1. Hmmm . . .
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    28 Mar '06 23:49
    Quite simply, the best short Zen “homily” that I’ve come across—

    (http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~rhegel/EAS224%20Page/images/web%20material/dropping_ashes_on_the_buddha.htm)

    Deep in the mountains, the great temple bell is struck. You hear it reverberating in the morning air, and all thoughts disappear from your mind. There is nothing that is you; there is nothing that is not you. There is only the sound of the bell, filling the whole universe.

    Springtime comes. You see the flowers blossoming, the butterflies flitting about; you hear the birds singing, you breathe in the warm weather. And your mind is only springtime. It is nothing at all.

    You visit Niagara and take a boat to the bottom of the Falls. The downpouring of the water is in front of you and around you and inside you, and suddenly you are shouting: YAAAAAA!

    In all these experiences, outside and inside have become one. This is Zen mind.

    Original nature has no opposites. Speech and words are not necessary. Without thinking, all things are exactly as they are. The truth is just like this.

    Then why do we use words? Why have we made this book?*

    According to Oriental medicine, when you have a hot sickness you should take hot medicine. Most people are very attached to words and speech. So we cure this sickness with word-and-speech medicine.

    Most people have a deluded view of the world. They don't see it as it is; they don't understand the truth. What is good, what is bad? Who makes good, who makes bad? They cling to their opinions with all their might. But everybody's opinion is different. How can you say that your opinion is correct and somebody else's is wrong?
    This is delusion.

    If you want to understand the truth, you must let go of your situation, your condition, and all your opinions. Then your mind will be before thinking. "Before thinking" is clear mind. Clear mind has no inside and no outside. It is just like this. "Just like this" is the truth.

    An eminent teacher said,

    “If you want to pass through this gate,
    do not give rise to thinking.”

    This means that if you are thinking, you can't understand Zen. If you keep the mind that is before thinking, this
    is Zen mind.

    So another Zen Master said,

    “Everything the Buddha taught
    was only to correct your thinking.
    If already you have cut off thinking,
    what good are the Buddha's words?”

    The Heart Sutra says, "Form is emptiness, emptiness is form."** This means, " no form, no emptiness." But the true meaning of "no form, no emptiness" is, "form is form, emptiness is emptiness."

    If you are thinking, you won't understand these words. If you are not thinking, "just like this" is Buddha-nature. What is Buddha-nature?

    Deep in the mountains, the great temple bell is struck.

    The truth is just like this—

    —Seung Sahn Roshi (Korean Zen master); italics and bolds are mine.

    * Dropping Ashes on the Buddha

    ** I say simply, The ground of the form-making mind is emptiness.
  2. Joined
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    29 Mar '06 01:54
    zen has no place in this forum! this is for dogmatic, fundamentalist psuedo-scientific christianity!
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    29 Mar '06 03:13
    Originally posted by nomind
    zen has no place in this forum! this is for dogmatic, fundamentalist psuedo-scientific christianity!
    Zat was Zen. Zis is Tao. 😡 Expect miracles.
  4. Hmmm . . .
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    29 Mar '06 03:34
    Originally posted by widget
    Zat was Zen. Zis is Tao. 😡 Expect miracles.
    😡
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    29 Mar '06 03:40
    Originally posted by vistesd
    😡
    The student Tokusan used to come to the master Ryutan in the evenings to talk and to listen. One night it was very late before he was finished asking questions.

    "Why don't you go to bed?" asked Ryutan.

    Tokusan bowed, and lifted the screen to go out. "The hall is very dark," he said.

    "Here, take this candle," said Ryutan, lighting one for the student.

    Tokusan reached out his hand, and took the candle.

    Ryutan leaned forward, and blew it out. πŸ˜›
  6. Standard membergollumprawn
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    29 Mar '06 04:001 edit
    Originally posted by vistesd
    Quite simply, the best short Zen “homily” that I’ve come across—

    (http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~rhegel/EAS224%20Page/images/web%20material/dropping_ashes_on_the_buddha.htm)

    Deep in the mountains, the great temple bell is struck. You hear it reverberating in the morning air, and all thoughts disappear from your mind. There is nothing that is you; there i a[/i]

    ** I say simply, The ground of the form-making mind is emptiness.
    huh
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    29 Mar '06 04:012 edits
    Originally posted by gollumprawn
    huh
    ..... ......

    (Be the blanks that need filling in ...)
  8. Standard membergollumprawn
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    29 Mar '06 04:031 edit
    Originally posted by widget
    ..... ......

    ([b]Be
    the blanks that need filling in ...)[/b]
    ????
  9. Hmmm . . .
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    29 Mar '06 05:12
    Originally posted by gollumprawn
    huh
    Well, “huh” is a pretty broad question. πŸ˜‰

    Zen is about experience. Zen-talk points to experience, but is not a substitute. If your mind is divided, thinking about work while eating your lunch, say, then you are missing the fullness and richness—the “just like this”—of the experience of life.

    Because “the map is not the territory,” Zen masters tend to use paradoxical statements, questions or stories (like the one widget gave), rather than description. The three main Zen practices are:

    (1) Mindfulness as you go about your daily round: really tasting the food, really listening to the music, etc.

    (2) Zazen, meditation practice, which has a number of variations, perhaps the simplest one being what Alan Watts called “just grooving with reality,” without thinking about it.

    (3) Koans, which are riddles or paradoxical statements which cannot be “solved” by the discursive mind; any thinking solution is just another thought about it. Working on a koan involves letting it open you to an experience or insight into reality without the intervening thoughts and words and images that our minds tend to continually conjure up.

    A very simple (“westernized” ) koan might be:

    Behind the makings of my mind,
    Before all images, thoughts or words—

    What?

    There’s nothing wrong with thinking; that would be silly. If you want to think, just think and pay attention to your thoughts. As Nakagawa Soen roshi said: “There is really no such thing as empty mind, only present mind.” But present means present (aware) where you want it to be present, without distraction...

    In Seung Sahn’s one example, when you are really present, there is not (1) you, plus (2) the experience of Niagara Falls—there is just “having the experience of Niagara Falls.” Yaaaa! It is only when you think about it that you separate your “self” from the experience (“Quick, get it on videotape!” ).
  10. Hmmm . . .
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    29 Mar '06 05:12
    Originally posted by widget
    ..... ......

    ([b]Be
    the blanks that need filling in ...)[/b]
    πŸ™‚
  11. Standard memberBosse de Nage
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    29 Mar '06 07:12
    Originally posted by widget
    Zat was Zen. Zis is Tao. 😡 Expect miracles.
    Here, have a tissue to blow your nose.
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    29 Mar '06 12:16
    Originally posted by vistesd
    Well, “huh” is a pretty broad question. πŸ˜‰

    Zen is about experience. Zen-talk points to experience, but is not a substitute. If your mind is divided, thinking about work while eating your lunch, say, then you are missing the fullness and richness—the “just like this”—of the experience of life.

    Because “the map is not the territory,” Zen masters tend ...[text shortened]... ink about it that you separate your “self” from the experience (“Quick, get it on videotape!” ).
    Yes, the essential Zen experience points toward two "things" -- 1. the lack of inherent existence of any objective phenomena, and 2. the lack of inherent existence of the self. Seen together, the result is a "luminous emptiness" (*shunyata* in Sanskrit). In Zen, this is usually called "satori", or the breakthrough into enlightenment. A satori in and of itself, however, is not the end of the path, but rather an important signpost on the way. Most committed Zen practitioners have a number of satoris in their life.

    I like the way the Tibetan Buddhists use the conceptual mind to point toward emptiness. A neat example is as follows...

    We have the idea of "the body". But can the body be truly located? What is the body?

    If we examine the matter, we find that the body is composed of parts -- legs, arms, etc. None of these parts is, in itself, "the body". So the entire body is comprised of non-body elements.

    Now, can a group of non-body elements make a body? That would seem to be absurd. For example, 5 cows do not make a horse.

    So what exactly is "the body"? Clearly, it's an abstraction, a concept only.

    Similarly, let us look for our "hand". What do we find? A set of fingers, bones, skin, etc. That is, a grouping of non-hand elements -- none of which can be said to be a "hand". And a collection of non-hand elements cannot logically make a "hand", anymore than 5 pigs can make a tree.

    So again, this idea of "hand" is purely an abstraction, a convenient conceptual label.

    By why stop at the hand? Focus on any objective phenomena, and you are led to the same conclusion -- everything exists only as an appearance of a collection of components (down to subatomic levels), that is in turn conceptualized. Nothing exists inherently in itself, independent of anything else.

    Same happens when we turn this reasoning back upon the self. Where is the "I"? As we examine ourselves, we see a collection of many elements -- moods, feelings, thoughts, memories. But we cannot say that our anger is "me", or our fear, or "I am this memory, but not that one," etc. So clearly, we can find no definable distinct entity inside that is "I".

    And so, "I" is yet another conceptual lable, a convenient abstraction, but not existing inherently in itself.

    That is the intellectual grasp of emptiness.

    The experiential grasp of it is entered into via the Zazen and koan practices that Vistesd mentioned. Also via certain Tibetan practices like shamatha, or Dzogchen ati yoga, etc.

    As the non-existence of the self is glimpsed, fear tends to diminish and peace arises, because we begin to realize that all problems in our lives are related to the idea that something is wrong with ourself, or that our self needs to get more things, become more, etc.

    Similarly, to see into the "emptiness" of reality is to see beyond the illusion that lead to unhappiness, being related to our craving and grasping and clinging to elements of so-called objective reality. In short, our attachments.

    Emptiness, by the way, doesn't mean that nothing exists. It simply means that nothing exists inherently and independently from anything else. In other words, all is One. It's only the phantom appearance of a separate self within us that in turn projects the phantom appearance of a divided and disconnected universe out there.
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    29 Mar '06 12:43
    There is no truth. Everything is permitted. This is the truth. πŸ™„

    πŸ˜€ Eternity fears nothing. Understanding that frees fools from belief.

    This is the last day of your life. 😡 Die gracefully. Let yourself become who you really are.

    Easily cornered by words, meaning sleeps until the mind is distracted by illusion. πŸ˜› There it goes, now!
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    29 Mar '06 13:22
    Originally posted by Metamorphosis
    As the non-existence of the self is glimpsed, fear tends to diminish and peace arises, because we begin to realize that all problems in our lives are related to the idea that something is wrong with ourself, or that our self needs to get more things, become more, etc.

    Similarly, to see into the "emptiness" of reality is to see beyond the illusion t ...[text shortened]... grasping and clinging to elements of so-called objective reality. In short, our attachments.
    MySELF might not be much, but its all I have...πŸ˜€
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    29 Mar '06 13:30
    Originally posted by JadeMantis
    MySELF might not be much, but its all I have...πŸ˜€
    YourSELF is the wall that you've built to keep the world out. πŸ˜‰ So many bricks, each one cemented into place by illusion. πŸ˜• Eventually, of course, you can't see anything beyond that wall. 😞 Safe, now?

    Despite this precaution, you, too, will die. 😲 You're dying already. Relax. Live in this moment πŸ˜‰
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