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Thread: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

  1. #1

    Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Dear All,

    I have asked Chugai to take a breather and break from here. I hope he comes back. I had to temporarily suspend his account because he broke a specific promise to me to (1) stop the shotgun approach of flooding the Forum with posts (I asked him to limit himself to a number of posts a day that he thought he really really needed to say) and (2) to stop the "baseball bat over the head" approach with many of his posts, often containing violent, bloody pictures and content.

    I explained that there is a time to be "in your face" with folks, wake them up with a bat over the head and an electric shock. However, if one just does that day in and day out, it also misses something. One ends up with a very aggressive, chaotic atmosphere bringing out ugliness in people, unfortunately as found too many places in the world and on the internet these days. I compared it to the following blunt image:

    If a fellow came into a Zen group and, to stir things up, threw a bucket of animal blood or feces on the floor and some of the sitters, I would approve perhaps ... if he did it once, maybe once in awhile. This Practice holds all the beauty and ugliness of the world, no problem ... point taken.

    However, if he came in every day and tossed a bucket of blood and feces on the floor, I might ask him to take it outside. If he refused, I might ask him to take a breather, and I might ask him to also know the beauty in bringing flowers and incense. Peace and serenity is to be valued too. I also like to sit Zazen in disturbing places, such as garbage dumps, crematoriums or scenes of violence. However, Dogen and others advised us to sit most of the time in a clean, peaceful, friendly, "not too hot not too cold" environment with flowers and incense facilitating to Zazen ... and even if sometimes (no problem too!) we sit squarely in a puddle of blood and pooh!

    I told Chugai he is always welcome back (as soon as he leaves the shotgun postings, baseball bat and bucket of blood at the door). I told him he can always write me, and I am always available to chat. I hope we see him back soon. I can count the number of times this has happened in Treeleaf's 5 year history on about one hand ... but sometimes it happens.

    Finally, Chugai has assured me that he is actually in pretty good physical health despite some misunderstanding on that point, and that this is not related to anything like that. I was happy to hear that too.

    Gassho, Jundo

  2. #2

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    He didn't understand things in that way at all. He thinks it's permanent. He wouldn't hear you, or me. I hope he does in time.

    I feel betrayed...he wasn't like this in ango when he was my partner. He doesn't even get that there was a "sudden change" in him. Alien kidnapping...?

    So much good could have come from Treeleafers being geographically near each other...sitting group, or what have you...but that's not going to happen. I guess I need to listen to Alan's words about the "pursuit of happiness" being false, and Fugen's words about "if OOOOOONLY I had this, I would be happy...if OOOOOOONLY I had that..."


  3. #3

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Jundo - it can't be easy to have to ask a member to leave/take a breather for a while - but I feel it's important to the integrity of the group that you sometimes take a stand - else it feels like anything goes.

    But I also feel we as a group need to take some responsibility by not 'feeding' a difficult situation.

    When there is a problem with postings it tends to become clear pretty early on. I gave up reading Chugai's posts. In the one video I watched it was clear that he wasn't too worried about his physical health - all was going well. It was also clear that Chugai thought that any grumblings about his posts were not really justified.

    I did feel the situation was being fed by members keep replying - sometimes making light of the content - and not giving attention to those individuals who were clearly disturbed/worried/upset by the postings. That aspect felt a bit uncaring.

    Anyway - I wish Chugai well - and whatever brought 'the change' about I hope he is able to work it through.



  4. #4

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Sometime Life take strange turns, or so it seems to me. I believe its good to let Chugai write, even a lot, when there is a need in him; and I believe its good to put a stop to that as Jundo just did! Actually I am concerned about Chugai, just like Eika expressed in another thread, and I would be more than happy to get Chugai back here soon. Also I'm sure other will agree that Chugai is always welcome to sit with us at the zendo (google+ hangout).

  5. #5

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Because I don't automatically follow links or videos posted in a thread unless there some interesting discussion or special interest on my part, I missed a lot of the controversy. Chugai, I appreciate your contributions here and hope to see you soon. Even Howard Stern had to tone it down to stay on the air

  6. #6

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Quote Originally Posted by willow
    I did feel the situation was being fed by members keep replying - sometimes making light of the content - and not giving attention to those individuals who were clearly disturbed/worried/upset by the postings. That aspect felt a bit uncaring.
    That's kind of why I've stayed out of all this. I don't exactly know what's going on with Chugai--if it's not his physical situation, then . . . ?--but I have been concerned about him.

    If you're reading this, Chugai, I wish you well, and hope you keep in touch with Jundo. I'd like to see you back here when you're ready.

    Take care,


  7. #7

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Quote Originally Posted by willow
    But I also feel we as a group need to take some responsibility by not 'feeding' a difficult situation.

    I did feel the situation was being fed by members keep replying - sometimes making light of the content - and not giving attention to those individuals who were clearly disturbed/worried/upset by the postings. That aspect felt a bit uncaring.
    Until it crosses a certain line, I feel people can respond to what they like. If I were to rack my brains for whoever might be feeling upset by a post I am about to respond to, I probably wouldn't respond at all.

  8. #8

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Knowing Chugai for a while now through Facebook, I can say that the frequency of posts here are his standard way of posting on Facebook. I've wondered more than once to myself if he ever sleeps!

    However, I did not comment on Chugai's posts because they didn't interest me in my place of practice. Inasmuch as I lately tend to gloss over discussions that are more soft and social in nature. I actually do read them all, but normally have been reserving my contributions to topics I feel have an impact to practice.

    I really didn't have any opinion about his posts...hence my silence. But I think the anomaly of the Facebook style machine gun fire probably was a bit out of character for his normal interaction here.

    I hope we all take the opportunity to allow this topic to somehow deepen our practice. I know for myself it has made me reflect on my own likes and dislikes in our forum and challenged me to understand why.

    Thank you all.


    Sent from my SGH-I897 using Tapatalk 2

  9. #9

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Amelia wrote

    Until it crosses a certain line, I feel people can respond to what they like. If I were to rack my brains for whoever might be feeling upset by a post I am about to respond to, I probably wouldn't respond at all.

    I don't disagree with that Amelia. I maybe didn't express myself very well - didn't mean to imply that replies should be censored. There were just a couple of times when I felt people were upset because they weren't being heard - or taken seriously.

    But Doken is right - I need to reflect on my own inner responses - likes/dislikes, all good practice.



  10. #10

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    I just saw this issue raised on our Treeleaf FB page and felt the need to comment, but here, where I don't feel as though I need to limit the number of words I use.

    I know I am a newcomer to this sangha and to the dynamic found within, and have personally not delved into the "controversy" of this member's posts, and therefore, my not be entitled to an opinion on the matter, but what I have to say may shed some light on what may have been behind his "outbursts."

    For the past 6 weeks, since I returned home from a month-long visit with my kids and grandkids, I have been angry and resentful with my husband. We'd start fighting pretty well from the moment we'd get up in the morning until we'd go to bed. And it wouldn't be about big things, either... lots of times I'd pick a fight with him over semantics and it would go on for hours until neither of us would speak to the other.

    Everything came to a head a week ago last Wednesday, when I suddenly started getting chest pains and was having trouble breathing. Not wanting to cause a fuss, and since the clinic wasn't open at 6pm in my little village, I chose to wait until the following day to do anything about it. As you may imagine, the night was spent in quite a bit of stress over the situation, which aggravated the physical symptoms, and around and around it went. I slept a good 6 hours, though, and for the first 5 - 10 minutes of the day, I thought I was over it and was going to have a good day... until it started creeping up on me again.

    We went to the clinic and I spent the 20 or so minutes wait pacing the waiting room, feeling as though someone had their hands wrapped around my neck and pressing their thumbs into the hollow in my throat. I did not feel as though I could get enough oxygen to my brain, but sitting wasn't helping not being able to breathe and I would only stop pacing and sit when I was too dizzy to go on any longer.

    Time to go in to see the doctor, and when I started to tell him about my symptoms, he started to ask me about suicidal thoughts, depression and so on. He checked the O2 level in my blood, took my blood pressure (way high for me!) and listened around my chest with a stethoscope, but in the end, simply wrote it off as being a panic attack, and prescribed both an anti-anxiety and an anti-psychotic drug for me to take. He did requisition blood work, but felt that it could wait a full week until the next laboratory date in our clinic.

    Needless to say, feeling once again that I had not been listened to, or believed, about how I was physically feeling, I was furious that he thought I was crazy, but filled the prescriptions and took the pills simply because I couldn't stand not being able to take a decent breath and there were no other options at the time. I took the anti-anxiety pills for a full week until the day I got the bloodwork done last Thursday, but could not take the anti-psychotic because the affects on me while I was sleeping freaked my husband out so badly that he did not sleep at all that night, just to keep an eye on me and make sure I didn't die in my sleep.

    So Friday, at 4:21pm, while hubby and I are at the store and the one and only time I don't have my cell with me, the doctor calls and leaves a message with my test results: diabetes, high cholesterol and, in his words, a whole host of other bad things that we need to discuss. One problem... it's a long weekend here in Canada and there's no way I can talk to him before Tuesday morning.

    Now here's the point of the whole matter: I am normally a pretty positive person, not prone to resentment or anger, nor prolonging the pain of discontentment. Once I was aware that my blood sugar was the cause of my so-called mental issues, I took steps to regulate it by diet and am nearly back to my happy self, according to my husband who hasn't heard me laugh since I got home from my visit. I'm also a pretty self-aware person and while I'm nowhere near perfect, I am very diligent in monitoring my mental state, and there was simply nothing there that could have caused these supposed anxiety attacks.

    Physical ailments can certainly present as emotional distress, which can be expressed in unwelcome ways, and this may in fact also be true for this sangha member. It saddens me that he may have been judged for something that he was in no way in control of, and for which I feel he should have been shown compassion and lovingkindness, consistently and constantly, until such time that all avenues of investigation could be addressed. This is not a criticism of how it was handled, simply another and personal viewpoint, based on what has happened to me lately.

    And on a final and personal note, I did not explain this in order to solicit pity or compassion for my current situation... it is what it is, and I have no fear of death, since I am no longer a seeker and have found my Path, and know beyond a shadow of a doubt that death is never the end, but simply another revolution of the wheel.



  11. #11

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...


    Lisa, we are here for you.


  12. #12

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Thank you, Fugen!

    At the risk of sounding arrogant, I know you are here for me... I know I am home, the first real home I've ever really known, where I know I will be accepted and loved for where I am and who I am and what I am, a perfectly imperfect human being, and that makes my heart want to burst out of my chest with gratitude and joy! : )

    I love how this is a real family, where people can have differing views and opinions without there being judgment or resentment over those opinions. That being said, though, if I have said something that offended, I would like to know. I can't promise that I will apologize for it, but I will try to clarify the issue if need be, and if the clarification doesn't muddy the waters more! : )

    In deep respect,


  13. #13

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    I have not followed the situation addressed in the OP, but would like to say something about how this medium can effect how we can come across at times. It is a bit like how we are when behind the wheel, compared to on foot. People say... I can say snarky things I would never say on the sidewalk. Although this forum is unique because it really is part of a Sangha... the structure can channel communication into post and counter-post. All the little nuances of face to face presence are not there. It takes time to get sense of people... something that may sound aggressive may be coming from somewhere else completely. This is not a comment on moderating decisions or anything like that at all... it is just pointing to ambiguities and challenges of this new medium... this new frontier of Sangha.

  14. #14

    Re: Jundo: Having Chugai take a breather ...

    Thank you, Lisa, for your very personal and excellent teaching on the "mind theatre" at work, and how we may experience thoughts and emotions that feel so real at the time. I am so glad that you have a handle on managing this.

    You also make an important point: In Buddhism, we try to avoid to blame people for their actions. Even in the most extreme cases, such as someone who does violence to a child or creates a holocaust involving millions, we try to see the harm doer as him/herself a victim of his inner pain, lack ... and both the person doing the violent act and the recipient of violence are victims of greed, anger and ignorance. That does not mean that we just ignore the act, by the way. Nor does it not mean that we do not remove the person from society, or take police or military action to protect society from threats even perhaps to the extent of taking the harm doer's life to prevent other deaths (and thus ultimately to save lives). Buddhism also recognizes personal responsibility, and that in most cases (not always) we have a choice in how we behave. However, we see anyone ... even the world's most harmful ... as ultimately victims of the bad factors of greed, anger and ignorance, or perhaps of environmental, social and biological factors beyond their control. We avoid to see any "bad people", only bad acts.

    That is true in any case, even with the small annoyances such as the person who cuts us off in traffic or in front of us in the supermarket line, anyone.

    Gassho, J

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