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View Full Version : BOOK OF EQUANIMITY. Case 12



Taigu
08-16-2012, 02:31 AM
Case 12

Dizang asked Xiushan, “Where do you come from?”
Xiushan said, “From the South.”
Dizang said, “How is Buddhism in the South these days?”
Xiushan said, “There’s extensive discussion.”
Dizang said, “How can that compare to me here planting the fields and making rice to eat?”
Xiushan said, “What can you do about the world?”
Dizang said, “What do you call the world?”
The Verse
Source and explanation variously are all made up;
Passing to ear from mouth, it comes apart.
Planting fields, making rice—ordinary household matters;
Only those who have investigated to the full would know—
Having investigated to the full, you clearly know there’s nothing to seek.
Zifang after all didn’t care to be enfeoffed as a marquis;
Forgetting his state he returned, same as fish and birds,
Washing his feet in the Canglang, the hazy waters of autumn.*

Attending to the matter at hand , dealing with this body- mind and this body mind only, sitting living being and relinquishing past and future, unleashing here and there: that is the making of a rice ball, the planting of a field. Because Buddha is real and alive in a single handful of soil, a cup filled with water. In our understanding-*
practice, shu sho i shi nyo, practice and awakening are one, countless sentient beings are displaying the treasure in full view.

The second aspect addressed by this koan is the need *To take care. Take care of the relative. Only through the relative can the absolute be. Don t be drunk with the absolute. Don t be sick with emptiness. Pay attention to weeding, *sewing, planting, watering. Today, it is grocery shopping and commuting and family life. Today, the relative shows the true value of mystical powers.

Concepts, words are manyfold, stitching your day, mending the fabric of reality now, giving yourself to the robe of everyday life is way beyond words of wisdom, way beyond discussions and philosophy.

This koan invites everyone to Plough her/his own field not *somebody elses. Cultivating the empty field.

What is the true world?*
So how do you plough the field of your own practice?
Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?
How to forget one s state and return same ad fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?

Shokai
08-16-2012, 11:10 AM
I just sit [monk] the answers come, hopefully I listen gassho2

Shingen
08-16-2012, 01:50 PM
... Attending to the matter at hand , dealing with this body- mind and this body mind only, sitting living being and relinquishing past and future, unleashing here and there ...

Wonderful, thank you Taigu. :)

Gassho
Michael

RichardH
08-16-2012, 01:56 PM
What is the true world?*
So how do you plough the field of your own practice?
Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?
How to forget one s state and return same ad fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?


There is only the true world.. only these bones. However, there is also this habit, with no discernible beginning, of trying to step aside from these bones. It is an impossible thing to do, of course, but in the reaching ......heaven and earth seem to separate, and “I” seem born into the world, stranded, as a thing among things. It is a bewilderment, a confusion, a melodrama. It doesn't matter if this confusion is a baseless illusion, and that heaven and earth, and every movement made, are nothing but the life of these bones.... because the suffering experienced all around is real enough to matter. Working with bewilderment in this world, this is the matter at hand. .... there is need to be met.

Maybe it endlessly returns, but the habit of rejecting these bones burns off like mist in just sitting.
Through practicing just sitting, needs are met freely, with no hook, and no melodrama. That is a life well lived, and an aspiration.

Gassho, kojip

Shohei
08-16-2012, 05:02 PM
Heh, I know that priest Xiushan all to well :rolleyes:!
I spin my wheels quite often on What I have to do, how to do it and how well it needs to be done.
I am figuring out I spend/spent more time worrying about doing, than the actual proceeding. Fear is a factor here.
Worried I might miss something/make a mistake so I do not move and yet I still manage to make even more mistakes and miss stuff this way :D

Sitting is not a cure or an antidote for this just a great view into who wants to run this show.

do what needs done when its met, though I am guilty of making it much more complicated.

Gassho

Shohei

Myoshin
08-16-2012, 11:01 PM
Sometimes I see me thinking instead of living, fortunately less than before for example at the age of 20 when I rehashed everything makin me sad. This practice of shikantaza helped me to drop this vicious circle. Maybe it's only now with treeleaf, Taigu and Jundo, others zennies and after years of shikantaza that I begin my new journey. Even if some days I tell me it'd be better to do something else, it helps me to find that being bored or lazy is good for not hoping anything of my sitting, and after sitting I smile telling me I was right to sit feeling better.
I don't know if my answer fits with the post or koan exactly [confused]

Thank you Taigu

Well said Shohei I'm not the only one with my thoughts now :D

Gassho to all

Yang Hsin

Myoku
08-17-2012, 09:15 AM
Gassho, Thank you Taigu,

Getting up in the morning, breakfast and off to work. Zazen at 11:30, Eating, some more work. Taking care of the children,
sometimes sports. Time to prepare dinner. Eat. Some time to hang around, or doing what needs to be done, some reading
or a listening to a dharma talk. Maybe some more zazen. And yes it takes effort, especially getting up in the morning ;-)
_()_
Myoku

Rich
08-17-2012, 10:21 AM
In a 1000 years, nothing has changed.

galen
08-17-2012, 03:30 PM
Thank you, Taigu.

Nice questions to ponder, or not. Should be quite a nice set-up for some great discussions forth coming. Looking forward and backward to this right here!


_/\_

galen

AlanLa
08-17-2012, 03:40 PM
My initial (and remaining) reaction to this koan was this lesson: Drop all the talk; DO the work; BE your practice! Whether it be rice balls or scrambled eggs or zazen, or whatever, make it your practice. Too often we get trapped and distracted by words, and in the meantime the true-world passes us by. What is the true world? This world in front of me right now, only seen more clearly and with greater awareness. I surf my practice, going from wave to wave of life, sitting out occasionally, stumbling regularly, balance slowly improving as I challenge myself with bigger and bigger life-waves. A typical stumbling is over thinking, and it is often caught here by Jundo or someone else, for which and whomever I am always grateful. My effort is not special, for if it was then I think I would be overdoing it. if anything, I under do it.

I must confess that I thought of Treeleaf when I read this koan. One of the criticisms of here, I believe, is all talk and no action. You could perhaps rewrite Xiushan's part as a former Treeleafer, someone disillusioned with all the chatter in an online forum as zendo. But that's not fair. Just because someone can't see the work, the practice, does not mean it's not happening. And the chatter can be its own form of work as practice. When we look at a tree we tend to focus on all the leaves, but what we so often miss is the whole ecosystem that is the actual tree: branches, trunk, photosynthesis, bugs, birds, etc. all working together to sustain that tree-life/Treeleaf. Such is us,,, but we get distracted by words and debate, too.

Rich
08-17-2012, 04:02 PM
See yourself in all sentient beings. Don't ya think the birds are sometimes chirping because they can. Or they are just being social which they are very much. They work together on a lot of things.

galen
08-17-2012, 06:04 PM
Beautiful, thank you Alan.


_/\_

galen

galen
08-17-2012, 06:10 PM
See yourself in all sentient beings. Don't ya think the birds are sometimes chirping because they can. Or they are just being social which they are very much. They work together on a lot of things.

Hi Rich,

Thank you for your post. Just wanted to say I think your one-handed gassho is quite clever. It seems, when looking at it, you can see the other hand that is not there [monk].


_/\_

galen

Rich
08-17-2012, 07:41 PM
Hi Rich,

Thank you for your post. Just wanted to say I think your one-handed gassho is quite clever. It seems, when looking at it, you can see the other hand that is not there [monk].


_/\_

galen

Actually not that clever. On my Droid virtual keypad, couldn't find the other hand -) and never fixed it from my laptop because as you said you can see the other hand that is not there. gassho1 [smile] :D

Shugen
08-18-2012, 08:21 PM
For whatever reason, this koan reminded me that "it's" not just on the cushion. In the words of Chet I believe, "you're soaking in it!"

Gassho


Shugen

alan.r
08-18-2012, 10:27 PM
For whatever reason, this koan reminded me that "it's" not just on the cushion. In the words of Chet I believe, "you're soaking in it!"

Gassho


Shugen

Me too Shugen: often we’re caught up in our self-centered lives, our little beliefs and concerns, our own little worlds, king of our own skulls. And because of this, we fail to truly see others, hear others, truly hear what they are saying, what they might be asking – we fail to really be there for and with others. So really, we blind ourselves a little bit with our own concerns, thoughts, ideas, much like Priest Shuzan has done here. Sometimes we can even do this with Buddhist stuff, Buddhist crap, Zen junk. We don’t hear others maybe because we’re thinking Zen stuff, oneness stuff, absolute and relative stuff, even thinking awareness stuff. But when we’re thinking in this way, we’re not open, not present. We can’t hear, as Shuzan can’t, what the other is really saying. And so, maybe a few days after talking to a friend or lover or partner or whoever, we talk to them again and go, “Wait, that’s what you meant by that. I didn’t get that.” And then they inevitably say, “That’s because you weren’t listening.” But what they’re really saying is we weren’t present, we weren’t truly there, right then. So this koan, to me, has something to do with not bringing the cushion into daily life. This priest in this koan hasn’t brought his sitting into everyday life. As soon as he does that, as soon as we all do, we can hear the question, we can answer or not answer appropriately, we can even play back with Jizo. And then we can go make our dinner and not worry about the three worlds.

Heisoku
08-19-2012, 12:38 PM
This koan invites everyone to Plough her/his own field not *somebody elses. Cultivating the empty field.

What is the true world?*
So how do you plough the field of your own practice?
Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?
How to forget one s state and return same ad fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?

I am inspired by Nanyue " It is not that there is no practice-enlightenment, but only that it cannot be defiled" and by the response by the 6th ancestor " This non-defilement is exactly what all the Buddhas and ancestors protect and care for."
It is zazen, and the place in which there is nothing to be defiled or to do defiling.
Carrying this in everyday practice is the challenge and the place of cultivation. Thank you Taigu.
Gassho.

Taigu
08-19-2012, 02:47 PM
Heisoku, You are here as close as anyone can be to the very marrow.

galen
08-19-2012, 03:57 PM
There is only the true world.. only these bones. However, there is also this habit, with no discernible beginning, of trying to step aside from these bones. It is an impossible thing to do, of course, but in the reaching ......heaven and earth seem to separate, and “I” seem born into the world, stranded, as a thing among things. It is a bewilderment, a confusion, a melodrama. It doesn't matter if this confusion is a baseless illusion, and that heaven and earth, and every movement made, are nothing but the life of these bones.... because the suffering experienced all around is real enough to matter. Working with bewilderment in this world, this is the matter at hand. .... there is need to be met.

Maybe it endlessly returns, but the habit of rejecting these bones burns off like mist in just sitting.
Through practicing just sitting, needs are met freely, with no hook, and no melodrama. That is a life well lived, and an aspiration.

Gassho, kojip


Hi Kojip,

I read your post a few days back, did not think that much about it... or wasn’t present enough to appreciated it. Just going over the opening and some of the posts here this morning (Mt time, Utah) and it seems, from my bones here in this recliner (so maybe in this present moment I was ready for your little delight here, because of my mood at this time), you really paint a scene of what is true and very prevalent in most of our lives.

It seems we are always/continuously trying to escape our bodies for some higher metaphysical place, to get some out of body experience, to make the leap from dealing with the life of this world. Some short cut to escape the pain of This reality. Most of us are not that comfortable in this bony situation, and many attempt to escape It, also through drugs, alcohol and food.

Just thought your set up here was superb and ended in a nice soft place within, where we can learn to deal with ordinary daily life and to realize, with the sitting inside this body in zazen, we learn to deal with what is out There, by bringing the two worlds together in being more comfortable and confident in these bones. Thank you, Kojip.


_/\_

galen

Taigu
08-20-2012, 12:56 AM
Indeed, Kojip's words describe a very common situation. Getting out of the bag of skin and flesh, stepping out if the bones is an activity human beings are very good at.

Gassho


Taigu

andyZ
08-20-2012, 10:44 AM
Thank you Taigu and everyone posting here for your take on this case.
After reading all the posts I realize that what I wanted to say has been pretty much already said. However, those are not my words and not my understanding so here goes my version :)


What is the true world?*


Can't be described, can only be experienced again and again and again.


So how do you plough the field of your own practice?


Not being separate from whatever I'm doing/is happening (not two) at the moment.


Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?


Over thinkg – yes, however zazen is an always present cure for that.


How to forget one s state and return same as fish and bird?
Does this take a special effort?


When you're the plough itself, there's no place for fish and birds to return to.
It does take an effort. Just like shikantaza – catching yourself drift, returning to the moment over and over.

galen
08-21-2012, 07:03 PM
My initial (and remaining) reaction to this koan was this lesson: Drop all the talk; DO the work; BE your practice! Whether it be rice balls or scrambled eggs or zazen, or whatever, make it your practice. Too often we get trapped and distracted by words, and in the meantime the true-world passes us by. What is the true world? This world in front of me right now, only seen more clearly and with greater awareness. I surf my practice, going from wave to wave of life, sitting out occasionally, stumbling regularly, balance slowly improving as I challenge myself with bigger and bigger life-waves. A typical stumbling is over thinking, and it is often caught here by Jundo or someone else, for which and whomever I am always grateful. My effort is not special, for if it was then I think I would be overdoing it. if anything, I under do it.

I must confess that I thought of Treeleaf when I read this koan. One of the criticisms of here, I believe, is all talk and no action. You could perhaps rewrite Xiushan's part as a former Treeleafer, someone disillusioned with all the chatter in an online forum as zendo. But that's not fair. Just because someone can't see the work, the practice, does not mean it's not happening. And the chatter can be its own form of work as practice. When we look at a tree we tend to focus on all the leaves, but what we so often miss is the whole ecosystem that is the actual tree: branches, trunk, photosynthesis, bugs, birds, etc. all working together to sustain that tree-life/Treeleaf. Such is us,,, but we get distracted by words and debate, too.


Hi Alan,

I was just starting to read Zen Mind, Beginners Mind for the second time and got to page 18 on Control, and it reminded me of having some parallel to your second paragraph. As McCartney says, Let It Be. We all need to be reminded of that from time to time. Its seems if we just let things process themselves out, without jumping in and correcting all the time, and leave attempts to control and manipulate alone, things process out and karma is there with the lesson. Control seems to be the egos way to manipulate instead of releasing, and is fear based. Suzuki's simple explanations of `things are very powerful and simple. In this section he also uses Dogens view as an example. I have had a tremendous teacher on this subject, my small self. And its an on going process, but awareness does wonders.



_/\_

galen

galen
08-22-2012, 03:53 PM
My initial (and remaining) reaction to this koan was this lesson: Drop all the talk; DO the work; BE your practice! Whether it be rice balls or scrambled eggs or zazen, or whatever, make it your practice. Too often we get trapped and distracted by words, and in the meantime the true-world passes us by. What is the true world? This world in front of me right now, only seen more clearly and with greater awareness. I surf my practice, going from wave to wave of life, sitting out occasionally, stumbling regularly, balance slowly improving as I challenge myself with bigger and bigger life-waves. A typical stumbling is over thinking, and it is often caught here by Jundo or someone else, for which and whomever I am always grateful. My effort is not special, for if it was then I think I would be overdoing it. if anything, I under do it.

I must confess that I thought of Treeleaf when I read this koan. One of the criticisms of here, I believe, is all talk and no action. You could perhaps rewrite Xiushan's part as a former Treeleafer, someone disillusioned with all the chatter in an online forum as zendo. But that's not fair. Just because someone can't see the work, the practice, does not mean it's not happening. And the chatter can be its own form of work as practice. When we look at a tree we tend to focus on all the leaves, but what we so often miss is the whole ecosystem that is the actual tree: branches, trunk, photosynthesis, bugs, birds, etc. all working together to sustain that tree-life/Treeleaf. Such is us,,, but we get distracted by words and debate, too.


Alan...... not to beat a DEAD HORSE, but my ego of course, wants to give it one more WACK !! Been having a few of those Freudian pops lately (Chopra case 30), and for the most part they carry some wack`age.... awakening. In case 34 Wick states this (page 107): “One of the 10 grave precepts in Zen is not to elevate oneself and put down others, and another precept is not too speak of others errors and faults”. Later he goes on to say: “When we identify with others, how can we elevate ourselves and put others down? Its only when we create that GAP, that separation which comes from fear (which I referenced in my last post), that we can do it.” And I thank you Alan, for your courageous insight here, as it was no small minded insight.

It seems he is talking about projection here, and in psychology, what we project onto `things/other, it reflects back as more of a lesson for the projector and highlights his or her OWN problem, not the one projected on. Look both ways from the gap, the cut (case 9), one foot in the historical dimension (world of ego, space and time), and one foot in the ultimate dimension (boundless expanse, just touching the earth). In Zen it seems to point to both, as we cannot escape `the world (these bones), but closing the gap to view the historical dimension from the ultimate dimension, from the perspective of no FEAR. {the ultimate dimension being the Way to enlightenment} Thanks to my close friend gassho1, Thich Nhat Hanh, for the dimension perceptions.

As I post this, and send it out electronically into the universe, it serves a great lesson to my small minded ego, as a projection (as for all), its time for me to grab a mirror and reflect on this lesson for myself.


_/\_

galen

Kaishin
08-22-2012, 08:13 PM
What is the true world?*

Just fingers typing this.


Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?

Sometimes... which is an improvement over Never.

AlanLa
08-23-2012, 12:36 AM
Galen wrote: Its seems if we just let things process themselves out, without jumping in and correcting all the time, and leave attempts to control and manipulate alone, things process out and karma is there with the lesson.
I (non)try to do this by letting that gap happen, by not responding right away, by not letting my small self run off with that first thought or impulse when reading on here (and Facebook also). One of the best lessons I have ever learned here is to pause and contemplate, to be mindful of that reaction, to watch it, and more often than not it just goes away. Things settle on their own, both in my head and on here (and on Facebook). The challenge is to also be emotionally honest, so I am still pretty sick when emotional reactions kick in, because it is a whole lot easier to pause on here (and Facebook) than it is in the rest of my day-to-day life. I am a whole lot zennier here than I am in the rest of my life, because the computer allows that gap more so than that irritation in front of me that I can't turn off like a piece of electronics. But I am getting better at that, too, just more slowly.

And of course it's all zenny everywhere in its own way.

BrianW
08-24-2012, 02:53 AM
I must confess that I thought of Treeleaf when I read this koan. One of the criticisms of here, I believe, is all talk and no action. You could perhaps rewrite Xiushan's part as a former Treeleafer, someone disillusioned with all the chatter in an online forum as zendo. But that's not fair. Just because someone can't see the work, the practice, does not mean it's not happening. And the chatter can be its own form of work as practice. When we look at a tree we tend to focus on all the leaves, but what we so often miss is the whole ecosystem that is the actual tree: branches, trunk, photosynthesis, bugs, birds, etc. all working together to sustain that tree-life/Treeleaf. Such is us,,, but we get distracted by words and debate, too.

For me this was fresh.... a perspective I've not thought about and not what first came to mind when reading this koan. Nice!

Gassho,
Jisen/BrianW

galen
08-24-2012, 04:20 PM
I (non)try to do this by letting that gap happen, by not responding right away, by not letting my small self run off with that first thought or impulse when reading on here (and Facebook also). One of the best lessons I have ever learned here is to pause and contemplate, to be mindful of that reaction, to watch it, and more often than not it just goes away. Things settle on their own, both in my head and on here (and on Facebook). The challenge is to also be emotionally honest, so I am still pretty sick when emotional reactions kick in, because it is a whole lot easier to pause on here (and Facebook) than it is in the rest of my day-to-day life. I am a whole lot zennier here than I am in the rest of my life, because the computer allows that gap more so than that irritation in front of me that I can't turn off like a piece of electronics. But I am getting better at that, too, just more slowly.

And of course it's all zenny everywhere in its own way.



Thank you,.... well done with the attempt to not react but act, or no action needed after some contemplation. It seems the other side of the coin can play a larger role in that endeavor once it comes from a deep source from within. And that would be the spontaneity of the intuition, or our enlarged Mind of our true nature/Buddha nature. Very deep zazen is the fruit from which to pick. So contemplation in `time (phenomena), and intuition in no-time, are both part of the same coin (gap), each being on the other side of itself. From my childhood I took a great deal of anger `out into the world and have spent a good share of my life softening that. So a lot of that period, which has mostly passed, I reacted out of anger, I was reactionary, and of course many teachings come from that. So as you say, I also try to come from a more subtle thoughtful response, but also to get where that is not so necessary. It seems taking a day or time, in considering a response/no response, also leaves room for so much mental chatter of the ego (monkey mind). But you clear a lot of that up by referencing a non-emotional out burst of such, as you point to. So sometimes it is better to take that `gut shoot (intuition hopefully), and as we get better at going deep within, it pretty much washes out and its not so reactionary, and can and should, be even more enlightening and not so much intellectualizing.

As for what you call the rest of your life, as apposed to online zennierism, as you know that is also a coin, they are different, but they are also the same, or should be. I get your take here and that is true for me also, but in that awareness, the goaless goal is to be fully embracing our true nature no matter where we go or come. 24/7 Zazen, 24/7 awareness of breath from the abdomen. Our good friend Thich Nhat Hanh has been a good teacher for me in this endeavor in his beautiful little heavy weight book NO DEATH, NO FEAR, where he teaches being in touch with our breath (present) in every physical and mental movement throughout our day. Awake meditation, if you will, walking with good posture and breathing in rhythm with our steps (feeling the ground under our feet). When the phone rings, take our time and approach the pickup through breath, that better prepares us for this other awaiting our voice (attempting to breath through our conversation being totally present to better to be one with the caller to soften the dualism that awaits {ego}). I am getting pretty decent at this and that percentage of being more present is growing. So as I sit here, with all my thoughts flying through the air I am doing my best to stay with my abdomen, it brings you back to earth. Also the koan ‘who am I’ an extension of Mu is pretty constant for me in bringing me back inside my body. I picked this up, with many other deep insights, from the beautiful book The Three Pillars of Zen. In that same realm, we could also ask our self, who is this going to the bathroom, who is this sitting down and so on. I am probably not telling you or many others in this assembly, what that does is put us back in the present moment, breath, with the intent for our being in touch once again with our Buddha nature
and this questing the ‘I’ or ‘who’ wakes us up to big Mind and not our little I (ego). This is how I spend my days, I just got up to make a cup of coffee to finish this long winding piece, and as I got out of this chair I went to breath and felt the carpet under my foot and breathed my way to the kitchen. Of course it goes on and on and we get better at it with Practice, isn’t practice what its all about, not only representing sitting practice (which I feel is the most important practice, to make the outer practice much easier, it like steroids if we can get deep enough). So with practicing our days being as present as we can be, becomes who we are, with practice, that is why it is called Practice. Zazen 24/7 (breath), practicing 24/7 until the gap becomes nothing more then a hair and that only closes in the very last level of Enlightenment, once we have crawled off the Ox and grounded, totally immersed in being........ a Master of our own mind.

Wow, that was short and sweet, not so sweet.

galen
08-24-2012, 04:54 PM
My initial (and remaining) reaction to this koan was this lesson: Drop all the talk; DO the work; BE your practice! Whether it be rice balls or scrambled eggs or zazen, or whatever, make it your practice. Too often we get trapped and distracted by words, and in the meantime the true-world passes us by. What is the true world? This world in front of me right now, only seen more clearly and with greater awareness. I surf my practice, going from wave to wave of life, sitting out occasionally, stumbling regularly, balance slowly improving as I challenge myself with bigger and bigger life-waves. A typical stumbling is over thinking, and it is often caught here by Jundo or someone else, for which and whomever I am always grateful. My effort is not special, for if it was then I think I would be overdoing it. if anything, I under do it.

I must confess that I thought of Treeleaf when I read this koan. One of the criticisms of here, I believe, is all talk and no action. You could perhaps rewrite Xiushan's part as a former Treeleafer, someone disillusioned with all the chatter in an online forum as zendo. But that's not fair. Just because someone can't see the work, the practice, does not mean it's not happening. And the chatter can be its own form of work as practice. When we look at a tree we tend to focus on all the leaves, but what we so often miss is the whole ecosystem that is the actual tree: branches, trunk, photosynthesis, bugs, birds, etc. all working together to sustain that tree-life/Treeleaf. Such is us,,, but we get distracted by words and debate, too.



I just couldn't resist [morehappy] ! Your delightfully little diddy of... "When we look at a tree we tend to focus on all the leaves, but what we so often miss is the whole ecosystem that is the actual tree: branches, trunk, photosynthesis, bugs, birds, etc. all working together to sustain that tree-life/Treeleaf. Such is us,,, but we get distracted by words and debate, too." This insight touches the core of Thick Nhat Hahn's awake meditation. Your big mind view of seeing much more the what sits right in our face (and the emptiness on the other side of the coin) is what Hahn instills, like when we are eating and being fully present (tv/radio off), while seeing/feeling the labor it took to bring the food from the farm, the transportation to our table, the fertilizer, the rain, the clouds that are all apart of this activity, and keeping us present and grateful.

galen
08-24-2012, 05:03 PM
Actually not that clever. On my Droid virtual keypad, couldn't find the other hand -) and never fixed it from my laptop because as you said you can see the other hand that is not there. gassho1 [smile] :D

And actually what i did mean with the cleverness, i took it as the one hand clapping koan, as you/your Droid, was symbolizing. Maybe it came accidentally/not accidentally, from the Droid/your unconscious, as a Freudian Slip. Any way can't help myself today, this is where my mind is taking me today, but for some reason it just struck me as being really cool [claps]. Obviously you have left it, well done!

Taigu
08-25-2012, 12:47 AM
Hi Galen,

I am going to sound old fashioned and pretty stuck. Pausing before action is a great practice.This practice of breath awareness is a great one, it is calming, harmonizing, grounding, in short: a great practice. And not mine anymore. Why is that? Because I am a stuborn son of a b.... And I stick to what Dogen teaches. Breath should be left to breath, Buddha to Buddha, things to things.
Planting fields, making rice is not Planting Breath, making breath. Not even Breath planting fields, breath making rice. The ordinary is not a special focus on breath, dishes, moment, present...It is best described by the words of a very wise lady on this forum: because I know my parents, partner, children, world are already dead, I enjoy their company so much ( something like that, I cannot access the link at the moment)...and when I do so, breath is not in the picture. When cooking or washing the dishes, We are not aware of doing something special, focusing in a particular way, We are simply doing what we are doing. When playing with our child, we just play.

And again if that works for you, great! If you feel you are getting this and that and better, great! But again, the whole point of Dogen Zen is not to get or be better. This attitude and expectation belongs precisely to the realm of extensive discussion described in the koan. You see, this is what makes this Dogen thing absolutely incredible. Far beyond any spiritual agenda could fathom. As expressed by a Shingon priest who happens to be my friend: shikantaza is the ultimate practice.

If you want to get better, fine. Get better. Be in control.

In my clouded eyes, control and intention just get in the way.



Gassho

Taigu

RichardH
08-25-2012, 01:39 AM
Breath should be left to breath, Buddha to Buddha, things to things.


Thank you for this, Taigu. I love this.

Once when absorbed in the sensation of breath entering the tip of my nose "like a gentle ball of cotton", a teacher said to me... "Don't become a unicorn!".. then crossed his eyes staring at his nose. When practice is impartial, each thing is full. Gassho, kojip.

galen
08-25-2012, 02:45 PM
Hi Galen,

I am going to sound old fashioned and pretty stuck. Pausing before action is a great practice.This practice of breath awareness is a great one, it is calming, harmonizing, grounding, in short: a great practice. And not mine anymore. Why is that? Because I am a stuborn son of a b.... And I stick to what Dogen teaches. Breath should be left to breath, Buddha to Buddha, things to things.
Planting fields, making rice is not Planting Breath, making breath. Not even Breath planting fields, breath making rice. The ordinary is not a special focus on breath, dishes, moment, present...It is best described by the words of a very wise lady on this forum: because I know my parents, partner, children, world are already dead, I enjoy their company so much ( something like that, I cannot access the link at the moment)...and when I do so, breath is not in the picture. When cooking or washing the dishes, We are not aware of doing something special, focusing in a particular way, We are simply doing what we are doing. When playing with our child, we just play.

And again if that works for you, great! If you feel you are getting this and that and better, great! But again, the whole point of Dogen Zen is not to get or be better. This attitude and expectation belongs precisely to the realm of extensive discussion described in the koan. You see, this is what makes this Dogen thing absolutely incredible. Far beyond any spiritual agenda could fathom. As expressed by a Shingon priest who happens to be my friend: shikantaza is the ultimate practice.

If you want to get better, fine. Get better. Be in control.

In my clouded eyes, control and intention just get in the way.



Gassho

Taigu



Thank you for this teachable moment, Taigu,

More later in response to your post. My question to you for now is, what is your biggest fear from my posts?


_/\_

galen


ps, my name is spelled galen.

Shingen
08-25-2012, 03:12 PM
Breath should be left to breath, Buddha to Buddha, things to things.

Thank you Taigu ... I agree with Kojip, I love this! Sweet and too the point. :)

Gassho
Michael

Taigu
08-26-2012, 01:04 AM
galen, this is the begining of Zazen Yojinki of Keizan:


Sitting is the way to clarify the ground of experiences and to rest at ease in your Actual Nature. This is called "the display of the Original Face" and "revealing the landscape of the basic ground".

Drop through this bodymind and you will be far beyond such forms as sitting or lying down. Beyond considerations of good or bad, transcend any divisions between usual people and sages, pass beyond the boundary between sentient beings and Buddha.

Putting aside all concerns, shed all attachments. Do nothing at all. Don’t fabricate any things with the six senses.

Who is this? Its name is unknown; it cannot be called "body", it cannot be called "mind". Trying to think of it, the thought vanishes. Trying to speak of it, words die.

It is like a fool, an idiot. It is as high as a mountain, deep as the ocean. Without peak or depths, its brilliance is unthinkable, it shows itself silently. Between sky and earth, only this whole body is seen.

I don t fear anything, galen. Your practice has a very sound ground and is apparently very beneficial to you. Anapanasati is a beloved teaching. And yet, shikantaza is seen as complete, lacking nothing, dropping all attempt to maintain, control, be the master of one s mind. It is very close to the Maha Ati of the Dzogchen teachings or the final practice of Mahamudra in the tibetan tradition. There is a definitive theravadan flavour to this mindfullness of breathing.

This post was also for other treeleafers. It is all too easy to mix practices . In this case I reommend people not to. In Dogens style, mindfullness is natural and flowing, not made or taylored by the mind. When you do, you simply do.

That s all really.

Take care


Gassho


Taigu

Shingen
08-26-2012, 01:42 AM
... mindfullness is natural and flowing, not made or taylored by the mind. When you do, you simply do.

This wonderful Taigu!

Gassho
Michael


Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 2

galen
08-26-2012, 02:11 AM
galen, this is the begining of Zazen Yojinki of Keizan:



I don t fear anything, galen. Your practice has a very sound ground and is apparently very beneficial to you. Anapanasati is a beloved teaching. And yet, shikantaza is seen as complete, lacking nothing, dropping all attempt to maintain, control, be the master of one s mind. It is very close to the Maha Ati of the Dzogchen teachings or the final practice of Mahamudra in the tibetan tradition. There is a definitive theravadan flavour to this mindfullness of breathing.

This post was also for other treeleafers. It is all too easy to mix practices . In this case I reommend people not to. In Dogens style, mindfullness is natural and flowing, not made or taylored by the mind. When you do, you simply do.

That s all really.

Take care


Gassho


Taigu



Thank you, Taigu,

I will approach this at a later time and thanks for your trouble in posting this. I have already been to this depth of this type of sitting, at the time under Yagananda 25 years ago, and lost my way some, but am at the gateless gate and am seemingly close to that profoundess, a goaless goal, it is one of the best drugs i have ever done, and that is saying a lot from years past. You speak like i am somewhat clueless on these subjects, even zazen, as i have good understanding and did come from another website before coming here, and maybe some of my postings resemble that, but some of he teachings on here are somewhat in wonderment also, but i like being here, and i am just processing at the speed and time of where i am at this moment, from clear back as far as 1969. More later, appreciate what you and Jundo do here.


_/\_

galen

Rich
08-26-2012, 12:00 PM
Galen, there is nothing profound going on here. all you have to do is sit and be your quite ordinary life. Thank you for sharing and participating.

"What is the true world?*"
A dark murky fog penetrates all.

"So how do you plough the field of your own practice?"
One breath at a time.

"Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?"
All the time.

"How to forget one s state and return same ad fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?"
Its like a pivot but nothing special.

galen
08-26-2012, 02:02 PM
Galen, there is nothing profound going on here. all you have to do is sit and be your quite ordinary life. Thank you for sharing and participating.

"What is the true world?*"
A dark murky fog penetrates all.

"So how do you plough the field of your own practice?"
One breath at a time.

"Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?"
All the time.

"How to forget one s state and return same ad fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?"
Its like a pivot but nothing special.

Thank you Rich,

I will leave the 'nothing going on thing' up to your perception of my perception. I am being as only my ordinary self can be, and sitting actually much, everything else falls where it may from there. And I really appreciate your jumping in with me here in the dark murky fog, where no rescue is needed. And thank You for sharing and participating, and I appreciate the fish and bird you have left me [claps].

This started with my post to Alan, and yes it might have been over the top, whatever. From what I see from Alan, he can handle me quite well in his own way. Then Taigu jumps in and miss takes a lot of what I said to suit his framing, which is fine and I really do appreciate, except by how the approach was done and some of what was said. Then in a couple posts, Taigu I and were getting things sorted out and will continue to on our own, but then you jump in, which I do appreciate in its own way, but this is mostly Your perception, there is no one way to anything, so-called profound or not, but I do not see the need here as Taigu and I were doing just fine. Then this no profound thing, fine, but then you post the very nice insightful piece, which could be considered very profound :adoration:, even though 'theres nothing going on profound here'. Perception, and mirroring, isn't it great to be human Rich, thats profound in and of its self..... Alan was and is just fine, and I am sure he will step up after sitting on some of this, as he does, as seems to do a good job of. So I will post this not-so-profound `thing.....

Control...

"To give your sheep and cow a large, spacious meadow is the way to control them"... that was the opening .... some exerts... "The best way to control people is to encourage them to be mischievous.".... "let them do what they want and watch them, this is the best policy."... "The second worst is to try to control them. The best one is to watch them, just watch them, without trying to control them" ... "How to make this kind of effort is the secret of practice." ...... Suzuki ZMBM


_/_

galen

galen
08-26-2012, 02:56 PM
Galen, there is nothing profound going on here. all you have to do is sit and be your quite ordinary life. Thank you for sharing and participating.

"What is the true world?*"
A dark murky fog penetrates all.

"So how do you plough the field of your own practice?"
One breath at a time.

"Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?"
All the time.

"How to forget one s state and return same ad fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?"
Its like a pivot but nothing special.


Rich, you may have read my first post here before the edit, as i added more............ thanks!

Rich
08-26-2012, 11:41 PM
Galen, I didn't mean to be profound. I was just answering the koan questions that taigu offered at the beginning of this thread. Early this morning sitting outside in a dark penetrating fog was the true world. My wife would testify that I am not profound lol.

galen
08-27-2012, 01:40 AM
Galen, I didn't mean to be profound. I was just answering the koan questions that taigu offered at the beginning of this thread. Early this morning sitting outside in a dark penetrating fog was the true world. My wife would testify that I am not profound lol.

and i did not read it as you saying that of yourself. i took it as the 'here' part meaning the whole trealeaf site :mad: . thanks for your response back, that meant a lot!

Risho
08-27-2012, 07:15 PM
What is the true world?*
So how do you plough the field of your own practice?
Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?
How to forget one s state and return same ad fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?

I've had a cold for the past 2 weeks, so I've just been avoiding this. lol

The true world is this right here, right now, but without all of the filters and assumptions and things we add or take away.

Ploughing the field of my own practice... sitting consistently, doing my best whatever it is I'm doing, questioning things, testing them out on my own and verifying them. Not giving up even though I don't feel ilke practicing. Not running away from things I don't like or trying to grasp things I want. But it all comes down to truly living this practice. These are ingrained habits, so I fail all the time. I just try to notice my frame of mind.. my grasping and pushing away. In some sense, I do practice for peace from this frantic running away. Not peace in the false sense, but a real lasting peace in that I don't run from or try to grab things... just let them be so I can act appropriately.

Yes, I catch myself overdoing and over thinking things a lot. I'm able to think myself out of practice at times. That's why I'm thankful for the Sangha, practice together, Jukai and Ango. It helps keep me centered and not so stuck in my head all the time.

THe "special effort" is more of a letting go, an observing. By acting, it gets me into the same mess of grasping or avoiding. By just letting go, letting things be... letting the "10,000 things confirm us", that's the special effort.

Gassho,

Risho

Taigu
08-28-2012, 04:03 AM
galen,

To suit my framing...

Would you please get your head and practice in the right place and then we can talk: if you want to cook pizza in a Chinese kitchen or play football right in the middle of a baseball game, that does not work.

Take care.


Gassho


Taigu

galen
08-28-2012, 02:12 PM
galen,

To suit my framing...

Would you please get your head and practice in the right place and then we can talk: if you want to cook pizza in a Chinese kitchen or play football right in the middle of a baseball game, that does not work.

Take care.


Gassho


Taigu


Taigu,

Thank you for your deep sincere interest in your and my well being. Everything works. What is there to be fearful of?


_/\_

galen

Taigu
08-28-2012, 03:19 PM
Again with your idea of "fear"... What do I fear?

A simple thing: I make sure people practice and get the right directions. It is my role as a teacher. See me as a referee. Does that help? makes sense?

galen, Breathing is NOT our practice. No need to pay attention to breath.

That's all. And that's big. And simple too.

Now if you want to do something else, advise people to practice something else...well, this is not the place. Because Jundo and I come from a lineage where BREATHING is just what it is. No more no less.

Now, thank you for being kind with me
and... I have enough.

It means...

Take it or leave it. Breathing is out (and don't you worry, it is taking care of itself).

Back to Dogen. Back to simplicity, Off with this stuff.


gassho

Taigu

alan.r
08-28-2012, 07:30 PM
Please excuse a newbie’s voice here, and I’m not siding with anyone, but: I don’t see why some middle ground can’t be found here. Like: focusing on breath isn’t shikantaza, is not zazen, and is not our practice, but sometimes such a thing can be helpful when, etc (numerous examples: giving a speech at conference; sporting events; even in an argument with someone). Because the thing is this. Sometimes the focus in Zen on “don’t control” can easily become a slippery slope to some (I stress the word "some" here): for instance, if I get angry and I don’t check that anger in some way, some really awful stuff could potentially happen. So, is it control if I “let my anger go” or is it "better" if I “go with the flow” of my anger and punch the dude I want to punch?

I don’t know. I even remember a video from Jundo stating as much, that the breath can be a helpful tool. Not our practice, but sometimes helpful. Maybe I’m wrong and misunderstood.

Again, I don’t know, but this just seems like a pretty obvious place where two people could easily meet in the middle, find some common ground, and then drop it.

Otherwise, we’ve got a dead cat.

Gassho,
Alan

Omoi Otoshi
08-28-2012, 09:16 PM
Sometimes the focus in Zen on “don’t control” can easily become a slippery slope to some (I stress the word "some" here): for instance, if I get angry and I don’t check that anger in some way, some really awful stuff could potentially happen. So, is it control if I “let my anger go” or is it "better" if I “go with the flow” of my anger and punch the dude I want to punch?

That's why traditionally, we let go of control in the cross legged position! :D
Have you ever punched someone in the face, sitting full lotus with your hands in your lap..? :D

Anger sometimes bubbles up in Shikantaza. Some days more and some days less. And we let it. We give it space and let it do whatever it wants (like Suzuki's cows). Let it burn us up completely. No controlling. No judging. No fear. No trying to push it away and force our focus back to "meditation". And when we let anger just be anger in this way, letting it rage freely without trying to put a leash on it, we can sometimes see it for what it is. Just a bubble, coming from nowhere, staying for a while, then naturally dissolving into nothing. Powerless really, when seen for what it truly is and not identified with.

Completely letting go like this, letting anger be anger, breathing be breathing, thoughts be thoughts, not seeking anything, not shutting anything out, letting whatever thought, emotion or sensation appears come into mind, in my opinion, is Shikantaza. So difficult, because it's so easy, so simple. We don't have to try to do anything, just stop meddling with the way body-mind naturally functions. This to me is the gateless gate, the goalless goal, the practiceless practice of no effort.

"What is called sitting-zen, sitting-meditation, is not meditation that is learned. It is the Dharma-gate of effortless ease. It is the practice and experience that gets to the bottom of the Buddha's enlightenment. The laws of the Universe are realized, around which there are no nets or cages. 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 spontaneously emerges, and darkness and dissipation vanish at a stroke."

In other situations, when we are tired, stressed out, afraid, frustrated, distracted, unbalanced, run by the monkey mind (and we are not sitting facing the wall in the crossed legged position!), we may find ourselves on the brink of punching somebody in the face, shaking our child, saying something deeply hurtful. In those situations control is necessary, vital even. Just stay your hand and walk away. Practice letting go of control another time! :)

Gassho,
/Pontus

Taigu
08-28-2012, 09:20 PM
Alan it is what I said in the original post, valuable technique but not our practice.
I don't want people to be misguided and think that this is an option.

Meet in the middle?

Anyway, ask galen, he seems to know better.

gassho

Taigu

or...ask Pontus ( nice to see back, buddy!), he has a very good take on this!

galen
08-28-2012, 09:27 PM
Again with your idea of "fear"... What do I fear?

A simple thing: I make sure people practice and get the right directions. It is my role as a teacher. See me as a referee. Does that help? makes sense?

galen, Breathing is NOT our practice. No need to pay attention to breath.

That's all. And that's big. And simple too.

Now if you want to do something else, advise people to practice something else...well, this is not the place. Because Jundo and I come from a lineage where BREATHING is just what it is. No more no less.

Now, thank you for being kind with me
and... I have enough.

It means...

Take it or leave it. Breathing is out (and don't you worry, it is taking care of itself).

Back to Dogen. Back to simplicity, Off with this stuff.


gassho

Taigu



Taigu,

I have you right where I want you, all emotional and losing sleep. You might try breathing into your diaphragm.... ever so slowly. I don't know where you get this fearful rant about breathing, I do not count breaths, use koans or any mantras to sit, and I would put the depth of contemplation up against yours any day. Do you breath while you sit, or do you hold your breath [monk] ? You are fearful you are losing control here, control is the issue here and very ego driven! But no worries, one of your little clinger zenners will show up soon and try to bail you out. If you are a teacher, then teach me, with out so much whining and acting like a teenager. Go ahead and kick me off this site, be a man, otherwise I will get back to you in a couple days, meanwhile get some sleep.

And you might try reading the wisdom here of alan.r............


_/\_

galen

Taigu
08-28-2012, 09:39 PM
I don t kick people out, I just make a point aboit the true teachings according to what is taught here.
As to all you assume, I leave it to you.

Gassho


Taigu

Taigu
08-28-2012, 09:41 PM
By the way, contemplation contests are not part pf our practice.

I am also sorry to read your words:


You are fearful you are losing control here, control is the issue here and very ego driven! But no worries, one of your little clinger zenners will show up soon and try to bail you out. If you are a teacher, then teach me, with out so much whining and acting like a teenager. Go ahead and kick me off this site, be a man, otherwise I will get back to you in a A couple of days

The mirror principle at its best. My breath is calm and what you describe applies to your mind state. Please , have a look!

Be well and take care


Gassho


Taigu

galen
08-28-2012, 09:59 PM
I don t kick people out, I just make a point aboit the true teachings according to what is taught here.
As to all you assume, I leave it to you.

Gassho


Taigu



Thank you! You have obviously have been doing some assuming yourself..... Later, man...

alan.r
08-28-2012, 10:21 PM
That's why traditionally, we let go of control in the cross legged position! :D
Have you ever punched someone in the face, sitting full lotus with your hands in your lap..? :D

Anger sometimes bubbles up in Shikantaza. Some days more and some days less. And we let it. We give it space and let it do whatever it wants (like Suzuki's cows). Let it burn us up completely. No controlling. No judging. No fear. No trying to push it away and force our focus back to "meditation". And when we let anger just be anger in this way, letting it rage freely without trying to put a leash on it, we can sometimes see it for what it is. Just a bubble, coming from nowhere, staying for a while, then naturally dissolving into nothing. Powerless really, when seen for what it truly is and not identified with.

Completely letting go like this, letting anger be anger, breathing be breathing, thoughts be thoughts, not seeking anything, not shutting anything out, letting whatever thought, emotion or sensation appears come into mind, in my opinion, is Shikantaza. So difficult, because it's so easy, so simple. We don't have to try to do anything, just stop meddling with the way body-mind naturally functions. This to me is the gateless gate, the goalless goal, the practiceless practice of no effort.

"What is called sitting-zen, sitting-meditation, is not meditation that is learned. It is the Dharma-gate of effortless ease. It is the practice and experience that gets to the bottom of the Buddha's enlightenment. The laws of the Universe are realized, around which there are no nets or cages. 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 spontaneously emerges, and darkness and dissipation vanish at a stroke."

In other situations, when we are tired, stressed out, afraid, frustrated, distracted, unbalanced, run by the monkey mind (and we are not sitting facing the wall in the crossed legged position!), we may find ourselves on the brink of punching somebody in the face, shaking our child, saying something deeply hurtful. In those situations control is necessary, vital even. Just stay your hand and walk away. Practice letting go of control another time! :)

Gassho,
/Pontus

Yeah, you're last paragraph is what I was referring to. I wasn't talking about "on the zafu." I'm talking about "control" during an argument, you know, when something like anger comes or spite or whatever - like you say, it's pretty difficult to just let it go or let it be in that instance, and frankly, I'd be surprised if anyone here hasn't "checked" their anger, their self-pity, their need for attention, their self-importance, at some point off the zafu. So, that's where the slope is, or can be, off the zafu. Especially for new folk. Anyway, and still, look, no, to me, this is like two people talking past each other, though I must say that galen's last comments have been rather disheartening. I thought Taigu (and I still do, Taigu) was and is being reasonable, but the problem seemed and still seems to be this:

Taigu was talking about breathing during Shikantaza (as you are, mainly, Pontus).

galen seemed to be talking about breathing not during shikantaza and pushing it pretty hard.

And frankly, I don't see what the problem is with a little attention to breath here and there, out in the world (though always out in the world, etc), though, as I said, I think galen was probably pushing the breath thing a bit too hard. So, it seemed to me there was, and still is, a place to meet in the middle on this. Otherwise, it would be like saying, "Look, our practice is this, shikantaza, don't mix other practices." And well, shit, I practice writing. So, I give up writing, even off the zafu? Seems silly. The practice of breathing, of being aware of the breath, quick before a free throw, on a jog (I mean, these are often prescribed things, being aware of the breath, for athletes, c'mon guys), and to say no to that seems, well, okay, I'll leave it there.

Gassho,
Alan

Taigu
08-28-2012, 10:50 PM
Thank you for your post and patience, Alan. This thread is s beautiful illustration of the very nature of " extensive discussion" of the case 12.
That s why I invite people here ( not mere " clinger zenners") to ask themselves :

What is the real world?
So how do you plough the field of your own practice?
Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?
How to forget one s state and return same as fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?

Gassho


T.

galen
08-29-2012, 01:01 AM
Yeah, you're last paragraph is what I was referring to. I wasn't talking about "on the zafu." I'm talking about "control" during an argument, you know, when something like anger comes or spite or whatever - like you say, it's pretty difficult to just let it go or let it be in that instance, and frankly, I'd be surprised if anyone here hasn't "checked" their anger, their self-pity, their need for attention, their self-importance, at some point off the zafu. So, that's where the slope is, or can be, off the zafu. Especially for new folk. Anyway, and still, look, no, to me, this is like two people talking past each other, though I must say that galen's last comments have been rather disheartening. I thought Taigu (and I still do, Taigu) was and is being reasonable, but the problem seemed and still seems to be this:

Taigu was talking about breathing during Shikantaza (as you are, mainly, Pontus).

galen seemed to be talking about breathing not during shikantaza and pushing it pretty hard.

And frankly, I don't see what the problem is with a little attention to breath here and there, out in the world (though always out in the world, etc), though, as I said, I think galen was probably pushing the breath thing a bit too hard. So, it seemed to me there was, and still is, a place to meet in the middle on this. Otherwise, it would be like saying, "Look, our practice is this, shikantaza, don't mix other practices." And well, shit, I practice writing. So, I give up writing, even off the zafu? Seems silly. The practice of breathing, of being aware of the breath, quick before a free throw, on a jog (I mean, these are often prescribed things, being aware of the breath, for athletes, c'mon guys), and to say no to that seems, well, okay, I'll leave it there.

Gassho,
Alan


Thank you, Alan.... i will own every part of that!


_/\_

galen

alan.r
08-29-2012, 02:56 AM
Thank you, Alan.... i will own every part of that!


_/\_

galen

And, as Taigu has artfully and with perfect timing reminded us, I'll own my part in over-thinking all this! A thing I catch myself doing all the time.

Gassho
Alan

Jundo
08-29-2012, 04:11 AM
I don’t know. I even remember a video from Jundo stating as much, that the breath can be a helpful tool. Not our practice, but sometimes helpful. Maybe I’m wrong and misunderstood.



Just for reference, here is that "Beginingless Beginners" Talk ...

What’s the most important thing to remember about ‘breathing‘ during Zazen?

DON’T STOP!

http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showthread.php?7695-Sit-a-Long-with-Jundo-Zazen-for-Beginners-%28Part-XI%29&highlight=breathe

Gassho, J

Omoi Otoshi
08-29-2012, 09:16 AM
Yeah, you're last paragraph is what I was referring to. I wasn't talking about "on the zafu." I'm talking about "control" during an argument, you know, when something like anger comes or spite or whatever - like you say, it's pretty difficult to just let it go or let it be in that instance, and frankly, I'd be surprised if anyone here hasn't "checked" their anger, their self-pity, their need for attention, their self-importance, at some point off the zafu. So, that's where the slope is, or can be, off the zafu. Especially for new folk.

I check and control myself every day, probably every hour. Whether that is good or bad depends on how you regard your practice IMHO. If you have a very idealistic interpretation of buddhism and zen buddhist practice, then checking back and controlling anger is a very bad thing. There shouldn't be anger in the first place in this idealistic picture, and if there still is, as good buddhists we should immediately become aware of it when it arises and just be mindful of it. The truth is, sometimes even buddhists get stark, raving mad and behave badly. It's OK. We're only humans, with all sorts of faults. There's no need to play charades, trying to impersonate our idea of a perfect buddhist. Instead, we can just acknowledge the damage done, the hurt inflicted, and ask for forgiveness. I do believe zen practice helps us become less frustrated and angry, but I don't think we should expect to achieve perfect balance at all times. True balance for me is the ability to adapt to the various circumstances life throws at you. If you feel perfectly happy, enjoy it. If you feel angry, accept that, be angry and adapt to being in a state of anger. Iif you did punch someone in the face, you adapt to that situation too, face it head on, take responsability and don't blame someone or something else. Causes and conditions put us where we are. All we can do in this moment is change the direction we're going. We can't do anything about the past, just learn from it. True balance is accepting and dancing with life as it constantly evolves, in or out of balance. On the Zafu, in stillness and silence, we are completely exposed, without anywhere for the ego to hide. In our busy, everyday lives, we are often under stress, distracted, forced to make decisions, choices, judge things. But we don't have to actively try to bring Zazen into every activity. If we allow ourselves to drop body and mind on the Zafu, then slowly, automatically, effortlessly (if we allow it), we will find Zazen mind, Bodhi mind arising in other activities too. But we can never force it to. Limiting the stress, distractions, decisions, judging and expectations we expose ourselves to helps though, in my own humble experience.

Gassho,
Pontus

Taigu
08-29-2012, 09:47 AM
What you write here at the end of your post is exactly what I give my life too. Surender, no grasping. Allowing, non doing. This is an excellent description of what takes place from zafu to life and life to zafu.

Thank you Pontus, and I really hope life is better for you now.

gassho


Taigu

Shingen
08-29-2012, 02:14 PM
On the Zafu, in stillness and silence, we are completely exposed, without anywhere for the ego to hide.

Thank you Pontus ... beautifully put. :)

Gassho
Michael

alan.r
08-29-2012, 02:36 PM
I check and control myself every day, probably every hour. Whether that is good or bad depends on how you regard your practice IMHO. If you have a very idealistic interpretation of buddhism and zen buddhist practice, then checking back and controlling anger is a very bad thing. There shouldn't be anger in the first place in this idealistic picture, and if there still is, as good buddhists we should immediately become aware of it when it arises and just be mindful of it. The truth is, sometimes even buddhists get stark, raving mad and behave badly. It's OK. We're only humans, with all sorts of faults. There's no need to play charades, trying to impersonate our idea of a perfect buddhist. Instead, we can just acknowledge the damage done, the hurt inflicted, and ask for forgiveness. I do believe zen practice helps us become less frustrated and angry, but I don't think we should expect to achieve perfect balance at all times. True balance for me is the ability to adapt to the various circumstances life throws at you. If you feel perfectly happy, enjoy it. If you feel angry, accept that, be angry and adapt to being in a state of anger. Iif you did punch someone in the face, you adapt to that situation too, face it head on, take responsability and don't blame someone or something else. Causes and conditions put us where we are. All we can do in this moment is change the direction we're going. We can't do anything about the past, just learn from it. True balance is accepting and dancing with life as it constantly evolves, in or out of balance. On the Zafu, in stillness and silence, we are completely exposed, without anywhere for the ego to hide. In our busy, everyday lives, we are often under stress, distracted, forced to make decisions, choices, judge things. But we don't have to actively try to bring Zazen into every activity. If we allow ourselves to drop body and mind on the Zafu, then slowly, automatically, effortlessly (if we allow it), we will find Zazen mind, Bodhi mind arising in other activities too. But we can never force it to. Limiting the stress, distractions, decisions, judging and expectations we expose ourselves to helps though, in my own humble experience.

Gassho,
Pontus

Yes, Pontus, thank you - this is a lovely expression of our practice.

Gassho,
Alan

galen
08-29-2012, 03:21 PM
Just for reference, here is that "Beginingless Beginners" Talk ...

What’s the most important thing to remember about ‘breathing‘ during Zazen?

DON’T STOP!

http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showthread.php?7695-Sit-a-Long-with-Jundo-Zazen-for-Beginners-%28Part-XI%29&highlight=breathe

Gassho, J


Thank you, Jundo,

Enjoyed the video, for the second time. Nice to refresh.

I have just started my second time through ZMBM by Suzuki, and you quote from his chapter on Breathing, not so ironic :adoration:. A couple chapters later, in Mind Weeds, he ads.... 'You should keep your mind on your breathing until you are not aware of your breathing.' I found that to be true many years back from my Kriya Yoga practice/meditation from my Yogananda teachings, it took a while but I became aware of this feeling of just setting inside and really very little use of breath of any kind, powerful shit! It seems to me there are many ways to get There, as long as we are processing as best we can with our abilities at that moment in `time. Breathing into 'boundless expanse', everything falls into place at its own time. gassho1


_/\_

galen

galen
08-29-2012, 05:00 PM
Jundo and Taigu,

I understand your method here using the King of Soto Zen, Dogen studies, and rightly so (i am excited to start reading him in the spring). I also have a grasp of shikantaza, and at some point if the pull is strong enough, I will also use that practice, with no goal. I also realize your concern (maybe some fear) about mixing practices and how that can get people off track, no track, and so related to that, personally at this point I sometimes speak from quite an extensive experience of different practices, because that is the only language I have been used to, and to this point it seems to have served me well. I do not intend to sell anything of which I have experienced, esp to convince newer Zen students of something not meant for them in your teachings. At this `point, I am just working with what I bring to the forum and what I have experienced from that. Have patience and no fear, you guys and most of the assembled here on this site have been here a while and are quite wise, and are mostly, fully on board. So with that, what I have to say, ‘for now’, should have little impact on new people, esp if your teachings are strong and true, which they seem to be. I am very new here, not to Zen so much or studies of different sects of Zen/Buddhism, Taoism and quite a bit of Hinduism under Yogananda teachings and also the reading of the GITA a couple times. So please be patient, give me ring once in a while and hopefully we will all be fine. It is somewhat hard for me to just get in line, I also feel some disruptions from time to time are not a bad thing, it only makes the teachings more powerful gassho1.


_/\_

galen

Jiken
08-29-2012, 06:03 PM
Hi galen,

Im a beginner here and have enjoyed reading your posts. A lot of food for thought. A lot of thoughts to let go of as well. You mentioned that you have a grasp on Shikantaza but i'm not sure that it is something to be grasped. Shikantaza is not the only way but it is our way here at Treeleaf. It sounds like you have a lot of experience although my opinion is you need to chillax a little and that is just my opinion. Your posts seem to have an angry undertone (something I understand) and a question that was recently posed to me was why? Why do certain things make me angry? An issue for me maybe not you . I don't feel your posts are disruptive as you stated above im just not sure what position you hold here at Treeleaf. At some level we are all teachers and always beginners but can you simplify your point?. Not meaning to be disrespectful here just being honest and posting what I would say to anyone in this situation on the forum or in person. Maybe you think I'm just a zen-clinger? [morehappy]

Gassho,

Daido

galen
08-29-2012, 06:23 PM
Hi galen,

Im a beginner here and have enjoyed reading your posts. A lot of food for thought. A lot of thoughts to let go of as well. You mentioned that you have a grasp on Shikantaza but i'm not sure that it is something to be grasped. Shikantaza is not the only way but it is our way here at Treeleaf. It sounds like you have a lot of experience although my opinion is you need to chillax a little and that is just my opinion. Your posts seem to have an angry undertone (something I understand) and a question that was recently posed to me was why? Why do certain things make me angry? An issue for me maybe not you . I don't feel your posts are disruptive as you stated above im just not sure what position you hold here at Treeleaf. At some level we are all teachers and always beginners but can you simplify your point?. Not meaning to be disrespectful here just being honest and posting what I would say to anyone in this situation on the forum or in person. Maybe you think I'm just a zen-clinger? [morehappy]

Gassho,

Daido


Thank you, Daido,

I thought I made a point here of where I stand or do not stand, what do you need for confirmation [scared] of said simplification? Does this matter need to go any further, and what would that help in making you feel better? In that posed question to you 'of why', you seem to be projecting what you are confronting me on, a little covered up rage/anger. Just let go, that is what I am trying to do, but here you are and for what reason, I will leave it up to you. I have nothing more to say on this matter, happy clinging.


_/\_

galen

Jiken
08-29-2012, 06:36 PM
Maybe I just have a simple mind. My responsibility though. Im good buddy. No need to attack. It's hard to discuss this stuff on a forum sometimes. Im better in person haha

Gassho

Daido

galen
08-29-2012, 07:02 PM
Maybe I just have a simple mind. My responsibility though. Im good buddy. No need to attack. It's hard to discuss this stuff on a forum sometimes. Im better in person haha

Gassho

Daido



very true. on line, while quite absorbing, and can be a tremendously great vehicle communicating, but it is hard sometimes to get a real `feel without personal expressions and even body language, which plays a huge part in getting up close and personal. so right here you seemed to disrupt [morehappy] my feelings to want to get past this and move on, but in that process, we have become friends, and duality gets dropped for the oneness we really All are. all of us are impassioned with the process called Zen or just the process of letting everything go and just be, and i can speak for all of us in thanking these two teachers for putting up with some of this (me), and sometimes us with them, at times, and for the great platform they have furnished here for `the all-of-us.......... thank you!


_/\_

galen

Risho
08-29-2012, 08:14 PM
hahahah I have to chime in here to because I really do get pissed when I post sometimes. :) "How could they have said that?" But it all comes from a good place. Just wait until you sew a Rakusu (unless you have already), that'll raise your hackles so to speak!

galen
08-29-2012, 08:39 PM
hahahah I have to chime in here to because I really do get pissed when I post sometimes. :) "How could they have said that?" But it all comes from a good place. Just wait until you sew a Rakusu (unless you have already), that'll raise your hackles so to speak!


i haven't, as i think you are responding to me. point me to the bad ol Rakusu.

we all get pissed, humanness, and why we the need for sitting until most of It simmers to almost nothing or a clearer awareness. living in Utard (a local joke from us progressives/liberals, because of the very conservative religiously zealot state here {very beautiful}) in and with the mormon culture here, they are very well known for what is called a passive-aggressive personality. they have been raised from day one, out of the shoot, by the washing of the mind [tranquillity] in what some also call a cultish behavior, and this personality disorder teaches them to not show emotions, look good, always smile but most of all do not show irritation (Mitt Romney). so i post a lot in the Salt Lake Tribune, just came from there, and some of the battles of course get heated and even though they try to seem reasonable about their angry stances, there is anger simmering and boiling on the border of hate, its still there, you can only cover it with a thin vale. remember when we were first talking in personal email when i first got here, i said keep an eye [scared] on me, i may need to be bailed out sometimes, where in the hell were you when the last days as they went by hahahahahaheeeeeeeeeeeeyaaaa !? take care, Risho!

Jundo
08-30-2012, 02:09 PM
We happened to have something about breath and Shikantaza come up on another thread today. I do not know if it adds to this conversation, but may be worth a look ...

http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showthread.php?10071-SIT-A-LONG-with-JUNDO-Sex-Scandal-Finger-Wagging&p=84289&viewfull=1#post84289

Gassho, J

galen
08-30-2012, 06:33 PM
We happened to have something about breath and Shikantaza come up on another thread today. I do not know if it adds to this conversation, but may be worth a look ...

http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showthread.php?10071-SIT-A-LONG-with-JUNDO-Sex-Scandal-Finger-Wagging&p=84289&viewfull=1#post84289

Gassho, J




Thank you, Jundo,

Before reading your response I read the Sutra, and after hearing of the monks self-annihilation, I seemingly had no feelings of a misguided teaching here. Yes, the large number who took this action was seemingly large, but maybe in the truer sense, it was just one... (Carl Jung: an `unconscious collective action, being a whole) It seems his lack of remorse or even taking notice, had served his lesson well. From my take, no-taking, or so called reasoning or lack there of, it seemed to me he was giving praise to, and acceptance of, unattractiveness. That seemed to be his lesson, unless I fell of the cliff [hello!]! In the monks taking this shaming to their death, the timing was perfect for their level of mindfulness at this time, their karma came to the fore, something to be worked out in the next time around and around, lesson served in their drive to be perfect and this perfection played out in the perfect timing of their deaths, no death. It was seemingly time for them to move on, get on the train as it leaving the station. A lesson of unmindfulness of the Big minded picture/perception, and to be worked through the next incarnation, of which could be continuous carnations for their level of awareness or lack of mindfulness.

A lesson on the perfection of non-perfection of Zen. In Suzuki’s The Marrow of Zen, he points to this... Those who can sit perfectly physically usually take more time to obtain the true `way of Zen, the actual feelings of Zen, the marrow of Zen. He also points to Dogen’s Shoshaku jushaku: to succeed wrong with wrong, or one continuous mistake... ie, one continuous mistake can also be Zen. It keeps you on the track always moving forward (my words)... This means so many years of ‘one single-minded effort.

There is no reaching It, no perfect `way to sit or be, that could also be the perfection of being 'filled up with emptiness'. There seemingly is only process, down the endless track of unattractiveness being beautiful and all fulfilling.... of nothing. In hoping this made no-sense in my senselessness!!


_/\_

galen

Ekai
08-31-2012, 03:42 PM
Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?

This question reminds me of my recent Judo test. When I was doing Harai-Goshi, the throw was good but I was stopping after the Kuzushi to fit in with the tsukuri perfectly. I was over thinking the throw instead of feeling it and letting the technique flow. Had I just thrown instantly after the getting them off balance and fitting in, the technique would been great instead of good. The dojang is mirror to what's inside ourselves, and I realized that I over think and second guess myself in other areas of my life. It was a great learning experience and this koan helped in pointing this out to me.

Gassho,
Ekai

Kyonin
09-03-2012, 10:38 AM
What is the true world?
The true world is the one beyond our delusions and attachments. There is the world as it is... but we keep distorting it by adding ideas and thoughts. Sitting breaks us free from this.


So how do you plough the field of your own practice?
I just sit and realize my own attachments


Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?
Yes, I tend to over think too often. With sitting I am sometimes aware of it and just drop it all.

Thank you, Taigu.

ScottM
09-04-2012, 05:03 AM
Hi all,

A bit late to the party, but as they say never late than never.

When I read the first line, "Where did you come from?" I jokingly said to myself, "Well Jizo, when a mommy and daddy love each other very much...". I thought it a joke, but after reading the commentary I felt that my not getting caught had been profound. Maybe, but it's not really important. Or is it?

When I read anything, koans, sutras, or a novel I try not to make the mistake or fall into the trap. I don't want to be embarrassed or seen as stupid. But perhaps the point is letting ourselves fall into the trap and learn a lesson that will live in our memories. In this instance, I noticed the trap, which is fine...but that shouldn't be seen as a necessarily a good thing. Learning from the lesson is what's important. Then drop the lesson and the question.

Breathe. Eat. Drink. Sleep. Sit.

Live.

Gassho,
Dosho

Nenka
09-04-2012, 04:03 PM
I have nothing useful to add, but I am watching. And reading. And sitting.

Gassho

Jen

Shujin
09-04-2012, 11:49 PM
I enjoyed reading your post, Dosho. The more I read Dogen, and these koans, the more I feel both stupid and embarassed. Of course, I can form general impressions about what is happening in the texts. The marrow seems to escape me, however, especially when learning the myriad history behind each reference and metaphor. A couple of years ago, I think this probably would have angered and upset me. As it stands right now, I just smile, shrug, and try to keep reading. The language of zen, although beyond language, feels like a third tongue to me. Who knows what'll happen in the future? For now, I've put down the hammer. That feels good.

Gassho,
Shujin

galen
09-05-2012, 12:08 AM
I enjoyed reading your post, Dosho. The more I read Dogen, and these koans, the more I feel both stupid and embarassed. Of course, I can form general impressions about what is happening in the texts. The marrow seems to escape me, however, especially when learning the myriad history behind each reference and metaphor. A couple of years ago, I think this probably would have angered and upset me. As it stands right now, I just smile, shrug, and try to keep reading. The language of zen, although beyond language, feels like a third tongue to me. Who knows what'll happen in the future? For now, I've put down the hammer. That feels good.

Gassho,
Shujin


It could be said, as it seems the marrow escapes you not, and no need for the stupidity of embarrassment. Thank you for your post!

Koshin
09-05-2012, 09:37 PM
What is the true world?


I think it is everything, the world that comes with me and will disappear when I am gone, and the world that was before me and will remain after me


So how do you plough the field of your own practice?


By sitting, and trying to take that when off the zafu. Not easy, not good at it, still a newbie


Can you catch yourself at over doing, over thinking?


All the time, but that is good, it reminds me to let go, to not overdo, not overthink, just Practice

How to forget one s state and return same ad fish and bird? Does this take a special effort?

Maybe I have to realize there is no ego... then it will be no effort

Myozan Kodo
09-11-2012, 10:35 AM
Hi all.
Great posts above.

I have nothing to add.
Gassho
Myozan