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Thread: The Willingness to March on

  1. #1

    The Willingness to March on

    I was having a conversation about Pureland practice and Zen practice. A couple things came up that I think are important.

    Zen is not an easy practice. It is not a fuzzy feeling, problem solving thing.

    In the old days at some monasteries you had to show your sincerity by waiting outside the monastery until the monk said you can come in. After that, you would have to sit in the lotus position all day with people coming by to check.

    Keizan Zenji said:

    "Do not give the teachings unless asked sincerely three times."

    When Kodo Sawaki first started practicing Zazen (maybe the first time. Not sure), a monk came by and bowed to him when he was sitting. He wondered why, eventually realizing that the posture of Zazen is dignified. It's Buddha.


    It is essential that you keep marching on, even when the chips are down. We will face all the worst sides of ourself. But don't give up, and don't have hope. Just keep practicing. Practice until the day you die.

    Zen has so much to offer (or not offer), but we have to put effort into seeing what that is. We can't just give up after a couple months, especially if our practice is inconsistent. Dogen wrote the Shobogenzo specifically for you.

    No one is here to force you to do anything. It is entirely up to you. The teacher can only teach students willing to listen.

    The great matter is Birth and Death.

    Gassho

    Will

  2. #2
    disastermouse
    Guest

    Re: The Willingness to March on

    But what are you marching toward?

    It's easy to keep up effort when gain is to be had. It's harder to keep up effort when you truly understand that no gain is to be had.

    Chet

  3. #3

    Re: The Willingness to March on

    It's harder to keep up effort when you truly understand that no gain is to be had.
    Do you "truly" understand that? Great. Then you must also understand that you have to get off your ass too.

    This is a part of practice. Ego loves what you just said.

    So you got a choice really. Mope about it, or do it.

    Let's not make excuses for all the reasons why under the sun we don't practice Chet.

    It's a privilege remember?


    Gassho _/_

    Will

  4. #4
    disastermouse
    Guest

    Re: The Willingness to March on

    Quote Originally Posted by will
    It's harder to keep up effort when you truly understand that no gain is to be had.
    Do you "truly" understand that? Great. Then you must also understand that you have to get off your ass too.

    This is a part of practice. Ego loves what you just said.

    So you got a choice really. Mope about it, or do it.

    Let's not make excuses for all the reasons why under the sun we don't practice Chet.

    It's a privilege remember?


    Gassho _/_

    Will
    I'm not making excuses - most certainly not to you. If ego loves what I said, it also loves transcending torpor and the pride that comes from that. I've actually resigned myself to the resistance I have to a true daily practice, while strangely enough also realizing that it's necessary. I'm sure something will come of that dilemma without me forcing it. Only when I thought that I had to sit every day did my practice become neurotic.

    Honestly, I have no choice - that's what's odd. No matter how many days stretch out with no sitting, eventually I always find myself back on the bench. Because shikantaza is the only thing that makes sense, so I always end up back to it.

    Chet

  5. #5

    Re: The Willingness to March on

    I'm not making excuses - most certainly not to you.



    If ego loves what I said, it also loves transcending torpor and the pride that comes from that.
    Well, maybe my statement doesn't fit you personally, but it is a habit that some people make excuses not to practice. If you think my post does nothing for you then fine. Throw it in the garbage. It is only a reminder.

    Shall we throw Dogen and Kodo Sawaki etc. etc. in the garbage too?

    Maybe when you read it another day, it might be different.


    I've actually resigned myself to the resistance I have to a true daily practice, while strangely enough also realizing that it's necessary. I'm sure something will come of that dilemma without me forcing it.
    And sometimes we sit all day.

    Only when I thought that I had to sit every day did my practice become neurotic.
    That's why it's good to have a community, and a teacher.

    Honestly, I have no choice - that's what's odd. No matter how many days stretch out with no sitting, eventually I always find myself back on the bench. Because shikantaza is the only thing that makes sense, so I always end up back to it.
    Alrighty then

    Gassho

    W

  6. #6
    disastermouse
    Guest

    Re: The Willingness to March on

    Did you just compare yourself to Dogen and Kodo Sawaki?

    When I said I'm not making excuses to you, I didn't mean that in a personal way. I appreciate your posts, actually. Maybe 'teh fire and brimstonz' are exactly what I need.

    Chet

  7. #7

    Re: The Willingness to March on

    Did you just compare yourself to Dogen and Kodo Sawaki?
    :lol:

    Yes. I did. Shameful I know.

    When I said I'm not making excuses to you, I didn't mean that in a personal way.
    No. I didn't really think you did.

    Sometimes I can be a bit over the top, but it's all for practice sake. Sometimes people just stop practicing for one reason or another. I was like that and I'm not saying everyone is. Maybe no one is like that. But it is an important point that: to do this practice, you need to "keep" doing it.

    But don't take my word for it.

    Gassho

    W

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