Tugas Gunadarma Gunadarma Tutorial VB.NET Download OST Anime Soundtrack Anime Opening Anime Ending Anime OST Anime Japan Download Lagu Anime Jepang

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 50 of 90

Thread: The beast, and other representatives of the darkness...

  1. #1
    Stephanie
    Guest

    The beast, and other representatives of the darkness...

    Been doing a lot of introspection over the last few days, questioning again, wondering why it seems that a lot of the answers that religion provides don't satisfy... Priests and teachers will say, "You're just not enlightened yet," or "You haven't been saved," but maybe they don't have the answers either? One of the more fascinating explorations I've made in Buddhism is the difference between the ideal that even the more "open" and "down-to-earth" teachers present, and the actual content of their lives...

    Was briefly involved with a (perhaps self-appointed) "Zen teacher" who had just about every demon imaginable ranging through his closet... and he tried to repress it, hide its face, but that Beast came out, oh boy... the peace and happiness he claimed to have found often seemed little more than a veneer over a deep, stormy layer of inner torment, a seething cauldron of violent rages, bottomless lust, self-loathing, misanthropy... all those tasty things that more of us wrestle with more deeply than we publicly acknowledge...

    He might be the most "egregious" example of a dichotomy between public persona and private demons I personally know of, but so many other teachers I deeply admire have eventually disclosed, willingly or unwillingly, consciously or subconsciously, that the darkness lives in them too... Who says you have to be a rock star to cash in on sex, drugs, and rock and roll? Putting yourself in the position of "guru" or even mild "teacher" is a nice way to get that power, that charisma. And maybe you start out decent, mild, but maybe that's just because nothing has yet cast the scent that stirs the Beast... But as soon as people start giving you that attention, even that adoration, out it comes...

    It's in me too, and I know it. The darkness, the Beast... and I've had an uneasy relationship with it for as long as I can remember. The religious stories tell us that this is Bad, and we must resist or overcome it, but what if the Devil has something to teach us, to tell us? About who we really are? And what this world really is? And I'm not just talking about the "reptile brain," the basic sex and aggression drives, but something more, something deeper... That precipice of existential terror, that soul-bleakness that drags you under? What is that? Is it just a melancholic personality thing? Or do we all have it in there, in us, somewhere? What Freud called thanatos?

    All this seems to me to tie together somehow. All of those things we tend to file under "the dark side." Why is it so appealing to us, even as we are also drawn to ideal moral images? Why might we like to sit zazen and help old ladies cross the street but then delight in violent films and music that mines the nether regions of the soul? What's up with that? When we get religion or get Zen or whatever, are we only half alive, or in denial, or liars, if we try to deny the appeal of the darkness? Is it all just a big mind game with no nice 'n' tidy conclusion? What if 'happiness' isn't enough? What if a 'decent, good, sensible' life really, honestly bores us? Can we really be happy if we try to shut out Eros--not just desire, but desire, the range of animal hungers that really gets us going, even if we might not feel comfortable talking about what gets our animal awake and on the prowl in polite company?

    Any thoughts on this? Anyone else out there have an intimate acquaintanceship with the Devil? The Beast? The http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A-ednnJsOq4[/video]]darkness?

  2. #2
    ... little more than a veneer over a deep, stormy layer of inner torment, a seething cauldron of violent rages, bottomless lust, self-loathing, misanthropy... all those tasty things that more of us wrestle with more deeply than we publicly acknowledge...
    Dear Steph,

    You obviously have had a bad experience or two down the line. But not everybody fits that image. Some very nice people are Zen teachers, some brilliant folks too. Unfortunately, there are bad apples and troubled, abusive people too who pop up here and there (same everywhere from Catholic Priests to Rabbis, same for any profession really).

    Can I make you a promise year by year, or better, month by month or day by day or moment by moment? If you find ANYTHING very threatening about me or this place, run (don't walk) away. I will be on the Sit-a-long everyday, I will be here everyday ... If you detect anything really off or abusive about me or this place, run fast. Okay? Don't even wave goodbye.

    You have been around here a couple a weeks. Don't be looking so fast for the "Beast" or the "Devil". Be more open, less defensive, less suspicious (until the point something truly gives you cause to be).

    This Sangha, like any place, is not perfect. Nobody in it is. But, we are coming up to the end of our first year (8 more to go!) and there have been no big scandals (no small ones either save an email I wrote to Brad Warner telling him my opinion on some things), no abuses, no sex or financial scandals, no crimes or misdemeanors. Jundo (me) is a basically harmless clown, not a bad teacher, and most of the folks here are kind and helpful.

    Relax ... if and until you have something you can point to otherwise.

    Gassho, Jundo

    PS- I want to entertain the notion of some kind of group reaction today that upset several folks simultaneously, one person igniting the next. But I truly am stumped at the cause(s) so suddenly. Can anybody point out the trigger? Anything I can do?

    PPS - Okay, I admit to the bottomless lust ... but I keep it in check. My wife has two blackbelts in Karate and Aikido.

  3. #3
    I think there're reasons for the striking similarities between the New Testament (and Genesis) acounts of Satan as a tempter, and the way Mara is presented within Buddhism.
    Temptation... the willingness to "sin..." comes from within entirely. And that's where the battle rages- internally. People can claim to have it all under control, they can say they have a grip on their own inner evils, but usually it's a matter of self delusion, because everyone has SOMETHING in their lives that can make that monster pop right up to the surface.
    And, I've found that the people who sem the most under contol, the folks who claim to have found THE WAY to peace and harmony with life are almost always the pones who, when the beast rears his ugly head, are the most shocking and unrecognizable. And when THAT is the face that becomes the recognizable one... yikes!

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by HezB
    I don't know about causes and all that. But I was reminded how powerful and creative the human subconscious was last night.

    I dreamt that I was on a bus tour organized by Nishijima Roshi. It was like a camping holiday stopping at various camp sites. We got into the bus and I sat in the seat next to Gudo. I was a bit self conscious to be sitting beside an elderly Japanese man, I didn't know what to say so I just sat there.

    After a while I noticed Gudo looking intently at my head: "You have nits you know" he said (nits= head lice). I can't remember what I said in reply, or if I replied, but he said "stay still" and he started to pick them out for me.

    Monkeys, being still, nit-picking.... all the themes where there.

    I hereby confess to Dogen Sangha Universal: I have nits.

    Regards,

    Harry.
    The question is whether Nishijima roshi ate them or not?

  5. #5
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Jundo, I appreciate your sincere and kind-hearted reply.

    But I think I must not have communicated too well what's riled my curiosity of late... It isn't some tormented feeling of victimhood. It's a sharp-toothed hunger of my own. My own "animal" pacing back and forth. My issue isn't that I'm afraid of the devil; my issue is that I kind of like the devil. I find it boring when someone doesn't seem to be demon-haunted in one way or another. What I saw with this "Zen teacher" with whom I was involved just seemed to me to be honest; not everyone would have his particular kinks and issues, but I think everyone's got their own Beast, whatever it is. And I'm saying that maybe all that more innocuous-seeming people do is repress or shut up the Beast, but underneath it all, it's still there. And again, this thought doesn't scare or upset me. It fascinates me.

    And perhaps you're generally a "nice, decent" person, but I suspect if one dug around in the halls of your subconscious long enough, they'd find your Beast too. And what I'm saying, is... maybe it's not so bad. Depending on what it is. I get bored and cynical when in a room full of people trying to be "nice." Don't get me wrong--I deeply value gentleness and kindness, but I value the instinctual side too, the wolf. I feel gratified when I see it come out in people in positions of religious power, because it supports my hypothesis that no one ever fully tames it. And again, that's not a lament... I think wolfishness has its place in the world too.

  6. #6
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by KvonNJ
    And, I've found that the people who sem the most under contol, the folks who claim to have found THE WAY to peace and harmony with life are almost always the pones who, when the beast rears his ugly head, are the most shocking and unrecognizable. And when THAT is the face that becomes the recognizable one... yikes!
    Yes, I've seen this too. But then sometimes the Beast isn't so shocking. Sometimes it's just like... a dog licking itself. I mean, yeah, some people find it gross, or unseemly, or whatever, but... it feels good to the dog, and who is it hurting? Would one really want to live in a crystal lotus Pure Land where no one had the urge to lick themselves...?

    Temptation... the willingness to "sin..." comes from within entirely. And that's where the battle rages- internally. People can claim to have it all under control, they can say they have a grip on their own inner evils, but usually it's a matter of self delusion, because everyone has SOMETHING in their lives that can make that monster pop right up to the surface.
    Agreed 100,000%. Except I wonder... What is "sin"? It's a bit of a different perspective in Buddhism, not so much sin, but still the idea that having "worldly desires" is somehow ignorant or unenlightened. So far in my practice, developing deeper awareness of the cyclical nature of samsara has led to detachment, and a different relationship to desire, but it hasn't made the desire go away. And nor would I want it to! But I often wonder... this truth that I hunger for... is it to be found in the cloud palace of detached celibate renunciation, or on the streets, in sweaty sheets, full-on dancing with desire and its attendant mysteries?

    What of Dogen's lifestyle, and then what of Ikkyu's? Did Dogen get something that Ikkyu didn't? Did Ikkyu get something that Dogen didn't? That's what I wonder. Because for all of the other things I do and don't want, my deepest hunger is to know the truth, in whatever way I can know it. I have the courage and willpower and training to go either way--I could go to the monastery and live austerely; I could wander the world and let my animal come out more... like I sometimes think I should... but what is the right way?

    Am I just being tempted by the Devil here, should I be saying, "Get behind me Satan," or is it more complex than that? What if God and all his angels don't have a monopoly on the truth? What if to really know it all, one has to walk with the Devil too?

    I think of Blake here:

    Those who restrain desire, do so because theirs is weak enough to be restrained; and the restrainer or reason usurps its place & governs the unwilling. And being restrain'd it by degrees becomes passive till it is only the shadow of desire.

    ...I was walking among the fires of hell, delighted with the enjoyments of Genius; which to Angels look like torment and insanity...

    Prisons are built with stones of Law, Brothels with bricks of Religion.
    The pride of the peacock is the glory of God.
    The lust of the goat is the bounty of God.
    The wrath of the lion is the wisdom of God.
    The nakedness of woman is the work of God.
    Excess of sorrow laughs. Excess of joy weeps.
    The roaring of lions, the howling of wolves, the raging of the stormy sea, and the destructive sword, are portions of eternity too great for the eye of man.
    The fox condemns the trap, not himself.

    ...I have always found that Angels have the vanity to speak of themselves as the only wise; this they do with a confident insolence sprouting from systematic reasoning...

    Let the Priests of the Raven of dawn, no longer in deadly black, with hoarse note curse the sons of joy. Nor his accepted brethren, whom, tyrant, he calls free: lay the bound or build the roof. Nor pale religious letchery call that virginity, that wishes but acts not!

    For every thing that lives is Holy.

  7. #7
    People can claim to have it all under control, they can say they have a grip on their own inner evils, but usually it's a matter of self delusion, because everyone has SOMETHING in their lives that can make that monster pop right up to the surface.
    And perhaps you're generally a "nice, decent" person, but I suspect if one dug around in the halls of your subconscious long enough, they'd find your Beast too. And what I'm saying, is... maybe it's not so bad. Depending on what it is.
    Not only should you suspect I have my inner "Beast", "inner evils", you should know it and I hereby confirm it. I am a hair's breadth short of my internal Pol Pot, Charlie Manson & Seung-Hui Cho (the human being who killed 32 other humans and wounded many more at a Virginia University this past year), all combined. I am not joking, I can taste it sometimes when I am pushed to the limit. Not very deep inside, I am a pornographer and embezzler, sadist and thief. Damn right, and I truly mean that.

    I read "Lord of the Flies" as non-fiction. I see a picture of a Nazi and, as a Jew, I realize that it could have been me on either side of the concentration camp walls. There, but for a small change in birth and circumstance, I would stand.

    I mean that for me and every other ordinary human being who, somehow, despite the potential for evil, keeps it in check and gets through his or her life without killing or raping anybody, managing to hold down a job, feed their family, being a reasonably good father, brother, sister, husband and citizen despite the inner devil. It applies to me, every member of this Sangha, the Buddha and all the Buddhist ancestors, every Christian Saint, every Homo Sapien on this planet.

    Steph, do not confuse the potential with the actual. Get over it.

    Somehow, for every madman in this world, 99.99% of its people get up in the morning, head to work, smile sincerely at their neighbors, do their job decently, help an old lady cross the street, embrace the people they love and head to bed. Most human beings are not tempted to kill other human beings (on most days anyway), do not abuse children (though some of our brothers and sisters do), do not crash planes into buildings.

    Our Buddhist Practice recognizes the "Dark Potential" in all of us. Thus, the first lesson, is to drop anger and envy, greed and clutching, forsaking violence and harmful acts. And ANYONE who tells you that Buddhism can be practiced otherwise is a liar or a fool. We recognize our evil energies, and channel them (without repressing them) into healthful directions. "Just Sitting" does that, the Precepts are meant to do that ... a partnership.

    We all are apes with lice, and we should learn to keep ourselves clean and cooperate to groom each other.

    Steph, you talk too much. I mean that sincerely and lovingly. You head is full of crap. Don't worry, it is not just you but most people on this planet. Your emails are filled with "issues" and philosophical positions and ethical dilemmas and clever ideas that only exist cause you throw words at them. I want you to write no more emails for awhile longer than 30 words. And you need to actuate being less defensive, less negative, less aggressive ... these are all states of mind you create in your own head. Try being open, accepting, cooperative for awhile.Otherwise, Zen Practice is not for you. Try something else.

    Harry, you too. I think you are full of it. Give it a rest or get off this bus. We keep ourselves well groomed here so as not to infect the other passengers with our vermin. We do not pick fights in the back that the driver needs to stop. We have a long trip, many people here are trying to enjoy the scenery, talk, listen and ... most importantly ... sit quietly. If not, you and all the other "angry Buddhists" can get off at the next stop.

    Gassho, The Driver

  8. #8
    Harry,

    I have to disagree with you here.

    I'm sorry but I just don't see the anger in Jundo's words that you are finding there.

  9. #9
    Hi Harry,

    There is one true rule here ... be kind to each other. It says it at the doorway to the Forum. It is the only one I enforce.

    Gassho, Jundo

  10. #10
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo
    Steph, you talk too much. I mean that sincerely and lovingly. You head is full of crap. Don't worry, it is not just you but most people on this planet. Your emails are filled with "issues" and philosophical positions and ethical dilemmas and clever ideas that only exist cause you throw words at them. I want you to write no more emails for awhile longer than 30 words. And you need to actuate being less defensive, less negative, less aggressive ... these are all states of mind you create in your own head. Try being open, accepting, cooperative for awhile.Otherwise, Zen Practice is not for you. Try something else.
    I was about to applaud you for what I thought was an excellent post until I came to this.

    You think the words cause the problems, but you don't live inside my head or my heart, honey... you don't know. The words are how I articulate, or try to articulate, the wordless struggle that consumes me. The emotions come first. And they don't come from hypotheticals. They come from the lived-in, actual experience of desire and desolation, and the yearning to come to grips with it all. I know that an intellectual formulation will not satisfy or assuage the yearning, but I am not looking for one to do so; I am simply looking for a map, a hint, a pointer. So far, you have been devoid of such a "turning word," but I temper that by saying you join a host of otherwise respectable people who have come up similarly... empty.

    I feel like the first post of this thread did not come from a place of negativity at all. It's rather more... celebratory, fascinated, interested. I'm not disgusted by the muck of the world. I love it and I just wonder if I should roll around in it more. I'm glad that some honest people out there have shown me and others their demons, not in some abstracted way, but in a real, visceral way. I've learned a lot more from that than I ever did from people who were easier to idealize as pure. I don't see the wolf as impure, I see that there is something holy to it... but I also see that there is something to teachings that warn us about it.

    Maybe this all seems abstract to you because you haven't lived it; you offer some generic words about how we all have the potential for "evil" in us, but you offer nothing personal, nothing of substance about the particular nature of your Beast or how you struggle with it. Which is to be expected; most of us don't put that sort of thing out there for mass consumption. Even I wouldn't lay bare all of it.

    You contradict yourself, Jundo; one moment, you tell me to stick around and explore, the next you tell me to shut up, imply that my character and contribution here is mainly negative, and state not just that this place might not be "for me," but that "Zen Practice" as a whole might not! All I can say to that is, What is wrong with you?

    I've been very honest here. I've laid a lot out on the table, including my alienation and yearning to find a community where I can express myself honestly among like-minded people and find some degree of acceptance. What you just said to me invites one of two responses: conform to your demands or leave. And you should know by now which of those two I would choose... so basically, in one breath, you're questioning why people are leaving, and then telling me to leave... I think you may be confused.

  11. #11
    Steph,

    It's not a question of your character or telling you to shut up. It's just that Zen practice is not about intellectualizing everything, it's not about the words in your head. It's about quieting those words. That's what the Zazen is about. That's what Jundo is trying to point out. Please continue to stick it out, but don't take all of this personally, consider it his attempt to help you see things in a new way, he's just pointing to that.

  12. #12
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Every sentence someone posts here is an intellectualization. It's how we communicate non-intellectual things. I actually try to present some of the things I talk about in a more poetic style so that it communicates more of a feeling than a theory for these reasons. But maybe I'm not much of a poet. Either way, words are what we got, especially in an online sangha.

    Again, I reiterate that if it seems that my struggles are purely intellectual in nature, either those who perceive them that way have not been paying enough attention, or I have not communicated well enough. How can I express my subjective experience in a way that transcends the intellectual? Perhaps if I was more of a poet, I could convey the yearning, the hunger, the loneliness and alienation, the feeling of 'unreality' and feelings of despair and meaninglessness that sometimes creep in, but then the exhilarating joy and freedom of wondering about it all...

    These feelings are churned up by real experiences, and real ethical dilemmas. If I did not think, or wonder, I would have no wisdom, no ethics at all. Thinking is not evil; it just needs to be seen for what it is. And that is a big part of what zazen practice is about for me. But there are questions and hungers and yearnings that transcend the verbal intellect, and come back again and again...

    And perhaps Jundo is right, that this is not the right forum for them. I'm not simply interested in talking about how great zazen is and pretending we're on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. But my questions, and hungers, and yearnings, do have a place in Zen practice and study. And maybe there is not a teacher out there who can meet me where I am without a host of Zen platitudes, but nonetheless I will continue to search and hunt and look wherever I have to until I find an honest man (or woman) who can meet me there.

    And maybe you think you're teaching Zen, Jundo, but to me, you're just another man telling me to shut up and be nice, and all I have to say to that is, YOU ARE NOT THE BOSS OF ME!!! :lol:

  13. #13
    You reserve the right to be the prime Alpha "Angry Buddhist" on this site with your telling people they are full of it and your angrily lording your moral stances over us and your dharma brothers. That behavior seems to be reserved for just you here... because you're more enlightened or something, right? This is clear now, thank-you.

    Harry, what you're describing just isn't there, but it does seem vry much as if YOU have been wandering this forum just ITCHING to pick a fight with any percieved stance of authority anyone takes. Ever. On any topic. Perhaps it's the guy in the mirror that needs to drop the "expert" self identity and take a look at anger issues? You're coming across lately like an Amish kid in a schoolyard yelling, "Oh yeah!? Well I'm TEN TIMES more humble than you!!"

  14. #14
    Stephanie,

    It's not a question of honesty.

    No one can answer all of those questions for you. As long as you look outside of your self, you'll never find satisfaction.

  15. #15
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Gregor~~I'm not looking for someone else to hand me the answers to these questions. I'm looking for someone else to, if anything, help point me in the right direction. It's happened before, so I know it's not impossible.

    What I'm really interested to hear is not a host of people telling me what my experience is or means or how to "fix" it, but rather, to hear if others have wrestled with similar things, and if so, how they have done it and what the outcome of it was. Not because I could simply do exactly what they did, but rather because, again, it might help orient me to my own context in a useful way.

    But what Jundo did was exactly the former: to assume he knows my own subjective experience and then tell me how to "fix" it. Not helpful at all, just ignorant and insulting.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Stephanie

    I've been very honest here. I've laid a lot out on the table, including my alienation and yearning to find a community where I can express myself honestly among like-minded people and find some degree of acceptance. What you just said to me invites one of two responses: conform to your demands or leave. And you should know by now which of those two I would choose... so basically, in one breath, you're questioning why people are leaving, and then telling me to leave... I think you may be confused.
    Hi Steph,

    I am telling you to think less, talk less, quiet the mind. That is our Practice here. Are you willing to try?

    Perhaps if I was more of a poet, I could convey the yearning, the hunger, the loneliness and alienation, the feeling of 'unreality' and feelings of despair and meaninglessness that sometimes creep in.
    The dream you choose to dream. Give it a rest.

    Gassho, Jundo

  17. #17
    Hi Steph...

    *sigh Well, here's my $0.02. Remember...take it for what you paid for it!!

    First: I would agree with you about "the dark side." Why we find it fascinating isn't such a mystery...we like mystery! Our lives are full of it...always have been. When we hear about the horrors of some kid just walking up and down the aisles of a university lecture hall shooting people at random, we sit up, take notice and ask a gazzillion "why's"?? We'll read all the reports about this incident, scour them, debate them, have coffee over them. I *LOVE* the TV show "Lost" for this very reason. It shows what happens when we walk out of the ordinary-ness of our lives and find ourselves 24/7 in survival mode against an unknown "evil."

    You don't necessarily react that way to stories like the one about the soldier in Iraq and the dog he befriended who tracked him 70 miles after relocation just to be together. We tend to spend a moment going, "awwww" and move on to something more "interesting."

    For more in depth information I'd like to direct you to two books written by Scott Peck: The Road Less Traveled and People of the Lie. Read in that order because the first book talks about the spiritual side of man and the second looks at what happens when that becomes entangled in "evil."

    That said, I'm going to let you know that I've walked long lengths on the streets of the Dark Side and you know what??? After time, it got to be.....BORING! While I respect Harry's right to his views and opinions, For the most part I bleep over his posts...why? Same old, same old. A one note song. Just as boring as someone who can't come up with a more intricate debate than "just sit." Sometimes elaboration is good, sometimes it detracts. Most times we like to know that people have more dimensions to them than the "angry Buddhist" or the "utterly cooooool Buddhist." Dimensions in personality give us a richness.

    My philosophy simply runs that our lives are not mysteries to be solved but to be lived, dear one. We try to solve them because we are afraid or in pain, or bored. Any number of reasons. But trying to solve for the mysteries will, ultimately, leave us dissatisfied because there are no answers.

    I will echo Jundo to a point: your head is full. I've been there, too. Eventually, with enough meditation, enough opportunity to look into my mind, listen to it's interminable rambling, that got boring as well. Now, I bore myself quite easily! :lol: I'd like to invite you to stay here and continue to share and take the Jundo Challenge: see if you can limit your posts to 30 words! :shock: Hmmm...maybe I should try that myself. :?

    Be well, Steph! Stick around if it seems good.

    In Gassho~

    *Lynn

  18. #18
    Hi Harry,

    Practice with your anger all the time, truly learn about it, do not just bury it. Question authority constantly.

    But this is a school and a place of peace, not a barroom or a boxing match.

    Anyone who has been hanging out here this past year will attest, I am sure: I talk sharply only to folks who talk sharply to others in the community, I am not kind and gentle with people who fail to treat others kindly and gently. That's the only time you will find (and all the written archives and recordings are here more than in any other Sangha in the world).

    Deal with anger all you want, keep it at the heart of your practice, wrestle with it every day. Question me and all the other clowns and bozos who claim some authority over some anthill.

    But here folks will not speak sharply, they will treat each other gently and with kindness. They will follow the practices of dropping thoughts, just sitting and stilling, and abiding by the Precepts that is our Practice here ... or why are they here?

    Gassho, Jundo

    PS - Please read the above with a soft voice in your head, it is firm but not written with an aggressive tone.

  19. #19
    Steph,

    I'll take the darkness challenge with you. I've dealt with it and still do. Before practicing Buddhism I lived a pretty unhappy, self hating life. Name a precept, I've broken it. What Buddhism has taught me is to just drop that stuff. To let go of the insecurities and expectations that breed unhappiness.

    It's all in the four noble truths. Perhaps you might want to study them closely and work on applying them to your situation. If your curious about some good resources for doing this I can recommend a few good sources.

    Zazen might not do it for you right now . . . do some work with the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path, these are the basic and universal tenets of Buddhism.

  20. #20
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynn
    Hi Steph...

    *sigh Well, here's my $0.02. Remember...take it for what you paid for it!!
    Thank you and gassho, Lynn. I am appreciative of you and KvonNJ, who are the only ones in this thread to really take up and discuss the issues I brought up. I'll keep an eye peeled for those books, they sound interesting.

    I like what you said about the "dark side" being boring! That is something I've run across too in my own travels. I find parties and various other run-of-the-mill kinds of debauchery tiresome, not invigorating. But I never seem to tire of certain other "dark" interests. I look back over my life and it's a thread that traces back very far... even when I was a very young child, I gravitated to the villains in Disney movies and identified with predatory animals, even though I was a very gentle, shy, sweet child in every other way. Then when puberty hit, it was off to the races with all sorts of dark and violent music and movies, even though I continued to generally be a gentle person in demeanor. And even during my most sunny, sweet, idealistic periods, I find that the art that speaks to me is still somewhat 'dark'. It's like the proverbial black dog on one's trail...

    Maybe it's nothing more mysterious than a matter of temperament, but I'm fascinated by it nonetheless. And it's come up in my spiritual search in the ways I describe above--seeing that no matter how adult or mature or enlightened a person seems to be, they've got that darkness in 'em too. It creates interesting drama when people are drawn to a person or community out of idealized notions of "love & light," only to be shocked into outrage when the underbelly is exposed. I breathe a sigh of relief when all that comes out, honestly. To me, it's just what's real.

    As for being full of ideas... Yes, I am. But I no longer believe that trying to change this trait is going to lead me to wisdom, enlightenment, or even peace. If I just wanted to numb myself into a stupor, there's easier ways to do that than to sit facing the wall for endless kalpas. The only thing that really bugs me is that people assume I haven't already tried to quieten my mind. I cannot even tell you all I've done toward that end. I've hit up against a wall so many times I've just given up. I can sit sesshin for a week and my mind is still atwirl at the end. Sure, I have moments or periods of silence, but my mind is generally very active.

    And at the end of the day, after trying to change it, I had to ask myself, do I really need to change this? It's one of my strengths in personal and professional relationships and decision-making. Without that restless, questioning, productive mind, I would not have experienced any of the success and adventure that I have in my life. And as for the hunger for an answer, for truth, that drives me in this restless quest, I can guarantee you that it does not come from words and phrases. It is a deep gut-hunger, and no matter how many times I think I've finally put it to rest, it comes back. I decorate it with words and phrases for the purpose of communication, but that's not how it arises.

    And Jundo, all I have to say to you is: Did anyone in Brooklyn ever tell you to go take a flying... leap at a rolling donut?

  21. #21
    Senior Member Kent's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    san diego california
    Posts
    198
    Hello. whats the weather like were you are? :lol:

  22. #22
    It seems that, although you have claimed in the past that you want to create an open, accountable and 'democratic' sangha, you reserve the right to call this as only you see it. I don't think that's very fair or reasonable given that you, by your own admission during the Brad W episode, are prone to anger and the odd barbed outburst just like everyone else. Is it just a case that we are solely at the mercy of your values and preferences as they exist on any given day? I will understand this better maybe when you quantify your reasoning drawing on real instances of my, and/or others', behavior.

    For e.g., KvonNJ's statement re. me above was pretty personal. I don't think I've been that spiky and personal about anyone here, is that a permissible statement or did it cross the line? Nothing in this respect seems clear here. (BTW, I don't really mind KvonNJ's statement. No probs).


    It was spiky.
    I'm not judging you, and certainly not trying to instruct you. I'm just telling you what I see... you've been going from post to post and thread to thread pulling at fibers and looking for a fight. And in the highlighted section, you are using what you obviously see as bad behavior on Jundo's part (and what he acknowledged as his own,) to justify or somehow excuse your own... so, I am wondering what the overall point is... all I'm seeing is, "Well, he did it so I can," and while yes, questioning everything, including authority, is a good thing, jumping up in peoples' faces to point out their flaws and shortcomings isn't.
    Jundo's not perfect. Neither are the rest of us. I'm not saying don't question, I'm saying it can be done reasonably and respectfully, as opposed to the way you've been going about it.

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by HezB

    It only remains for us to consider just WHERE I, or others, have been unkind to the extent that it is against the ethos of the sangha.

    It strikes me that a detailed consideration of where I, or others, are in breach of the hazy rule will clarify this grey area for the sangha.

    I'll happily retract or delete anything which is clearly unreasonable and I will discuss anything which does not seem unreasonable with an open mind.
    Dear Harry,

    I am going to rely on one of those Japanese cultural traits that has come to permeate Zen Practice, and life in a Zen Sangha ... it is one of the Japanesey traditions I think is worth keeping and at the heart of our Practice ... It is group Wa, "group harmony" and balance. It is merely keeping a feeling of peace and civility and mutual respect in any group of people, be it a family, and company, a Sangha

    It depends on no one person, me or anyone else ... yet is is as clear and obvious as rough seas and wind when there is disturbance in the atmosphere ... Consider it the most democratic guide, for it is truly a matter of group feeling ... it is not a perfect system, but it does keep good human relations.

    In the way we must practice it in the West, it should not rule out self expression, personal honesty and such. But we need to live in the same little row boat and must be careful how we treat the other passengers.

    Gassho, Jundo

  24. #24
    That said, I'm going to let you know that I've walked long lengths on the streets of the Dark Side and you know what??? After time, it got to be.....BORING! While I respect Harry's right to his views and opinions, For the most part I bleep over his posts...why? Same old, same old. A one note song. Just as boring as someone who can't come up with a more intricate debate than "just sit." Sometimes elaboration is good, sometimes it detracts. Most times we like to know that people have more dimensions to them than the "angry Buddhist" or the "utterly cooooool Buddhist." Dimensions in personality give us a richness.
    Thanks, I was just going to post the same thing. Middle Way anyone? Always picking the middle way in any given situation seems to be working out pretty well for me, anyway.

    Steph, there's a massive body of work in the West dealing with these issues, for example, existentialism. Pick up any book by Nietzsche (I like Beyond Good & Evil, skip over the misogynist bits), Kirkegaard, Camus. I came from this tradition grappling with my own darkness. What I found was they came to essentially a very Buddhist position - that to resolve the conflict is to not resolve it, but to experience it fully, make friends and invite it for tea, but don't let it sleep on your couch. And the experience is largely beyond the ability to rationally describe. Which is why so much of it is presented in metaphors, or novels, or poetry, etc etc.

    Personally I had a breakthrough when I realized that things don't have to be rational to make sense. We are so conditioned in the West to worship at the alter of logic. However as Hume pointed out, "reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions". We never construct an argument except to prove something for another reason. Reason is another construction of our minds, as is common sense. However that does not necessarily mean we are now in the realm of "blind faith" - there is something else which can only be pointed at and I have only had the slightest glimmer of but I am dedicated to pursuing in this tradition. It's transcendental. I'm sure you know what I'm blabbing about, or you probably wouldn't be here.

    I see every serious seeker of nearly any religion as grappling with this same issue. There are many brilliant minds in the history of Christianity, Islam, Brahmanism, etc etc that have tried to express it. Personally I had a deep need to, and continue to, research and explore these intellectual gymnastics. But at least now I realize that it is both profound, and meaningless. Just like sitting.

    Bla bla bla

  25. #25
    Hi, Kvon.

    I simply see Jundo's behavoir as 'bad' in that instance by his own standards. Its no big deal, I hardly think I'm much of a moral idealist.

    All this talk of 'The Dark Side' is a bit absolutist don't you think? Surely there's many shades in between in reality?

    I think you are completely missing my point, and If I want couciling I'll go to a professional. No big deal.

    Regards,

    H.



    Harry, I understand your point perfectly. I happen to disagree with it and with the antagonistic way you're presenting it. You may have a valid point somewhere, but it's getting lost in your aggression. But, if you're happy with people only noticing the way you express yourself and allowing it to distract from whatever value there may be in what you have to say, you're right... no big deal.
    Peace.

  26. #26
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Skye
    Thanks, I was just going to post the same thing. Middle Way anyone? Always picking the middle way in any given situation seems to be working out pretty well for me, anyway.

    Steph, there's a massive body of work in the West dealing with these issues, for example, existentialism. Pick up any book by Nietzsche (I like Beyond Good & Evil, skip over the misogynist bits), Kirkegaard, Camus. I came from this tradition grappling with my own darkness. What I found was they came to essentially a very Buddhist position - that to resolve the conflict is to not resolve it, but to experience it fully, make friends and invite it for tea, but don't let it sleep on your couch. And the experience is largely beyond the ability to rationally describe. Which is why so much of it is presented in metaphors, or novels, or poetry, etc etc.

    Personally I had a breakthrough when I realized that things don't have to be rational to make sense. We are so conditioned in the West to worship at the alter of logic. However as Hume pointed out, "reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions". We never construct an argument except to prove something for another reason. Reason is another construction of our minds, as is common sense. However that does not necessarily mean we are now in the realm of "blind faith" - there is something else which can only be pointed at and I have only had the slightest glimmer of but I am dedicated to pursuing in this tradition. It's transcendental. I'm sure you know what I'm blabbing about, or you probably wouldn't be here.

    I see every serious seeker of nearly any religion as grappling with this same issue. There are many brilliant minds in the history of Christianity, Islam, Brahmanism, etc etc that have tried to express it. Personally I had a deep need to, and continue to, research and explore these intellectual gymnastics. But at least now I realize that it is both profound, and meaningless. Just like sitting.

    Bla bla bla
    Skye!!

    Thank you and gassho for this lovely post.

    I have found much guidance and comfort in the work of the existentialists. Camus's Myth of Sisyphus helped me through a suicidal period in my early to mid-teens. Even if I didn't get 100% of his philosophy at the time, just encountering a writer who grappled with these themes and saw the problem of suicide as a

    REMIANDER DELETED BY THE DRIVER

  27. #27
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Alright Jundo, you win. You've silenced me and there's nothing I can do about it.

    I'm sure you think you're teaching me some sort of profound Zen lesson, but all I think you're doing is proving that all your years of zazen haven't made much of a dent on that inner Type A control freak.

    You don't like my words and ideas; you think I'm too intellectual; that's fine. But are my only options here to accept your word as gospel and do what you say, or leave? If you really want me to leave, I will; what can I do? Because if I can't be myself here, or share the real struggles I'm going through--however illegitimate you see them as being--there's no reason for me to post here.

  28. #28
    Everyone has a say so long as it is in accordance with the master.

  29. #29
    Hi Stephanie,

    I did not silence you. You are free to say whatever you would like, and I won't stop you.

    I would like you, however, to do it in a few lines, and with a deep respect for the silence that surrounds it.

    But within those line, please say whatever you would like.

    Gassho, Jundo

    PS- We all need to remember this value of silence to one degree or another.

  30. #30
    Hi, Stephanie.
    I sense a great deal of frustration on your part . . . you are entitled to that, I think. However, I will suggest that your opinion of Jundo strikes me strangely. When someone comes to a teacher and his/her house (zendo), the implicit understanding is that the student is coming to that teacher because of what that teacher is offering. If the teacher suggests rowing as an antidote to your particular illness, then I think that you ought to give rowing a try for a while before you become angry with the teacher for not giving you the teaching you wanted. Secondly, I will say that there have been times when I have wanted to respond to your posts but have been daunted by the sheer volume of ideas to which I would have to respond. Brevity and staying on topic are not your strong points (and I truly mean that as nicely as I can), so I understand how a teacher might have trouble helping out. Lastly, my personal opinion is that Zen is not a self-help, pseudo-psychological system. It is something else . . . a bit of religion, a bit of psychology, a bit of philosophy, etc. My impression from your posts is that you want Zen to do more for you than it can (and all of this before you give the basic teachings of this particular teacher, Jundo, a try). Jundo is not perfect, but don't throw the baby out with the bath water. I sense little patience on your part regarding the teacher's instructions.
    I hope that my sincere effort to speak honestly does not create more strife in this forum, but I felt that one of the things a sangha does is speak openly about behavior and speech within it.
    With respect,
    Bill

  31. #31
    You can keep stacking those blocks of words one top of the other, but they'll never reach the moon. They'll never take you where you imagine you want to go. And neither will Jundo, I think. He's just a zen teacher. All he can do is point the way as best he can. You might have more luck with Jesusjungfreudghandigandalf, but I haven't seen that guy around in a while. Anyway, I'm just a beginner at all this. I don't know much -- and hopefully I'll know even less after I go sit.

    Gassho,

    David

  32. #32
    What is the role of a Sangha? Our forum is the only interaction that we have. It is our community of like practitioners, where we should be able to practice the Dharma in relative safety and support.

    It is important that we maintain a certain harmony in order to feel safe when it becomes necessary for our fellow practitioners to question whether we truly understand what we are practicing. If you are a dancer or skater, sometimes you need people observing your practice to see where you are going wrong. I think a Sangha should be like those spotters. And the suggestions for adjustments to your practice should be delivered with honesty, love, and compassion. That is not to say that you always will like what you hear.

    Unlike many other types of forums, as a Sangha, I don't think this should be a soapbox (even though I suspect this reply sounds like one). Nor to I think it helps develop an environment of love and safety if there are sarcastic, rude or nasty replies. The Buddha said that Right Speech is part of the Eightfold Path for a good reason.

    Well, I think that we need to decide if we are going to behave like a Sangha or behave like any old social networking site. I personally am here to study with a teacher and within a Sangha.

    I really hope everyone can let their anger go and support one another.

    Linda

  33. #33
    Linda,

    Nice sentiments. I'm with you 100% on this. We need to maintain a special sense about things and tread delicately just as we would if this were a brick and mortar Zendo.

    This is a special place, let's have respect for that.


    This day has passed.
    Our lives, too, are closing.
    Like fish with little water,
    Joy will not last.
    Let us work with pure effort.
    Work as we would were our heads aflame.
    Be mindful of impermanence.
    Be careful of idleness.

  34. #34
    Stephanie
    Guest
    I suppose I now must express my thoughts in haiku format:

    Silence is broken
    By the sound of Jundo's ego
    Flapping in the breeze

    :roll:

  35. #35
    Stephanie,

    I might be overstepping my place here. But, your comments bother me. I think they show a lack of respect. Not just to Jundo. But, Also a lack of respect for the people who consider this forum their place of practice.

    I think the time has come for you to stop leaving the negative comments on the board. It's inappropriate.

    I'm sorry perhaps I'm breaking the golden rule myself. But, I cannot sit by and watch this. Please consider what you have to say and the intentions behind it before you hit that submit button.

  36. #36
    Harry,

    Your right. My way of wording that was a bit much. However, I'm merely trying to imply that the snarkiness, sarcasm, and negativity is inappropriate here none the less.

    But, I suppose we should be careful about these things wherever we are.

  37. #37
    Hi Harry,


    That's true it does take two to tango after all. Thanks for the reminder of that. I'll chalk it up to another lesson that needed learning.

  38. #38
    Harry,

    You'd be surprised. We'll have to compare rap sheets sometime.

    take care,

    Greg

  39. #39
    Thank you Linda!

    This is a Zendo, and Jundo is the Sensei. A Zendoís purpose, I think, is to create atmosphere conducive to leaning the Dharma. I sometime wonder if rules should perhaps be stricter around here.

    Harry, you are an intelligent individual and usually make very valid points. You add a flavour to this community that is all you own and it would be a shame to loose you. But you make it a habit (especially lately) to carry yourself in a sarcastic, unnecessarily blunt and often rude manner. I donít think it is your intention, but in your writing you come across as self absorbed at times. Even your avatar! This is a shame because I suspect that this is probably not your character in person. But I feel it does take away from this Zendo, and is not appropriate in a Zendo setting. I donít think you would speak this way if this Zendo were made of bricks a mortar; or perhaps you would.

    In the past few days you have consistently complained about religion, Buddhism, group mentality, authority, Jundo etc. You have even suggested that you did not care for our Ďmotelí and intended to leave. Yet hear you are. You continue to post. You continue to complain. Jundo said run (donít walk) should you disagree with his methods. Yet you drag your feet. What is it about sharing your opinion that makes you unable to stop? Even your signature tries to usher me to your blog so that I may read further into your insights.

    I fear that this post will be read with a harsher tone than it was written, yet you yourself Harry have expressed your displeasure with attempts to sugar coat opinion.

    I hope equilibrium will return to Treeleaf soon, but I suppose if there are issues that need to be dealt with, now is the time rather than suppressing them.

    I mean no disrespect Harry,
    Gassho,
    Kelly

  40. #40
    I suppose I now must express my thoughts in haiku format:

    Silence is broken
    By the sound of Jundo's ego
    Flapping in the breeze

    Is it "ego," or is it simply people demanding that the teacher follow the students?
    The guy's not perfect. Doesn't claim to be. He's offering a service that some of us who can't get to a sitting in person appreciate. It's totally voluntary on his part. He doesn'towe anyone anything. but I, speaking for myself, at least feel i owe him my respect for that. This is, for all intents and purposes, his Zendo.
    If he sometimes acts like a teacher even though some have seen his human frailties and weaknesses, so be it. he's human. He makes mistakes. He discusses them freely. But that does't mean he answers to any of us.
    And he's still the teacher here.

  41. #41
    Q: How much "ego" do you need?
    A: Just enough so that you don't step in front of a bus.

    Shunryu Suzuki

    :lol:

    Sorry I am sure you all think this thread is serious, but I think it is a hoot.

    A pretty wise dead guy once said that a sangha is like a rock tumbler.
    you pour a bunch of rough stones in it, let them tumble around and bounce off of each other and after some time they become smooth and polished.

    May you all be free from suffering, really.
    In gassho
    Jordan

  42. #42
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Thanks for the sanity, Jordan. I find a lot of this stuff funny too, but apparently my sensibilities aren't delicate enough.

    I didn't come here for a teacher, I came here looking for sangha. And I think I have responded to and treated Jundo with respect up until today, after he was very disrespectful and dismissive toward me.

    But whatever, I find this silly. Being ganged up against, insulted, censored, and told I need to change basic personality traits like the way I think and express myself to be accepted here--what sort of crap is this? If you think my self-esteem is so low that I would accept these "suggestions" and "instructions," you're barking up the wrong tree. I'm perfectly open to criticism, but none of you all have even taken the beginning steps of actually trying to listen to or respond to what I have to say, so none of your criticisms give me any information other than your personal preferences for others' behavior and your willingness to jump on the bandwagon of "Dear Leader."

    I know I have contributed a lot of positive and good-humored things to this board. The sudden consensus that I am so negative because I have responded to fire with fire today strikes me as insincere.

  43. #43
    Jordan,

    Thanks for the reminder not to take things so seriously.


    Stephanie,

    I guess points of views are bound to differ. It's really amazing how different people can look at the same words and interpret them in different ways. I wonder if there is something to be learned here?

  44. #44
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Honestly, looking back over this thread, it's sort of shocking. Perhaps I just seem wordy and pretentious to some of you, but the stuff I chose to share here is actually deeply personal. I risked sharing it because of the trust and comfort level I had built here, but instead of being shown gentleness, I was torn into. Sheesh! I've learned my lesson about taking self-disclosure risks in a public forum, that's for sure. At least I can empathize now with Will as to why he was deleting posts--when you're treated like this, it makes you feel violated that you even shared anything at all.

  45. #45

  46. #46
    Let's all take a breath a start again.

    Stephanie, I am sorry that the Sangha is not as you expected. It is focused on Shikantaza, which is founded upon quieting the storm of thoughts and emotions and views within, all to experience the world from perspectives of silence and stillness. I hope that you will be willing to try that Practice when you are here.

    It is not that we are without all thoughts and emotions and views when experiencing the world through silence and stillness. It is that those thoughts and emotions and views are quite different when seen through silence and stillness. So, that is what we do here.

    Gassho, Jundo

  47. #47
    Reading this thread made me think of an moldy oldy but goodie...

    SUBHUMANS:

    "Mickey Mouse Is Dead"

    Mickey Mouse is dead
    Got kicked in the head
    Cause people got too serious
    They planned out what they said
    They couldn't take the fantasy
    They tried to accept reality
    Analyzed the laughs
    Cause pleasure comes in halves
    The purity of comedy
    They had to take it seriously
    Changed the words around
    Tried to make it look profound
    The comedian is on stage
    Pisstaking for a wage
    The critics think he's great
    But the laughter turns to hate
    Mickey Mouse is on T.V.
    And the kids stare at the screen
    But the pictures are all black and white
    And the words don't mean a thing
    Cause Mummy's got no money
    And Daddy is in jail
    He couldn't afford the license
    She couldn't afford the bail
    The kids out in the road
    Their minds have all gone cold
    Cause Mickey Mouse is dead
    They shot him through the head
    With ignorance and scorn
    They believed in something new
    They read the papers watched the films
    And they thought they new the truth
    But reality deceives
    Whatever you believe
    There's always another idea
    And theirs is based on fear
    The fear of being sussed
    For what you really are
    The fear of being laughed at
    When you go too far
    They call it paranoia
    You can laugh it away
    Until you come to realize
    That everyone's the same
    People hide their problems
    Under faces of contempt
    They hide them 'til it kills them
    And no one is exempt
    Not even you
    Look what you done to Mickey Mouse

  48. #48
    Jordan,

    Wow .. . I'm gonna have go n' check out the subhumans.

  49. #49
    Stephanie
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo
    Let's all take a breath a start again.
    I can do that.

    And from now on I'll only post haikus about kittens and rainbows :wink:

    And I apologize if you feel disrespected by me, Jundo, because I do respect you, your honesty, and what you are doing here. But I've also been disrespected enough myself that I'm not willing to take certain things any more, no matter who they're coming from. And that's all I'll say about that.

  50. #50
    Sometimes we are Mickey mouse, sometimes we kill Mickey mouse.
    Sometimes we just sit by and watch Mickey mouse getting killed, sometimes we might just be able to save Mickey mouse.

    Gassho,
    Jordan

Similar Threads

  1. 4/3 - Branching Streams: 8th Talk - Within Light ...Darkness
    By Jundo in forum "BEYOND WORDS & LETTERS" BOOK CLUB
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 04-12-2009, 04:48 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •