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Thread: Opening the Hand of Thought - Chapter 7 Part 2

  1. #1

    Opening the Hand of Thought - Chapter 7 Part 2

    Dear Bodhisattvas,

    We continue with the closing portions of Chapter 7, "Living Wide Awake", beginning from "The Bodhisattva Vow" on page 116 until the end.

    Because there is much here, and the first portion of the Chapter stimulated much discussion, we will take a few extra days to be with this.

    - What do you feel about all of us being described as "Bodhisattvas", and the importance placed on living by Vow?

    - I am really not sure how I feel about Uchiyama's interpretation of the story of Guixing, Fayuan and the stolen flour. Was Guixing just a tightwad, and an SOB (Son of a Buddha ), or is there some Teaching behind it all on his part, as the end of the story implies? However we feel about Guixing, Fayuan seems like the real hero of the story, ready to pay the price for his actions and not quitting. But, anyway, what do you think?

    - I believe that the last sections of this Chapter, on "Magnanimous Mind" (as well as "Parental Mind" and "Joyful Mind"), the scenery of life, and "the self living out the self that is only self" are one of the real highlights of the book, worth the whole price of admission. Learning to take life as it is, without goals and weighing win and lose all the time is a skill lost on people, perhaps more in the modern West than even in China or Japan of centuries past. How does this section strike you?

    Gassho, Jundo

    SatToday

    PS - A reMINDer that, after the current book, we will return to the Koans of the Book of Equanimity, reading the wonderful "this worldly" commentary by Shishin Wick. We worked with the book last year and will come back. The book is available for purchase here, which is a good thing to do ...

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Book-Equan.../dp/0861713877

    Until you receive the book, it is also available in portions here ...

    https://books.google.co.jp/books?id=...page&q&f=false

    All of the Koans, but without Shishin's commentary, are available here ...

    http://terebess.hu/zen/shoyo-roku.html#wick

    For those new to Koans, some tips on reading the book can be found here ...

    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...ANIMITY-Case-1
    Last edited by Jundo; 03-09-2016 at 03:39 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  2. #2
    Thank you Jundo. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen

    #justsat

  3. #3
    Kyotai
    Guest
    Thank you Jundo.

    I really enjoyed this section. The descriptions of the Bodhisattva reminded me of the talk Koun Franz gave during a treeleaf zazenkai some years ago.

    Gassho, Kyotai
    sat today

  4. #4
    When I was 22 I got hired to play bass for a punk band and started my life as a touring musician. What struck me about life on the road was that when things went wrong (which they frequently do) you had nothing better to do with your time than deal with those problems. No home comforts to distract yourself. I loved the clarity and embraced the life. I also drove a delivery truck in NYC for several years. Same deal. When you have a 20 ft box truck in that kind of traffic you have no choice but to keep going no matter what happens. One memorable moment was loading out after the NYC Gay Pride Parade where some guy tried to steal my company's speakers off a float and I had to chase hm down through the thick (and largely intoxicated) crowd of glitzed up half naked people over cobblestones in the village where the parade ends. He couldn't shake me and gave up. (It was a pretty large speaker) I'm glad no one noticed that I forgot to take the keys out of my truck I had momentarily abandoned.

    I liked the story of Guixing and Fayuan. We have to be careful not to get too caught up in Guixing's character. I don't think that's the point of the story. Life brings us many difficult situations and people. Where I live in Pennsylvania there are a lot of Guixing's living there. Just last week our cat Kush wandered onto our neighbors property. He got 12 pieces of buckshot shrapnel in his head and lost his left eye. Since our town doesn't have a police force and is very remote, even though we are going through the proper channels to deal with it, anything resembling what we might call "justice" is uncertain and unlikely. Sometimes that's life. Fayuan accepted his suffering without remorse. This is a very powerful lesson. Animals who've lost limbs (or eyes) are a gentle reminder to us that life goes on despite adversity and what matters most is that we stay the course, just like Fayuan.

    Gassho

    Sat Today

  5. #5
    What happened to your cat is cruel and horrible. If your town doesn't have a police authority then check with the county or state. Wishing the best for your cats recovery.

    SAT today
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  6. #6
    Also you may want to contact the spca and local media so the investigation gets all the attention it deserves.

    SAT today
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  7. #7
    - What do you feel about all of us being described as "Bodhisattvas", and the importance placed on living by Vow?

    If the Vows are these:

    To save all sentient beings, though beings numberless

    To transform all delusions, though delusions inexhaustible

    To perceive Reality, though Reality is boundless

    To attain the Enlightened Way, a Way non-attainable

    Then I feel that Bodhisattvas are a bunch of ego-maniacs. It's all about them. I would feel very uncomfortable with being described a Bodhisattva and rather go by Jishin.

    To save all sentient beings, transform all delusions, perceive Reality and attain the Enlightened Way is a bunch of baloney. No attaining with nothing to attain. The path enlightens itself when distinctions are not made.

    Just chop wood and carry water. :-)

    - I am really not sure how I feel about Uchiyama's interpretation of the story of Guixing, Fayuan and the stolen flour. Was Guixing just a tightwad, and an SOB (Son of a Buddha ), or is there some Teaching behind it all on his part, as the end of the story implies? However we feel about Guixing, Fayuan seems like the real hero of the story, ready to pay the price for his actions and not quitting. But, anyway, what do you think?

    Guixing is just a tightwad and an SOB. Fayuan is the hero of the story. What else is there?

    - I believe that the last sections of this Chapter, on "Magnanimous Mind" (as well as "Parental Mind" and "Joyful Mind"), the scenery of life, and "the self living out the self that is only self" are one of the real highlights of the book, worth the whole price of admission. Learning to take life as it is, without goals and weighing win and lose all the time is a skill lost on people, perhaps more in the modern West than even in China or Japan of centuries past. How does this section strike you?

    This section is worth about one penny.

    Gassho, Jishin, ST
    Last edited by Jishin; 03-09-2016 at 08:59 PM.

  8. #8
    Done all of that Rich. Received mostly apathy. Country livin.

    Gassho

    Sat Today

  9. #9
    Joyo
    Guest
    Yes, I agree with Jishin, Guixing is a tightwad and an SOB. Good lessons to learn from the story, as others here have posted already, but I don't totally agree with Uchiyama's interpretation of the story.

    I went to a church for quite a few years, the pastors there did a whole long list of bullying/abusive behaviour. And everyone took it because the pastors were considered the "people of God." When my husband and I finally had the courage to leave, we were looked at as the bad ones. My point is, I don't think that just because someone is a religious leader it gives them a free ticket to abuse that power by bullying vulnerable sentient beings. Guixing makes for a good story, but, sadly, this kind of stuff happens in real life all the time.

    I'm really inspired by this book though. My copy has so many underlines and little notes on the side =)

    Gassho,
    Joyo
    sat today
    Last edited by Joyo; 03-10-2016 at 03:10 AM. Reason: typo

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Jishin View Post
    - What do you feel about all of us being described as "Bodhisattvas", and the importance placed on living by Vow?

    If the Vows are these:

    To save all sentient beings, though beings numberless

    To transform all delusions, though delusions inexhaustible

    To perceive Reality, though Reality is boundless

    To attain the Enlightened Way, a Way non-attainable

    Then I feel that Bodhisattvas are a bunch of ego-maniacs. It's all about them. I would feel very uncomfortable with being described a Bodhisattva and rather go by Jishin.

    To save all sentient beings, transform all delusions, perceive Reality and attain the Enlightened Way is a bunch of baloney. No attaining with nothing to attain. The path enlightens itself when distinctions are not made.

    Just chop wood and carry water. :-)

    - I am really not sure how I feel about Uchiyama's interpretation of the story of Guixing, Fayuan and the stolen flour. Was Guixing just a tightwad, and an SOB (Son of a Buddha ), or is there some Teaching behind it all on his part, as the end of the story implies? However we feel about Guixing, Fayuan seems like the real hero of the story, ready to pay the price for his actions and not quitting. But, anyway, what do you think?

    Guixing is just a tightwad and an SOB. Fayuan is the hero of the story. What else is there?

    - I believe that the last sections of this Chapter, on "Magnanimous Mind" (as well as "Parental Mind" and "Joyful Mind"), the scenery of life, and "the self living out the self that is only self" are one of the real highlights of the book, worth the whole price of admission. Learning to take life as it is, without goals and weighing win and lose all the time is a skill lost on people, perhaps more in the modern West than even in China or Japan of centuries past. How does this section strike you?

    This section is worth about one penny.

    Gassho, Jishin, ST
    Hello,

    No, seriously, how do you feel?

    j/k



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

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Myosha View Post
    Hello,

    No, seriously, how do you feel?

    j/k



    Gassho
    Myosha sat today
    Give me a penny and I will tell you.

    Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Jishin View Post
    Give me a penny and I will tell you.

    Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_
    We don't have pennies in Canada anymore. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen

    #sattoday

  13. #13
    Kyotai
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Shingen View Post
    We don't have pennies in Canada anymore. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen

    #sattoday
    Not true. I have several under my couch cushions

    Gassho, Kyotai
    Sat today

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Joyo View Post
    Yes, I agree with Jishin, Guixing is a tightwad and an SOB. Good lessons to learn from the story, as others here have posted already, but I don't totally agree with Uchiyama's interpretation of the story.

    I went to a church for quite a few years, the pastors there did a whole long list of bullying/abusive behaviour. And everyone took it because the pastors were considered the "people of God." When my husband and I finally had the courage to leave, we were looked at as the bad ones. My point is, I don't think that just because someone is a religious leader it gives them a free ticket to abuse that power by bullying vulnerable sentient beings. Guixing makes for a good story, but, sadly, this kind of stuff happens in real life all the time.

    I'm really inspired by this book though. My copy has so many underlines and little notes on the side =)

    Gassho,
    Joyo
    sat today
    I feel as you do Joyo.

    I'm not very comfortable with the distinction between an ordinary human being and a bodhisattvas - on the whole we're just all ordinary human beings trying to do our best. I'm also not interested in becoming someone's disciple so I find some of the language uncomfortable.

    If a fellow human being's cold give them a blanket - if you're cold yourself take a blanket. I'm not on board with the notion of putting up and shutting up. Isn't that how abuse has taken place? Being committed doesn't mean not discriminating or making a judgement call.

    Apart from glimpses I'm not sure I'm a believer in 'absolute peace' as a goal or state of mind. Absolute peace sometimes feels like a strange desire to have in a world where people do 'merely rise and fall' - often not of their own fault. I understand this is Uchiyama criticising our competitive world - and rightly so - but perhaps he generalises too much.

    Anyway - my obsolete pennies worth

    Gassho

    Willow/Jinyo

    sat today
    Last edited by Jinyo; 03-10-2016 at 11:54 AM.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Myosha View Post
    Hello,

    No, seriously, how do you feel?

    j/k



    Gassho
    Myosha sat today

    Sometimes we are egomaniacs and that's ok. Having the vow or direction to see or cut through that is most important. The bodhisattva ideal is just you living moment to moment. Consciousness is always trying to save itself.

    Will sit soon
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Kyotai View Post
    Not true. I have several under my couch cushions

    Gassho, Kyotai
    Sat today
    Ok ok ... your right, I too have some under my couch cushions for my retirement plan too. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen

    #justsat

  17. #17
    Member Hoseki's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    St. John's Newfoundland, Canada.
    Hi folks,

    I'm not finished the chapter yet but I wanted to chip in at this point. It seems like Guixing was the kind of guy who leaned towards asceticism. It sounds like he was constantly testing the metal of the other monks. Like
    a blacksmith hammering on a red hot iron bar. Pounding it into shape or something like that. The "you want to be a lotus? Then you live in the mud" kind of attitude. He will only take those who didn't leave after getting
    splashed with cold water, he was starving the other monks and he had to be sure that Fayuan wasn't trying to improve his standing with the other monks at the experience of the community as a whole by once again inflicting hardship. I just
    think its part of his teaching style.


    Personally, I think if your charges are malnourished your not taking very good care of them (unless your rationing for some reason e.g. expecting a drought or famine of some sort.)

    As for being called a Bodhisattva I think its neat and appropriate when one is doing the work of a Bodhisattva. When I'm helping an old lady across the street, Bodhisattva. When I'm using the washroom? Nope, just a dude using a washroom.
    Identity words when utilized skillfully can be a powerful motivator for action. We will have opportunities in our life to be a Bodhisattva and we should take them! That part of the stuff about the vows.

    Just my thoughts so far.

    Gassho
    Adam
    Sat today

  18. #18
    Eishuu
    Guest
    I particularly enjoyed the section from p134 onward about "the mind of a parent looking after its child" and descriptions such as "this nurturing mind is the natural functioning of magnanimous mind, with which we work to enable the flower of life to bloom in every encounter" and "joyful mind is discovering one's worth and passion for life through the action of parental mind toward everything we encounter". I find them easier to relate to than the term 'Bodhissatva'. I found these descriptions really inspiring and moving as well as relatable. If I used the term 'Bodhissatva' in relation to myself, I think it would just be a hindrance because it would be easy for my ego to get hold of it and think I was something special or important (if that makes sense).

    Gassho
    Lucy
    Sat today

  19. #19
    Yes, me too. I never think of myself as a bodhisattva. Parenting, nurturing, joyful, loving describes it nicely. Quickly letting go of anger has allowed this more for me.

    SAT today
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  20. #20
    Guixing, Fayuan and the stolen flour.

    I think we can critique this, but I think to be fair whenever we are critiquing something, we have to be cognizant that we are applying
    our modern views to people who had completely different outlooks on life.

    So sure Guixing can come off as a tightwad, but I like Uchiyama Roshi's point: Bodhisattvas need to do what needs to be done despite
    the consequences that will occur.

    This is a very practical expression of the way. Look, sometimes when you are out with friends and someone says something homophobic,
    racist, sexist or what have you, you can just laugh along uncomfortably, or you can steal some rice from the cupboard and tell them
    that's unacceptable. You may get "kicked out of the temple" and lose your friendship, I don't know, but if you know better, do better.

    The more I practice the more I realize that this practice is about taking care of each other. Really that's what this is about. Trying
    to attain something is the complete antithesis of what this is about; this is about facing ourselves; what we do get is a way to navigate life
    in a less harmful way to better take care of each other. But to get that we have to drop the grasping crap. We have to soften the imagined separation
    between us and others. And our idea of ourself will just grow and grow and grow until the idea of "our people" includes everyone.

    What good is enlightenment if it doesn't help others? More importantly, what kind of legacy or life do we have or world do we leave to our children
    if we don't focus on taking care of each other? We are the ancestors of the future practitioners. When they look back on our writings and videos, on our actions,
    will they be inspired? I hope they will.

    I agree that the word "Bodhisattva" sounds esoteric; I think the more it becomes part of our cultural lexicon then it will have more meaning. It has
    a lot of meaning to me and others here who are more exposed to it. I like it because it's concise. I also like Uchiyama's point of it being a true adult. But
    true adult to me doesn't do the term justice. I like it though, I just think BOdhisattva is deeper than that; sort of like how you can
    translate Dukkha to dissatisfaction or suffering, but Dukkha is just the way to go because it's a deep concept. It's a nice, concise word that
    means a lot.

    In terms of some sort of superiority that a Bodhisattva has, I don't think that's what Uchiyama is trying to get to. It's most certainly a superior way
    to live compared to a more selfish way, or there would be no reason to pursue the path. There is a distinction to be made; if there weren't a
    distinction, then it wouldn't matter. But we also know that to live as a Bodhisattva is something we can never fully do because we are human and
    selfish, and just because we set our GPS to a specific point does not mean it's easy to get there or that our old harmful habits are suddenly
    going to vanish. So living the Bodhisattva life is a vow to stay on the path the best we can, but we have to continually renew that vow because we constantly fail, and
    we renew that vow by practice and mindset.

    Further we are all Bodhisattvas (and Buddha's for that matter - even the people who we just simply can't stand) whether we know it or not because everything we do effects everyone else, so it's not like "hey, we're over here in the
    Bodhisattva group, and you slackers over there are just a bunch of neerdowell commoners!" Our thoughts, our moods, somehow eke their way into the
    zeitgeist (ack this word is overused lately, but it's apt here). All the practices we do, have this practice of helping others as their intention. "To save ALL sentient beings" means all, not just the ones who I like, who aren't
    assholes. hahaha All of them! We have to face our likes and dislikes and live through each situation we find ourselves in fully. That's the bodhisattva path.
    It's truly wonderful, it's a life of example, not a life of cutting down; it inspires hope in others but because of what we DO, not what we preach.

    I love the discussion of the three minds; it further elucidates the working of a Bodhisattva. It also helps me personally; this viewpoint, when I first read it radically
    altered my understanding of practice.

    I work for a large "evil" corporation, so early on in my practice I would get concerned that I could never truly follow the way working at this place. At the same
    time I really enjoy what I do, so it was something I thought about a lot. A couple of years ago, one of the executives told us, in a quarterly meeting, that "if
    people of good conscience do not stay and do good, then we can never hope for anything to change." And that resonated.

    We hear or read the stories of the Buddha or these spiritual "Zen gods" in the koans or Dogen, and it's easy to just give up because there's no way
    we could ever hope to be that enlightened, or live like they lived to strengthen our practice. But something that that manager said got me to thinking about
    my practice, and that this is my practice. Although it's also not mine, it's everyone's practice with me, but I have to also do this.

    I have to take what I learn and integrate this in my life. We are all connected! When you feel that, you know that you are unique; you are the universe expressing itself
    as you! Only you can see the cup (to steal from Uchiyama's example) quite like you can. So while these are the Buddha's and Jundo's and Dogen's teachings, you have to
    make them your own. They are your teachings when you make them yours, and only we can make them ours. We have to do the work.

    So for me, I need to make my Genjokoan alive when I log into my computer, talk to my coworkers, work, take out my dogs, live with my wife, spend time with friends and family,etc.
    And that's why I like that description of the magnanimous, joyful and parental minds.

    Magnanimous and joyous mind allows us to drop the bullshit when things don't go the way we want, so that instead of sulking in a corner and checking out,
    that we stay engaged and we can take care of people (parental) regardless of where we stand. When we have a very myopic viewpoint of the world - my group vs. their group,
    we are living a very very narrow life. Magnanimous mind is like a breath of fresh air - like taking off the blinders.

    It's all about taking care of each other. A couple of weeks ago, and I don't know why it took me so long to realize this - probably just takes time to sink in, I
    realized the real reason I'm here at work (obviously I need to pay the bills, but I don't think that's the main reason), but the main reason is to take care of my people where I work. Really take care of
    them. I really feel that's why I'm where I'm at, to bring a joyful, lighthearted and caring attitude where it's often competitive and cold.

    That means always being available to help if I'm needed, or just listen, or give helpful advice or more practical knowledge transfer to increase their skills. It
    means to share all of my knowledge, all of "my" code, even though I busted my ass to write it. It means dropping "my". A really important point
    is to allow my teammates the room to express themselves professionally and grow, to show off their skills the best they can. To give them the room to state their
    points and feel like they are valued and acknowledged, to not try to outshine everyone.

    This is a markedly, and I cannot emphasize this enough in the sometimes shark tank where I work, different way of working with people. The way this world works,
    and it's utter insanity, is that it wants us to compete against each other for resources, to outshine each other. I don't know if it's some subconscious coping strategy we use
    to keep ourselves distracted from the fact that we are going to die, that we don't really own anything, and that since we are all connected, we would be much happier if we actually
    helped each other, were honest with each other and took care of each other. I don't know what it is.

    But I can tell you that even in an unorthodox setting the way of the bodhisattva works. It also makes practice fun. Practice is hard, it's hard to move past the
    habits of mine, mine, mine. But this so far is the best way I've found of facing those habits.... of trying to make the world a more gentle place.

    So I don't think I'm better than anyone else, but I know that there is a definitive distinction between living my life (and failing) like this and not.

    Gassho,

    Risho
    -sattoday

  21. #21
    Member ForestDweller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Beltrami Island Forest in Minnesota
    Aha! Most interesting reading the comments about the bodhisattva. It seems most people who commented are at least a little uncomfortable with the concept, and I'd like to say something about that. The concept of bodhisattva is not, to my knowledge, mentioned in the Pali Canon which is probably as close as we can get to what the Buddha actually said. (I'm only half way through the Canon, so please correct me if you've found the concept there.) The bodhisattva is largely a Mahayana invention and is famously evident in "The Lotus Sutra" where they are all over the place. This Sutra was written many hundreds of years after the Buddha lived, and its origin and authors are unknown. The point being there is no certainty at all that the Lotus is even something the Buddha taught, even though it is literally revered in many parts of Asia today. I, for one, don't believe this Sutra is the Buddha's. The developers of Mahayana were pretty interested in a form of salvation whether it was through becoming a bodhisattva or eventually a buddha. "The Lotus Sutra" emphasizes both. I think the reason many of us are uncomfortable with the bodhisattva concept is because it is nearer the Judeo-Christian concepts of salvation and good works than it is the heart of Buddhism. There, I've gone and done it -- opened the box. Would be interested in your comments. Forest Dweller ^^ForestSatToday^^

  22. #22
    Ah interesting interesting. I don't find Bodhisattva uncomfortable. I feel that Buddhism is sort of like Physics. Without Einstein we wouldn't have physics, but physics doesn't end with Einstein.

    I completely stole that example; I think Jundo may have said that; I'm pretty sure I heard it here. Similarly, with the Mahayana Bodhisattva "ideal", I'm not sure if the Buddha historically talked about this, but the Buddha was important obviously because like Einstein he sort of is credited with starting this, but I'm sure he would credit others before him that got him to his discoveries, etc.

    In any case, my point is that even though the Buddha may have not explicitly discussed Bodhisattvas, it doesn't matter. I think that the Buddha started this, but just like physics, it grows and grows. It doesn't end with the Buddha. It changes and adapts, gets deeper, etc.

    I think the idea of the Bodhisattva is important as a sort of a map or compass to practice.. for example, we are all Avalokitesvara, Kannon, Kuanyin, etc. We, as human beings, have the ability to respond to the needs of each other, we are here to take care of each other.

    If you view a Bodhisattva as a literal god-like creature that exists somewhere, then that's odd, but I've always understood Bodhisattvas to be archetypes of the Mahayana path, Kannon for compassion, Manjushri for wisdom, but ultimately these are facets of the practice. Further the idea that we are Bodhisattvas, here to take care of each other, staving off attainment of enlightenment until everyone is enlightened.. I feel this is just another way of illustrating that our practice never ends --

    But what is interesting, and especially since you brought up the Lotus Sutra is that the Lotus Sutra (well in "The parable of the fantastic castle-city" ) is sort of like saying, hey you know guys that Nirvana idea was sort of something I conjured up to keep you interested, but now that you guys are Arhats, ummmm well this is actually not really it, the treasure is much, much better! hahah

    That also seems to parallel Christianity! In the Bible when Jesus says, hey guys, you've heard an eye for an eye, but no it's turn the other cheek!

    It does sort of make you wonder, and these are awesome questions Forest! I mean did the Buddha have a similar understanding of awakening that we take for granted now from a Mahayana perspective? Dogen seems to attribute this path to the Buddha (now take that with a grain of salt because Dogen confuses me but this is what I read from him); I mean Dogen repeatedly talks about zazen and the path of the mahayana as the path of the Buddha. But I'm just in question mode now too, I would like to hear from more members too!!! lol

    Gassho,

    Risho
    -sattoday
    Last edited by Risho; 03-12-2016 at 07:54 PM.

  23. #23
    It reached a point where the enlightenment stuff got so confusing and seemingly unattainable by the common folk that they said it's ok
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  24. #24
    You can become a bodhisattva and help all beings. Much easier to understand and greatly expanded Buddhism to everyone.
    Being an enlightened Buddha automatically makes you a grew bodhisattva.

    SAT today
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  25. #25
    Everything is so simple. Yet we like to complicate things. Even in Buddhism.

    Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

  26. #26
    If Bodhisatvas make someone uncomfortable for any reason they should avoid Bodhisatvas.

    Gassho

    Sat Today

  27. #27
    Nobody needs saving. Sentient beings are saved from the beginning. Boddhisatvas are deluded beings that do not see this. I try to avoid them like the plague. They may try to convince me I am not Jishin and brain wash me. :-)

    Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Rich View Post

    Being an enlightened Buddha automatically makes you a grew bodhisattva.



    SAT today

    I didn't say that. My phone said that.

    I say 'a groovy bodhisattva '. -)😊😃

    SAT today
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Jishin View Post
    Nobody needs saving. Sentient beings are saved from the beginning. Boddhisatvas are deluded beings that do not see this. I try to avoid them like the plague. They may try to convince me I am not Jishin and brain wash me. :-)

    Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

    What about the vow 'sentient beings are number less we vow to save them all ? Is that part of the brainwashing?
    Or just reminders in case we forget we are already Buddha. 🙏

    SAT today
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  30. #30
    I don't know. This saving business is to complicated. Let's just have some tea. How would you like yours? I will take mine with a Tao Te Ching One splash of milk and two sugar cubes.

    Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

  31. #31
    Great idea! No worries. Plain with honey. Thanks.

    SAT today
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  32. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by ForestDweller View Post
    Aha! Most interesting reading the comments about the bodhisattva. It seems most people who commented are at least a little uncomfortable with the concept, and I'd like to say something about that. The concept of bodhisattva is not, to my knowledge, mentioned in the Pali Canon which is probably as close as we can get to what the Buddha actually said. (I'm only half way through the Canon, so please correct me if you've found the concept there.) The bodhisattva is largely a Mahayana invention and is famously evident in "The Lotus Sutra" where they are all over the place. This Sutra was written many hundreds of years after the Buddha lived, and its origin and authors are unknown. The point being there is no certainty at all that the Lotus is even something the Buddha taught, even though it is literally revered in many parts of Asia today. I, for one, don't believe this Sutra is the Buddha's. The developers of Mahayana were pretty interested in a form of salvation whether it was through becoming a bodhisattva or eventually a buddha. "The Lotus Sutra" emphasizes both. I think the reason many of us are uncomfortable with the bodhisattva concept is because it is nearer the Judeo-Christian concepts of salvation and good works than it is the heart of Buddhism. There, I've gone and done it -- opened the box. Would be interested in your comments. Forest Dweller ^^ForestSatToday^^
    Some bbackground.
    The big schism happened about 400-500 years after Gautama Buddha passed. The Mahayana - greater vehicle broke away from the Hinayana - lesser vehicle. In the hinayana the enlightened person was an arhat. The arhat had complete freedom to cross to the other shore alone. They didn't have to take anyone but they could if someone followed them. Their compassion was spontaneous, not with desire or attachment. The term lesser vehicle refers to numbers not inferiority.
    The Mahayana said that the enlightened person - the bodhisattva does not cross to the other shore until all beings are saved. The bodhisattva has immense compassion and leading others to enlightenment is the greater vehicle.
    Around the year 500 the Mahayanist Bodhidharma came from India to China.

    SAT today
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  33. #33
    Eishuu
    Guest
    This might be a silly question, but it's been rattling round my head for a while. I understand the Bodhissatva as an ideal of compassion and particularly the compassion that arises seeing that sentient beings are suffering because they are not enlightened, but in terms of the Bodhissatva Vow to save all sentient beings what if some sentient beings don't want to be saved? Does the Bodhissatva save them anyway without asking their permission? Like in the Matrix when Cypher would rather stay plugged in and eat pretend steak than wake up...isn't it a choice to go looking for the nature of reality rather than focusing on happiness in a samsaric sense? I really don't like religions that are evangelical and constantly trying to convert everybody whether they like it or not. Am I taking this too literally?

    Gassho
    Lucy
    Sat today

  34. #34

    Opening the Hand of Thought - Chapter 7 Part 2

    Lucy,

    Maybe it goes something like this:

    When the butterfly beats its wings, Japan is affected by a gentle breeze across the world. In Bendowa Dogen talks about one moment of Zazen imperceptibly enlightening the entire world. Maybe you become nicer and more aware of good and bad and the world and universe becomes more aware of itself along with you when you grab you some Zazen?

    Who knows?

    Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_
    Last edited by Jishin; 03-15-2016 at 12:07 PM.

  35. #35
    The Great Bodhisattva Way
    By Zen Master Seung Sahn




    One, two, three. Where do these numbers come from? You already understand. Children want candy; business people want money; scholars want to become famous. There are many kinds of people and many directions. Where do they finally go?

    If you attain this point, you attain human nature and universal substance. If you attain universal substance, you can see and hear clearly, and your emotions, will, and wisdom can function correctly. Then your life is correct and you can help all beings. This is called the Great Bodhisattva Way.


    By Zen Master Seung Sahn
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  36. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by Lucy View Post
    This might be a silly question, but it's been rattling round my head for a while. I understand the Bodhissatva as an ideal of compassion and particularly the compassion that arises seeing that sentient beings are suffering because they are not enlightened, but in terms of the Bodhissatva Vow to save all sentient beings what if some sentient beings don't want to be saved? Does the Bodhissatva save them anyway without asking their permission? Like in the Matrix when Cypher would rather stay plugged in and eat pretend steak than wake up...isn't it a choice to go looking for the nature of reality rather than focusing on happiness in a samsaric sense? I really don't like religions that are evangelical and constantly trying to convert everybody whether they like it or not. Am I taking this too literally?

    Gassho
    Lucy
    Sat today
    Hmmm. Well, I suppose the traditional Buddhist answer would be that one makes the Path available and someday, in this life or another, their Karma would lead them to be ready to walk it! It might not be soon, but someday ... for all have the potential within.

    In the meantime, we do the best to make the world, and everyone's lot, better. I used to volunteer for hospice. One could do nothing to rescue all the patients in their difficult straights, but one could do much to make their way better and easier.

    I do not believe in aggressive proselytizing, or pressuring people. However, I do believe in making resources and opportunities available. One can plant a seed and, when the time is right, it will grow. If it does not help everyone in this world, it will help some. Those who need it, will make use of it and benefit. Others will go another way. In our Vow, we try ... although sentient beings are numberless and delusions inexaustible.



    Gassho, J


    SatToday
    Last edited by Jundo; 03-15-2016 at 01:44 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  37. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by Rich View Post
    The Great Bodhisattva Way
    By Zen Master Seung Sahn




    One, two, three. Where do these numbers come from? You already understand. Children want candy; business people want money; scholars want to become famous. There are many kinds of people and many directions. Where do they finally go?

    If you attain this point, you attain human nature and universal substance. If you attain universal substance, you can see and hear clearly, and your emotions, will, and wisdom can function correctly. Then your life is correct and you can help all beings. This is called the Great Bodhisattva Way.


    By Zen Master Seung Sahn
    You know too much. Whack! Only go straight don't know, attain nothing- mind, use nothing mind, and save all beings from suffering.

    Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

  38. #38
    Bodhisattva is a simple label for a complex process. I don't want to be a label, but I have no problem trying to live up to that process -- with the understanding that I am going to fail, of course. I like the Bodhisattva vow and recite it almost every day because I treat it as a process, not an outcome. That taking it actually makes me a Bodhisattva like Kannon, for instance, never even enters my mind. I find that idea silly. Everything in this second section of the chapter, the three minds, being an adult, etc., is all about process. I think it best to accept it as practice, as a process, an aim, not always actually hitting of the target -- though that might happen from time to time, which is a good thing.

    Was Guixing a tightwad SOB or a great teacher? Yes!
    Was Fayuan a simple thief or Bodhisattva? Yes!
    Were both of their actions wrong or right? Yes!
    Do people need to be saved or are they already saved? Yes!
    Do they still have pennies in Canada or not? Yes!
    Don't get trapped by polarities!
    Last edited by AlanLa; 03-15-2016 at 06:23 PM.
    AL (Jigen) in:
    Faith/Trust
    Courage/Love
    Awareness/Action!

    I sat today

  39. #39
    Member Hoseki's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
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    St. John's Newfoundland, Canada.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lucy View Post
    This might be a silly question, but it's been rattling round my head for a while. I understand the Bodhissatva as an ideal of compassion and particularly the compassion that arises seeing that sentient beings are suffering because they are not enlightened, but in terms of the Bodhissatva Vow to save all sentient beings what if some sentient beings don't want to be saved? Does the Bodhissatva save them anyway without asking their permission? Like in the Matrix when Cypher would rather stay plugged in and eat pretend steak than wake up...isn't it a choice to go looking for the nature of reality rather than focusing on happiness in a samsaric sense? I really don't like religions that are evangelical and constantly trying to convert everybody whether they like it or not. Am I taking this too literally?

    Gassho
    Lucy
    Sat today
    Hi Lucy,

    For what its worth, I don't think you can save everybody. Nor can you help everybody lessen their suffering. But you can try to help the people around you. Sometimes that might mean providing the skinny on some relevant concept from the History of Buddhism. Other times, its a warm cup of tea with a biscuit or maybe even a kick in the arse! The vow to save all sentient beings is more like the hand on a compass that points north. You never get to the"North" but you do keep moving in a northward direction. The Bodhisattva is a being of action and while proselytizing is certainly an action it doesn't fill an empty belly.

    At least that what I think about when I think of the vows.

    Gassho
    Adam
    Sat today

  40. #40
    Joyo
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Lucy View Post
    This might be a silly question, but it's been rattling round my head for a while. I understand the Bodhissatva as an ideal of compassion and particularly the compassion that arises seeing that sentient beings are suffering because they are not enlightened, but in terms of the Bodhissatva Vow to save all sentient beings what if some sentient beings don't want to be saved? Does the Bodhissatva save them anyway without asking their permission? Like in the Matrix when Cypher would rather stay plugged in and eat pretend steak than wake up...isn't it a choice to go looking for the nature of reality rather than focusing on happiness in a samsaric sense? I really don't like religions that are evangelical and constantly trying to convert everybody whether they like it or not. Am I taking this too literally?

    Gassho
    Lucy
    Sat today
    I'd say people need the freedom to choose and their karma will follow. Some of the greatest lessons I've learned are through my own mistakes. In a sense, we are all suffering because we are not enlightened.

    Gassho,
    Joyo
    sat today

  41. #41
    Eishuu
    Guest
    Really great responses. Lots to think about. Thank you all.

    Gassho
    Lucy
    sat today

  42. #42
    infinite means everything eventually is everything so long as you give it enough time to ripen. So some beings don't want to be saved. No biggie. Patience is a virtue. Infinity is pretty powerful stuff.

    Gassho

    Sat Today

  43. #43
    Eishuu
    Guest
    Thank you Byrne.

    Lucy

  44. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by Dude View Post

    As for being called a Bodhisattva I think its neat and appropriate when one is doing the work of a Bodhisattva. When I'm helping an old lady across the street, Bodhisattva. When I'm using the washroom? Nope, just a dude using a washroom.
    Identity words when utilized skillfully can be a powerful motivator for action. We will have opportunities in our life to be a Bodhisattva and we should take them! That part of the stuff about the vows.
    This is pretty much my view. I've been following this thread without much to say, but wanted to thank everyone for helping me see "Bodhisattva" from every possible angle.

    Gassho,
    Jakuden
    SatToday
    清 道 寂田
    SEIDO JAKUDEN
    She/her.
    I am a novice priest. Any resemblance my posts may have to actual teachings about the Dharma, living or dead, is purely coincidental (and just my attempt to be helpful).

  45. #45
    Joyo
    Guest
    I have to admit, I've been trying to **get** this book, but I don't get it. And the more I let that go and quit trying, the more I think I'm beginning to understand, but it's hard to put it into words.

    Gassho,
    Joyo
    sat today

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