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Thread: Buddhist Basics for Zen

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  1. #1

    Buddhist Basics for Zen

    Hi everyone!

    After a month of daily zazen some questions came up for me that don`t have to do with zazen directly but more with the overall buddhist approach according to zen. As far as I have read Zen Buddhism seems to be a certain interpretation of the basic (Theravada) teachings of the Dharma. Right now I am reading "Opening the Hand of Thought" from our reading list. I really like it but I have the feeling (just as with other zen specific books) that the fundamental teachings of Theravada are not described there but knowledge is assumed. What would you consider the basics everybody should know? The four noble truths, the eightfold path, the three marks of existence? What about dependent origination? What would be Mahayana spefic interpretations or added insights that one should know? Don`t get me wrong: I have no doubt in the practice of shikantaza or anything like that, I don`t think that the study of sutras will ease suffering by itsself but I want to know what the thoughts and teachings are that lead to our practice.

    kind regards,
    alex

  2. #2
    Hi Lou,

    Oh my Buddha, you dug up a "Golden Oldie" thread from awhile back.

    Let me add that, since that time, we have added a few things to help with the "basics" ...

    First, of course, there is A SERIES OF TALKS FOR NEW FOLKS on the basics of Shikantaza as we sit that (and Shikantaza sits us and everything) around here. It is a good thread for all "new folks", and even "new folks" who are ancient might look at it from time to time.
    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/forum...-FOR-NEW-FOLKS

    Next, there is a series on Buddha-Basics, a quick introduction to such topics as the Four Noble Truths, the Eightfold Path, Emptiness and all the good stuff (and stuffless) ... a very basic introduction in understanding some fundamentals of Buddhist Practice ...
    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/forum...-Buddha-Basics

    ... plus some other little talks on Bodhisattva-Basics that introduce the warm and wise Heart of this Way ...
    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/forum...isattva-Basics

    If you need more on "how to" Shikantaza, have a look here ...
    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/forum...IKANTAZA-ZAZEN

    And, as mentioned, there is our SUGGESTED BOOK LIST for further reading (with books suggested for new folks marked with **), and soon to be expanded to include recommended online resources, podcasts and the like ...
    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...REELEAF-SANGHA

    Last but not least (beyond last or least), we are about to release a pamphlet with basic instructions for newcomers on sitting Zazen, such as various non-postures, preparing the sitting place, Zafus and such. It is a little delayed as we take the photos it will include (Dokan is our model), but I should be able to post that here in a few days.

    Gassho, Jundo
    Last edited by Jundo; 09-27-2012 at 12:39 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  3. #3
    Senior Member Koshin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Hi Lou,

    Last but not least (beyond last or least), we are about to release a pamphlet with basic instructions for newcomers on sitting Zazen, such as various non-postures, preparing the sitting place, Zafus and such. It is a little delayed as we take the photos it will include (Dokan is our model), but I should be able to post that here in a few days.

    Gassho, Jundo

    Great

    Gassho
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    P.S. Yup, I know, my English sucks

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