View Full Version : My Cancer Ango - 10 - Cancer is Nirvana

12-27-2017, 12:47 AM
Hey Guys,

Well, looks like I will be going home this week, in time for the New Year. I do not get my final biopsy result for 3 more weeks (they do take their time!), and there is a possibility of chemo if there is a surprise with the lymph nodes, but the doctors think they got it all. I am grateful.

My friend and old Treeleaf member Jim, who I mention in today's talk, has been through more bumps in life than about anyone I know, including cancer. He says that, when things like this happen, build a wall around it and move on. I think that resonates with Master Dogen's vision of time, in which each event is self-contained. Dogen might say, "when trauma happens, dive in." But, when the trauma is over "move on." I don't think that means that we ignore the past trauma. Far from it. But we recognize it, maybe seek to avoid a future repeat, then put it aside and move on to what is next in life. Learn from it, but do not become trapped by it.

I read from a couple of writings by Dogen today that present his view on events, such as the Genjo Koan ("Life is an instantaneous situation, and death is also an instantaneous situation. It is the same, for example, with winter and spring. We do not think that winter becomes spring, and we do not say that spring becomes summer") and in his Shobogenzo-Shoji ("Life & Death"), where he writes (my mix and match translation):

"Because in life and death there is buddha, there is no life and death. ... [But also,] if a person looks for buddha outside of life and death, that is like pointing a cart north and heading for [the south]. ... When we understand that only life and death itself is nirvana, there is nothing to hate as life and death and nothing to aspire to as nirvana. Then, for the first time, the means exist to get free from life and death. ....

... Birth is a state at one moment; it already has a past and will have a future. ... Extinction also is a state at one moment; it too has a past and a future. ... In the time called “life,” there is nothing besides life. In the time called “death,” there is nothing besides death. There is no reason for your resisting and being under their control. [As well,] don't wish for them. This life and death are the life of the Buddha. If we hate it and want to get rid of it, that is just wanting to lose the sacred life of buddha. If we stick in it, if we attach to life and death, this also is to lose the sacred life of buddha. ... If you neither deny nor seek, you enter the mind of the Buddha for the first time."

When there is Cancer, there is just Cancer with its own before and after. When there is Healing, there is just Healing with its own before and after. Cancer is Nirvana. Cancer is Buddha. Likewise for Healing. Even as one seeks a cure, neither run toward nor run away, neither cling nor deny. Even as one seeks a cure, neither stick to Cancer nor want to lose Cancer. Do not run toward Healing nor away from Healing. Be free of Healing and Cancer. Only then is one truly free of Cancer.

Dogen's Death Poem ("Yellow Springs" is a traditional Chinese symbol of death) ... Diving into the moment ...

Fifty-four years lighting up the sky.
A quivering leap smashes a billion worlds.
Entire body looks for nothing.
Living, I plunge into Yellow Springs.


Gassho, J


PS - I msispoke here: They attached my remaining stomach to the small intestine, not the large, with some fancy looping twist. I am glad that the doctors (at least) know the difference! :p

12-27-2017, 01:11 AM
Thank you Jundo, lovely talk!

And hey, being a little different whether inside or out, is always a good thing. =)



12-27-2017, 01:26 AM
Thank you Jundo.
Life and death are an instantaneous situation... Sounds and silences have to melt to give musical partitions, no ?


_/|\_ Sat

12-27-2017, 01:35 AM
Yes! This is a very important-non-important teaching. In order to move on from events in the past we must learn to see every instant as a self contained unit.

Thank you Jundo. I'm glad you are looking better and better :)



12-27-2017, 07:14 AM
Thank you Jundo. I was thinking in my simple terms , just not having to decide or have an opinion about life's events.... just acknowledge them and let them be.... it's quietly revolutionary.
Thank you for your thoughts and insight again.
Sat/ LAH

Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk

12-27-2017, 07:47 AM
Thank you for this wonderful teaching. Hope you get to go home soon.


12-27-2017, 02:48 PM
A surgeon friend says when the sense of humor returns the recovery is well-underway.

Sat Today LAH

12-27-2017, 03:43 PM
[emoji120][emoji120][emoji120] Thank you Jundo. So glad to see you looking so much better! This is an interesting teaching. I know how tempting it can be to attach a label to ourselves e.g. cancer survivor, abuse survivor, etc., but I realized (maybe through practice, some years ago) that hanging on to labels was not helpful, because it kept a story alive that colored the present time. Initially, it may help someone get through trauma by creating a feeling of empowerment, but I think in the long run it is just another delusion—allowing the adverse event to take a bigger place on the stage than it deserves.
Sounds like your internal physiology may have some resemblance to a Vulcan’s now, although not quite, I think their liver is where their heart is supposed to be [emoji868]

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

12-27-2017, 04:28 PM
Beautiful. Thank you, teacher.

I hope you get good news on going home soon.


12-27-2017, 07:13 PM
Thank you.

Get home safe and sound.


12-27-2017, 10:08 PM
gassho2 Thank you for this teaching. I'm glad you will most likely be going home this week and are getting better and better.


12-28-2017, 01:44 AM
Lovely, what you said. Glad you are looking better Jundo.

Gassho Kyotai

Sent from my SM-G950W using Tapatalk

12-28-2017, 11:47 AM
Thank you for the talk, Jundo [gassholook]


12-28-2017, 03:10 PM
Jundo, good to hear you’re healing well and recovering good.

Thank you for finding wisdom on the adversity of life and being able to share a deeper understanding from Dogen’s teachings.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

12-28-2017, 06:23 PM
Thank you for this teaching Jundo.
You look much better and I hope you will be home soon.


12-31-2017, 02:37 PM
Deep gassho to the modern medicine which has, will, or is being used to heal all those who are suffering or ill in health. And in this case, especially our wonderful Jundo.
Just a little FYI as shared by the CEO of the healthcare company I work for. Medical advancements now double every 7 months! It fills me with great happiness to think of how many people these advancements will be used to heal now and in the future.

Sat today

12-31-2017, 02:47 PM