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Thread: How Things Are Expressed

  1. #1

    How Things Are Expressed

    Hi,

    A couple of messages I received yesterday were quite interesting. A few people have written over the past months to comment on how the way I teach Buddhism seems so "matter of fact" and "down to earth" compared to, for example, some more wild and mystical, colorful and mind-blowing schools of Buddhism like Tibetan Buddhism or even other Zen teachers.

    I respectfully disagree.

    I think it all comes down to how the teachings are expressed, and how we feel them in our bones ... how we encounter the Dharma as the very marrow of our bones ...

    This is very much the same as in Master Dogen's telling of the Koan of "children of fire come looking for fire" in Shobogenzo-Bendowa, which was the topic of another thread yesterday. In that Koan, the central point is along the lines that our search for "who we are" and the nature of life and reality is something like "one's true nature" looking for "one's true nature" or "reality searching for reality". Although the monk Xuanze mumbled words showing a correct intellectual understanding of this fact, his teacher (Master Hogen) rejected those words. But later, when Xuanze said the exact same words again, Master Hogen approved (this is very common in Koans). Why?

    It is because it is very different to know intellectually that "one's true nature finds one's true nature" versus the actuality of "one's true nature finds one's true nature", or "reality as reality found" ... the latter ways of expression must be tasted and encountered in one's very marrow.

    This came up again today. Paul posted on the blog a very nice summary of one central teaching of the Genjo Koan. I think he may feel this deep in his bones, and if so, I approve his summary! Yes! It is, in fact, another way to say "children of fire come looking for fire":

    I guess all our actions make up the universe as it is.

    But the wonderful directness and simplicity of this manner of saying it made me think about all cases in which the same words can mean very different things. Saying "a rose is just a rose is just a rose" is --not-- the same as saying "a rose is just a rose is just a rose". So, I wrote the following. I also wrote it to anyone who believes that the Dharma as I express it is just "matter of fact" and "down to earth" (which it certainly is) and not wild and mystical, colorful and mind-blowing (which it certainly is all that too when perceived as such!!) ...


    I guess all our actions make up the universe as it is.

    Hi,

    Words are so flexible in their expression. On the one hand, it really sometimes does not sound like much when we just say it in simple words. As you know, we must not understand this only intellectually, but instead taste all the implications. Even a truth of universal proportions can be reduced to sounding like a mundane fact.

    Or the very same words can explode the universe ...

    For example, a phrase such as "the Bang Bang was the start of all the stars and planets" sounds like a yawner, and a dusty fact, until we realize it to be the wellspring for all time and space and you and me too, the seed from which the flower of the cosmos blooms, all matter and energy rolled up into a singularity so small as to be beyond "big" or "small", source of all that became our world and its life, going on even now right under our feet and --as-- our feet too!

    There are many ways to look at it.

    Well, "our actions make up the universe as it is" is also the wellspring of all time and space and you and me too, the seed from which the flower of the cosmos blooms, all reality rolled up into the singularity which is each of us, beyond all small ideas of "great" or "small", source of all that becomes our world and its life, going on even now where we stand and our very standing too!

    Just depends how you look at it, and how you feel the words deep within, I suppose. Words are so imperfect!

    Gassho, Jundo

  2. #2

    Re: How Things Are Expressed

    You don't mind if I roll this post up and use it in the washroom do you?

    G,W

  3. #3

    Re: How Things Are Expressed

    As toilet paper? Good!

    Gassho, J

  4. #4

    Re: How Things Are Expressed

    Dear Jundo

    like any good teacher you make complex subjects accessible - it is up to me to grasp some of the depth of what is offered.

    Thank you for your efforts.

    Gassho

    Jools

  5. #5

    Re: How Things Are Expressed

    Thanks MC .

    Gassho Will

  6. #6

    Re: How Things Are Expressed


  7. #7

    Re: How Things Are Expressed

    C'est une pipe et ce n'est pas une pipe


    vous ne pouvez pas mettre le tabac dans celui...peut-Ítre

    G,W

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