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Thread: BOOK OF EQUANIMITY - Case 50

  1. #1

    BOOK OF EQUANIMITY - Case 50

    A reMINDer that we will take a little pause from the Book of Serenity to look at Ben Connelly's wonderful "Inside the Grass Hut", starting in a couple of weeks ... Information here ...

    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...l=1#post145310

    Case 49 never ends, yet now comes ...

    Case 50: Seppo's "What's This?"


    http://www.conceptos.net/cafebuda/shoyoroku/i50.htm

    In fact, if you recall, Case 49 turned on the phrase, "Just This". Now, in Case 50, "Just This" comes again. It begins with the first words, "What's This?", and end with the final words, "Just This". But are "What's This?" and "Just This" different or the same?

    Dogen would remind us that "question words" can become declarations and affirmations. That "What's This?" can turn into "WHAT's THIS!!" and "THIS's WHAT!!".

    In your life, show me a time of asking "What's This?", a time of responding "Just This", and perhaps a time of becoming a shout from the rooftops "THIS's WHAT!!"

    Gassho, J

    SatToday
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  2. #2
    Mp
    Guest
    Hello Jundo,

    This is wonderful ... I have very much enjoyed reading this book and look forward to the discussion. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen

    SatToday

  3. #3
    At age 16.. it was a moment of despair when "my world" was disintegrating. Withdrawing into a dark place and sinking down and down... at a certain point a really calm and sane mind saw and felt the whole state, and asked "what is this?". It was a total question.. complete. That was the first time, before ever practicing Buddhism, that there was no suffering right in the middle of everything.

    Gassho
    Daizan

    Sat today

  4. #4
    Holding our five-minute birthed son and gushing, "You made it!"


    Gassho,
    Myosha sat today
    "Recognize suffering, remove suffering." - Shakyamuni Buddha when asked, "Uhm . . .what?"

  5. #5
    I'm happy we are changing the book, I don't understand all "this".

    But it points me to the moments in my life when I don't understand, when there is no word or concept for a "table", and I stare at things wide eyed, stare into people's faces impolitely like only very small children do, and it feels like this <
    Wide open, what's this, all new, all couriosity.

    Then, a table has a very interesting tactile experience.
    A pot plant is a planet.
    > focusing, exploring.
    I've never been shouting, if there should have ever been balance, no distinction of this, it runs away faster than words return.

    Gassho,
    Danny
    #sattoday

  6. #6
    When my six-year-old son opened his eyes and came out of a coma. What's this! Life!

    Gassho
    Meishin
    sat today

  7. #7
    Every morning when I wake up in pain.

    Just this.


    On other occasions during the day with pain.

    What's this?

    Gassho
    Kokuu
    #sattoday

  8. #8

    BOOK OF EQUANIMITY - Case 50

    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post

    In your life, show me a time of asking "What's This?", a time of responding "Just This", and perhaps a time of becoming a shout from the rooftops "THIS's WHAT!!"
    "What's this?" What's this?
    "Just this." Just this.
    "THIS's WHAT!!" THIS's WHAT!!

    Don't make anything. Not even this. It's already here.

    Gassho, Jishin, _/st\_
    Last edited by Jishin; 02-06-2015 at 11:11 AM.

  9. #9
    You are amazing!
    What's This!

    This guy just doesn't get it; he's not on my level
    What's This!

    I can't believe I was able to solve that problem; I am awesome!
    What's This!

    Does this guy know how to drive?!
    What's This!

    I wonder if anyone has read my post?
    What's This!

    They totally ignored it! It was brilliant!
    What's This!

    Oh yeah, they loved it!
    What's This!

    To paraphrase/quote a famous zen quote:

    "Master?"
    "Yes"
    "Are you awake?"
    "Yes I am."
    "Never be deceived by anyone, anywhere."
    "No I won't"

    I just want some piece of mind.
    What's This!

    Why am I doing this? It's not getting me anywhere!
    What's This!

    Zen isn't about what you get. It's about what you give. But to give, I have to continually
    practice opening up and letting go of my narrow minded attachments. Attachments to self, other, delusion,
    enlightenment. Enlightenment isn't about me, or my happiness. True happiness comes from
    helping others. Not a sappy, bleeding heart annoying-ness, someone just waiting to pounce
    on the opportunity to help. Practicing. Being thankful for a meal. Genuinely assisting someone
    who needs it without patting myself on the back. "Being excellent to each other"

    WHAT'S THIS!

    Gassho,

    Risho
    -sattoday

  10. #10
    What's This, as the tenth unit of blood dripped into my arm! First anger, then relief, then Gratitude, Gratitude that my life was not over, and "This is." I contemplate my pain, moment by moment to remind me "this" is not over. I am alive.

    Elgwyn
    sat today
    Gassho

    _/|\_

  11. #11
    Oh, I like this one, so many examples from my life could fit, some quite profound like those above, but I'll do my most recent and ongoing struggle, as this just popped into my mind.

    Asking what's this - What I say after getting yet another ridiculous demand from the higher-ups to write yet another report justifying the most basic and essential of expenses needed just to keep the proverbial lights on when my time would be much better spent doing the actual work.

    Responding just this - My writing the report without complaint, without separation between me and it, without the suffering that separation creates, when just doing the work as samu.

    Exclaiming just this! - Hitting send on that report as I say, "You can take this latest report and shove it up your @@&, because I got your 'this' right here!" as I grab my crotch and thrust.

    Okay, that last one was probably not what you were really asking for, Jundo, but the "just this" in me couldn't resist

    (sitting today was just this)
    AL (Jigen) in:
    Faith/Trust
    Courage/Love
    Awareness/Action!

    I sat today

  12. #12
    Yeah, Al, that last stage is more "Sit on this!"



    Neither do we sit on our emotions. We just sit.

    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 02-10-2015 at 03:31 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Yeah, Al, that last stage is more "Sit on this!"



    Neither do we sit on our emotions. We just sit.

    Gassho, J
    Just this honest, I just sit on/with my anger daily these days. My post was done honestly, and I have struggled ever since because my koan contemplation discovered an anger that I did not want to acknowledge.

    Just this honest, I could have posted here already a number of life experiences that were beautiful expressions of "just this" in all three categories, but I've already done that before (feel free to search my history and fit them in as you wish), and they popped quickly into my mind. But I generally treat these koans as a challenge, so I went on to my next honest thought.

    Just this grumpy honest ass, I am happy to see the move to a new book because I was really tired of all the Zennie poetic crap that got posted here rather than the real work these koans are supposed to promote. I think that was a fail, but I will sit with that empty idea as i challenge people to tear down their grass hut.

    AL (Jigen) in:
    Faith/Trust
    Courage/Love
    Awareness/Action!

    I sat today

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by AlanLa View Post
    Just this grumpy honest ass, I am happy to see the move to a new book because I was really tired of all the Zennie poetic crap that got posted here rather than the real work these koans are supposed to promote. I think that was a fail, but I will sit with that empty idea as i challenge people to tear down their grass hut.

    Hi Alan,

    Just wondering what is the "real work" and what is just "Zennie crap", what is win and fail, what is peace and what is anger. Maybe your sense of need for work vs. crap and win and lose and feelings of anger vs. peace are not unrelated?

    Maybe work on that crap for awhile.

    Gassho, J
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  15. #15
    By the way, this Koan also appears as No. 51 in the Blue Cliff Record, and there the Preamble goes ...

    If there is even a bit of right and wrong, the mind is lost in confusion. If
    you do not descend to gradations, there will be no searching. Just say, is letting
    go right or is holding fast right? If there is even an infinitesimally narrow road of
    understanding here, one is still stuck in words. Moreover, if you are caught up in
    hidden and apparent actions, each of them is hanging onto grasses and clinging
    to trees. Even if you have reached the point of solitary liberation, you will not
    escape longing for the far-away gates of home. Have you grasped it yet? If not,
    just understand this totally revealed public case. To test, I bring this up. Look!
    Suzuki Roshi has a pretty short and sweet talk on what's what about that ...

    Engo introducing the subject said, "If you are caught by the slightest idea of good and bad, your mind (true mind, essence of mind) will be lost in the realm of disorder. If you do not have an idea of the order of stages, there will be no purpose in your practice. Now which do you think is better, to pursue the relative way or to resume to the absolute?"

    ... The relative form and color that you see now are the conditioned attributes of the unconditioned--constant--absolute. The absolute is the eternal unconditionally that gives rise to the conditioned, relative ways of practice. What you see now is the eternal unconditionality of the absolute and the momentous conditioned relative. Actually the positive or relative way is not different from the negative or absolute way. Even though you follow the order of the stages in your actual practice, if each relative stage, even the first stage, is brought out in full relief against the darkness of the absolute, and if there is no fumbling and groping in your practice under the right teacher, then your practice is already in the realm of Reality. Each relative stage bears the full meaning of the absolute and the absolute reveals its actual meaning in the relative practice. If you wish to understand this secret, you must study under the right teacher not only by words but also by actual conduct on each moment under particular circumstances.

    To continue with Engo's introduction, he said, "If you become attached to some particular way of expressing Zen, captivated by something told in words or verse, attached to some method of instruction (scolding voice, slapping face, seizing by the collar and casting off, drawing a circle, lifting up one finger, etc.) you are nothing better than the parasitic weeds wrapped around dead trees. Even if a man thinks that he is living in the land of Tathagata itself, when he is possessed by the idea of this land or that land, he is said to be watching the moon of his old home which is now ten thousand miles away. Well, have you understood what I am saying? If not, here is an actual koan for you to ponder."

    ...

    Dogen-zenji said, "Breathing in or breathing out, after all, what is it?" No one can tell what it is.

    Now, you may not be calm or patient enough to wait for the right answer, but let us ask ourselves if our activity is either subjective or objective. Let me point to this: What do we mean by "it"? Do you mean breathing itself or the idea of breathing. If you mean the idea of breathing it will be another matter. If you mean breathing itself each moment, you have solved the problem already when you breathe in and out on each moment in calmness with Big Mind. Now, you will understand that the right answer to "What is it" should always be "This is it."

    http://suzukiroshi.sfzc.org/archives...html?seemore=y
    Gassho, J
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  16. #16
    I admit my grass hut is frail.
    I admit my anger and peace are of my own making.
    I think I fully admit working on my own crap.
    If that was not clear before, I admit it fully now.
    If that's not clear enough, let me be more clear,
    I think the anger i need to sit with is my very expression of ignorance.
    I try to live that (non) challenge every day.
    Such is the type of practice my ignorance expects.
    Last edited by AlanLa; 02-12-2015 at 04:24 AM.
    AL (Jigen) in:
    Faith/Trust
    Courage/Love
    Awareness/Action!

    I sat today

  17. #17
    I would like to recommend yet ANOTHER recent Steve Hagen talk on Just Sitting and Just This ... unadorned, unpretentious, straight and clear as it gets in explaining the crazy-sane whys of Shikantaza.

    (If you haven't guessed, I am catching up on some Steve Hagen talks recently. Although he is semi-retired, I am going to approach him as a possible Guest Teacher for a Zazenkai her).

    Recommended talk for all, I am going to post it a couple of places around the forum today ...

    Practice-Enlightenment
    http://dharmafield.org/talks/1724-pr...enlightenment/

    I post it here, as a pretty good reflection on Just This and What's What.

    Gassho, Jundo

    SatToday
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  18. #18
    Just this grumpy honest ass, I am happy to see the move to a new book because I was really tired of all the Zennie poetic crap that got posted here rather than the real work these koans are supposed to promote. I think that was a fail, but I will sit with that empty idea as i challenge people to tear down their grass hut.
    Haa! What’s this?!


    Guilty as charged, right here, on the poetic crap! But it is sincerely offered. I like grumpy honest ass; we do need a little more of that around here. Interesting that the anger seems more authentic/interesting than the beautiful experiences? Maybe that’s just what’s going on right now. I think sometimes the ‘real work’ is slogging uphill through mud and shit and swallowing broken glass. But it can be just as soul-shattering to realize oneness, beauty, or ‘just this’; it destroys ‘you’ just as much as the ‘real work’ with anger, pain, etc. Beautiful or disturbing, awestruck or angry, these are reactions to the same ultimate and whole Reality. Any reaction = separation. I try (and fail) not to attach to (or resist) the beautiful moments, any more than I attach to (or resist) my anger or pain, or identify with them as ‘me’. None of these experiences are more authentic. It’s all just this.


    To answer Jundo’s original questions:


    What’s This? -- The State changing all the paperwork for our Elderly/Disabled Assistance Program. Again! So now I have to spend hours and hours doing redundant paperwork instead of helping people face to face. Resistance. (Futile.)


    Just This -- Realizing it all helps, and the only constant is change, and all rivers flow to the sea. So I put on my nikes and Just Do It (samu).


    This’s What! -- My heart so joyful when all that stupid paperwork pays off and a client gets what they need; also, the moment they realize (you can see it in their eyes) that they do have the power to make choices and advocate for themselves. I want to stand on the rooftop and yell “YES!”

    Gassho
    Lisa
    sat today

  19. #19
    Lisa,

    I think sometimes the ‘real work’ is slogging uphill through mud and shit and swallowing broken glass. But it can be just as soul-shattering to realize oneness, beauty, or ‘just this’; it destroys ‘you’ just as much as the ‘real work’ with anger, pain, etc. Beautiful or disturbing, awestruck or angry, these are reactions to the same ultimate and whole Reality. Any reaction = separation. I try (and fail) not to attach to (or resist) the beautiful moments, any more than I attach to (or resist) my anger or pain, or identify with them as ‘me’. None of these experiences are more authentic. It’s all just this.
    Lovely, lovely. Leaves me shaking.

    I would just add ...

    ... Amid all the endless-beginingless paperwork and at the unhindered heart of red tape

    ... no old age, no lack, for all is "this"-abled ...

    ... no officials, no clients in need, no suffering, nor hours and hours of time ...

    ... nothing in the universe ever redundant, each totally a flowing step of the Great Program ... What's to resist? ...

    ... no payoff for the realization is in hand, always face-to-face Buddha.

    ... Standing on the rooftop, yelling "YES!"

    ... "Just Do It While Already Done!"


    ... and yet, and yet ...

    ... Constant clients in need, horrible bureaucracy, poverty and illness, pressing deadlines and constant delays, nearly drowning in rivers of basic needs, endless steps and kind-hearted work to be done.

    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 02-13-2015 at 03:07 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  20. #20
    ... Amid all the endless-beginingless paperwork and at the unhindered heart of red tape

    ... no old age, no lack, for all is "this"-abled ...

    ... no officials, no clients in need, no suffering, nor hours and hours of time ...

    ... nothing in the universe ever redundant, each totally a flowing step of the Great Program ... What's to resist? ...

    ... no payoff for the realization is in hand, always face-to-face Buddha.

    ... Standing on the rooftop, yelling "YES!"

    ... "Just Do It While Already Done!"


    ... and yet, and yet ...

    ... Constant clients in need, horrible bureaucracy, poverty and illness, pressing deadlines and constant delays, nearly drowning in rivers of basic needs, endless steps and kind-hearted work to be done.
    AH! Jundo, wow. Thank you.

    Printing this out and putting it up at my desk!

    Gassho
    Lisa
    sat today

  21. #21
    Gassho Jundo and Lisa.

    That's the rub. Nothing to fix, but you better not waste time and go fix it. hahahahah It's the ultimate zen joke.

    Gassho,

    Risho
    -sattoday

  22. #22
    When my 25 year old daughter came home from Japan and we had not seen her for 2 years. Tears of joy, your'e home!
    Kindness, Ubasoku, Calm Poetry, I seek always to support.

  23. #23
    Elgwyn
    Gassho
    sat today
    Kindness, Ubasoku, Calm Poetry, I seek always to support.

  24. #24
    What's This? - Again and again yet not repeated.
    Just This - Just Now.
    This's What - ' '.

    Gassho Heisoku
    Sat today again and again
    Heisoku 平 息
    Every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home. (Basho)

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