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Thread: We are all connected... pebbles and water and people too

  1. #1
    Treeleaf Unsui Yugen's Avatar
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    We are all connected... pebbles and water and people too

    I have been reading about Dogen's views of nature.... has lead me to read several fascicles from Shobogenzo.... Mountains and Waters (Sansui-kyo), Voices of the River Valley and the Form of the Mountains (Kesei-sanshiki)....

    My views of mountains and oceans and other natural vistas has been very anthropocentric - I have viewed nature as an object of beauty and wonder (nothing wrong with that), but very much in a subject/object relationship.

    By letting go a bit, and realizing that mountains express themselves now, totally and radically in the present, as the totality of the universe in this moment (and walk at the same time!) I realize that in the realm of nonduality distinctions between sentient and nonsentient disappear.... mountains walking are like humans walking. And my feeling of connectedness to everything around me only deepens.... I feel so much more awareness of my actions and their (potential) consequences/impact - not all of which I can understand and even begin to foresee. I have always mouthed the belief that "we are all connected" but this understanding moves it to such a profound and intimate understanding for me that I am humbled... mountains and pebbles express themselves as well as humans... though not always in the "voices" or fashion that we assign or project onto them. My challenge is to apply this understanding to how I conduct my life.. with respect and consideration for everything around me... not just in the human realm, but all beings....

    There are so many threads and ideas that Dogen cultivates and repeats in many of the Shobogenzo fascicles.... his views on nature, the totality of existence in the present, and time (every moment has in it past, present, and future, but stands as a discrete unit) are woven throughout his work. It's amazing stuff.

    I begin to understand the power of mountains in various religions, and the reason why seekers travel to the mountains to abide, study and practice.... not only to remove themselves from the distractions of urban and secular life... but to be closer to understanding this radical oneness and immediacy of being... the universe displaying the totality of existence, in every moment, before our eyes....

    Wow.

    Gassho
    Yugen
    Last edited by Yugen; 07-31-2012 at 02:18 PM.
    Please take all my comments with a grain of salt - I am a novice priest and anything I say is to be taken with a good dose of skepticism - Shodo Yugen

  2. #2
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    Yugen;
    Thank you for sharing this
    gassho
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Koshin's Avatar
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    Thank you

    Gassho
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    Kōshin / Leo



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

  4. #4
    This is wonderful Yugen ... thank you for sharing.

    Gassho
    Michael
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  5. #5
    Thank you very much.

  6. #6
    Treeleaf Unsui/Engineer Kyonin's Avatar
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    Mountains are serene and wise giants that always point to the skies. They talk so very slowly that one can only listen if we sit still and contemplate them.

    For some reason my mind started playing this:



    Thank you, Yugen.

    Deep gassho,

    Kyonin.
    Last edited by Kyonin; 08-01-2012 at 09:54 PM.
    Shuso and Ango leader for September 2014.

    Please remember I am only a priest in training. I could be wrong in everything I say. Slap me if needed.

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  8. #8
    Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest Taigu's Avatar
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    Thank you Yugen, the old foolish Taigu wrote in the Autumn of 2006 :



    shedding this skin, bones crushed
    what is left?
    mountains, mountains

    My friend Sakaide translated:

    Hone kudakareshi nakigara no
    nani zo nokoran
    Yama yo yama
    骨砕かれし亡き骸の   
    何ぞ残らん    
    山よ山
    Taigu, teacher at Treeleaf Sangha, was born in 1964, started Zazen early and received Shukke Tokudo in 1983 at age 18 from Rev. Mokusho Zeisler of the Deshimaru Lineage. Received Dharma Transmission from Chodo Cross in 2002. Now resides in Osaka, Japan.

  9. #9
    Treeleaf Unsui Yugen's Avatar
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    Taigu,
    Your verse is beautiful, thank you! I like the kanji for mountain (yama)....

    We are all sentient beings

    Gassho
    Yugen
    Please take all my comments with a grain of salt - I am a novice priest and anything I say is to be taken with a good dose of skepticism - Shodo Yugen

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Taigu View Post
    Thank you Yugen, the old foolish Taigu wrote in the Autumn of 2006 :



    shedding this skin, bones crushed
    what is left?
    mountains, mountains

    My friend Sakaide translated:

    Hone kudakareshi nakigara no
    nani zo nokoran
    Yama yo yama
    骨砕かれし亡き骸の   
    何ぞ残らん    
    山よ山
    Taigu - the words go direct to the heart.

    Willow

  11. #11
    Yugen - thank you for this thread. Have also been reading Keisei-Sanshiki. I appreciate/like the fact it is partly a story about a
    layman (Toba). There are no mountains/tumbling rivers where I live so I looked up the area of Lushan and it is indeed very beautiful.

    Nature is a wonderful communicator/embodiment of the truth - I feel - sometimes as adults - we lose our communication with nature and need to reclaim. Dogen poses the question - do we realise the truth or are the mountains and waters realising the truth?
    The question is answered in another story - when a monk asks 'How can we make mountains, rivers and the Earth belong to ourselves?' - and the rhetorical answer/question comes back 'How can we make ourselves belong to mountains, river and the Earth?'

    Abstract essence and concrete reality are one and the same.

    But I much prefer Taigu's way of expressing this - just being.

    Gassho

    Willow

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