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Thursday, August 26, 2010

No shortcut to Enlightenment

5th generation Chan Master Niutou Farong (594-651) writes in the Song of Mind,

"Clearly knowing
The net of view increases"

Chan Master Sheng Yen, interprets these lines as, "When we start practicing, we see things the way normal people do--mountains are mountains and rivers are rivers. After we are deep into the practice, mountains are no longer mountains, and rivers are no longer rivers. This will happen when you are practicing very single-mindedly, and people may even perceive you as a little foggy. At this stage you may not even recognize yourself in the mirror. When you finally attain enlightenment, you once again see that mountains are mountains and rivers are rivers." Song of Mind, Wisdom from the Zen Classic Xin Ming by Chan Master Cheng Yen, pg. 60.


For those of us who are interested in Mindfulness and Kids, especially teachers, we can sign up to Susan Kaiser Greenland's web site It's an extremely comprehensive site focused upon children and education, mostly in the U.S.

An interview of Joseph Goldstein is available on that site. WIKI states, Joseph Goldstein (born 1944) is one of the first American vipassana teachers (Fronsdal, 1998), co-founder of the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) with Jack Kornfield and Sharon Salzberg, contemporary author of numerous popular books on Buddhism, resident guiding teacher at IMS, and leader of retreats worldwide on insight (vipassana) and lovingkindness (metta) meditation.

While the majority of Goldstein's publications introduce Westerners to primarily Theravada concepts, practices and values, his 2002 work, "One Dharma", explored the creation of an integrated framework for the Theravada, Tibetan and Zen traditions.

Here is the interview of Joseph on the subject of mindfulness and the legal profession; and yes, we could substitute our occupation whatever it be, especially those amongst us who are in the therapeutic/helping professions. You do have to sign up to this site to see the interview.


And a second insert for this blog, Really famous Zen Masters, or "Watch it, whether you answer correctly or incorrectly to Zen master's question, you still get 30 whacks from the incense stick. Ouch!!!"

Here is a story about a ninth generation teacher, Layman Pang, "Pangyun". What's fascinating about Layman Pang, is that he, his wife, and his daughter all achieved illumination.

"When Layman pang was about to die, he said to his daughter, Ling Zhao, "Go look at the sun and see what time it is. Just when it's noon come and tell me."

Ling Zhao went to the door and looked out, saying, "The sun has just reached noon, but there's an eclipse."

When Layman Pang went to the door and looked out, Ling Zhao went to her father's seat, placed her hands together, and passed away.

Layman Pang smiled and said, "My daughter's deftness!"

He then postponed his departure from the world by seven days.

The governor of Xiangzhou came to visit Pangyun and ask about his illness.

Layman Pang said to him, "I ask that you regard everything that is as empty, nor give substance to that which has none. Farewell, The world is like reflections and echoes."

Then, placing his head on the governor's knee, Layman Pang passed away. His cremated remains were cast upon rivers and lakes. Monks and laity mourned him, saying that he was actually Vimalakirti. Three hundred of Layman Pang's poems were left to spread through the world.


Can we rest attention upon our heart for Shirley's mom, and all the flood victims in Pakistan.

There will be a class tonight at 7 p.m.

Also check out:
Master Cheng in Facebook
and the Western Chan Fellowship at

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