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Thread: Beginner's Sutra Studies

  1. #51

    Re: Beginner's Sutra Studies

    That was a joke from Brad I believe. :wink:

    A sad story indeed.
    The only thing that worries me is that someone who doesn't have a teacher and doesn't bother to read the reviews might mistake this for a "translation", when it is not. It won't matter in a hundred years and I doubt it will soil Nishijima Roshi's reputation much.

    I believe Jundo's intentions in trying to stop the publication and writing his review were good.
    I believe Brad's intentions in publishing his teacher's work were good.

    And intentions do matter.

  2. #52

    Re: Beginner's Sutra Studies

    Quote Originally Posted by Omoi Otoshi
    That was a joke from Brad I believe. :wink:
    Really? Maybe I missed part of the post... I thought he was serious!

  3. #53

    Re: Beginner's Sutra Studies

    I just started reading (well about 1/4 through it) Red Pine's Heart Sutra book, and it's a wonder. He's a great writer, adopting a mix of scholarly and "lay" commentary. Highly readable, and what a fascinating dive into the HS's history and interpretations. Highly recommended!

  4. #54

    Re: Beginner's Sutra Studies

    Just discovered Red Pine has his translation/commentary of the Lankavatara Sutra coming out in two days (24 Jan. 2012):

    http://www.amazon.com/Lankavatara-Sutra ... 944&sr=1-1

  5. #55

    Re: Beginner's Sutra Studies

    Quote Originally Posted by Kaishin
    Just discovered Red Pine has his translation/commentary of the Lankavatara Sutra coming out in two days (24 Jan. 2012):

    http://www.amazon.com/Lankavatara-Sutra ... 944&sr=1-1
    Ordered. WIll show up on my kindle on the 1st. I better get crack-a-lacking as I just picked up a book last week at a used bookstore that, so far, is really good. Platform Sutra by Yampolsky.

    Thanks for the tip.

    Gassho,

    Dokan

  6. #56
    (resurrecting an old but good thread)

    What about the Ksitigarbha Sutra? http://www.cttbusa.org/esscommentary/earthstore1.htm

    With Jizo being so popular in Japan, was wondering how important this sutra (and related ones) are in our tradition.
    Thanks,
    Kaishin (Open Heart aka Matt)
    Please take this layman's words with a grain of salt.

  7. #57
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaishin View Post
    Trying to summarize this discussion for easy reference (with Amazon links). From what I gather, a recommended approach to delving into study as a beginner would be:









    • Other "Advanced" Sutras for Nerds
      • Surangama
        Lankavatara
        Flower Garland
        Mahaparinirvana
        Avatamsaka
        Platform
        Other Mahaprajnaparmita (Nagarjuna?)


    I hope this is accurate and useful for everyone!
    An interesting thread indeed, and one to come back to again and again. Thank you Kaishin, for resurrecting it. The list that you pulled together is wonderful, many thanks.

    Gassho
    raindrop
    sat today

  8. #58
    So many treasures hidden in this forum! Thank you for uncovering this one!
    Gassho,
    Sierra
    SatToday

  9. #59
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaishin View Post
    (resurrecting an old but good thread)

    What about the Ksitigarbha Sutra? http://www.cttbusa.org/esscommentary/earthstore1.htm

    With Jizo being so popular in Japan, was wondering how important this sutra (and related ones) are in our tradition.
    Hmmm. Jizo has been a very important figure and still is, especially for women and couples suffering with pregnancy or the loss or miscarriage of a child ...

    XVIII - Whattsa Who'sa Bodhisattva? - Kshitigarbha (Jizo)
    http://www.treeleaf.org/sit-a-long/w...rbha-jizo.html

    Jizo has also, in centuries past in Japan, been used by the Zen equivalent of "tent show faith healers" (you can read a little about that from about page 104 here) ...

    https://books.google.co.jp/books?id=...ure%22&f=false

    I know the Ksitigarbha Sutra was very much cherished in China for the role of Jizo as a kind of helpful saint (to find the equivalent in Christian thought), and it was introduced into Japan centuries before Zen was introduced to Japan ...

    大乘大集地藏十輪経
    Mahāyāna Great Collection Sūtra
    Ten Cakras of Ksitigarbha Sūtra
    Jp. = Daijō Daijū Jizō Jūrin-Kyō

    Translated into Chinese in the mid-7th century by the Chinese monk Hsuan-tsang (Xuanzang) 玄奘, known as Genjō 玄奘 in Japan. The Sanskrit text is no longer extant. The sūtra’s shortened title is 地藏十輪経, Ten Cakras of Ksitigarbha. It was copied by the Japanese around +738-739 (Nara period). ... Jizō worship in China can be traced back to these two sūtra, which introduced Jizō as a savior who would remain on earth between the absence of Shaka Nyorai (Historical Buddha) and the future coming of Miroku (Skt. = Maitreya). Jizo would function most effectively during the Mappō (末法) period, the period of degenerate law, when Buddhist faith and practice were at all time lows. The sūtra also says Jizō appears from the south, possesses miraculous powers, and is able to assume various forms, including that of a Buddhist priest, and even that of the Judge of Hell, known in Sanskrit as Yama-rāja (Lord of Death), in Chinese as Yanmo Wang 閻魔王, and in Japanese as Emma-ō 閻魔王. This early association between Jizō and the underworld foreshadows Jizō’s future role in China and Japan as the savior “par excellence” of those who fall to hell.
    http://www.onmarkproductions.com/html/jizo-texts.html
    So, I assume that it was always popular, although more for Jizo's qualities as a rescuer of folks in trouble, than for specifically Zen Buddhist practice. For Dogen, his successors and Jizo, please read a bit from page 99 to 101 here ...

    https://books.google.co.jp/books?id=...izo%22&f=false

    Gassho, J

    SatToday
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

    #SAT TODAY!

  10. #60
    Thank you for the additional info, Jundo!!!
    Thanks,
    Kaishin (Open Heart aka Matt)
    Please take this layman's words with a grain of salt.

  11. #61
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post

    Not easy going, the Lankavatara.

    Gassho, J
    So true! I have been wading through the Red Pine translation for over a year now and it is a tough read. So many questions, asked in rapid-fire order one after another and then answered in the same manner. Very tough to follow.

    Gassho,
    Juki

    #sattoday
    "First you have to give up." Tyler Durden

  12. #62
    Excellent thread. Precisely the guidance I have been seeking.


    Gassho

    Bokusei

    SaT
    ToDaY

  13. #63
    Hello,

    After trying to ride through the heart and diamond sutras alone in different translations and commentaries, the only conclusion i glimpsed is a interdependent everchanging whole that my person is just a weave in that can and should benefically act on the world as I best understand it since it is all me by extension, i just don't have control over it all like my immediate body.

    It's a rosy conclusion that changed nothing other then the blind walking in life because others were walking. I never found some exotic all knowing bodhisattva mind that always knows exactly what to do. I found many dilemas in life that I acted on merely in best intention unsure if what I did was definately right. I just found a rational reasoning of why it is definately the best to do things that are best for myself and the whole. It's a bittersweet truth having the rationale knowing you don't know what's often best anyway but must act on your best gut instinct knowing full well that you have no way to know what's best or not.

    Sitting has helped me be more 'collected' and less hesitant on my choices but the choices are rarely clear cut as to what is best.

    This has definately been sitting in my mind for a long time and I'm thankful for treeleafs existence to outlet into.

    Metta(even if it isn't the finest),
    Greg

    SatToday

    Sent from my SCH-R530M using Tapatalk
    A fine line separates the weary recluse from the fearful hermit. Finer still is the line between hermit and bitter misanthrope. - Dean Koontz

  14. #64
    Member Geika's Avatar
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    Nice, Greg! I have also often seen life as a big ocean and we are all waves waving...

    Gassho

    Sat today
    迎 Geika

  15. #65
    Geika,

    Lots of metaphors for this saying the same story. It's just strange why this is not only not self evident, but requires going out of ones way to find it and internalize it to applicable utility.

    I try not to bring this up in public too much. Sparingly bring up interdependent existence when the popular theme of 'being independent' comes up and I point out the most immediate realities of their employment being dependent on work coming in and so forth. I don't bother with morality since most are too burned by the conversation to consider a compassionate effect of interbeing and hope they will be able to tie it together themselves.

    This is where I doubt the quality of my practice and wonder if I am doing a good enough job of bringing to light something so obvious that would legitimately resolve many conflicts should it ever be recognized in large enough numbers.

    It's a constant balancing act of not being 'that spiritual nut' and also talking about from where my actions stem from by default so there will be more enduring harmony and less need to take piecemeal measures to help issues that come from unadressed ignorance only to return in another form because the ignorance remains.

    Biggest issue I faced is people look for some proverbial 'form' of a buddhist and how they behave because they don't know that in function of being a buddhist, you don't have a linear set of rules you follow to benefit self and others as a whole. self and others themselves not always coming in that order, depends on the situation.

    Bodhidharma once said one of his students only had the skin of zen, I understand that as buddhist appearence/form and one had zens bone, what I see as buddhisms function, to save all sentient beings from suffering be it dharma or physical and mental aid.

    I'm only hoping I understand the bones here, thought I did before only to my better understanding seeing I didn't. Hence Treeleaf, hence redigesting what I think I get since I completely missed it when I thought I really got it.

    Right now I don't even what principle qualifies a zen master or any other teacher of different traditions to be one in principle outside of a teaching role, a lineage chart, and a ceramony of dharma transmission.

    I honestly don't think there even is a 'last word of zen', you don't hit a final cutscene, stop buddhisming, and go and I don't know, start a destructive corporation harming interbeing and just not do the sitting thing anymore? Nope.

    The whole climbing the mountain, filling a bucket with snow, decending the mountain to dump said snow in a well indefinately seems what it really is and supposed to be about if you 'get' it.

    I think sutras are fine but they can be very disjointed since so many topics are effectively covered at the same time in the diamond sutra for example, each topic in itself requiring a lot of learning and contimplation to understand.

    I know a lot of people are spinning their wheels trying to get it all together so it gells, this place definately helps me gell it and it one day might fully click if it didn't yet.

    The sutra topic and how offbeat sutras can be definately remind me of what kind of unsturdiness my understanding was at in the early days and where the holes may or may not be now. It's absolutely important to me to get it right considering the butterfly effect magnitude of getting it horribly wrong.

    'Beginners sutras' is what I see the actual state of practice. The constant beginning since new things are always happening and 'experts' have nodded out thinking there is nothing further to see here and potentially stop trying to practice correctly all together. Todays lunch won't fill you tomorrow nor is yesterdays sitting todays.

    Metta,
    Greg

    SatToday


    Sent from my SCH-R530M using Tapatalk
    A fine line separates the weary recluse from the fearful hermit. Finer still is the line between hermit and bitter misanthrope. - Dean Koontz

  16. #66
    Reeeeeally late to the party here, but can I put in a good word for the Samvegaparikittanapatha sutta (Reflections on detachment from worldly miseries) from the Pali canon, chanted daily in Theravada communities? Apart from the fact that it's got a really good, pacy, fun-to-chant rhythm (at least in the Thai tradition where I learnt it), it's just a great, unfrilly, straightforward reminder of how misunderstanding the impermanence/no-self nature of things causes suffering. What's not to like - it's one of my all-time favourites There's a version of it here: https://dharmafolk.wordpress.com/200...ng-on-sudafed/

    Libby
    #sattoday

  17. #67
    Thank you Libby! I would like to hear it chanted sometime.

    Gassho,
    Jakuden
    SatToday
    serene
    ​field

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