Yesterday, I described Buddhism as a positive, joyful, optimistic philosophy, with Zazen an experience pleasant and peaceful, filled with feelings of deep contentment. I was kidding around with my little nieces and son, shooting the garden hose, celebrating a child's birthday ...
They grabbed him on a January day outside his central Baghdad home, doused him with gas and set him ablaze. It's an act incomprehensibly savage, even by Iraq's standards today ... the motive remains unknown. "They dumped gasoline, burned me, and ran," Youssif said, pointing down the street with his scarred hands where his attackers fled. As he sucked his thumb, he repeated, "I was burning." He tried to put the flames out himself. It's hard to see the energetic outgoing child his parents describe beneath the sullen demeanor that defines Youssif today. [more here]
What is called sitting-Zen is not learning Zen meditation. It is just a peaceful and effortless gate to reality. It is practice-and-experience which perfectly realizes the Buddha's enlightenment. The Universe is realized, untouched by restrictions or hindrances. To grasp this meaning is to be like a dragon that has found water, or like a tiger before a mountain stronghold. Remember, true reality is naturally manifesting itself before us, and gloom and distraction vanish at a stroke. [NISHIJIMA]
The zazen I speak of is not meditation practice. It is simply the dharma gate of joyful ease, the practice-realization of totally culminated enlightenment. It is the koan realized; traps and snares can never reach it. If you grasp the point, you are like a dragon gaining the water, like a tiger taking to the mountains. For you must know that the true dharma appears of itself, so that from the start dullness and distraction are struck aside. [SZTP]
Burned and Vandalized Buddha Statue from S.Korea
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