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Thread: Moral Dilemma

  1. #1

    Moral Dilemma

    I'm in the midst of a moral dilemma.

    I've been planning to do Zazen, before going to work, but today is the opening of the NCAA football season, to make matters worse I've found a broadcast of the Ohio State game on the radio. Zazen or Buckeye football, I'm torn? Can I sit Zazen while listening to a football game? Most likely not, ah the sacrifices we must make in order to walk the path.

  2. #2
    If you could sit down and watch the game with non-thought - without attachment or judgement, it would be zazen, but I reckon that's impossible :lol:

  3. #3


    Hello Gregor:
    I guess I'd call it a 'dilemma,' rather than a 'moral dilemma' you find yourself in.
    The closest I've come to zazen and sports are times when I've come across a hockey game (in person or via TV) in which I have not a shred of vested interest in either team. It's actually very close to what Bruce (hello and welcome!) described above. I must say, it is very odd to watch hockey in a state of equanimity. It is my only sports interest (I stumbled across it rather late in life--47) and I have complete and utter passion for it (for a whole year, every night, as I closed my eyes--there before me was the empty white rink with the blue and red lines, the red circles, and the sounds of skates on the ice--yup, I got bit by the bug real added such a new dimension to my emotional world for almost 10 years now!).

    It is very different (almost 'Twilight Zone-ish) to watch a sport you passionately love with this state of detachment and no desired outcome. Others around me really find it odd that I break into cheers no matter which side gets the biscuit in the basket, I have to admit, such watching is a very different activity, which I can just as easily walk away from as stay... (sometimes though, with a game already underway, I'll check the scoreboard, and root for the underdog--because equaniminous watching just doesn't give you those great highs and lows that only 'your' team's win or loss can give you!!!)

    So, to you and your dilemma, Gregor, good luck!


  4. #4
    Hi Greg,

    We are diligent in our Zen Practice around here ... not rigid. We are careful and consistent, but not inflexible.

    Unless one is in Sesshin, or some other particular period of retreat, training or personal commitment, I would allow oneself some slack. For sports, weddings, funerals or even sleeping in late on Sundays.

    That doesn't mean, however, that you should forget to sit after the football game is over! ;-)

    Thus, I hereby grant you a special dispensation and absolution from your dilemma. You are relieved of your Karma. Go Buckeyes!

    Gassho, Jundo

  5. #5

    Thanks for the absolution of my sins. Luckily by the time I finished my Pre-Zazen stretching/Yoga the Buckeyes were trouncing the opposition and I just sat without delay. I'll save the absolution for the Michigan game.

    Oh and thanks for the "Go Buckeyes!", I appreciate that from a Duke man, I fought many a gruesome duel against the Blue Devils, when I was on the Ohio State varsity fencing team.

    So I'll return the honor with. . .

    Go Blue Devils!

    - Greg

  6. #6
    Member Martin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Wherever the next mediation is. Every now and then I make it back to Norfolk, England.
    Well, several years following my local football / soccer team (Norwich City - yet another defeat snatched from the jaws of victory at the weekend!) has convinced me beyond any doubt that life is dukkha.


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