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Thread: Why so much anger?

  1. #51

    Re: Why so much anger?

    There is absolutely no scientific evidence to support anyone's assertion that sitting zazen or spinning on ur head for that matter balances the ANS. The ANS dose a more than adequate job staying in balance all by itself. Thats why it is called the AUTO-NOMIC nervous system. I've been watching people discuss this issue on the blog-o-sphere for a couple months now without saying anything.

    Trust me on this.......I'm a doctor.(they make you study shit like this just on the off chance that someday you might stumble across some incredibly stupid blog site like HC and you are forced by the sheer will of the truth to make an attempt at correcting some terribly confused and profoundly disturbed persons mind ..... like brad.) (Ta Da )

    Jundo, thanks for allowing me to speak my peace on this issue without feeling like I am insulting you or your teacher.

    But......de facts are de facts


    Jenna

  2. #52

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Quote Originally Posted by kudra
    .... without feeling like I am insulting you or your teacher.
    Oh, that's okay Jenna. I do enough insulting of me and him all on my lonesome! :wink:

    There is absolutely no scientific evidence to support anyone's assertion that sitting zazen or spinning on ur head for that matter balances the ANS. The ANS dose a more than adequate job staying in balance all by itself. Thats why it is called the AUTO-NOMIC nervous system.
    But wouldn't Zazen (and perhaps just the relaxation response associated with Zazen) have at least some indirect effects on the ANS, for example, in these studies? ... I am not saying that it is bringing about "balance in the ANS", whatever that may mean, but that it does have an effect in some ways ...

    Okay, Jenna ... just say it directly: This whole "Balance of the ANS" idea via Zazen is snake oil and quackery. Yes? What is being described below is very mild changes to the heart, respiration, etc., with not particularly more significance. Is my understanding correct? Speak straight.

    Functional brain mapping of the relaxation response and meditation
    [AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM]

    http://www.neuroreport.com/pt/re/neuror ... 28!8091!-1

    Changes in EEG and autonomic nervous activity during meditation and their association with personality traits

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_o ... 561d08f116
    cDepartment of Psychiatry and Neurobiology, Graduate School of Medical Science, Kanazawa University, Kanazawa, Japan

    Received 17 September 2003;
    revised 17 July 2004;
    accepted 20 July 2004.
    Available online 2 September 2004.

    Abstract

    Meditation is the attainment of a restful yet fully alert physical and mental state practiced by many as a self-regulatory approach to emotion management, but the psychophysiological properties and personality traits that characterize this meditative state have not been adequately studied. We quantitatively analyzed changes in psychophysiological parameters during Zen meditation in 20 normal adults, and evaluated the results in association with personality traits assessed by Cloninger's Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI). During meditation, increases were observed in fast theta power and slow alpha power on EEG predominantly in the frontal area, whereas an increase in the normalized unit of high-frequency (nuHF) power (as a parasympathetic index) and decreases in the normalized unit of low-frequency (nuLF) power and LF/HF (as sympathetic indices) were observed through analyses of heart rate variability. We analyzed the possible correlations among these changes in terms of the percent change during meditation using the control condition as the baseline. The percent change in slow alpha EEG power in the frontal area, reflecting enhanced internalized attention, was negatively correlated with that in nuLF as well as in LF/HF and was positively correlated with the novelty seeking score (which has been suggested to be associated with dopaminergic activity). The percent change in fast theta power in the frontal area, reflecting enhanced mindfulness, was positively correlated with that in nuHF and also with the harm avoidance score (which has been suggested to be associated with serotonergic activity). These results suggest that internalized attention and mindfulness as two major core factors of behaviors of mind during meditation are characterized by different combinations of psychophysiological properties and personality traits.

    Frontal midline theta rhythm is correlated with cardiac autonomic activities during the performance of an attention demanding meditation procedure

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_o ... cfd762a712

    Tai Chi Chih Acutely Decreases Sympathetic Nervous System Activity in Older Adults
    Sarosh J. Motivala, John Sollers, Julian Thayer and Michael R. Irwin
    Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior, Los Angeles, California.
    http://biomed.gerontologyjournals.org/c ... 61/11/1177
    1 Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior, Los Angeles, California.
    2 Emotions and Quantitative Psychophysiology Section, National Institute on Aging, Gerontology Research Center, Baltimore, Maryland.

    Address correspondence to Sarosh J. Motivala, PhD, Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior, 300 Medical Plaza, Suite 3148, Los Angeles, California 90095-7057. E-mail: smotivala@mednet.ucla.edu

    Background. Aging is associated with increases of sympathetic nervous system activation implicated in the onset of hypertension and cardiovascular disease. The purpose of this study was to examine whether the practice of Tai Chi Chih (TCC), a movement-based relaxation practice, would acutely promote decreases of sympathetic activity in elderly persons.

  3. #53
    Senior Member kirkmc's Avatar
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    Re: Why so much anger?

    Thanks, Jundo, you saved me time looking up references. Jenna, there is a _ton_ of evidence that doing zazen, or other forms of meditation, has effects on the autonomic nervous system. It is not always named as such in the studies, such as Jundo posted, which call in heart rate, respiration, blood pressure, etc. Just because it is AUTO-nomic doesn't mean it can be influenced.

    Kirk

  4. #54

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Quote Originally Posted by kirkmc
    Thanks, Jundo, you saved me time looking up references. Jenna, there is a _ton_ of evidence that doing zazen, or other forms of meditation, has effects on the autonomic nervous system. It is not always named as such in the studies, such as Jundo posted, which call in heart rate, respiration, blood pressure, etc. Just because it is AUTO-nomic doesn't mean it can be influenced.

    Kirk
    Hi Kirk,

    But my understanding about that, and correct me if I am wrong, is that that is not saying much more than that the pulse rate and respiration changes, blood pressure and the like minor physiological changes occur during Zazen. That is just the relaxation response. I do not think that all the properties that Nishijima Roshi attributes to that (basically, pretty much all of Buddha's Enlightenment and Master Dogen's & Nagaruna's philosophical positions!) should be attributed just to that.

    Nishijima Roshi used to be a runner. He often compares the experience. It is my feeling that Nishijima Roshi regularly experiences a very profound Samadhi and sense of peace/balance/wholeness/oneness in Zazen ... and cooked up his fanciful "Balance of the ANS" to explain that sensation/experience, based pretty much on his half-understanding of some popular science books and articles on the subject he read back in the 60's and 70's. In other words, he is an excellent and deep meditator, but his explanation of why is a bit peculiar.

    I sometimes compare Nishijima Roshi to my own father. Smart, good, excellent fellow, well read (although not a college graduate ... he grew up during the depression). He knew a lot about the world but, for some reason, had the idea in his head that much of the third world crisis was due to the hot sun near the equator making people "hot blooded" (literally).

    Well, I do not fault people for one cute idea too many. Nishijima Roshi is gifted in many other ways beyond his few "too cute" ideas.

    Gassho, Jundo

  5. #55
    Senior Member kirkmc's Avatar
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    Re: Why so much anger?

    These studies are not showing that "all the properties that Nishijima Roshi attributes" are changing, but I don't think that invalidates his "theory". Studies do show long-term changes, that aren't measured as easily, notably in the production of certain neurotransmitters, which, in turn, have effects on the ANS (or whatever you want to call it). This is one reason, for example, why long-term meditation helps decrease chronic pain; there's an increase in dopamine and GABA, for example (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11958969; http://books.google.com/books?id=uZ4fyf ... #PPA118,M1). I think he found something, and tried to explain it in his way, but that it turns out that he's sort-of-correct. Only recently have theses studies been done, and I think they'll be finding more as time goes on, since this type of study has become somewhat "trendy" in medical circles.

    Austin's two books - Zen and the Brain and Zen-Brain Reflections - discuss this in detail.

    Kirk

  6. #56

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Quote Originally Posted by Al Coleman
    Dr. Jenna,

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't Dysautonomia and the mitral valve prolapse syndrome caused by imbalances in the ANS? I think this is pretty well documented.

    Al
    And you believe that Zazen would help mitral valve prolapse etc., Al? Just curious as to what you are asking.

    Gassho, J

  7. #57

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Quote Originally Posted by Al Coleman

    I understand that you don't feel that justifies Nishijima narrowing the whole history of Buddhism into a "Balanced ANS", but I think that this is what he sees as the truth at this point. Some people say, "everything is one" or "we all have Buddha nature". Nishijima seems to prefer using the ANS. This is what his experience has shown him. If everything really is "one" then these are all just words anyway.

    Al
    Well, I wish it were just a matter of that, Al. Thank you for the good thought.

  8. #58

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Hi all. I don't have any medical expertise to offer to the current line of discussion, but I'd like to just put my two cents in about the original question, "Why So Much Anger?"

    I've learned a lot about anger lately...some from my past and some from the present. One important thing I've learned is that anger is okay, as long as it's expressed in an assertive way and not aggressive or passive. I've lived my life more on the passive side, expressing anger in more subtle, indirect ways. I'm learning how to be more assertive, and it sounds to me, Jundo, like your responses to Brad were more assertive than otherwise.
    That makes me feel confident about you as a teacher.

    Because I haven't been here that long and am fairly new to Zen in the first place, I had no idea who Brad Warner was. After reading through his blog, it sounds like he has some valuable teachings to impart, but he strikes me as someone who is deluded and has some growing up to do. His association with the whole porn thing is his choice, albeit an irresponsible one. Porn is very addictive, as the male brain can be triggered into a response similar to that of drugs. All too often, also, the porn industry is involved in sex with children. People can interpret the Precepts any way they want, but to me, sexual misconduct is a pretty clear issue. Lust is suffering. Watching porn is getting off on people who are suffering. And by the way, I'm not denying physical attraction. Happens to me a lot, but I deal with it in a different way.

    And then there's the punk-thing. I was a punk rocker, too, when I was like, 18 or something. Yeah! Let's be pissed at the world! Okay. Whatever. I used to hang out and slam dance at clubs like Oliver J's in Allentown, which was real hard core, not poser hard core. Appealing to the whole younger generation angst-scene isn't really rebellion at all. It's a suck-up. If young people want to be true rebels, they may want to consider more patience, compassion and honesty. Being gentle and loving is more hard core than any punk-ass could ever hope to be.

    If Brad wants to distance himself from you, Jundo, consider it a blessing. Hope I'm okay with commenting on this after the tension seems to have blown over somewhat.

    Deepest and most sincere bows,
    Dave

  9. #59

    Re: Why so much anger?

    I just hope people who have only been around Treeleaf Sangha a few weeks won't think this is the way things always are. It was just a very sad family event, or series of events, that I thought to be very honest about. Most of the time, things are downright dull around here.

  10. #60

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Hi.

    I hope as "OJ" does that people see beyond these lines and see what is really going on, people practsing and living "the way" in "their way".

    Mtfbwy
    Tb

  11. #61

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo
    I just hope people who have only been around Treeleaf Sangha a few weeks won't think this is the way things always are. It was just a very sad family event, or series of events, that I thought to be very honest about. Most of the time, things are downright dull around here.
    Hi Jundo. Even if this would be the way things always are, your honesty would help new members make the choice that's right for them. Regardless of what direction this feud takes, I'm grateful to be here.

    I also had some time to quiet my mind and feel more compassion about this situation. I don't take back anything I said in my post, even though certain issues can make me "shoot first and ask questions later."
    It's become clear to me that within any teacher-student relationship that involves more than one student, there's always the possibility of diverging paths.

    In this case, it appears one path is more concerned about maintaining the integrity of Nishijima Roshi's teachings, while the other is caught up in hype and cashing in on popularity. I've been through hype and popularity. It's a downward-spiraling delusion. Brad is suffering, though he may not realize it, and his influence over Nishijima is causing others to suffer.

    Sounds like metta practice is needed.

    Peace and blessings,
    Dave

  12. #62

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo
    I just hope people who have only been around Treeleaf Sangha a few weeks won't think this is the way things always are. It was just a very sad family event, or series of events, that I thought to be very honest about. Most of the time, things are downright dull around here.
    Hi Jundo,

    Speaking as someone whoís only been around Treeleaf for a few weeks, I really appreciate your openness and honesty around this situation. Your obvious (and understandable) distress about this family event has given your students a glimpse at your humanity. A human teacher - who knew? I am glad to be here practicing with you all, be it dramatic or boring.

    Gassho,
    Jean

  13. #63

    Re: Why so much anger?

    yeah, what jean said. thanks jean

  14. #64

    Re: Why so much anger?

    Hi.

    Doctor Glas, Hjalmar sŲderberg

    We want to be loved; failing that, admired; failing that, feared; failing that, hated and despised.

    At all costs we want to stir up some sort of feeling in others.

    Our soul abhors a vacuum.

    At all costs it longs for contact.


    ...

    Ití s hard sometimes.

    Iím not saying it isnít but Iím also not saying it shouldnít be.

    Itís all in the practice.

    ...

    Steve Hage puts it this way in "Buddhism is not what you think":
    "According to the Buddhadharma (the teaching of the awakened), our effort is to live fully and compassionately in this world of muddy water without churning it up all the more.

    To do this , we only need to realize that whatever comes our way is already of the whole and cannot be done away with.
    "


    Dogen puts it like this in Shobogenzo Genjokoan:

    ďAnd though it is like this, it is simply that flowers, while loved, fall; and weeds, while hated, flourish.Ē



    Try not to cling to the feeling, even though itís hard, just live with it.

    It is what it is, and maybe not what you think it is
    Full text from the quote can be found here:
    http://fugen.blogg.se/2009/february/bum ... -road.html

    In the meanwhile it is as he says, it's "hard" if you make it "hard", and our practice may be that of not making it "hard".

    Mtfbwy
    Tb

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