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Thread: A vital reminder on zazen

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  1. #1

    A vital reminder on zazen

    I wrote this for another place, but it is so important a reminder that I want to shout it from the rooftops here. Please sit Zazen in this way, tasting this. Live all of life this way ...

    Master Dogen often spoke about Zazen as "itself body-mind dropped off". I have this little way of explaining "Zazen is in itself body-mind dropped off":

    Our small self, the body-mind, is always filled with countless desires ... the desire to be somewhere else, be getting somewhere, achieving some prize, some distant goal. Our body-mind is always judging this or that as somehow inadequate to what the body-mind wants, its likes and dislikes, needs, regrets and dreams.

    Thus, when there is sat an instant of Zazen as wholeness in just sitting, the only place to be and act to do in that instant in all of reality that is required to fulfill life as life ... the Buddha and all the Ancestors just sitting in that instant of sitting, no other thing to attain or which ever can be attained ... no other place to go or in need of going ... all holes filled, whether full or empty or in between ... all lack and excess resolved in that one sitting, with not one thing to add or take away ... judgments dropped away, "likes and dislikes" put aside ... nothing missing from Zazen (even when we might feel that "something is missing", for one can be fully content with the feeling of lack!) ... the sitting of Zazen and all life experienced as complete and whole as just the sitting of Zazen ... the entire universe manifesting itself on the Zafu at that moment ...

    ... in other words, when the "little self" is thereby put out of a job by the experience of "just sitting" as whole and complete with nothing more to be desired or needed ... then the hard borders between the "little self" and the "not the self" (which is usually being judged and "bumped into" and divided into pieces) thus naturally soften, fully fade away ... only the wholeness of the dance remaining ...

    ... then "Zazen is in itself body-mind dropped off".

    Human beings simply do not know how to engage an action pierced as naturally complete just by the engaging of the action itself, how to live life that is whole just by the act of living life.

    This is not sitting 'on one's complacent rump like a bump on a log', but is instead whole ... vibrant ... alive ... fulfilled sitting.

    Then, rising up from the Zafu to our day to day lives ... we realize that there is no place to go, even as we have so many places to go ... no holes in need of filling, even as we grab a shovel and get to work to filling holes ... nothing to fix in life, even as we try to fix what can be fixed ... no life or death or disease to cure, even as we take our medicine or head to the gym, all on the road to our own funeral ... aversions and attractions dropped away, even as we lightly hold onto those aversions and attractions necessary to ordinary human life ... nothing to attain, even as we follow the Precepts to keep a healthy and balanced life, manifesting the Teachings in each moment and choice ... fully knowing that each step of life's path is a total arriving, sacred in itself, even as we seek to choose the path to a balanced and loving life (and to avoid the paths which lead off the cliff!)

    It is then seen as --all-- the wholeness of the dance.

    Something like that. It's not rocket science. Please sit and live in such way.

    Gassho, Jundo
    Last edited by Jundo; 11-30-2014 at 04:17 PM.

  2. #2
    Gassho, Jundo.

    Balance is hard


  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by charst46 View Post
    Gassho, Jundo.

    Balance is hard

    Charles, the short post by me at the start of this thread is as clear as I can ever make the "non-reason reason" for Shikantaza. Unfortunately, most folks still seem to have a hard time to get the point.

    That's one reason I feel we have some difficulty getting folks to stick with Shikantaza ... because the selfish self wins out, and they end up resuming the rat race of chasing after the next shiny thing, unable to be the Treasure here all along.

    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 12-25-2012 at 02:55 AM.


  4. #4
    Senior Member Jakudo's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Brantford, Ontario, Canada.
    Thank you for this reminder Jundo.
    Gassho, Shawn.
    Gassho, Shawn Jakudo Hinton
    It all begins when we say, I. Everything that follows is illusion.
    "Even to speak the word Buddha is dragging in the mud soaking wet; Even to say the word Zen is a total embarrassment."

  5. #5

  6. #6
    Thank you very much for this!


  7. #7
    Something like that. Yes!
    Thank you, Jundo.

  8. #8
    Very great topic !

    Gassho _/|\_

  9. #9
    Senior Member Troy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Kansas City, MO (USA)
    Thank you... I needed that reminder. Time to get on the cushion

  10. #10
    Member Jamie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Uki, NSW, Australia
    This is not sitting 'on one's complacent rump like a bump on a log', but is instead whole ... vibrant ... alive ... fulfilled sitting.

    Gassho Jundo

  11. #11
    Junior Member Aelric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    South Buckinghamshire, England
    Thank you.

  12. #12
    Thank you.

    sat today

  13. #13
    Senior Member Nandi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    West Palm Beach Florida

    Nandi - sat today.

  14. #14
    Thank you Jundo.
    Uchiyama roshi's comments on Genjokoan speak of dropping off 'the dichotomy' of body and mind of self and other at zazen and off the cushion. He tirelessly mentions living life from the 'ground of being before mind splits reality into this and that.' We live there in that Ground of Being, whether we know it or not, but finding it out, experiencing it, is the marvelous gift of this thing we do, zazen and the Buddha Way.
    To be reminded of this, is a gift I never tire of and receive with energy.

    "Know that the practice of zazen is the complete path of buddha-dharma and nothing can be compared to it....it is not the practice of one or two buddhas but all the buddha ancestors practice this way."
    Dogen zenji in Bendowa

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