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Thread: A Request to Sangha Members: "Three Sacred Sentences" Practice

  1. #1

    A Request to Sangha Members: "Three Sacred Sentences" Practice

    Dear All,

    In Zen, it is important to untangle from our complex thoughts, simplify views and hold opinions lightly. As one practice in doing so, I am requesting that our members try to limit their Forum comments to about, more or less, three (3) well-chosen and heartfelt sentences. The purpose is to cause people to consider what they really need to say, to keep it short, simplify and to honor the dropping of opinions and extra ideas.

    That said, the request is not a "rule" or set in stone in any way:

    - Anyone who feels that they need more than three lines to express themselves about some topic is totally free and welcome to do so (We simply ask that they try to note, "Sorry, needed more than three sentences here" or "Sorry, needed to run long" or the like at the end of their post). If you have something you really want to say and share, please say it!

    - The request is not being made of newcomers, just arrived to Treeleaf Sangha, during the first few months of their being here.

    - It will not apply to some sections of our Forum where a bit more discussion is welcome (e.g., our "No Words" Book Club, the Art & Poetry Circles, our Precept reflections during Jukai, the "Beginner's Place" for newcomers, and the like).

    - It is okay to add some colons ";" and parenthesis ( ), but let's not go overboard. However, quotes don't count, so please quote the writings of others all you wish. "More or less three" is fine, no need to be exact.

    - It is just a request, with no kind of penalty or punishment attached in any way, and it will not be moderated. While it is purely voluntary, I am counting on the group spirit of Sangha members to lead them to join in voluntarily. I may offer privately a friendly reminder of the request from time to time to folks who seem to be heavy in thoughts.

    - Folks who are neuro-diverse do not have to bother with this if it is a hardship for them, and should write as they need to write unless otherwise requested. It would be appreciated if, even so, a tiny "sorry, needed to run long" were placed at the end of long posts, the same as for everybody.


    The reason for 3 is a bit arbitrary, but Buddhists traditionally like their "threes" ... like the Three Refuges (Buddha, Dharma, Sangha).

    Thank you. This "Three Sacred Sentences" practice is an ongoing experiment in our Sangha as we see how it goes. Please give it a try!

    Gassho, Jundo

    (Sorry, needed to run long in the above)

    SatTodayLentAHand
    Last edited by Jundo; 07-22-2021 at 12:07 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  2. #2
    Member Onka's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    rural queensland australia.
    I appreciate this statement and wording Jundo. It's well thought out and I agree that some kind of acknowledgement for needing to go over 3 sentences shouldn't be too much of a challenge for our neuro-diverse members or members with mental wellbeing challenges. I hope that they, like me see it as an acknowledgement and not an apology for being neuro-diverse or having mental wellbeing challenges. Finally I hope that we will all try to keep posts to the 3 sentences.
    Gassho
    Onka
    *I acknowledge I went over 3 sentences. I will continue to try to keep my posts to 3 sentences as requested by my teacher Jundo.
    穏 On (Calm)
    火 Ka (Fires)
    aka Anna Kissed.
    Pronouns She/Her They/Them.
    Life's too serious to be taken seriously.
    No Gods No Masters No Borders

  3. #3
    Thank you Jundo. As I've already noted, this is an excellent exercise for checking and containing the ego, considering response rather than reaction, and for clarifying thoughts.
    Gassho
    Meitou
    Sattoday lah
    命 Mei - life
    島 Tou - island

  4. #4
    More than happy to abide by this! If anything, what itís done for me in the short time Iíve been here, is that itís made me think carefully about what I say and how I say it, to make sure Iím clear, respectful, considerate and brief, making it easy for others to read and understand me.

    Thank you!

    SatToday
    Bion
    美音

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  5. #5
    Thank you, Jundo. I will do my best to honor this request.
    Gassho,
    V
    ST

    Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk
    "Heaven is right where you are standing, and that is the place to train"-Ueshiba Morihei

  6. #6
    Member Getchi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Between Sea and Sky, Australia.
    Ooooh I like this,
    forced tonne succinct.
    We can do it!!!?!
    Nothing to do? Why not Sit?

  7. #7
    Thank you Jundo for being you. I truly appreciate all that you have done for me! I have the little vase with the Heart Sutra on my alter! You have or maybe it has been me but by golly you have been every step you have helped so many of us! Never forget. A man who has friends is a rich man, and you have many friends. Just a guy.
    Gassho
    st/ lah
    Tai Shi


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    ...Thought and action/ your life would never experience, (even before you were born), But he also being the Devine Cannot, He etched every moment of your existence, With His own hand... Haifiz

  8. #8
    I was just wondering if I was missing something with everyone apologizing for running long(which to me a paragraph is nothing) and I was. I'll try to be more succinct in the future. My apologies.
    Dave SAT/LAH

  9. #9
    I am going to bump this post a bit, for ALL members (and I put myself on that list for sure), because it is an excellent little practice.

    Truly, this is a powerful Zen practice about letting words and thoughts go a bit, simplifying ideas, not getting tangled, and is not some law or hard rule at all.

    Of course, if someone really has something in their heart to say, and it is vital and cannot be said more concisely or silently, then say what one is called to say: no limit on words needed.

    Sorry to run long.

    Gassho, Jundo

    SatTodayLAH
    Last edited by Jundo; 07-15-2021 at 03:43 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  10. #10

  11. #11
    Can i use koans to convey complex thoughts in relation to the topic? For example if i say "overflowing tea" it can refer to the koan about emptying the cup of thoughts and opinions before learning, which would relate to the topic, although perhaps not the best example. The goal being to stimulate thought between the koan concepts and the current topic while staying within the three sentances, or would these be too vague?
    Gassho
    David
    Sat/lah

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by serenewolf View Post
    Can i use koans to convey complex thoughts in relation to the topic? For example if i say "overflowing tea" it can refer to the koan about emptying the cup of thoughts and opinions before learning, which would relate to the topic, although perhaps not the best example. The goal being to stimulate thought between the koan concepts and the current topic while staying within the three sentances, or would these be too vague?
    Gassho
    David
    Sat/lah
    The tree in the front garden.

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    The tree in the front garden.

    Gassho, J

    STLah




    Gassho
    Byokan
    Please take my words with a big grain of salt. I know nothing. Wisdom is only found in our whole-hearted practice together.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by serenewolf View Post
    Can i use koans to convey complex thoughts in relation to the topic? For example if i say "overflowing tea" it can refer to the koan about emptying the cup of thoughts and opinions before learning, which would relate to the topic, although perhaps not the best example. The goal being to stimulate thought between the koan concepts and the current topic while staying within the three sentances, or would these be too vague?
    Gassho
    David
    Sat/lah
    Assuming we all are familiar with the koans. I am not, so Iíd rather use my own simple words but make it brief!

    SatToday
    Bion
    美音

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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    The tree in the front garden.

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    Or, in a different vein.

    Darmok and Jalad at Tanagra.



    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    Or, in a different vein.

    Darmok and Jalad at Tanagra.



    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    Hey, I actually got that reference!

    -satToday
    Thanks,
    Kaishin (Open Heart)
    Please take this layman's words with a grain of salt.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    Or, in a different vein.

    Darmok and Jalad at Tanagra.



    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    When the walls fell

    Gassho,
    Koushi
    ST
    広 Kou (Vast)
    髭 Shi (Beard)

  18. #18
    Long, here I vowed, grateful poetry longer, keep others short, positive, excuses spelling/typing. Great joy in realization that Zen is what I am, not what I practice, 7 years I learned thought practice, now I learn to be.
    Gassho
    sat/ lah
    Tai Sho
    Last edited by Tai Shi; 07-16-2021 at 05:16 PM. Reason: complete ideas, concisiom
    ...Thought and action/ your life would never experience, (even before you were born), But he also being the Devine Cannot, He etched every moment of your existence, With His own hand... Haifiz

  19. #19
    When the walls fell
    No, no, no, no no; that was Jeriko

    gassho, Shokai
    stlah
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    May we all grow together in our knowledge of the Dharma

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Shokai View Post
    No, no, no, no no; that was Jeriko

    gassho, Shokai
    stlah
    Jericho was EXACTLY what I thought as well

    SatToday
    Bion
    美音

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  21. #21
    Ah, thank you. I had been wondering why people were apologising for going over three sentences specifically. Jundo, could perhaps a link to this post be placed in the Recommended Threads each week, with the 'Re-MINDer on SIMPLICITY' (which is similar but does not mention/explain the three sentences 'rule' or the acknowledgement of running long)?

    Gassho,
    Charity
    sat/lah

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by coriander View Post
    Ah, thank you. I had been wondering why people were apologising for going over three sentences specifically. Jundo, could perhaps a link to this post be placed in the Recommended Threads each week, with the 'Re-MINDer on SIMPLICITY' (which is similar but does not mention/explain the three sentences 'rule' or the acknowledgement of running long)?

    Gassho,
    Charity
    sat/lah
    Done!

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Done!

    Gassho, J

    STLah


    Gassho,
    Charity
    sat/lah

  24. #24


    Thank you! I also wondered about this.

    Gassho, Tony,

    ST LAH
    The miracle is not to walk on water. The miracle is to walk on the green earth in the present moment, to appreciate the peace and beauty that are available now. - ThŪch Nhất Hạnh

  25. #25
    Yes Jundo, I am at fault again with four or five too long sent. I will work more at your request for Lay people to keep it short.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    ...Thought and action/ your life would never experience, (even before you were born), But he also being the Devine Cannot, He etched every moment of your existence, With His own hand... Haifiz

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Koushi View Post
    When the walls fell

    Gassho,
    Koushi
    ST
    Sokath, his eyes uncovered.

    Gassho


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    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).

  27. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by Jakuden View Post
    Sokath, his eyes uncovered.
    Was going to reference this one. Certainly the most "Zen."

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Jakuden View Post
    Sokath, his eyes uncovered.

    Gassho


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    A rather dedicated Trekkie though I am, I had to look this up.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/entertai...s-fell/372107/

    Actually, this description explains one of the main reasons that many Zen Koans seem so hard ...

    FIRST OFFICER: Darmok? Rai and Jiri at Lungha.

    DATHON (shrugs): Shaka. When the walls fell …

    FIRST OFFICER: Zima at Anzo. Zima and Bakor.

    DATHON (firm) Darkmok at Tanagra.

    FIRST OFFICER: Shaka! (indicating situation) Mirab, his sails unfurled.

    DATHON: Darmok.

    ...

    Shaka, when the walls fell is a likeness of failure for the Children of Tama. ...

    Picard calls it metaphor, and Troi calls it image. For the Federation crew, the Tamarians cite examples that guide their understanding of and approach to the various problems they encounter on a day-to-day basis: as Picard puts it, by citing “a situation similar to this one.” Science fiction often plays with alternate methods of linguistic understanding, and this is familiar territory: The alien is incomprehensible, but in a way that can be overcome through reason and technology.
    Gassho, J

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  29. #29

    Missing references, missing communication

    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    A rather dedicated Trekkie though I am, I had to look this up.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/entertai...s-fell/372107/

    Actually, this description explains one of the main reasons that many Zen Koans seem so hard ...



    Gassho, J

    STLah
    Thanks for the Star Wars link, not that I understood the conversation there either. I am new to this site and not a Trekkie; therefore the references to Sokath, Darmok and Jalad fell on deaf ears.
    I mistakenly thought they were terms from Hindu cosmology, like Shinjen or nebutsu that I have yet to learn.

    Gassho, Hedy

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Hedy View Post
    Thanks for the Star Wars link, not that I understood the conversation there either. I am new to this site and not a Trekkie; therefore the references to Sokath, Darmok and Jalad fell on deaf ears.
    I mistakenly thought they were terms from Hindu cosmology, like Shinjen or nebutsu that I have yet to learn.

    Gassho, Hedy
    Um the first grave precept, also called the Treeleaf Prime Directive, is utter devotion to Star Trek!! (not the new stuff either) hahaha

    gassho

    risho
    -stlah

  31. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    A rather dedicated Trekkie though I am, I had to look this up.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/entertai...s-fell/372107/

    Actually, this description explains one of the main reasons that many Zen Koans seem so hard ...



    Gassho, J

    STLah
    Yes this is quite a parallel to Koan study isn't it? Leave it to Star Trek.

    This episode is so revered by ST fans that they always play it at conventions. Along with the Inner Light, another episode that I think of often in relation to Impermanence.

    Gassho,
    Jakuden
    SatToday/LAH
    Last edited by Jakuden; Yesterday at 08:23 PM.
    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).

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