Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

reiun
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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by reiun » Wed May 27, 2020 5:36 am

LastLegend wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 11:49 pm
That’s not it: I am told after people transcended, there consciousness needs to be turned into wisdom to freely distinguish without problem because the Buddha made distinction when he talks about anything. Skandhas are still there maybe clean skandhas? I don’t know. A few Siddhis will develop as well. Probably able to hear people’s thoughts and suffering of sentient beings to point where it’s unbearable that function needed to be closed because only Buddhas like Avalokitesvara can bear to hear suffering. It’s very ordinary in human body just like us. But wisdom goes far because of working to benefit sentient beings. Motivated by compassion, stopping wild fire in Australia (raining came) with one thought (in this enlightened nature of no self and no dharma: known as ‘the Buddha’s land.’). The power here is amazing. But until the finest traces of consciousness as dust motes is transcended, this enlightened nature isn’t unveiled.

Take it or leave!
OK," leave"! Because it makes no sense.

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LastLegend
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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by LastLegend » Wed May 27, 2020 7:34 am

Of course it doesn’t to most people.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

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Dan74
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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by Dan74 » Wed May 27, 2020 9:40 am

Queequeg wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 5:23 pm
Admittedly, I'm not familiar with Zen and Zen-speak, or what I take to be Zen-speak from what I see in forums like this.

Why the hangup with conventional designations? If you understand that designations are conventional, then what's the need in speaking cryptically about dharma as though its some cute game? I don't see what the problem is with seeking articulate and meaningful explanations of Buddhadharma without resorting to hazy double-speak, puns, and other such nonsensical conventions to undermine subjects being discussed.

Maybe I just need to see myself out.
I agree that as you describe it, there is no point.

I can only speak for myself and my experience has been that a lot of energy and effort are wasted building up conceptual pictures of Nirvana, Zen and Zen masters. All a monumental distraction from practicing here-and-now. So while I totally dig getting the theory straight in every other field, when it comes to the Dharma, it seems to me that what one needs is some basics, like Dependent Origination, Buddhanature, the importance of ethics and the Paramitas and basic practice instructions. Plus contact with a genuine teacher who can not only give what is appropriate for you, but embody realisation, etc.

What I've experienced both in myself and online is people spending years worrying about their gear and reading guidebooks but never really making more that a few fretful steps on the journey. Not sure if this applies to the OP, maybe I am just feeling jaded.

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by Wayfarer » Wed May 27, 2020 10:02 am

My recent contact with Jodo Shinsu has been salutary. In their view, the path of self-effort (which includes many traditional schools of Buddhism) whilst perfectly sound, is also only really feasible to a very small number of aspirants. As Harold Stewart (an Australian poet who lived the last part of his life in Kyoto) put it:
Those few who took the trouble to visit Japan and begin the practice of Zen under a recognized Zen master or who joined the monastic Order soon discovered that it was a very different matter from what the popularizing literature had led them to believe. They found that in the traditional Zen monastery zazen is never divorced from the daily routine of accessory disciplines. To attenuate and finally dissolve the illusion of the individual ego, it is always supplemented by manual work to clean the temple, maintain the garden, and grow food in the grounds; by strenuous study with attendance at discourses on the sutras and commentaries; and by periodical interviews with the roshi, to test spiritual progress. Acolytes are expected to develop indifference to the discomforts of heat and cold on a most frugal vegetarian diet and to abstain from self-indulgence in sleep and sex, intoxicating drinks and addictive drugs. Altogether Zen demands an ability to participate in a communal life as regimented and lacking in privacy as the army.
In my case, I have long felt that I lack the self-discipline to practice this kind of discipline with any degree of rigour. That’s why I started attending Jodo Shinsu services (before being interrupted by the pandemic).

Still working through all of this.
'Only practice with no gaining idea' ~ Suzuki Roshi

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by Astus » Wed May 27, 2020 11:32 am

Wayfarer wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 10:02 am
Those few who took the trouble to visit Japan and begin the practice of Zen under a recognized Zen master or who joined the monastic Order soon discovered that it was a very different matter from what the popularizing literature had led them to believe. ... Altogether Zen demands an ability to participate in a communal life as regimented and lacking in privacy as the army.
I lack the self-discipline to practice this kind of discipline with any degree of rigour.
In Buddhism there are monastics and there are "householders". The quote restricts Zen to monastic practice. So, we can ask for instance: was Peixiu - an educated nobleman working in several high government positions - a genuine Chan practitioner, or not really? Guifeng Zongmi wrote this about him: 'I had become aware that he had entered the Buddha’s gateway and arrived at the mind state of the Buddha. ... he is an emissary of the Buddha engaged in carrying on the Buddha’s work.' Was he an exception?
I'm not saying you shouldn't go for Shinshu, don't get me wrong please. It's just that I don't see Zen as an exclusively monastic teaching (and then there are also differences between what monastic life is like, but that's another topic).
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.


1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"

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Wayfarer
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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by Wayfarer » Wed May 27, 2020 12:09 pm

I certainly feel it can be a lay practice, but a lot does depend on the character of the practitioner, seems to me. Like a lot of people, I got drawn to Buddhism through popular books about Zen, but as a practical matter, it is a demanding path. Not at all like the kind of instantaneous realisation that it seemed.

A few years back, I gave some talks on Mahāyāna at a friend’s dharma centre. I know I am able to speak intelligently enough about the subject, but part of me felt a bit of a phoney standing up there. You have to walk the walk and I don’t feel I do that.
'Only practice with no gaining idea' ~ Suzuki Roshi

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by LastLegend » Wed May 27, 2020 2:40 pm

Wayfarer wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 10:02 am
My recent contact with Jodo Shinsu has been salutary. In their view, the path of self-effort (which includes many traditional schools of Buddhism) whilst perfectly sound, is also only really feasible to a very small number of aspirants. As Harold Stewart (an Australian poet who lived the last part of his life in Kyoto) put it:
Those few who took the trouble to visit Japan and begin the practice of Zen under a recognized Zen master or who joined the monastic Order soon discovered that it was a very different matter from what the popularizing literature had led them to believe. They found that in the traditional Zen monastery zazen is never divorced from the daily routine of accessory disciplines. To attenuate and finally dissolve the illusion of the individual ego, it is always supplemented by manual work to clean the temple, maintain the garden, and grow food in the grounds; by strenuous study with attendance at discourses on the sutras and commentaries; and by periodical interviews with the roshi, to test spiritual progress. Acolytes are expected to develop indifference to the discomforts of heat and cold on a most frugal vegetarian diet and to abstain from self-indulgence in sleep and sex, intoxicating drinks and addictive drugs. Altogether Zen demands an ability to participate in a communal life as regimented and lacking in privacy as the army.
In my case, I have long felt that I lack the self-discipline to practice this kind of discipline with any degree of rigour. That’s why I started attending Jodo Shinsu services (before being interrupted by the pandemic).

Still working through all of this.
Luckily, enlightened nature is in all of us it’s not confined to a sitting position. Needed strong conviction and aspirations (the seeds). It’s self reliant only people choose to be such but it never was never self-reliant. If it is only self-reliant, then vows of Buddhas are meaningless.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by PadmaVonSamba » Wed May 27, 2020 3:01 pm

npr wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 3:36 pm
Since the One-Mind is empty of intrinsic existence, what does it depend on ?

Thank you.
Aha! In that statement, the age-old trap that ensnares almost every Dharma student:

“What does it depend on?”

This is what happens, starting with the premise of something truly existent, and then afterwards, trying to dissect it to see what it’s made from. And the problem with that is, you can’t get the right answer if the question is wrong to begin with. You are assuming the existence of an “it” which is merely an abstract concept representing s multitude of events.

I think your question about “absolute” is best answers in the famous zen poem, On Believing In Mind:

In the higher realm of true Suchness
There is neither "self" nor "other":
When direct identification is sought,
We can only say, "Not two".

In being "not two" all is the same,
All that is is comprehended in it;
The wise in the ten quarters,
They all enter into this Absolute Reason.

This Absolute Reason is beyond time and space,
For it one instant is ten thousand years;
Whether we see it or not,
It is manifest everywhere in all the ten quarters.


•••
Last edited by PadmaVonSamba on Wed May 27, 2020 3:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by seeker242 » Wed May 27, 2020 3:03 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 5:23 pm
Admittedly, I'm not familiar with Zen and Zen-speak, or what I take to be Zen-speak from what I see in forums like this.

Why the hangup with conventional designations? If you understand that designations are conventional, then what's the need in speaking cryptically about dharma as though its some cute game? I don't see what the problem is with seeking articulate and meaningful explanations of Buddhadharma without resorting to hazy double-speak, puns, and other such nonsensical conventions to undermine subjects being discussed.

Maybe I just need to see myself out.

Probably because of stuff like this:

"Giving rise to thought is erroneous, and any speculation about it with our ordinary faculties is inapplicable, irrelevant and inaccurate." ~Huang-po, Chung-Ling Record

My teacher told me once that zen does not really do explanations, it does demonstrations. I would add that an explanation of the demonstration essentially defeats the purpose of the demonstration to begin with. And also one really can't get a proper demonstration from a book. A live teacher is needed, at least initially, for that.

:meditate:
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by Queequeg » Wed May 27, 2020 3:30 pm

I well understand using literary devices to undermine grasping. This is not unique to Zen and is found in many Mahayana sutras. The Vimalakirtinirdesa and Suramgama come to mind. I understand they have been influential in Zen traditions and its not a big leap to go from Vimalakirti's silence to various Zen associated conventions. These approaches have their applications.

There are also technical terms in Buddhism that are confused when poetic license is applied to turn it into a demonstration of emptiness, or whatever - a lot of the time it just looks like an egotistical demonstration of one's cleverness. I suspect the teachers who apply these methods effectively can also drop the character and explain teachings in straightforward conventional manners. It would seem that understanding is necessary to apply these methods.

And I have read Zen texts, and particularly enjoy poetry associated with the tradition, but that stuff is the real deal and the profound insights behind the words can often be readily discerned.

Its what I see it in forums like this, that is just not appealing to me, and I sense some people use the aesthetic to paper over their own tentative understandings. That makes me wonder, what benefit such elliptical language/thought is supposed to do for someone who doesn't yet actually have genuine insight? It just looks like word play.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

There are beings with little dust in their eyes who are falling away because they do not hear the Dhamma. There will be those who will understand the Dhamma.
-Ayacana Sutta

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by LastLegend » Wed May 27, 2020 3:33 pm

LastLegend wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 2:40 pm
Wayfarer wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 10:02 am
My recent contact with Jodo Shinsu has been salutary. In their view, the path of self-effort (which includes many traditional schools of Buddhism) whilst perfectly sound, is also only really feasible to a very small number of aspirants. As Harold Stewart (an Australian poet who lived the last part of his life in Kyoto) put it:
Those few who took the trouble to visit Japan and begin the practice of Zen under a recognized Zen master or who joined the monastic Order soon discovered that it was a very different matter from what the popularizing literature had led them to believe. They found that in the traditional Zen monastery zazen is never divorced from the daily routine of accessory disciplines. To attenuate and finally dissolve the illusion of the individual ego, it is always supplemented by manual work to clean the temple, maintain the garden, and grow food in the grounds; by strenuous study with attendance at discourses on the sutras and commentaries; and by periodical interviews with the roshi, to test spiritual progress. Acolytes are expected to develop indifference to the discomforts of heat and cold on a most frugal vegetarian diet and to abstain from self-indulgence in sleep and sex, intoxicating drinks and addictive drugs. Altogether Zen demands an ability to participate in a communal life as regimented and lacking in privacy as the army.
In my case, I have long felt that I lack the self-discipline to practice this kind of discipline with any degree of rigour. That’s why I started attending Jodo Shinsu services (before being interrupted by the pandemic).

Still working through all of this.
Luckily, enlightened nature is in all of us it’s not confined to a sitting position. Needed strong conviction and aspirations (the seeds). It’s self reliant only people choose to be such but it never was never self-reliant. If it is only self-reliant, then vows of Buddhas are meaningless.
However, one part we have to do is fully unveil that enlightened nature. The way Zen texts talk about sounds like there is a straight jump to all realms and Buddha lands, but it isn’t so wisdom needs to be developed. There are cases that people have fully unveiled to be unmistaken and clear of that enlightened nature, but they were ahead of themselves and expected more. They then abandoned their realization. The reason for this is because they had no direction to go further, so progress stopped here. A lot of things will be clear on their own due to wisdom. They know how to abandon this body/skandhas at will. Generally, there are a type of enlightened people who want to leave immediately.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by LastLegend » Wed May 27, 2020 3:36 pm

seeker242 wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 3:03 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 5:23 pm
Admittedly, I'm not familiar with Zen and Zen-speak, or what I take to be Zen-speak from what I see in forums like this.

Why the hangup with conventional designations? If you understand that designations are conventional, then what's the need in speaking cryptically about dharma as though its some cute game? I don't see what the problem is with seeking articulate and meaningful explanations of Buddhadharma without resorting to hazy double-speak, puns, and other such nonsensical conventions to undermine subjects being discussed.

Maybe I just need to see myself out.

Probably because of stuff like this:

"Giving rise to thought is erroneous, and any speculation about it with our ordinary faculties is inapplicable, irrelevant and inaccurate." ~Huang-po, Chung-Ling Record

My teacher told me once that zen does not really do explanations, it does demonstrations. I would add that an explanation of the demonstration essentially defeats the purpose of the demonstration to begin with. And also one really can't get a proper demonstration from a book. A live teacher is needed, at least initially, for that.

:meditate:
Unless the teacher is fully realized, it’s hardly the case now that no explanation works. We are in a modern era.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by LastLegend » Wed May 27, 2020 3:48 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 3:30 pm
I well understand using literary devices to undermine grasping. This is not unique to Zen and is found in many Mahayana sutras. The Vimalakirtinirdesa and Suramgama come to mind. I understand they have been influential in Zen traditions and its not a big leap to go from Vimalakirti's silence to various Zen associated conventions. These approaches have their applications.

There are also technical terms in Buddhism that are confused when poetic license is applied to turn it into a demonstration of emptiness, or whatever - a lot of the time it just looks like an egotistical demonstration of one's cleverness. I suspect the teachers who apply these methods effectively can also drop the character and explain teachings in straightforward conventional manners. It would seem that understanding is necessary to apply these methods.

And I have read Zen texts, and particularly enjoy poetry associated with the tradition, but that stuff is the real deal and the profound insights behind the words can often be readily discerned.

Its what I see it in forums like this, that is just not appealing to me, and I sense some people use the aesthetic to paper over their own tentative understandings. That makes me wonder, what benefit such elliptical language/thought is supposed to do for someone who doesn't yet actually have genuine insight? It just looks like word play.
I don’t contest that arrogance and self are involved, that’s the theme of samsara and old karma it’s just that there is a clear understanding it will come back to me.

Not all language is suitable for everyone. I personally don’t find Madhyamaka attractive. Also, it took me 10 years to understand the Flower Sermon. Understanding even with experience (it’s still a trap) doesn’t mean fully unveiled it. So are what so called insights.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by Queequeg » Wed May 27, 2020 4:15 pm

LastLegend wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 3:48 pm
Not all language is suitable for everyone. I personally don’t find Madhyamaka attractive. Also, it took me 10 years to understand the Flower Sermon. Understanding even with experience (it’s still a trap) doesn’t mean fully unveiled it. So are what so called insights.
Before Miles Davis made like Picasso, starting whole sub-genres with discrete experiments as he explored and deconstructed jazz, he was classically trained at Julliard. There's a vast difference between Captain Beefheart blowing on a saxophone (though Beefheart had his own genius) and Ornette Coleman.

Whatever floats your boat, but it seems immersing oneself in spontaneous word soups is not a particularly effective practice without a solid grasp of basics.

I may also just be a square and not get it.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

There are beings with little dust in their eyes who are falling away because they do not hear the Dhamma. There will be those who will understand the Dhamma.
-Ayacana Sutta

el gatito
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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by el gatito » Wed May 27, 2020 4:19 pm

Meido wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 9:03 pm
Anyway, the point of the whole 5 ranks framework is not to set up some kind of absolute (or to present a progressive ladder of realization, as is commonly thought), but to point out different ways or facets of seeing (jewel mirror samadhi, alternating samadhi of hen and sho, and so on) that come out from awakening, and the danger of setting up any as a state, position, or view within which one lingers. It is hardly, in other words, to posit some metaphysical absolute.
If the inquiry is really coming from within people's heart, then of course, they by no means will be satisfied by the reply given by the "Google/Wikipedia" brain-programming tandem (that I have posted earlier). They will truly and wholeheartedly investigate.

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by narhwal90 » Wed May 27, 2020 4:36 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 3:30 pm

There are also technical terms in Buddhism that are confused when poetic license is applied to turn it into a demonstration of emptiness, or whatever - a lot of the time it just looks like an egotistical demonstration of one's cleverness. I suspect the teachers who apply these methods effectively can also drop the character and explain teachings in straightforward conventional manners. It would seem that understanding is necessary to apply these methods.

And I have read Zen texts, and particularly enjoy poetry associated with the tradition, but that stuff is the real deal and the profound insights behind the words can often be readily discerned.

Its what I see it in forums like this, that is just not appealing to me, and I sense some people use the aesthetic to paper over their own tentative understandings. That makes me wonder, what benefit such elliptical language/thought is supposed to do for someone who doesn't yet actually have genuine insight? It just looks like word play.
I think egotistical demonstration and instruction are very close, perhaps dangerously so. The skill of the teacher in posing the device, selecting and then abandoning vs explaining is critical. Conventional explanations are not out of place either, perhaps even more common- at least with my guy.

Conversely I have no patience for the poetry. I read it when it arises in the texts, try to notice the imagery and keep my mind out of the way- but going through that stuff is like doing income taxes for me == work to get done.

Read alone, the devices look a lot like word play to me as well. Occasional glimmers of something maybe going on but nothing unveiled.

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by Meido » Wed May 27, 2020 4:50 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 3:30 pm
Its what I see it in forums like this, that is just not appealing to me, and I sense some people use the aesthetic to paper over their own tentative understandings. That makes me wonder, what benefit such elliptical language/thought is supposed to do for someone who doesn't yet actually have genuine insight? It just looks like word play.
Queequeg wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 4:15 pm
Whatever floats your boat, but it seems immersing oneself in spontaneous word soups is not a particularly effective practice without a solid grasp of basics.
Well, I share your annoyance.

The kind of Zen talk that we often see aped in online forums is the encounter dialogue between masters and their disciples that can be found in many texts. These were not originally word soup, and did not occur among people who lacked an understanding of basics.

But the problem obviously is not that we have an over-abundance of Zen masters using true living words in that manner. It is that there are people with little or no Zen practice experience who read such things, are attracted by a style seemingly of iconoclastic freedom and mysterious spontaneity, and adopt it as an affectation.

In other words, it is the over-enthusiastic (though often sincere) behavior of the dilettante. I have seen the same kind of thing with a friend who took refuge with a Tibetan teacher and started acting and dressing as he imagined Tibetans do. It's cute, in a way.

Personally I think that when that kind of thing pops up in forums it's best to slap it down quickly. If someone replies in a topic with Zen speak - answering "Mu!" or "Have a cup of tea!" in reply to straightforward discussion, for example- it's just off-topic. An online forum is not a dokusan room, and i personally do not come here to have sanzen (though certainly I do come to learn from folks who have a lot more knowledge than I).
It is relatively easy to accomplish the important matter of insight into one’s true nature, but uncommonly difficult to function freely and clearly [according to this understanding], in motion and in rest, in good and in adverse circumstances. Please make strenuous and vigorous efforts towards this end, otherwise all the teachings of Buddhas and patriarchs become mere empty words. - Torei

The Rinzai Zen Way: A Guide to Practice

Hidden Zen: Practices for Sudden Awakening and Embodied Realization

Korinji Rinzai Zen Monastery [臨済宗 • 祖的山光林禅寺] - http://www.korinji.org

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by Meido » Wed May 27, 2020 4:57 pm

el gatito wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 4:19 pm
If the inquiry is really coming from within people's heart, then of course, they by no means will be satisfied by the reply given by the "Google/Wikipedia" brain-programming tandem (that I have posted earlier). They will truly and wholeheartedly investigate.
Yes, that is the moment to seek out a teacher and enter into the mainstream of a practice lineage.
It is relatively easy to accomplish the important matter of insight into one’s true nature, but uncommonly difficult to function freely and clearly [according to this understanding], in motion and in rest, in good and in adverse circumstances. Please make strenuous and vigorous efforts towards this end, otherwise all the teachings of Buddhas and patriarchs become mere empty words. - Torei

The Rinzai Zen Way: A Guide to Practice

Hidden Zen: Practices for Sudden Awakening and Embodied Realization

Korinji Rinzai Zen Monastery [臨済宗 • 祖的山光林禅寺] - http://www.korinji.org

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by LastLegend » Wed May 27, 2020 5:06 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 4:15 pm
LastLegend wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 3:48 pm
Not all language is suitable for everyone. I personally don’t find Madhyamaka attractive. Also, it took me 10 years to understand the Flower Sermon. Understanding even with experience (it’s still a trap) doesn’t mean fully unveiled it. So are what so called insights.
Before Miles Davis made like Picasso, starting whole sub-genres with discrete experiments as he explored and deconstructed jazz, he was classically trained at Julliard. There's a vast difference between Captain Beefheart blowing on a saxophone (though Beefheart had his own genius) and Ornette Coleman.

Whatever floats your boat, but it seems immersing oneself in spontaneous word soups is not a particularly effective practice without a solid grasp of basics.

I may also just be a square and not get it.
I also don’t like poetry or word play and not like texts anymore I’ll pull a line here and there but generally no.

How I am supposed to tell you without being non-sensical that it also takes me 10 years to recognize what’s behind moving feet and hands (scratching)? But this is only recognition. There is passage in Blood Stream Sermon that talks about such movements of hands and feet.

Point taken. But,
if it’s the case that’s learning to crawl before I could I walk, then merits can be created with much virtues and behaviors, yet it might be worldly merits of samsara. The same question can be asked why don’t we drop samsara? Because it’s not a simple choice. What is clear is the choice will followed by karma.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

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Re: Zen’s stand regarding ‘The Absolute’

Post by LastLegend » Wed May 27, 2020 5:25 pm

Meido wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 4:50 pm

Well, I share your annoyance.

The kind of Zen talk that we often see aped in online forums is the encounter dialogue between masters and their disciples that can be found in many texts. These were not originally word soup, and did not occur among people who lacked an understanding of basics.
If I may erroneously take this as directing at me, your view is also a personal view.
But the problem obviously is not that we have an over-abundance of Zen masters using true living words in that manner. It is that there are people with little or no Zen practice experience who read such things, are attracted by a style seemingly of iconoclastic freedom and mysterious spontaneity, and adopt it as an affectation.
This a view of strict discipline and practice but it’s not shared by all Zen and it shouldn’t be because it means no hope for people without strict discipline and practice. I will stand strongly to strong convictions and aspirations.
In other words, it is the over-enthusiastic (though often sincere) behavior of the dilettante. I have seen the same kind of thing with a friend who took refuge with a Tibetan teacher and started acting and dressing as he imagined Tibetans do. It's cute, in a way.
It’s same assumption here that you make about all Zen practitioners that seem new agey.
Personally I think that when that kind of thing pops up in forums it's best to slap it down quickly. If someone replies in a topic with Zen speak - answering "Mu!" or "Have a cup of tea!" in reply to straightforward discussion, for example- it's just off-topic. An online forum is not a dokusan room, and i personally do not come here to have sanzen (though certainly I do come to learn from folks who have a lot more knowledge than I).
I would not promote any action as authoritative towards liberation. It could go wrong anytime even if it has good intention. I have my personal preferences as well.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

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