One is not irreversible until the 8th Bhumi http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhūmi_(Buddhism) which is the level corresponding to "nirvana". I don't think Nonin is denying anything, unless when folks use the term "Zen Buddhist Masters" they are saying that each of those masters is definitely a 8th-10th Bhumi Bodhisattvas or full Buddha. (and if they are saying that then that is probably a topic for another thread)Astus wrote:"We need to remember, however, that awakening is not a permanent event, that all of us, even those who have deeply awakened to our true nature and the nature of our relationship to the rest of the universe can fall into delusion in an instant and act badly, causing harm to ourselves and others."Matt J wrote:I don't see that at all. Nonin writes (in my opinion) controversial things at times but this article is not one of them.
Are you a part of a formal Zen tradition? There may be a disconnect between different teachings.
"The law of cause and effect governs all our actions. No one can escape it, even the Zen Buddhist master who foolishly thinks that he or she is beyond it."
The impossibility of becoming free from karma, from samsara, sounds to me like denying nirvana. Saying that one is never permanently liberated means that the chain of dependent origination cannot be broken.
Would you say that Nonin's Zen is a teaching that promises no freedom, unlike other forms of Buddhism?
Edit: having read through the article and comments, it appears Nonin is quite active in responding to comments being made. You could ask him directly about this.