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Thread: Youtube Meditations

  1. #1

    Youtube Meditations

    I stumbled across this video from Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche a while back, but something made me revisit it today. I thought I would share it here. Obviously this falls outside the context of zen traditions, but I like the practice-in-daily-life imagery.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FDSAAlrqAHM[/video]]

    I've found the proliferation of video online brings up some really interesting material (and we all know how great it is here on treeleaf). I'm not sure how this sort of material was distributed before Youtube - I don't think you'd ever have found it on television.

    Curious to hear anyone's thoughts. Anyone else have favorite Buddhist internet-videos?

    Gassho,
    Ryan

  2. #2

  3. #3
    Heck...If you are good you could save yourself several hundred dollars and a trip to Salt Lake City with those.

  4. #4
    Hmmm.... I have to admit that I'm inclined toward skepticism about Big Mind. Maybe that's just because it sounds a like a "quick fix" Maybe I should be more open minded about it and watch a few of these =)

    -Ryan

  5. #5
    Did any body see the ad for Big Mind in the recent edition of Tricycle. . . It literally says, "Genpo Roshi. . . One of the greatest living Zen Masters!"

    I prefer the Bozo on the bus approach.

    Then again it's of very little significance nothing is permanent, even the dharma so if somebody enjoys it in a corrupted form, great, I just won't be spending my money on it.

  6. #6
    You have to admit that it is tempting even if it seems a bit modern "instant gratification". I looked at those and while I am not qualified to declare it the next big thing or not and while meditation has been good technology for 2500 years, it is conceivable that someone may come up with something more effective. My listening to Gil Fronsdal's podcasts suggest he thinks it requires 30 years including eight month stints of meditating 20 hours a day. If family history is any indication I will be a crazy old man by then. Others suggest five years for good result. I know such thinking is an obstacle to the present but one would like to know.

    Maybe this helps:
    Ma-tsu was doing Zazen daily in his hut on Nan-yueh Mountain. Watching him one day, Huai-jang (Nanyue Huairang, Nangaku Ejo) 677-744, his master, thought, "He will become a great monk," and inquired:


    "Worthy one, what are you trying to attain by sitting?"

    Ma-tsu replied: "I am trying to become a Buddha."

    Thereupon Huai-jang picked up a piece of roof tile and began grinding it on a rock in front of him.

    "What are you doing, Master?" asked Ma-tsu.

    "I am polishing it to make a mirror," said Huai-jang.

    "How could polishing a tile make a mirror?"

    "How could sitting in Zazen make a Buddha?"

    Ma-tsu asked: "What should I do, then?"

    Huai-jang replied: "If you were driving a cart and it didn't move, would you whip the cart or whip the ox?"

    Ma-tsu made no reply.

    Huai-jang continued: "Are you training yourself in Zazen? Are you striving to become a sitting Buddha? If you are training yourself in Zazen let me tell you that the substance of Zazen is neither sitting nor lying down. If you are training yourself to become a sitting Buddha, let me tell you that Buddha has no one form [such as sitting]. The Dharma, which has no fixed abode, allows of no distinctions. If you try to become a sitting Buddha, this is no less than killing the Buddha. If you cling to the sitting form you will not attain the essential truth."


    Anyway, I found those you-tube bits while trying to find the source of the Heart Sutra recording that accompanies the meditation timer on this site. I never found it but I saw some amazingly hokey presentations that looked like a Chinese Buddhist version of a Billy Graham evangelist meeting.

    In the mean-time I continue to sit.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Drut
    You have to admit that it is tempting even if it seems a bit modern "instant gratification". I looked at those and while I am not qualified to declare it the next big thing or not and while meditation has been good technology for 2500 years, it is conceivable that someone may come up with something more effective. My listening to Gil Fronsdal's podcasts suggest he thinks it requires 30 years including eight month stints of meditating 20 hours a day. If family history is any indication I will be a crazy old man by then. Others suggest five years for good result. I know such thinking is an obstacle to the present but one would like to know.
    Hi Drut,

    Allow me to wax a bit poetic ...

    Realizations happen in an instant. Some stay, some fade in hours or an instant. Some are perceived clearly, some occur below the surface. Yet all stay with us forever, in one way or another, even the ones that seem not to last. How? Like the single strokes of a sculptor's chisel, like drops of water beating down upon rock ... they come and go in an instant, yet last. Each single stroke and drop is here and gone, yet joins with the rest to carve stone into new forms ... its mark remains permanently upon the rock.

    In our 'Just Sitting' Practice, Realization arises from the radical release of all search for Realization. There is nothing to change. Releasing all need for Realization is the greatest Realization. Giving up the need for change is a revolutionary change. Dropping all friction between our self and the universe drops the walls between the two. Thus, we find that this very instant of Zazen is complete and 'fills the universe'. It is an expression of, and wholly, all of the universe. We find too that --every-- action of our lives is complete and fills the universe, is an expression and whole with all the universe.

    Realizing such perspectives may take an instant. But to truly grasp these facts, down to the marrow, takes each moment by moment of Practice ... like those chisel strokes, like those drops of water that wear down the stone. In fact, Zen Practice is a lifetime practice ... it is never over or complete (even though each moment is complete). Each instant of your life is timeless and complete, yet life takes a lifetime.

    Yes, I think that technology, and our knowledge of the workings of the human brain, will allow some quick 'short-cut' ways to experience various 'Zen-like' experiences. Hell, they already exist, in the form of various pharmaceuticals and hypnotist's tricks ... many experiences can be summoned very much like what we experience on the cushion. 'Big Mind' (when I experienced parts of it) does this.

    But they all miss the real point:

    They are not Practice ... they do not serve to completely recarve our lives. That takes daily effort (to be effortless), and constant attention. There are few short-cuts for developing new habits, values and ways of thinking. What is a good analogy?

    Cigarette smoking can be dropped in an instant. Yes a healthy lifestyle comes day by day. Something like that.

    I think that Genpo is selling a taste a Zen, a bit of stage hypnosis and some snake oil. I don't think that necessarily a bad thing, but it is not 'once and for always life fixing' ... and it is certainly not worth the $1400 pricetag ... I think.

    http://209.85.165.104/search?q=cache:hO ... cd=4&gl=us

    Big Mind will induce certain Zen-like states in participants (I know because I was there), but it is not what we are doing here ... which is more the slow process of training to be athletes of the mind. Something like that.

    Pardon my flowery language, but some topics just lend themselves to it.

    Gassho, Jundo

    PS- The Heart Sutra with the timers ...

    http://www.treeleaf.org/meditation.html

    ... is in Korean. I just liked it at the time, as it had a little jump. I cannot find the original file, but will look for it when I have some time.

  8. #8
    I just noticed the incense burns with the time. Hehe. cool.

  9. #9
    I just recieved an email. "Buy Integral Institute Kit and recieve 7 free gifts!"

    Hey Jundo maybe Treeleaf should do something like this. Like a fruit basket or something.

    Gassho

    P.S. That's a joke by the way. However.....

  10. #10

  11. #11
    Maybe it should be socks. I've heard that is the most thoughtless gift.

  12. #12
    Maybe it should be socks. I've heard that is the most thoughtless gift.

    That's great. I wish I had thought of that one.

    I seem to have hijacked this post but I am very happy with the response and, while perhaps not as well articulated in my mind as Jundo has expressed, it is as I had expected. My intent was mostly provovative with a whisper of hope that it would be useful.

    So back to you-tube and the like. There are a bunch of lectures by Brad Warner on Punk and Zen...

  13. #13
    He rags on Genpo mercilessly and also elicits strong responses within the community.

  14. #14
    I think you must have taken that literally.

    R

  15. #15
    O.K. Here's one. "Zen Fighting."

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid ... 2236826328


    Not to be taken too seriously but shows what others think of us a bit. Personally I was rooting for the "suit" as I thought he was less tainted although the other guy impressed me sitting seiza on the bare concrete. The image was very left brain/right brain. The result was perhaps predictable.

  16. #16
    Drut-

    Haha, the "Zen Fighting" was pretty funny with the stereotypes!

  17. #17
    Senior Member Martin's Avatar
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    Jundo, all

    I was interested to hear your comments about Big Mind. I went to a Big Mind session in London last January. I had come across Big Mind on Brad Warner's blog, where Brad (whose writing I really like) was getting quite emotional on the subject, and his hostility rather perversely made me want to go and see for myself, so when I found out that Genpo Roshi was in London I went along.

    It wasn't expensive, and I didn't object to the entrance fee. The hall had to paid for, presumably. I don't know where the $1400 comes from: I can't recall exactly what I paid, but it was comparable to what I'd pay to see my local soccer team get beaten on a Saturday. I enjoyed the day, and when Genpo Roshi asked to speak to "Big Mind" I did experience a state of mind. It was just that; a state of mind. Not unlike what I experience on the cushion. Maybe even the same, I don't know. I'm not even sure if "same" is meaningful in that context. But as for attaining "enlightenment" or experiencing a "quick fix" (or "slow fix" come to that), good grief, no. I had a nice sandwich, though.

    I don't know enough about hypnosis to know whether there was an element of that. I'm not sure that the experience, such as it was, would be "invalidated" if there were: it was still just what it was. I did want to say, though, that whatever others may say about it, and whatever the hype that has got Brad Warner so exercised on the subject (which may come from Genpo Roshi, I don't know), on the occasion when I saw him Genpo Roshi was careful to stress that Big Mind is not a substitute for Practice; quite the reverse. He didn't for one moment present it as "instant enlightenment", more as something that may help with Practice.

    I believe he's coming here again next January but I don't think I'll go again. It's not that I thought it was harmful - it might even be helpful, and I wouldn't discourage anyone else from going - it just seems a bit irrelevant to my daily Practice. Maybe I don't see that I should have to go to London when my cushion is just next to me.

    If anyone were interested I even have a DVD of the Big Mind "process" (which I picked up for my son who is studying Religion and Philosophy and who was interested but couldn't go) which I'll gladly send on (if you give me your address) as I can't imagine either I or my son are going to watch it again. No $1400 fee either!

    Gassho

    Martin

  18. #18
    Hey Martin. Keep sitting

    This stuff could probably cause some state. I don't know. I just know that zen is not a state and what this could be mistaken for is some experience that deludes you from your actual experience. Zen is infront of your nose not in your mind. Actually, it is your nose and your mind.

    Anyway, Jundo?

    PS. I tried the one on youtube and "big surprise" nothing. I felt uplifted for about 4 hours and then I felt like crap and confused again. The goal of zen is not a state of non-dualism. It is a state of non-dualistic "EXPERIENCE".

    Jundo? (this means Jundo what do you say?)

    Gassho

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by will

    Jundo? (this means Jundo what do you say?)

    Gassho
    I say ... everybody back to your Zafu! Best to talk about some of these issues with silence.

    Gassho, Jundo

  20. #20
    Hello all,

    I've just finished reading Beyond Sanity and Madness, Genpo Roshi's book on Dogen. I know it's a no-no to talk about being disappointed with teachers and all that, but I must admit being a little disappointed in the book.

    Can mainly be summarized by the following points:

    -CUT OUT THE ROOT OF DUALISTIC THINKING
    -NO REALLY
    -CUT IT

    Lots of talk of the heroism of the crazy old masters who'd break people's legs or cut off their arms to bring them to enlightenment. They get called "compassionate" a lot. Genpo suggests that if you think this is crazy, you are not on the true way! It's frustrating.

    Gassho.

  21. #21
    Genpo can kiss my a**. woops. hehe. I meant art. Yeah. Thats it.

    Gassho

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Justin
    Lots of talk of the heroism of the crazy old masters who'd break people's legs or cut off their arms to bring them to enlightenment. They get called "compassionate" a lot. Genpo suggests that if you think this is crazy, you are not on the true way! It's frustrating.
    Thanks for this Justin. This is a much more powerful explanation of why his teachings will probably not worth pursuing for me than the pro/anti Big Mind blog posts.

    I think some zen masters need some WWBD (What Would Buddha Do) bracelets. If being on the true way means seeing extreme violence as compassionate, I'd rather stay on my false way.

    Helena.

  23. #23
    I have been gone for a while. Went to a memorial for a friend...was a good time. Here is a list to keep you busy.

    http://www.theworsthorse.net/vidotm/vidotm-archive.html

  24. #24
    Sorry to hear about your friend, Drut.

    Thanks for the video links - I have to second the "Good Lord!" re: the Gucci ad. :?

    The fact that I've never heard of the Casket Seal Dharani in no way impacts the awesomeness of this animation:

    http://hk.video.yahoo.com/video/video.html?id=320935

    And here are two pretty cool (IMO) Heart Sutra chants (the 2nd one can get stuck in my head all day!):

    http://<iframe class="restrain" titl...="0"></iframe>

    http://<iframe class="restrain" titl...="0"></iframe>

  25. #25
    Thanks Paige. Although people seem to look at me funny or even insist on having the last word of condolance when I say it but I think those here will understand when I say it is not to be regreted. Not that I reacted that way when I first heard of his death but I got there eventually. In any case he didn't miss much in life.

    http://www.backroadsboogie.com/intro.htm

    Motorcycles...racing, touring, sport and dirt biking. Bicycles...many charity rides for AIDS, breast cancer amongst others. Sea kyaking. Home renovation. He was friend for life to me and about 100 other people who showed up at the memorial. He had a real talent for friendship.

  26. #26
    Genpo Roshi is the roshi of my local Zen center (Kanzeon ZC in Salt Lake City). I haven't been to Kanzeon since I attended their introductory meditation classes years ago. I have heard of Big Mind recently, but hadn't seen anything or gotten any detail until I watched the videos just now.

    I did find the videos helpful, somewhat, in a partially experiential way, but mostly in an intellectual way. It seems a little hokey to me, but the distinctions Genpo Roshi made were interesting and somewhat helpful, I suppose, in understanding what a "fully enlightened" state might look like. It all seemed like a lot of visualization exercises...

    Even if we accept the premise as true, it still falls, for me, into the wisdom section of the Noble Eightfold Path. It still requires the practice to be able to implement it and sustain it in real life. Is that what enlightenment is? Just glimpses of this state, then an ever growing experience of that state? Is the "sudden" school referring to the glimpses and the "gradual" school referring to the practice, which helps the experience become more and more frequent and persistent?

  27. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by paige

    The fact that I've never heard of the Casket Seal Dharani in no way impacts the awesomeness of this animation:

    http://hk.video.yahoo.com/video/video.html?id=320935
    Thank you Paige.

    It is amazing what magic stories the human imagination will come up with when it cannot see the magic right before its own eyes. I particularly liked the part at the end promising "longevity, high positions and fame without striving, defeat enemies without fighting, a noble husband or beautiful wife without searching, smart sons and pretty daughters PLUS every other wish fullfilled" all for building a Stupa. Stupa-pendous!

    The style, in fact, reminds me of some animations that the Aum Shinrikyo cult (the folks who poisoned the Tokyo subways) made of their guru, Shoko Asahara. Please have a look at these, they are MUST SEE. not be be missed.

    (watch only the first couple of minutes of this first one ... then it gets talky)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pfXzTb6wAdE[/video]]

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLtPfsUmVd0[/video]]


    Thank you, Paige, for the very pretty Heart Sutra recordings.

    Gassho, Jundo

  28. #28
    Hi Kevin,

    Gee, you asked THE Question!! :-) This is the question where the teacher might tell you, "Don't ask, just sit!!!".

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin
    ... the distinctions Genpo Roshi made were interesting and somewhat helpful, I suppose, in understanding what a "fully enlightened" state might look like. ... Is that what enlightenment is? Just glimpses of this state, then an ever growing experience of that state? Is the "sudden" school referring to the glimpses and the "gradual" school referring to the practice, which helps the experience become more and more frequent and persistent?
    And that "don't ask, just sit" is really the best advise. Otherwise, I am trying to describe to you the sweetness of vanilla ice cream when you have never tasted it for yourself. So, please get back to the cushion and keep churning your ice cream.

    The one thing I do want to say is that, in our "Just Sitting" way, we have to be careful with the idea that there is some "fully enlightened", once and for all, state we are searching for that ... the instant we get IT, well, we're done, time for the party!

    I might just say this to you: Insights, large and small, come in an instant, now and then. They are many, and many varied in the "lessons" (better word: perspectives) they provide. But making them truly part of you and your life is a matter of time and learning ... some of which takes a lifetime.

    I still think that Genpo Roshi is using a bit of hypnosis and some parlor tricks to give his audience one or two quick and easy "Zen like" experiences (like giving somebody a taste of a quick appetizer, not the whole banquet) Further, it will do little for someone without the rest ... without the lifetime of cumulative Practice.

    I should mention to you a subject that has come up here from time to time, since you are near Kanzeon. Genpo Roshi's Lineage (vie Maezumi Roshi) is Soto/Dogen/"Just Sitting" in name, but is actually a hybrid with a particular subgroup of Rinzai Zen that emphasized "WOW" experiences, big Kensho breakthrughs and the like via intense Koan focused Zazen. I believe that Genpo Roshi, like many in that lineage, have backed off from that quite a bit in the current generation of teachers. However, that theme still pops up from time to time in some of their wording in teachings. I think.

    As in the material I sent you yesterday, in our "Just Sitting" Zazen as I teach ... we seek nothing, and no special state. However, living without seeking IS a very special state of being.

    Now, go back and sit!

    Gassho, Jundo

  29. #29
    Senior Member kirkmc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo

    I might just say this to you: Insights, large and small, come in an instant, now and then. They are many, and many varied in the "lessons" (better word: perspectives) they provide. But making them truly part of you and your life is a matter of time and learning ... some of which takes a lifetime.
    This is probably the most important thing I've learned here in the six months or so of hanging around the Leaf. So many books on the dharma present enlightenment as a miracle, as something that can be obtained either mathematically (ie, prostrate 108,000 times, etc.) or through mooing. Yet this lesson so corresponds with my own experience: these little flashes of kensho that add up over time. Understanding this also helps me not grasp at these flashes, and not seek enlightenment.

    A killer teaching indeed!

    Kirk

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Drut
    Beautiful smile. Being hard of hearing I couldn't catch all of it. Music can be especially hard for me to understand but I think I caught the jist of it.
    here is the lyric:

    What about me?
    by Sakyong Mipham

    What about me?
    That’s my first thought every morning.
    What happened to me?
    It’s the last thought every night.
    Has this gotten me anywhere?
    Any more friends? Any more love?
    It should. It should have, by now.
    In fact, by now I should be a bundle of joy.
    Because I say this mantra every day.

    What about me? What about me? What about..

    In fact, it’s embarassing
    I say this mantra all day long.
    Like the beating of my heart: What about me?

    What about me? What about me? What about..

    When I take a shower, I think: “what about me?”
    I hope this shower makes me feel happy.
    I hope this kiss makes me feel happy.
    I hope this lunch makes me happy.
    I hope these clothes make me feel happy.
    I hope this donut, this cup of coffee,
    This new affair, this new job….

    What about me? What about me?
    What about me? What about me?
    What about me?

    This new spiritual practice,
    This new movie, this new CD
    Oh, this new CD will make me happy…

    What about me? That’s my first thought every morning.
    What about me?
    What happens to me? It’s my last thought every night.
    Has this gotten me any more love? Any more joy?

    This new city. This new country.
    This new planet. This new universe makes me happy.

    You know what? None of it will make you happy
    Unless you do one simple thing:
    Change “me” for “you.”
    Change “me” for “you.”

    Just wake up in the morning, and try something wild.
    Just wake up, and not “me.”
    Instead, say "you, be happy."
    May you be happy.
    May you be happy.

    What about you?
    That’s my first thought every morning.
    What happens to you? It’s my last thought every night.
    It has given me so much more love. So much more joy.

    When I give you a big fat kiss, take a shower,
    Make my bed, when I dance,
    May make you happy.
    When I give you the remote control
    May make you happy.
    When I sit on a park bench by myself,
    When I feel the sun, the breeze,
    May make you happy.
    When I just look at you, and stare at your eyes.
    May make you happy.

    And you know what?
    When you’re happy, I’m happy.
    That’s the formula:
    First you, then me.
    That’s all happiness is.
    It’s just the heart being free.

  31. #31
    This has nothing directly to do with Buddhism, let alone Zen or Soto, but, well, watch it and try not to smile a little bit:

    Free Hugs China
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLImQtyjI10[/video]]

    I like the clip toward the end with the woman in the wheel chair. Now I'm going to run and hide before I get accused of being a total sap.

    -Ryan

  32. #32
    Naah Ryan. You're no sap. You got heart. It's a good thing.


    Thank you Walter. That made a big difference in my understanding of that song. While you hear, I have to interpret and infer from context. It makes for a very interesting world sometimes. You should see some of the things I "hear" people say depending on fatigue, attention, backgroud noise or accoustics. It's not a big deal. It's how I live life. I appreciate your help though.

  33. #33
    No wait there's more:

    Diamond sutra chanted in English. A sample clip... http://www.dharmaflix.com/wiki/Performa ... in_English


    And if you scroll down on this one you can hear the whole 55 min.s without paying $9.00 to itunes or 17.00 to Amazon for the whole CD.... http://www.spiritual-happiness.com/chanting.html


    Cool of her to offer it for free if you just want to listen.

  34. #34

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