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Thread: a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

  1. #1
    Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest Taigu's Avatar
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    a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

    A few weeks ago, I did spend a few hours with my friend and brother Yasuo. He is a Shingon monk and a very unsual person. Anyway, he took me to a dream place, a remote valley where he lives in the mountains between Kyoto and Osaka where cranes, herons,shiny insects and all sorts of flying things can be seen playing endlessly over shivering ricefields, where very old farms and old temples dream away from the busy city life. It is like going back in time or entering a living sumie painted by an artist three hundred years ago ...Very different from the Japan we work in. Anyway, he took me to a brown new Nichiren temple build on a mountain with countless statues, huge big Boddhisatvas as tall as a high building, and statues of all sorts, the whole collection of deities, none missing...A Buddhist attraction park, empty, of course. How much better this money would have been spend in creating schools and jobs, feeding the poor and building hospitals or just properly invested in nice and healthy business projects. Instead, a kitch display in which I could not see anything that looked like real. I mean real as life, people, stuff. I told him how I was feeling and he was feeling quite the same. We ended up visiting a tiny Soto zen temple, not far from a paddy field, so poor and yet very looked after. He drew my attention to a stone covered with moss that was carved with the poem "orginal face": for those familiar with the film about Dogen, it is the poem (waka)of Dogen that you hear in the trailer and in the movie too and it says:

    Haru wa Hana
    Natsu Hototogisse
    Aki wa tsuki
    Fuyu yuki saete
    tsusushi karikeri

    Flowers are in Spring
    In summer the cuckoo
    in Autumn the moon
    and in winter the snow
    Freshness and cool

    Quite refreshing indeed, this simplicity. As Dogen says somewhere else, don't remember where:

    When you paint Spring, do not paint willow trees, plums, peaches or apricots just paint Spring.

    To make Buddha statues out of stone, wood and precious metals is really painting the unnecessary. The very beauty of it all is in the simplicity of Buddha sitting in the flesh and in the universe manifesting the boundless aspect of the path. I find our virtual place, so simple, so unpretentious, a bit closer to what would be my ideal vision of a true temple. As Jundo often says, life as the temple.

    gassho


    Taigu

  2. #2

    Re: a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

    Thank you, Taigu.

    Gassho,
    Eika

  3. #3

    Re: a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

    Thank you for sharing this Taigu. I would agree the money could have been better spent.
    Though my simpleton brain pictured this when you said a buddhist attraction park -
    :roll: I know, i know....
    "step right up...All things are impermanent... when does the grass stop being grass?!..."

    Gassho Shohei

  4. #4

    Re: a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

    Taigu,

    Thank you for shareing. I agree with you the money could be spent more wisely.

    Shohei,

    You get rather large chuckle out of me with the impermanence of grass. Well done. :lol:

    Gassho
    Will dover

  5. #5

    Re: a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

    gassho
    tobi

  6. #6

    Re: a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

    Thank you, Taigu.
    gassho,
    T

  7. #7
    Senior Member AlanLa's Avatar
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    Re: a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

    Taigu wrote: he took me to a brown new Nichiren temple build on a mountain with countless statues, huge big Boddhisatvas as tall as a high building, and statues of all sorts, the whole collection of deities, none missing...A Buddhist attraction park, empty, of course.
    Amusement parks can be fun to go to. The recreation they provide can help regenerate us. But you can't really live there. You can, however, get a souvenir (a small statue, perhaps, or maybe just a memory) that serves as a reminder of your visit to the that park, something to help you take that regenerational experience out into the world.

    Thank you, Taigu

  8. #8

    Re: a trip to Buddha land and a visit to original face

    Quote Originally Posted by Taigu
    he took me to a dream place, a remote valley where he lives in the mountains between Kyoto and Osaka where cranes, herons,shiny insects and all sorts of flying things can be seen playing endlessly over shivering ricefields, where very old farms and old temples dream away from the busy city life. It is like going back in time or entering a living sumie painted by an artist three hundred years ago
    sounds close to the takatsuki area... sooooooo many little hidden places out there that look like they are still in the warring states, or Edo period, It's beautiful and stands out so much in stark contrast to the big cities.

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