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Jundo
08-01-2016, 05:32 AM
Case 60 never ends, and so we jump to Case 61, Kempo's One Stroke ...

This seems almost to be a Koan about Koans ... how explaining something "straight" in logical and intellectual terms might actually be distracting, misleading and roundabout ... while the seemingly indirect allusion, metaphor, shout or gesture is direct to that which directly shoots beyond and right through all words and thoughts.

As Rev. Wick cautions, "The preface warns us that if he says it too clearly, you will begin to think you understand it -- and if your understanding is only conceptual, you will make it into some kind of dogma. It becomes the One Road of My Lineage, or of My Practice, or of My School -- and then we get sectarianism."

This is true. This Light shines through and as all things, all Paths, all Teachings.

However, at the same time, most Zen Teachers and other Buddhists throughout history have implied that their way is the best (or one of the best) ways! Go figure! It is true that there is only One Road to Nirvana, yet while all roads along Buddha Mountain are the mountain, some go in circles, into poison ivy or right off the cliff![scared]

In this Koan there is much symbolism. We might also speak of the "One Road to God", and in his gesture, Ummon's fan rises up and whacks God right on his nose! Enlightenment (Carps turning to Dragons) flows like raining cats and dogs. The fever breaks and the disease of ignorance is cured. One comes back to life right through and beyond all small human distinctions of "life vs. death".

Yamada Koun has some helpful very words (in a talk filled, by the way, with invective about how his Teacher's way is the best way and 'true tradition' in Soto Zen!! See Below ** [toomuch] )...


The monk told Unmon about his
going to Kemp˘ and asking his question and how Kemp˘ responded. He wanted to know what
this was all about and thus asked Unmon. In reply Unmon says what appears in the koan. As
for the “heaven of the thirty-three devas,” there are many heavens in Buddhism as opposed to
the single Christian heaven. There are worlds where the many people who have died in this
world now reside. They are not all heaven, but the place where the most advanced persons
reside is known as heaven, while the lowest place is hell. But even the highest level contains
many variations. The heaven referred to here is the Tusita heaven where the most outstanding
persons reside. Indra (Taishakuten) is something like the boss of that heaven. Unmon says that
his fan jumps up to that heaven and hits the nose of Taishaku. What is he saying with such a
statement? Then he speaks about the carp in the Eastern Sea. When you hit that carp with a
stick it jumps around, and it rains torrents as if a tray of water were overturned. What relation
do these statements have with Kemp˘’s “here it is”? This is the important point in the koan. It
is sometimes referred to as the true self or Buddha nature or dharma nature. Or sometimes we
say essential nature or essential world. Although it is completely empty, it is simultaneously
the phenomenal world itself. There may be all sorts of movement or disturbances in the
phenomenal world. So when Kemp˘ says “here it is,” he is presenting that movement while at
the same time revealing the essential nature. In Unmon’s case, he is presenting that element of
movement from the aspect of the phenomenal world. However, in addition to being the
phenomenal world it is the world of our true nature. In the phenomenal world, such things as a
fan jumping up to heaven are impossible. But seeing things from the standpoint of the essential
world, we can say such a thing. The same thing holds for the statement about the carp of the
Eastern Sea. In terms of everyday logic, such statements cannot be understood. But our true
self is presented to us directly in this way. Unmon Daishi was a master of the cogent statement,
although he was closer in spirit to the Soto School. You can see both Kenp˘ and Unmon as
doing their utmost to bring us to a realization of the world of our true nature.

and


On the Verse:
The hand [of a master veterinarian] cures even a dead horse. The original
Chinese says “entering the hand” (te ni hairu). What enters the hand? “Here it is” enters the hand. And then
he can even bring a dead horse back to life. This is a reference to an old Chinese legend. In olden times there
lived a man name Ch˘shű who had a most outstanding horse, which unfortunately died. Ch˘shű was beside
himself with grief. His friend Kakuboku told him he would bring the horse back to life for him. He brought
an animal that looked like a monkey and had it breathe into the nostrils of the dead horse, perhaps in a
process resembling mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. And sure enough, the horse revived. When the men looked
around, the monkey was no longer anywhere to be found. This story is mentioned here to indicate how when
“that” is put in the hand, it can revive even a dead horse.
The soul-reviving incense will make you rise from the peril. The
“soul-reviving incense” had a very fine fragrance. There is also a story behind this line of the
verse. Long ago, an epidemic ravaged the land, claiming many lives. But when this incense was
lit and the fine fragrance wafted in the air, people who had died three days before returned to
life. It was an ethereal fragrance with the power to revive people from the dead. If you truly
realize what the fragrance stands for, your true life will be in your hands. But you must clearly
realize Kemp˘’s “here it is” and Unmon’s talk about the fan jumping up into heaven. The
“soul-reviving incense” will bring you back to life, in the sense of giving you your true life.
If you once sweat with your entire body,
You will believe that he has never spared the eyebrows. It’s often said that
sweating will cure you of a fever. It is like sweating the fever out of your entire body. The word
“he” in the final line is referring to Unmon. It means that he is willing to spare his eyebrows
and look strange out of his great compassion to save all beings. Although he might look quite
unsightly when observed from the side, he even forgets that and does not regret losing his
eyebrows. ...

Today’s Verse is saying that there are cases where the teacher does not regret even
losing his eyebrows for bad preaching, so great is his compassion for his students. Thus, from
the real standpoint we can say that Kemp˘’s statement “here it is” is not the very best method
of delivering a preaching. That’s all the more the truth concerning Unmon. His method seems
to be saying all sorts of strange things to confuse people so that, from one standpoint, it’s true
that it’s not so admirable. Thus there have been short critical comments in koan collections
that contain this koan, which say things to that effect. In other words, one can well understand
that both masters are doing their very best, but it remains short of the genuine article. Such
views are possible. Be that as it may, the masters are so filled with a desire to bring people to
an awareness of this true fact, that they publicly embarrass themselves.

http://www.sanbo-zen.org/shoyoroku_61.pdf

A very cogent description, everybody just trying to do their best ...

Gassho, Jundo

SatToday

** Yamada Roshi writes ...


I’m sorry to
speak badly of the modern-day Soto School, but since our Sanb˘-Ky˘dan is in the Soto tradition,
Yasutani Roshi said that we had separated from the Soto School and established a direct
connection with D˘gen Zenji to create the Sanb˘-Ky˘dan. I believe that is only natural to say so.
Few are those who would be able like Yasutani Roshi to say things so straightforwardly
without mincing words. ... I am always feeling, as I have said before many times, that if D˘gen Zenji were
to be reborn and visit Eiheiji [the temple Dogen founded, and Head Temple of the Soto School], he would be driven away with abuse: “This is no place for you!
Get out of here!”

I agree myself in many ways (and anyway, Jundo Zen is best!) :p

Onkai
08-01-2016, 11:10 PM
gassho1

Thank you, Jundo.

Gassho,
Onkai
SatToday

Mp
08-02-2016, 12:38 AM
Thank you Jundo. =)

Gassho
Shingen

s@today

Byokan
08-03-2016, 06:10 PM
Thank you Jundo. gassho1

This one is really koany! When I read these koans, the mind at first looks for clues and tries to puzzle out an answer. I try to let that go, and just set the koan gently into a pot, add a little water, and set it on a back burner to simmer a while. Then I come back later and lift the lid and see how it looks. When you cook rice, you get rice. It’s easier to digest after it’s cooked a bit. Here are some of my impressions of this koan.

Carp may become dragons, or maybe they just realize they were dragons all along. When a carp swims like a carp it IS a dragon. When you fully and simply embody and enact your true self, you are an “exalted saint of the ten directions,” even as you are just you, doing what you do. Realizing this might feel like a club to the head.

If you’ve ever been fishing you know what happens when you club a fish. And, ew, there’s a dead horse lying over there, too. What’s all this death? How do we “heal this deathly illness”? How do we cure a dead horse? You can’t change reality or go against nature. But you can look deeply to see and experience the flowing nature of life into death into life... they are aspects of the same thing, not separate states. When you realize this you are cured of death.

The idea of enlightenment can be scary as hell. Will "I" have to die? Maybe we put up roadblocks sometimes to delay ourselves along the path. We run around asking where the road is, seeking it endlessly. There is only one road, and you don’t find it -- it is made by your feet as you walk. Can you walk on someone else's feet? Please don’t. We’re pretty lucky... we have some help. The ancestors and Jundo are saying, this way, this way. Carp swim, dragons fly, people walk. Each moves according to its nature. Just step forward, simply, naturally, as yourself.

Gassho
Byōkan
sat today

Jakuden
08-03-2016, 08:00 PM
"The fan jumped up to the thirty-third heaven and whacked Indra's nose"="if it were any closer it would have bit you!" (perhaps the snake is back?) This sounds like we are discussing how many ways there are to describe the path to enlightenment, debating which way of pointing to the moon is best... When really they are all different ways of trying to convey how enlightenment is here under our noses all the time.
Jundo are you willing to lose your eyebrows to help us learn this? [emoji12]
I am not sure if I am enlightened enough to raise the dead yet. But I feel much more of an amiable companionship with the dead these days.
Gassho
Jakuden
SatToday


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Byokan
08-03-2016, 08:12 PM
... I feel much more of an amiable companionship with the dead these days.
Gassho
Jakuden
SatToday


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Ooh I like that! :)

Gassho
Byōkan
sat today

Jishin
08-04-2016, 12:22 AM
Hi,

This past weekend my cat was shot and then attacked by neighbor dogs. 1,700 US later she is limping around the house and half shaved from the surgery. Recovery time will be about 3 months. Now she gets the whole second floor to the house to her self. Since she can't get away from the dogs fast enough she lives upstairs where our dogs can't get to her. Looks like she used up 2 of her nine lives.

Last night one of my dobermans was bitten by one of my German shepherds or other Doberman. Serious but she will live. It was probably her sister that outweighs her by 50 pounds.

The pool maintenance fellow was almost hurt by one of the dogs. I guess they are just doing their job. Guarding us.

About this Koan?

I have had a cold but think I started to get better.

Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

Jakuden
08-04-2016, 12:32 AM
Oh no! So sorry to hear this! I get what you are saying about the koan... but I also am sending Metta to you and your furry family. It is indeed all right here in front of us, enlightenment or whatever we want to label it.
I may be putting my old Shepherd to sleep this weekend. Perhaps we have been dragging it out too long. It's hard to make that call. Animals and children force us to deal with the here and now, don't they?
Gassho
Jakuden
SatToday


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Risho
08-04-2016, 01:37 AM
Ugh Dogs! I love them so much, but it is so hard to let go. Jakuden I know what you are going through; its hard to know when its time or accept that its time, but that does not make it easy. All we can do is love them an do our best by them. Im so sorry to hear about this; much metta.

Gassho

Risho
-sattoday

Jundo
08-04-2016, 02:06 AM
Hi,

This past weekend my cat was shot and then attacked by neighbor dogs. 1,700 US later she is limping around the house and half shaved from the surgery. Recovery time will be about 3 months. Now she gets the whole second floor to the house to her self. Since she can't get away from the dogs fast enough she lives upstairs where our dogs can't get to her. Looks like she used up 2 of her nine lives.

Last night one of my dobermans was bitten by one of my German shepherds or other Doberman. Serious but she will live. It was probably her sister that outweighs her by 50 pounds.

The pool maintenance fellow was almost hurt by one of the dogs. I guess they are just doing their job. Guarding us.

About this Koan?

I have had a cold but think I started to get better.

Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

Ah, living your own custom designed Koans again, Jishin! Taking the one about "cutting the cat in two" a bit too literally?

I am glad the cat pulled through. Darn Obama, not providing Obamacare for the pets! :p

Been there ...

SIT-A-LONG with JUNDO — Dumb Animal
http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showthread.php?7803-SIT-A-LONG-with-JUNDO-%C2%97-Dumb-Animal

I will be sitting for the cats, the dogs ... and the pool guys everywhere.

Gassho, J

SatToday

Jundo
08-04-2016, 02:09 AM
Oh no! So sorry to hear this! I get what you are saying about the koan... but I also am sending Metta to you and your furry family. It is indeed all right here in front of us, enlightenment or whatever we want to label it.
I may be putting my old Shepherd to sleep this weekend. Perhaps we have been dragging it out too long. It's hard to make that call. Animals and children force us to deal with the here and now, don't they?
Gassho
Jakuden
SatToday


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...

When we finally lost Tinky the cat a few years later from the above accident, someone wise around here (I wish I could recall who) said that this is the little animals teaching us right to the end.

Gassho, J

SatToday

Jakuden
08-04-2016, 10:38 PM
...

When we finally lost Tinky the cat a few years later from the above accident, someone wise around here (I wish I could recall who) said that this is the little animals teaching us right to the end.

Gassho, J

SatToday

gassho2

Gassho,
Jakuden
SatToday

Jishin
08-04-2016, 11:38 PM
Ah, living your own custom designed Koans again, Jishin! Taking the one about "cutting the cat in two" a bit too literally?



Nansen Cuts the Cat in Two:

Nansen saw the monks of the eastern and western halls fighting over a cat. He seized the cat and told the monks: `If any of you say a good word, you can save the cat.'

No one answered. So Nansen boldly cut the cat in two pieces.

That evening Joshu returned and Nansen told him about this. Joshu removed his sandals and, placing them on his head, walked out.

Nansen said: `If you had been there, you could have saved the cat.'

Wasn't thinking about this Koan specifically but my take is it is a Koan about compassion. While the monks are looking for a cute word about zen, nobody does the compassionate thing and snatch the sword from Nansen. A word is not the answer. Compassionate action is. Joshu seems to answer with action. He walks away as if to say I want no part of your lunacy, even if it is to teach compassion. He probably would have acted and cut Nansen in two to teach compassion. [emoji33]

Maybe the cat should have been left to die. Maybe not. Had I pondered too much the cat probably would have. So I just did it. Chop wood, carry water even when it's raining cats and dogs.

Don't know if I did the right thing but now it's time to eat. Haven't eaten Mexican food for a while and I am about to order enchiladas! Yum yum!

Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

Risho
08-04-2016, 11:56 PM
Thank you Jishin; I often look for those cute words; I never thought about the koan like that. A lightbulb just went off.

Now if youd cut those enchiladas in half and give me one I'd be happy hahaha

Gassho

Risho
-sattoday

Matt
08-05-2016, 03:51 PM
What I get from this case is the importance of engaging with Zen practice without making an idol of it.

I feel deeply that this Soto way is the best way. That, as Dogen teaches, by just sitting we wake up.

Yet, when I think that this way is the best, I have already lost it.

Gassho,
Matt
#SatToday

Mitty-san
08-07-2016, 05:18 AM
Kemp˘ĺs "here it is" reminds me of something the great 21st century teacher Jundo Cohen said while giving a talk to his disciples at his hermitage atop Mt. Tsukuba.


...But in Zen Master Dogenĺs view, the point of flying the plane is to fly the plane. Each moment by moment of flying is a constant arriving at the destination Ś right here and right here and, now, right here...
His full talk has been preserved here: http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showthread.php?7802-Flying-Air-Buddha

gassho1

Paul

Sat today.

Roland
08-07-2016, 06:04 PM
Can we really ever be there where 'here it is'? Every moment seems to be permeated by absence. The 'now' we experience is full of our musings about the future and our stories about the past. Maybe even those exceptional moments that we feel to be 'here', that the blue sky unfolds itself without any cloud, even those moments are secretly inspired by ancient stories and the longing for another future.

But then again 'here' is maybe the compassionate acceptance of the 'not ever really here'.

Gassho

Roland
#SatToday

Mitty-san
08-08-2016, 04:20 AM
But then again 'here' is maybe the compassionate acceptance of the 'not ever really here'.


Hi Roland,

That's my thought too. Thoughts of the past and future are just as much "Here" as being aware of your breath or listening to the air conditioner.

gassho1,

Paul

Sat today.

Eishuu
08-09-2016, 02:55 PM
Jishin, your poor cat! Glad she is going to recover. Metta to her, your doberman and the pool maintenance guy! Jakuden, I'm so sorry you are having to make that decision. I can imagine how hard it must be.

With regards to the koan, I've read it a couple of times and it's not really speaking to me. I'm left with a sad sense of my own lack of understanding. Both the direct and the roundabout teachings don't seem to reach me. Conceptually I know 'Here it is!' and I've had glimpses but right now I'm just aware that I don't understand, I'm not fully present. I guess the whole koan seems to be about sudden Enlightenment and about understanding.

Gassho
Lucy
Sat today

Jundo
08-11-2016, 12:02 AM
I will just ask, as we fan this Koan, whether the fan rises to heaven to strike god's nose ... or does heaven come down to earth ... or is there perhaps no up or down in this up-down world, and god's nose constantly waves the fan?

Another famous fanning Koan on practice-enlightenment, recited by Dogen in the Genjo ... how to realize heaven here and now ...


Zen master Baoche of Mt. Mayu was fanning himself. A monk approached and said, "Master, the nature of wind is ever-present and there is no place it does not reach. When, then, do you fan yourself?"

"Although you understand that the nature of the wind is ever-present," Baoche replied, "you do not understand the meaning of its reaching everywhere."

"What is the meaning of its reaching everywhere?" asked the monk again. The master just kept fanning himself. The monk bowed deeply.

The actualization of the buddha-dharma, the vital path of its correct transmission, is like this. If you say that you do not need to fan yourself because the nature of wind is ever-present and you can have wind without fanning, you will understand neither ever-presence nor the nature of wind. The nature of wind is ever-present; because of that, the wind of the buddha's house brings for the gold of the earth and makes fragrant the cream of the long river.

http://www.thezensite.com/ZenTeachings/Dogen_Teachings/GenjoKoan8.htm

Gassho, J

SatToday

Jishin
08-11-2016, 06:13 AM
Jishin in earnest asks Zen Master Jundo:

Why do we have to inhale air to breathe? It is everywhere, even in my lungs.

Jundo takes a deep breath in exasperation and tells Jishin to hold his breath to find out for himself (the proper function of air).

Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_