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Thread: Teaching of the rain

  1. #1
    Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest Taigu's Avatar
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    Teaching of the rain

    When Suzuki was a very young monk in Japan, he used to walk in the heavy rain with his master and his master used to tell him : « Why do you hurry up, rain is everywhere ! ». When it rains, we all hurry up, rushing, running frantically, with shoulders up, head bend, to avoid rain. Just look at yourself, look at everybody in the street. A few drops of rain and suddenly everybody becomes hysterical, we found ourselves in a swarm of mad bees. And eventually, we are just as wet as if we have been walking peacefully. There are many interpretations of this teaching. We could say that there is no need to hurry up to escape difficulty, for difficulty will always be with us. Trying to escape pain just makes more pain. You are wet, out of breath and even in danger for you do not pay much attention to what you do, just obsessed with the idea of getting out of the rain. Even if it does not rain, we always in a rush, running from one point to another, one activity to the next, we hardly take the time to live, to experience life, if we really ask ourselves, if we wonder why we are in a hurry, we don’t know or we blame people, circumstances, work. It shows how very little space we give to our life, trapped in rush and judgmental mind. Suzuki’s master wanted to point out that pain is very much created by our attitude towards life, not totally, thoroughly doing what we are doing. Popping, jumping, skipping, the ape instinct of the ego as Trungpa Rimpoche calls it. This is the pessimistic understanding.

    Yet, there is another way of understanding it: rain, Buddha nature is always with us, no need to hurry up, when it rains, it is Buddha rain. Rain is not separated from us. The problem comes from the fact that when it rains, we think it rains, « it » being something different from what we are. On one side, there is rain, one the other, there is me. From the Buddha’s perspective, there is just a moment and it is called rain, and it includes everything, including myself, here and now. Pouring down, Buddha rain, Bright sun, Buddha sun. When it rains cats and dogs, Buddha cats, Buddha dogs ! And everyday I find myself rushing under the rain, not only the rain made of water, cats and dogs, but also the rain made of work, relationships, difficulties and joy, Please, next time you are under a shower, do not try to walk as slowly as possible to really get soaked… You won’t get enlightenment, just a cold ! justcome back to this precious undivided moment. The point is not to think we should, or should not do this and that. The point is pointless, just enjoy your life and welcome every moment as it comes. Rain is everywhere means that the path is the goal.

    When it rains, we call this moment rain, it is the very moment we experience. Rain is not at object over there. Rain cannot grasped. The whole experience rain is beyond concepts,words, nets and buckets. Rain is everywhere, everything, and rain is who we are. Originally Buddha. So being originally Buddha, does not mean that we are always happy, perfect. Buddha is sometimes wet, sometimes dry, sometimes merry, sometimes not. Buddha is an ordinary man or woman. We often have a kind of distorted perception, idea of what an enlightened being would be like. A Buddha would be like a super hero of the spiritual path, always wise, helpful, opened, clear... Being Buddha is accepting things as they are, if sadness comes, sad Buddha, if joy comes, joyful Buddha, if rain comes, soaked Buddha. No need to hurry up. No need to pretend or escape. Ordinary life, everyday life is Buddha. When Dôgen says that ordinary people are deluded about enlightenment, and Buddha enlightened about their delusions, he literally means that : enlightening our illusion, moment after moment, realising Buddha within our simple and daily life. Being aware of how much we hurry up in the rain. When we sit, we are enlightened about our delusions, for rather than being the thoughts in our mind and tensions in our body, identifying ourselves to the flow of illusions, we see it, we notice it without judging. The mind that does not judge or discriminate is Buddha mind.

  2. #2
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Taigu-oso;

    What a beautiful collection of miscellaneous thoughts

    thank you,

    Richard

  3. #3

    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Thank you Taigu, sensei. I really needed to read that.. you have no idea

    Gassho,

    Cyril

  4. #4

    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Fantastic.

    Taylor

  5. #5

    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Thank you.You are a powerful teacher!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Nenka's Avatar
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    Re: Teaching of the rain

    I feel like a silly cliche posting Beatles lyrics on a Zen forum, but this so reminds me of my favorite Beatles song:

    When the rain comes they run and hide their heads
    they might as well be dead
    when the rain comes

    When the sun shines they slip into the shade
    and sip their lemonade
    when the sun shines

    Rain, I don't mind
    Shine, the weather's fine

    I can show you that when it rains and shines
    it's just a state of mind
    I can show you . . .

    Ah well. Gassho.

  7. #7

    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Taigu wrote:

    "... rain, Buddha nature is always with us, no need to hurry up, when it rains, it is Buddha rain. Rain is not separated from us. The problem comes from the fact that when it rains, we think it rains, « it » being something different from what we are. On one side, there is rain, on the other, there is me. From the Buddha’s perspective, there is just a moment and it is called rain, and it includes everything, including myself, here and now. Pouring down, Buddha rain, Bright sun, Buddha sun. When it rains cats and dogs, Buddha cats, Buddha dogs ! And everyday I find myself rushing under the rain, not only the rain made of water, cats and dogs, but also the rain made of work, relationships, difficulties and joy, Please, next time you are under a shower, do not try to walk as slowly as possible to really get soaked… You won’t get enlightenment, just a cold ! justcome back to this precious undivided moment. The point is not to think we should, or should not do this and that. The point is pointless, just enjoy your life and welcome every moment as it comes. Rain is everywhere means that the path is the goal.

    ... Being Buddha is accepting things as they are, if sadness comes, sad Buddha, if joy comes, joyful Buddha, if rain comes, soaked Buddha. No need to hurry up. No need to pretend or escape. Ordinary life, everyday life is Buddha. When Dôgen says that ordinary people are deluded about enlightenment, and Buddha enlightened about their delusions, he literally means that : enlightening our illusion, moment after moment, realising Buddha within our simple and daily life. Being aware of how much we hurry up in the rain. When we sit, we are enlightened about our delusions, for rather than being the thoughts in our mind and tensions in our body, identifying ourselves to the flow of illusions, we see it, we notice it without judging. The mind that does not judge or discriminate is Buddha mind."

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Thank you, Taigu. A very clear and simple teaching- though one also very easy to forget. What really matters is to be mindful and present with what is happening right now, right here. We are not the limited individuals we often believe ourselves to be. Ordinary life, everyday life is Buddha.

    Deep bows.

  8. #8

    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Thanks for a brilliant post! One that you can read over and over again.

    I have often looked at people running from a gentle summer rain, wondering why they are running around like headless chickens. It can be great fun to watch!
    When it starts to rain, I often look up at the sky for a few seconds, to feel the rain against my face. My clothes can handle some rain and if I'm on my way home, I can always change them.
    It's a lot harder to see the ice cold rain of december whipping your face as Buddha's rain... Especially when the kid is screaming and the dog is pulling on the leash... Good practice though.

    /Pontus

  9. #9
    Senior Member Hoyu's Avatar
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    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Truly an all weather all condition teaching!
    _/_

  10. #10

    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Thank you for that Taigu!

    999 Bows

  11. #11
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    Re: Teaching of the rain

    Quote Originally Posted by Taigu
    ...When it rains, we all hurry up, rushing, running frantically, with shoulders up, head bend, to avoid rain. Just look at yourself, look at everybody in the street... And eventually, we are just as wet as if we have been walking peacefully.
    I've never noticed this or thought about it this way, but now I remember doing it many times. I have noticed more that when there is tension in my body or mind, I am "dodging rain".

    Quote Originally Posted by Taigu
    ...And everyday I find myself rushing under the rain, not only the rain made of water, cats and dogs, but also the rain made of work, relationships, difficulties and joy, Please, next time you are under a shower, do not try to walk as slowly as possible to really get soaked… You won’t get enlightenment, just a cold ! justcome back to this precious undivided moment. The point is not to think we should, or should not do this and that. The point is pointless, just enjoy your life and welcome every moment as it comes. Rain is everywhere means that the path is the goal...

    ...if sadness comes, sad Buddha, if joy comes, joyful Buddha, if rain comes, soaked Buddha. No need to hurry up. No need to pretend or escape...
    Thanks for pulling my eyes open a bit wider.

    Gassho,

    Amelia

  12. #12
    Senior Member Heisoku's Avatar
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    Sitting in my car waiting for my wife to finish work in the rain. Wonderful Gassho.

    Sent from my BlackBerry 9790 using Tapatalk
    Heisoku
    平 息

  13. #13
    Friend of Treeleaf Daido's Avatar
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    Gassho Taigu

    Daido
    Jiken Daido - Unsui at Treeleaf's Brother Sangha, the Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage.

    Do not just accept what I say. Decide for yourself if it rings true for you

  14. #14
    Senior Member Myosha's Avatar
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    "You only get wet once." - my Nana age 92.


    Gassho,
    Edward
    Practice with humility, respect all beings, avoid attachments, give rise to prajña from your own awareness, put an end to delusions - Hui-neng

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