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Taigu
11-23-2012, 07:08 AM
Not knowing is most intimate...

As long as you are standing in front of the mountain, knowing the mountain, seeing the mountain, admiring its landscape, is but removing yourself from the mountain. As you climb, as you go you become part of the mountain, the mountain beneath your feet is not seen,perceived as such, rather experienced fully, the mountain have swallowed you, you have embraced the mountain to become it.

This is the relationship between self and sitting. From a distance there is Zen, zazen, as you take the shape and form of the mountain state, this state and this form vanishes, as you wear the kesa, you cannot see it. Not knowing is total intimacy with the source, the origin.

So not knowing is not ignorance or behaving like an idiot or a fool. Not knowing is living fully out of the expanse- space before thoughts arise, hishiryo.beyond thinking

In zazen shin, a needle for zazen, Dogen starts like this:

While Great Master Yakusan Kōdō1 is sitting, a monk asks him, “What are you thinking in the still-still state?” The master says, “Thinking the con- crete state of not thinking.” The monk says, “How can the state of not think- ing be thought?” The master says, “It is non-thinking.” Experiencing the state in which the words of the great master are like this, we should learn in practice “mountain-still sitting,” and we should receive the authentic transmission of “mountain-still sitting”: this is the investigation of “mountain-still sitting” that has been transmitted in Buddhism. “Thinking in the still-still state” is not of only one kind, but Yakusan’s words are one example of it. Those words are “Thinking the concrete state of not thinking.

Hishiryo, non thinking, beyond thinking, is the essence and secret of our treasury house. And again in this, thoughts may arise as clouds in the vast blue sky, not knowing is the sky- like, sea- like, state like the sea state as Dogen puts it. But collapse into a thought, believe your thought, become your thought , identify with it and you enter instantly the world of knowing. Entering the word - world of knowing you end up smelling like a dead cat, good for universities and lecturing, writing brilliant stuff or recipe books, useless for cooking your life. You d better be good for nothing. as Santoka puts it,

in the embrace of mountains
I am naked.




A common misconception of Zen ractice is that it should lead to a state without thoughts. Of course not! Thoughts making is a natural process of he brain, the point is not to be brain dead but stepping back, taking the backward step, to appreciate Big mind, to live in and out the Big reality that we are, not merely a few inches of flesh and a collection of random thoughts. As some Zen words say: Born from a hole and ending thrown into another one,
...really???is it really what life is?

IT is as-it-isness, original face, not knowing, call it pepsi or fake plastic gimmick, it IS.

When in the dokusan moment you appear on the screen or enter the room, It comes just with- as- you.

When you wake up and do things and not do things, It radiates. Not before or after. Exactly, precisely as you do. Thoughts? An aftermath effect.

Not knowing, knowing not.

This is the not knowing thing that makes lecturers and writers and philosophers so shallow and vain.

Not knowing is raw, undiluted. Kind of straight to the point, razor blade like, juicy, meaty, not wrapped in much fuss.

As is.

Doesn t mean Zen teachers should indulge in rawness.

They pick up whatever works to help you to unload.

In the mountain state, no need for much. It is all complete and full and ripe. The chase has stopped, blossoms and leaves collide, snow and furnace cuddle, the old and new have one face.

This cae is very close to ordinary mind is the way , case 19 of the Gatelss Gate.

Please consider these questions:

When you get up, what happens then?

Does not knowing has a colour or shape?
Does it speak?
How big are the legs?
How far its arms can reach out?
How to know not knowing?
How can it be known?
Where are you in this knowing?
Still there?


Gassho in not knowing

Taigu

Shingen
11-23-2012, 04:56 PM
When you wake up and do things and not do things, It radiates. Not before or after. Exactly, precisely as you do. Thoughts? An aftermath effect.

Beautiful! Thank you Taigu. :)

Gassho
Michael

Shujin
11-23-2012, 05:44 PM
Until the recent past, I had faith in some sort of narrative for myself. I started somewhere, and was clearly going somewhere else. I couldn't always articulate the destination, but that didn't seem to diminish my belief.

After sitting for a short time, I am able to admit that I am less the mountain and more the weather around it. I don't know (in the most mundane way) where this leads, and I've mostly stopped wondering. Amidst all this uncertainty, there is this practice. For me, for now, that is enough.

Incidentally, I feel I'm missing something of the appreciators verse: "The matter of thirty years' pilgrimage -- a clear transgression against one's pair of eyebrows." Perhaps someone could explain.

Gassho,
Shujin

Omoi Otoshi
11-23-2012, 08:32 PM
Wonderful words, aimed for the heart.

Thank you,
Gassho,
Pontus

Daitetsu
11-25-2012, 03:17 AM
Please consider these questions:

When you get up, what happens then?
Whatever comes


Does not knowing has a colour or shape?
The colour of my shirt



Does it speak?
The sound of white noise



How big are the legs?
As big as the ground


How far its arms can reach out?
From me to you and back again


How to know not knowing?
I don't know


How can it be known?
I don't care


Where are you in this knowing?
Everywhere and nowhere


Still there?
Yes and no

Gassho,

Timo

Taigu
11-25-2012, 04:00 AM
Hi Timo,

Not too bad and yet your answers are still a bit zenny to me, they stinck good old answers and some are obviously processed through over thinking.
I give you the credit to give it a real go when mostDragons and Elephants, a famous opening of the sussho ceremony, behave lile scared rabbits, rushing into holes but without a watch this time.

Gassho


Taigu

Ps: your answers, the colour of my shirt/i don t care come the closest, the space where they are spoken from, is very free and clear and crisp.
Thank you again.

Taigu
11-25-2012, 06:01 AM
Oh yes, some might think here comes this bossy-arrogant-provocative-abusive French guy.
And for sure I am , and yet, and yet...

gassho

T.

Jinyo
11-25-2012, 11:15 AM
Oh yes, some might think here comes this bossy-arrogant-provocative-abusive French guy.
And for sure I am , and yet, and yet...

gassho

T.

... a mirror to my own 'self' :)


..... 'the cuddle of snow and furnace' all embracing words - but when I get up the intimacy is often lost.

(If I might just say - the philosopher/writer in me is the part most unsure/afraid. I've always felt philosophy is the activity of the mind quivering over the dark abyss of doubt - possibly shallow and vain - but also afraid. Out on the cold mountain - half asleep - not fully awake)

Thank you for your teaching

Gassho

Willow

Omoi Otoshi
11-25-2012, 11:32 AM
When you get up, what happens then?
In getting up, it sometimes seems like delusion rushes in and this Buddha becomes a seeker again. Not knowing turns into knowing. Resting turns into carrying a burden. The path that had ended reappears. But it's OK. I know the seeker a little better by now. He's me and mostly harmless. And I'm still Buddha.


Does not knowing has a colour or shape?
No colour or shape in particular. 10000 colours, 10000 shapes.


Does it speak?
No. It doesn't need to. Yes. It speaks the truth. Constantly speaking wordless Dharma through all, to all. And sometimes speaking living words through arrogant Frenchmen! :)


How big are the legs?
In not knowing, big or small, here or there is not so important. But sometimes it seems like they are as big as the world.


How far its arms can reach out?
Not knowing can embrace everything, hold the universe in its arms.


How to know not knowing?

How can it be known?
No matter how hard you try, you can't. You can just stop trying, give up, accept not knowing. Give the seeking, judging mind a rest. And in not knowing, you know, in the sense that the true nature of all things becomes clear. But as soon as the thought "I know!" is identified with, the true knowing is gone. A bit of a bummer that. It would be nice to be able to tell others. But there's really no need to. It's the ego that wants to keep its imagined treasure, retain it, show it off. The ego isn't doing this out of spite. It's making a simple mistake, a misunderstanding that is not so surprising given the nature of ego. It has a hard time accepting that the treasure is not something to cathegorize, seek, find and keep forever. It doesn't understand that the treasure belonged to everyone and everything from the beginning, that it can't be cathegorized, can never be found by searching, is not a thing to be found and can't be kept because it can never be lost.


Where are you in this knowing?
Gone completely. Home completely.


Still there?
I trust that I am. But it doesn't always seem that way.

Gassho,
Pontus

Daitetsu
11-25-2012, 12:16 PM
Hi Taigu,




Ps: your answers, the colour of my shirt/i don t care come the closest, the space where they are spoken from, is very free and clear and crisp.
Thank you again.

Thanks for your response - this "PS part" was very helpful, as actually these two answers were those that came up totally spontaneously, while the others took several seconds.
One thing: There was another spontaneous answer, that I dismissed though: My original (spontaneous) answer to "Does it speak" was "It has my voice", but when I saw this I thought it sounded totally contrived (although it wasn't) and thus I deleted it...

Thanks again for your useful feedback!

Gassho,

Timo

Shohei
11-25-2012, 04:14 PM
Hi

They pick up whatever works to help you to unload.

And I cannot thank you enough for doing so!


I woke up today and sat on the back deck sneaking a forbidden cig (tisk tisk I know) while I drank my coffee, cold air blowing throw the rip in my pants, and making me cringe.
Standing to butt my bad habit, I saw a then shiny (melted frost) absolutely imperfectly perfect water washed and shaped rock sitting there in the dead grass.
I picked it up and inspected it and pondered how it got there. I had no clue. Silly thought, I was about to drop it again and realized in that instant I could not tell it from me with the raw wind on my hand. I had lost, for a moment, my arms and hands fingers and sense...the rock was as much me as I was it. The grass the bare tree limbs the cold wind the clouds blowing by making me dizzy as I stared off. I dawned on me for a second, I could not put it into words, but it dimmed my need find an answer. Shit who cares how it got here... amazing that its here in the grandest sense.

I was a bit shocked and looked up from it, here I sat on a rock, holding a rock wondering how it got here. I laughed out loud and put it back where it found me, and pulled the last drag and put the but in a the stinking tin.

This not knowing scared me for I felt I lost for a lifetime in that moment... it all fell away. I did not stop thinking I just let those thoughts be and realized that any answer I can come up with is just a me grabbing at something to ground this self.

Anywho, how big are the legs, big enough! Everything is in arms reach when I stop trying to get a handle on things. Not knowing was the very colour of that moment. I cannot wrap the right words around to convey it and its already long gone.

I do not have answers really for these questions.

783

Omoi Otoshi
11-25-2012, 04:19 PM
Anywho, how big are the legs, big enough! Everything is in arms reach when I stop trying to get a handle on things. Not knowing was the very colour of that moment. I cannot wrap the right words around to convey it and its already long gone.

I do not have answers really for these questions.

Who does? :D

I like your answers for what it's worth.

Gassho,
/Pontus

Shingen
11-25-2012, 04:21 PM
Hi


And I cannot thank you enough for doing so!


I woke up today and sat on the back deck sneaking a forbidden cig (tisk tisk I know) while I drank my coffee, cold air blowing throw the rip in my pants, and making me cringe.
Standing to butt my bad habit, I saw a then shiny (melted frost) absolutely imperfectly perfect water washed and shaped rock sitting there in the dead grass.
I picked it up and inspected it and pondered how it got there. I had no clue. Silly thought, I was about to drop it again and realized in that instant I could not tell it from me with the raw wind on my hand. I had lost, for a moment, my arms and hands fingers and sense...the rock was as much me as I was it. The grass the bare tree limbs the cold wind the clouds blowing by making me dizzy as I stared off. I dawned on me for a second, I could not put it into words, but it dimmed my need find an answer. Shit who cares how it got here... amazing that its here in the grandest sense.

I was a bit shocked and looked up from it, here I sat on a rock, holding a rock wondering how it got here. I laughed out loud and put it back where it found me, and pulled the last drag and put the but in a the stinking tin.

This not knowing scared me for I felt I lost for a lifetime in that moment... it all fell away. I did not stop thinking I just let those thoughts be and realized that any answer I can come up with is just a me grabbing at something to ground this self.

Anywho, how big are the legs, big enough! Everything is in arms reach when I stop trying to get a handle on things. Not knowing was the very colour of that moment. I cannot wrap the right words around to convey it and its already long gone.

I do not have answers really for these questions.

783

This is great Shohei, thank you. :) I could actually feel the cold as you described it. [scared]

Gassho
Michael

galen
11-25-2012, 05:27 PM
Who is such a person? a person who `thinks they know. Lead by the head and not the heart.

Not knowing is the most intimate because it seems to embody true feelings of being open to knowing through dichotomy. Both sides of one coin, the wholeness of what Is. How can you know, without not knowing? How can you find east without west?


Gassho

Jiken
11-25-2012, 05:37 PM
I do not have answers really for these questions.

I keep coming back to this thread. Thinking about the questions, thinking about my answers, thinking about what to write and eventually writing nothing because every time I try to answer them my words drive me so far away from what I am actually feeling. I think about the questions and let them go. For me the realization of the moment where my thought arises and the point where I let it go is precious...useful. The same goes for PPE 9 as to why I practice zen. Constantly changing and flowing non-answers. This is my answer right...now. gone!

Gassho,

Daido

Shujin
11-25-2012, 06:34 PM
I keep coming back to this thread. Thinking about the questions, thinking about my answers, thinking about what to write and eventually writing nothing because every time I try to answer them my words drive me so far away from what I am actually feeling. I think about the questions and let them go. For me the realization of the moment where my thought arises and the point where I let it go is precious...useful. The same goes for PPE 9 as to why I practice zen. Constantly changing and flowing non-answers. This is my answer right...now. gone!

Gassho,

Daido

Thanks for this response, Daido. I feel it encompasses the object of my clumsy post above.

Rich
11-25-2012, 06:48 PM
Spontaneously, joyfully, playfully the flag is flying.
Who could hang a name on me.
Trust not knowing with your life.

Memo
11-26-2012, 12:13 PM
Don't really know
says this scared rabitt
just trembling because of being slapped by these questions[scared]

Daitetsu
11-26-2012, 10:19 PM
Don't really know
says this scared rabitt
just trembling because of being slapped by these questions[scared]

What do you have to lose? ;)

Gassho,

Timo

Heisoku
11-27-2012, 08:20 PM
Not knowing is living fully out of the expanse- space before thoughts arise, hishiryo, beyond thinking.
Where are you in this knowing?

There is so much space in each moment, around each thought. Where indeed are you in this spaciousness?....In 'not knowing'.

Kaishin
11-27-2012, 10:00 PM
I find myself often trying to think my way into a state of Before Thinking. Pretty dumb. But it keeps happening. Even though it seems that zazen is the only real gateway.


Gassho, Kaishin / Matt

Risho
11-27-2012, 10:12 PM
When you get up, what happens then?

Does not knowing has a colour or shape?
Does it speak?
How big are the legs?
How far its arms can reach out?
How to know not knowing?
How can it be known?
Where are you in this knowing?
Still there?



I don't know

Myoku
11-28-2012, 02:21 PM
Thank you Taigu and everyone contributing (in this thread or just by following),

a couple of years ago when I engaged in several buddhist forums I though of a signature that goes "Not knowing. No opinion. Seeing what is.". While this is a bit stupid in some sense in contains something I still believe is pretty ... vital to practice, at least for me: Not knowing. I feel that Knowing often means having made my mind on what I cannot grasp, it often means an over-simplification of the wondrous. It often means I shut the door and not being open anymore. It more or less means anything but living practice (or practicing life). And no, I cannot tell you any answer :)
_()_
Myoku

galen
11-28-2012, 04:13 PM
Spontaneously, joyfully, playfully the flag is flying.
Who could hang a name on me.
Trust not knowing with your life.



Nice. Thanks for this, it is Rich!


Gassho

galen
11-28-2012, 04:51 PM
Until the recent past, I had faith in some sort of narrative for myself. I started somewhere, and was clearly going somewhere else. I couldn't always articulate the destination, but that didn't seem to diminish my belief.

After sitting for a short time, I am able to admit that I am less the mountain and more the weather around it. I don't know (in the most mundane way) where this leads, and I've mostly stopped wondering. Amidst all this uncertainty, there is this practice. For me, for now, that is enough.

Incidentally, I feel I'm missing something of the appreciators verse: "The matter of thirty years' pilgrimage -- a clear transgression against one's pair of eyebrows." Perhaps someone could explain.

Gassho,
Shujin


Shujin... in first reading your post here, it seemed very real, insightful and a somewhat courageous take on yourself, but then landing softly in 'for me, for now, that is enough' (how true!). Then your lower post seemed to call out yourself to this one being messy. You may not be as messy here as you might think.


Gassho

AlanLa
11-29-2012, 03:12 PM
I find it curious that we are asked to not know, yet we rely on those that do know (not knowing), namely Jundo and Taigu, to help us in our not knowing. One thing I do know is that the more I pay attention to what I know up in my head the less my heart hears the cries of the world. It's knowing that seems to create separation, which means less intimacy.

Going back to Mt. Sumeru for a moment, I picture a Native American and a geologist on the same mountain. The Indian experiences the mountain as sacred ground while the geologist can tell you all about the make up of the mountain, how it came to be, etc. Both see the mountain clearly and deeply, yet each sees it through their own respective ego lens. Which of them is most intimate with the mountain? The non-knowing answer would seem to be the Indian, because of sacredness over knowledge, but I think the answer is none of the above. I think there is a place for both because there is plenty of room on Mt. Sumeru. But maybe there needs to be a third person in the story, some singular traveler that wanders onto the mountain and sees it as just that, lives on it and with it as just a home, a place of shelter and source of provision. Or maybe this wanderer sees the mountain not as a sacred or geologic or home object, but rather just as a part of himself.

I don't know.

Heisoku
11-29-2012, 09:38 PM
Thanks Al that is a really wonderful image.

I don't know either.

RichardH
11-29-2012, 10:53 PM
Please consider these questions:

When you get up, what happens then?

Does not knowing has a colour or shape?
Does it speak?
How big are the legs?
How far its arms can reach out?
How to know not knowing?
How can it be known?
Where are you in this knowing?
Still there?


Gassho in not knowing

Taigu

Thank you, Taigu.

Shugen
11-30-2012, 12:38 AM
This is one of those "right on the tip of my tongue", "I had it and then lost it" maddeningly close, "I can almost touch it" feeling things.

For me, "don't know" can change to "don't care because it isn't important to ME" if I'm not careful.

Gassho


Shugen

galen
11-30-2012, 02:27 AM
This is one of those "right on the tip of my tongue", "I had it and then lost it" maddeningly close, "I can almost touch it" feeling things.

For me, "don't know" can change to "don't care because it isn't important to ME" if I'm not careful.

Gassho


Shugen



Intriguing post, Shugen.

You seem to be all over It.

It may be that this feeling thing, right on the tip of your tongue, had it and lost it, is the voice of the intuition, that can't quite fight through the ego that we all have come accustom to being The voice. Could it be the 'don't know' (but is the Knowing), changing to the 'don't care' when the 'me takes over if I'm not careful' (giving in to the ego [me]), the same tip of the tongue situation of the ego once again winning or over powering the softer Knowing that can only be known by sitting with it? It might be you are so close, just a little more patience and 'a nudge of just letting go a little more', without clinging to this feeling that is so close it gets chased away, the Way? It does not seem to be something that can be thought of or figured but, sitting with feeling and letting the body do the rest.

You seemingly are right there, so close, not only is it on the tip, you can taste it. One blink of the eye, one breath, one heart beat away, but not away all the time or gone, but right here and now. You seem so close Shugen. You may even 'feel' some relief by sharing this here, something that could open to the profoundness of the real you.

Thanks for sharing this.


Gassho

RichardH
11-30-2012, 03:39 AM
Did a lot of practice with the local Kwan Um group a couple of years back. They had a great little Zendo that was shared with the Dharma Drum folks. There wasn't much talk and they were very disciplined. It's not everyone's cup of tea but I felt at home with that style. Two things frequently repeated.. "Don't check, just do" and "Only don't know" . I always found the term "Don't check" very direct . No checking, no being sure.... not sure what's what... haven't "got it"......no getting. Arms swinging around looking for something to hold? ....nothing to hold. Don't get it, don't know, no reaching, no getting.

Rich
11-30-2012, 04:46 PM
"Don't check, just do" and "Only don't know" .


I think this is the same as just sitting. I use to check myself constantly now I'm more into checking other people's speech and feelings and how best to respond (help the situation). No kind of checking would be the ideal. Failure is part of the landscape but 'don't know' leaves you open to success. Rambling of the day.

Risho
11-30-2012, 10:30 PM
Rich Thank you! When I answered "I don't know", I didn't know, but it wasn't the don't know that you and Kojip are talking about. This post just rang a bell: Beginner's Mind....

Gassho,

Risho

AlanLa
12-01-2012, 05:48 AM
I do know this: The ability to admit to not knowing is a serious sign of maturity. Most of us go through this phase of late childhood where we think we have it all figured out, and then we spend of the rest of our lives learning that we really don't know all that much after all. I think this is especially true in terms of spiritual maturity. I also know that I am concerned about those that think they really do know. But what do I know?

Zazen is about disengagement from the life narrative that I am constantly creating, even the buddhist narrative, and maybe especially from the zazen narrative; it's the dropping of knowing, the non-act of not-knowing, such a futile and beautiful non-exercise.

Thane
12-02-2012, 07:44 PM
Hi everyone.

This koan really spoke to me. I find it can be easy to be caught up in the mind and grasp after a state of not knowing of a feeling of i have cracked it now. I can remember coming back from sesshing thinking that i had cracked the practice. Time usually showed it wasnt as simple as that!

This koan spoke to me as it reminded me,at a time of over thinking,

Thane
12-02-2012, 07:47 PM
Sorry my response is continued i pressed reply by mistake.

That not knowing is not an intellectual game but much more. In fact it is the most intimate. A lovely teaching and reminder.

Gassho

Thane

Ed
12-04-2012, 06:05 PM
Don't know. Sharp blade slices wart on tip of my nose. Understanding has ruined it.

Gassho, sensei.

Jishin
12-05-2012, 03:31 AM
Please consider these questions:


When you get up, what happens then?

I say shit!


Does not knowing has a colour or shape?

No.


Does it speak?

No.


How big are the legs?

No legs.


How far its arms can reach out?

No arms.


How to know not knowing?

Don't know.


How can it be known?

Can not.


Where are you in this knowing?

Don't know.


Still there?

I think so.


Gassho in not knowing



Taigu

Gassho back,

JC

Taigu
12-05-2012, 11:55 AM
Dear JC,

Military.

Your style is military style.

It can be known... "by the Way"

gassho as is

Taigu

Taigu
12-05-2012, 11:59 AM
Pretty close Samsara, too intimate? too close?

Be simple

and thank youfor your answer


gassho


T.

Taigu
12-05-2012, 12:02 PM
I like Al's good old voice, knowing is the separation.

gassho

T.

Jishin
12-05-2012, 01:18 PM
Taigu,

I was in the US Navy many moons ago.

Gasho,

JC

Ed
12-05-2012, 01:27 PM
who knows here?
above abyss, leaps back
no trace


_/\_

Daitetsu
12-05-2012, 01:31 PM
I stumbled upon the following passage from "The Complete Chuang Tzu" (Translation by James Legge).
Actually, this is a Taoist text (I hope it is OK to post it), so please don't feel disturbed by the term "Tao" - I think it's the meaning that counts...


[…]
We look for it, and there is no form; we hearken for it, and there is no sound. When men try to discuss it, we call them dark indeed. When they discuss the Tao, they misrepresent it.'
Hereupon Grand Purity asked Infinitude, saying,
'Do you know the Tao?'
'I do not know it,' was the reply. He then asked Do-nothing, who replied, 'I know it.'
'Is your knowledge of it determined by various points?'
'It is.'
'What are they?'
Do-nothing said,
'I know that the Tao may be considered noble, and may be considered mean, that it may be bound and compressed, and that it may be dispersed and diffused. These are the marks by which I know it.'
Grand Purity took the words of those two, and asked No-beginning, saying,
'Such were their replies; which was right? and which was wrong? Infinitude's saying that he did not know it? or Do-nothing's saying that he knew it?'
No-beginning said,
'The "I do not know it" was profound, and the "I know it" was shallow. The former had reference to its internal nature; the latter to its external conditions.
Grand Purity looked up and sighed, saying,
'Is "not to know it" then to know it? And is "to know it" not to know it? But who knows that he who does not know it (really) knows it?'
No-beginning replied,
'The Tao cannot be heard; what can be heard is not It.
The Tao cannot be seen; what can be seen is not It. The Tao cannot be expressed in words; what can be expressed in words is not It. Do we know the Formless which gives form to form? In the same way the Tao does not admit of being named.'



Gassho,

Timo

Geika
12-05-2012, 07:31 PM
Is there a difference between Tao and Dharma?

Daitetsu
12-05-2012, 09:29 PM
Hi Amelia,


Is there a difference between Tao and Dharma?

In order to answer the question I would have to define both terms and compare them. And thus would be on the wrong track. ;)

I don't want to leave it like that though...
The following is my very personal opinion:
For me Dharma, Tao, etc. speak more or less about the same thing. The same thing Hinduism talks about (and other religions) or the Sufis or the Christian mystic Meister Eckhart.
Taoism, Zen, etc. are different fingers pointing to the moon.
Different Buddhists will define Dharma differently and different Taoists will define the Tao differently.

Before I came to Zen I was very much into Taoism, and when I became acquainted with Zen, I was totally surprised by the parallels.
Actually, Taoism had a considerable influence on Buddhism when it came to China, and later Zen had a huge influence on Taoism.
Alas, the philosophical Taoism developed into a superstitious religion. However, there is a so-called "New Taoism" nowadays (especially in the West) that goes "back to the roots". They even use Zen anecdotes/stories.
However, there are several clear differences between Zen (Buddhism) and Taoism. E.g. Taoism has no precepts, because according to Taoism deep inside people know by themselves what is right or wrong.
Taoism also lacks a clear methodology like the 8th fold Path, etc.

Actually, I don't want to make a Taoist thread out of this (sorry Taigu!), so if someone has questions/answers/feedback about this, you can send me a PM if you want.

As a final quote - this time from Tao Te Ching (Translation by Stephen Mitchell)


The tao that can be told
is not the eternal Tao
The name that can be named
is not the eternal Name.

The unnamable is the eternally real.
Naming is the origin
of all particular things.

Free from desire, you realize the mystery.
Caught in desire, you see only the manifestations.

Yet mystery and manifestations
arise from the same source.
This source is called darkness.

Darkness within darkness.
The gateway to all understanding.


Gassho,

Timo

Geika
12-05-2012, 10:09 PM
Thank you, Timo.

RichardH
12-07-2012, 01:38 PM
However, there are several clear differences between Zen (Buddhism) and Taoism. E.g. Taoism has no precepts, because according to Taoism deep inside people know by themselves what is right or wrong.
Taoism also lacks a clear methodology like the 8th fold Path, etc.


These are two really good points... (sorry to extend the Taoist thing on this thread) . The Tao Te Ching always seemed like an expression of realization with no methodology. It is so beautiful and simple.

The (overly simplified) story goes that there was vanilla Buddhism in India.. then Padmasambhava took it to Tibet where it fused with Shamanism, and Bodhidharma took it to China where it fused methodology and the Boddhisattva commitment with Taoist immediacy.
I think it is safe to say in Buddhism it is also true that people know by themselves what is right or wrong. The difference being it just needs to be uncovered.

Gassho , kojip

Jundo
12-08-2012, 01:13 AM
Dear All,

I would ask our members to hold, as much as possible, all Forum discussion and chit-chat during our Rohatsu Retreat the next two days, except as related to the Retreat.

http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...U-RETREAT-2012

Now is a day for sitting, not talking.

Thank you.

Gassho, Jundo

Jundo
12-08-2012, 01:14 AM
Dear All,

I would ask our members to hold, as much as possible, all Forum discussion and chit-chat during our Rohatsu Retreat the next two days, except as related to the Retreat.

http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showthread.php?10379-TREELEAF-SANGHA-online-2-DAY-ANGO-JUKAI-ROHATSU-RETREAT-2012

Now is a day for sitting, not talking.

Thank you.

Gassho, Jundo

galen
12-08-2012, 04:21 PM
Dear All,

I would ask our members to hold, as much as possible, all Forum discussion and chit-chat during our Rohatsu Retreat the next two days, except as related to the Retreat.

http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showthread.php?10379-TREELEAF-SANGHA-online-2-DAY-ANGO-JUKAI-ROHATSU-RETREAT-2012

Now is a day for sitting, not talking.

Thank you.

Gassho, Jundo



Jundo... it seems this link does not open.


Gassho

NOTE FROM JUNDO: THANK YOU, LINK FIXED

cnol
12-11-2012, 01:17 PM
I wonder if it's the difference between having "awareness" versus "analysis" in our sitting?
I especially enjoy the final commentary questions:



Does not knowing has a colour or shape?
Does it speak?
How big are the legs?
How far its arms can reach out?
How to know not knowing?
How can it be known?
Where are you in this knowing?
Still there?

Gassho in not knowing, -Taigu

It feels like a dharma poem in and of itself. I printed it out to reread after today's sitting. On a side note, is there a section on the forum for posting dharma poems that we write? I define a dharma poem as an expression of our understanding (I won't use the word enlightenment b/c that sure doesn't apply to me, haha...). I have found in the past that it feels beneficial at times to try to write something after having a longer sitting session, trying to remember not to be pretentious but instead try to express honestly both my understanding and blind spots. Do you think that is a good practice or does it still lead to too much thinking and analysis? I apologize if that's been listed somewhere else and I missed it.

Thanks, -Chris

Nenka
12-11-2012, 03:48 PM
What I think I know about anything changes with every piece of the puzzle I'm given. It's not wrong to investigate, ponder, or even philosophize. But whether the subject fades away or the discussion goes on forever, did I ever really know the whole great truth of it? To believe so would be the mistake.

Gassho

Jen

Shogen
12-29-2012, 12:51 PM
Taigu asked, Please consider these questions:

When you get up, what happens then?

Choices to be made.

Does not knowing has a colour or shape?

No

Does it speak?

No

How big are the legs?

don't know

How far its arms can reach out?

don't know

How to know not knowing?

Looking, touching, tasting, smelling, hearing for the first time.

How can it be known?

Shikantaza

Where are you in this knowing?

Practicing

Still there?

Yes


gassho shogen

Tb
12-29-2012, 05:33 PM
Hi.

gassho2

Nothing to add.

Mtfbwy
Fugen