    Once again thank you so much. I can't express how wonderful entering practice with the Treeleaf Sangha is turning out to be. Thank you everyone.

  15. #15
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    Beautiful That's great Arnold and I'm glad I was able to tweek your mind. One gets a nice warm feeling when something like that clicks in. However, for all of us beginners it's a good practice to also talk things over with Jundo or Taigu once in a while to get a fix on real verification. Thank you for joining this sangha and for your practice.

    gasho, Shokai
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  16. #16
    Thank you Shokai; very kind of you. I will take your advice of reaching out to the teachers to heart.

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