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Thread: tangaryo

  1. #1
    Member bayamo's Avatar
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    tangaryo

    is the practice of "tangaryo" still observed by temples? what are some examples of it in modern day retreats? just curious
    gassho

  2. #2

    Re: tangaryo

    Quote Originally Posted by bayamo
    is the practice of "tangaryo" still observed by temples? what are some examples of it in modern day retreats? just curious
    gassho
    I will wait a week before answering.

    Yes, it is still practiced at the formal training monasteries in Japan. It is formalized, in the meaning that they give you a set date when the semester starts and tell you to show up (you don't just drop in at most monasteries) ... but then leave you sitting in a special room doing Zazen, morning to night, for a few days (as far as I know, nobody makes anyone sit in the snow these days ... or cut off their arm like Huike.



    The whole monastery experience for these young monks in Japan is actually more like marine boot camp ... complete with punching and kicking and all kinds of hazing, and "give me 100 pushups" ... then one might imagine. All to break down the ego and instill compliance.

    A thread on the topic ...

    viewtopic.php?p=23609#p23609

    I do not do Tangaryo at Treeleaf unless I have a senior moment and forget someone's email asking to join the Forum. :shock:

    Gassho, J

    PS - For those who do not know the word ...

    Tangaryo is based on an ancient practice in China and Japan, where a monk who has requested admittance to a monastery, is routinely rejected until he has proven his commitment by patiently sitting outside the gate regardless of weather for several days before he is finally allowed to enter.

  3. #3

    Re: tangaryo

    By the way, I just attended some lectures on Dogen's Gakudo Yojinshu with my first teacher in Japan of many years, Azuma Roshi (now age 92, sharp as a tack). He lectured on a section where Dogen says not to take the easy road in practice, because "a master of old cut off his arm ... This is an excellent precedent in practing the way. ... It is obvious that people who are fond of easy practice are not capable of the way ... If you seek easy practice, you will for certain never reach the ground of truth."

    However, a few sentences later, he makes an interesting point ...

    Do you think [practicing to the point of] crushing the bones is of value? Although many [in the past] endured such practice, few of them attained dharma. Do you think people practicing austerities are to be respected? Although there have been many, few of them have realized the way, for they still have difficulty in harmonizing the mind. ... ... [Breaking the bones or practicing austerities is not the difficulty, but to harmonize the mind is most difficult ... to harmonize bodily activities is most difficult. The meaning of harmonizing is that] separation between the two aspects of activity and stillness simply does not arise. ...

    This reminds me of the Buddha's famous analogy of the lute string (from the Sona Sutta) ...

    After becoming a monk, [Sona] ... walked to and fro in meditation in the monastery until one day his feet developed blisters and bled.

    But even after all his efforts Sona did not experience happiness, only pain and disappointment. ...

    When the Buddha heard about this he went to see Sona. [The Buddha said", "Sona, you were a musician and you used to play the lute. Tell me, Sona, did you produce good music when the lute string was well tuned, neither too tight nor too loose?"

    "I was able to produce good music, Lord," replied Sona.

    "What happened when the strings were too tightly wound up?"

    "I could not produce any music, Lord," said Sona.

    "What happened when the strings were too slack?"

    "I could not produce any music at all, Lord," replied Sona

    "Sona, do you now see why you did not experience the happiness of renouncing worldly craving? You have been straining too hard in your meditation. Do it in a relaxed way, but without being slack. Try it again and you will experience the good result."

    Sona understood and stayed on in the monastery as a monk and soon attained [arhatship]

  4. #4

  5. #5
    Member bayamo's Avatar
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    Re: tangaryo

    Jundo
    super intreresting and fascinating, THANKS for the details and the link to the other thread!!
    gassho

  6. #6
    disastermouse
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    Re: tangaryo

    Some places have a somewhat 'symbolic' Tangaryo. I think ZCLA had a practice as one of their pre-Jukai steps where you spent a whole Saturday in Tangaryo. They were sure to let me know that no one monitors you during your 'all day zazen' though, so if you needed to fudge a little - there seemed to be the implication that it was okay.

    Chet

  7. #7

    Re: tangaryo

    I love Bhodidharma's face in the picture Jundo posted...
    He's usually depicted with big, goggle eyes ('cause he supposedly cut off his eyelids, ya see...) but in this particular instance it gives him the perfect "Dude! What the *bleep* are you DOING!?" expression. :lol:
    Gassho,
    -K2

  8. #8

    Re: tangaryo

    Quote Originally Posted by kliffkapus
    I love Bhodidharma's face in the picture Jundo posted...
    He's usually depicted with big, goggle eyes ('cause he supposedly cut off his eyelids, ya see...) but in this particular instance it gives him the perfect "Dude! What the *bleep* are you DOING!?" expression. :lol:
    Gassho,
    -K2
    :mrgreen:

    Mandy

  9. #9
    BlueMorpho
    Guest

    Re: tangaryo

    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo
    I do not do Tangaryo at Treeleaf unless I have a senior moment and forget someone's email asking to join the Forum. :shock:
    Ah, now I see.

    Actually, I am struck by the difference between the styles of different 'keepers of truth'. There are those that evangelize; that work hard to enlist. And those that create barriers (such as having to wait outside by the gate for a week, or having to state your desire to learn/join on three separate occasions, etc.). It is an interesting contrast, with implications for how humans respond psychologically to that which is easy to obtain/given, and that which is difficult/earned.

    And further, it is interesting these two styles exist for 'keepers of truth' when in fact there is nothing to be gained or lost, and nothing to be learned/forgotten.

    Just pondering.

  10. #10

    Re: tangaryo

    I read Eight Gates of Zen recently and I seem to remember that JDL made people sort of prove themselves before they were fully accepted into their process there at Zen Mountain Monastery. No great hardships, though, more like a kindly version of waiting for a while to prove you really want to do it.

  11. #11
    Member bayamo's Avatar
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    Re: tangaryo

    Quote Originally Posted by AlanLa
    I read Eight Gates of Zen recently and I seem to remember that JDL made people sort of prove themselves before they were fully accepted into their process there at Zen Mountain Monastery. No great hardships, though, more like a kindly version of waiting for a while to prove you really want to do it.
    what's JDL? I only know the Jewish Defense League..

  12. #12

    Re: tangaryo

    Quote Originally Posted by bayamo
    Quote Originally Posted by AlanLa
    I read Eight Gates of Zen recently and I seem to remember that JDL made people sort of prove themselves before they were fully accepted into their process there at Zen Mountain Monastery. No great hardships, though, more like a kindly version of waiting for a while to prove you really want to do it.
    what's JDL? I only know the Jewish Defense League..
    John Daido Lori, a great teacher who left this world last month ...

    viewtopic.php?p=28568#p28568

  13. #13

    Re: tangaryo

    Quote Originally Posted by bayamo
    Quote Originally Posted by AlanLa
    I read Eight Gates of Zen recently and I seem to remember that JDL made people sort of prove themselves before they were fully accepted into their process there at Zen Mountain Monastery. No great hardships, though, more like a kindly version of waiting for a while to prove you really want to do it.
    what's JDL? I only know the Jewish Defense League..
    John Daido Loori

    http://johndaidoloori.org/

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Daido_Loori


  14. #14
    Member bayamo's Avatar
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    Re: tangaryo

    gassho, erik

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