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Monday, June 13, 2011

16th is the Last class until July: Duality of the fans: a dzogchen perspective






Duality of the fans: a dzogchen perspective










“The world of perception teeters precariously between existence and nonexistence. From the perspective of conventionally filtered vision, the phenomena of perception are seductive, provocative, and highly misleading. Substantiality and insubstantiality dance together. One could be looking at a fan dancer: the ostrich plumes of emptiness and phenomena which somehow are the voluptuousness of being. Somehow, though, there is something else—but we can see what is really there only if we occasionally dispense with the duality of the fans. The naked lady of nonduality is occluded only fleetingly by the flickering feathers of the ostrich-plume fans. Unless this is understood, it is impossible to see what is happening. Unless one realizes that both the lady and her fans are equally naked and equally delightful, one sees nothing but form.

In order to feel solid, permanent, separate, continuous, and defined, one has to attach to facets of the constantly shifting illusion that temporarily display those qualities. One needs to feel solid, permanent, separate, continuous, and defined only because the experience of divorced individuation requires illusion in order to survive. There is a need for struggle in maintaining illusion only because our beginninglesss enlightenment sparkles through the fabric of duality, continually undermining our manic manipulations.

We are constantly poised on the brink of effortlessness, but we continually distract ourselves in order to sustain our sense of divorced individuality. These delirious, distressing, and dreary deviations from effortlessness are mechanisms we employ in order to maintain the illusion of duality. These mechanisms are constantly under threat of disillusionment. Disillusionment is the continuous nondual intimidation offered by the nature of reality itself, and from the experience of this intimidation there arises a specific kind of dualistic self-protective commitment to fleeting apparitions of stability. This is the character of duality.

Nonduality, on the other hand, is completely relaxed in the flow of whatever is. It could be said that if all phenomena had a duration of minutes, and everything changed simultaneously everywhere, a state of distraction might not be able to maintain itself. Nothing that comes into existence has the qualities of solidity, permanence, separateness, continuity, or definition. These qualities can never be found as fixed features of anything, yet everything shares these qualities temporarily. Therefore, it becomes possible to generate illusory versions of reality. But these versions of reality are simply further fan dances, where the ostrich plumes are either substantiality and insubstantiality, permanence and impermanence, separateness and indivisibility, continuity and discontinuity, or definition and indefinability. These fan dances are neither samsara nor nirvana. They are ornaments of the sheer naked presence of being.”   …from Ngakpa Chogyam and Khandro Dechen in Roaring Silence pg 86-87

Class schedule:  The 16th of June is the last class at Courtenay Elementary. For the summer, classes will resume at 1146 Cumberland Rd. July 7th. Please arrive 10 minutes early. 
 
Also check out these Chan sites of interest:
 

2. How to chan meditate:
 
3. Master Sheng Yen in Facebook

4. The Western Chan Fellowship at http://www.westernchanfellowship.org/


Call Adrian at 250 898 8201,
email adrian2@shaw.ca
Please notify me if you wish to be removed from the email list.



Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Dualistic vision: attraction, aversion, indifference and identity














"In everyday life, the continual search for reference points distorts experience in a manner that is largely unsatisfactory. But, although the sensation of unsatisfactoriness irritates or tortures us, we would appear to endure it in order to satisfy our need for self-definition. This is what makes it possible to distract ourselvs from being by continual attempts to 'be'--and thus 'be' is always manufactured through 'do.' We do 'attempting to be permanent.' We do 'attempting to be solid.' We do 'attempting to be separate.' We do 'attempting to be continuous.' We do 'attempting to be defined.' This 'do style' designs itself on the basis of dualism. The basic misconception is that it is only the form qualities of being that have the capacity to validate existence. Dualistic vision takes existence and nonexistence to be mutually exclusive--and in so doing strays into unending cycles of dissatisfaction and painful confusion. Because we grade what we perceive in terms of its referential value, we are capable of only three responses: attraction, aversion and indifference. If what is perceived substantiates our personal definitions, attraction arises. If our personal definitions are threatened, aversion manifests. If the phenomena of perception neither substantiate nor threaten our personal definitions, there is indifference. What cannot be manipulated referentially is ignored. We never actually experience anything as it is--we only experience according to our need for definitions, and consequently everything is graded as to its suitability as a possible reference point." ...from Ngakpa Chogyam and Khandro Dechen in Roaring Silence, Discovering the Mind of Dzogchen, pg. 63

artist: Nancy Desjarlais

There will be a class this thursday the 9th. 




Also check out these Chan sites of interest:
 

2. How to chan meditate:
 
3. Master Sheng Yen in Facebook

4. The Western Chan Fellowship at http://www.westernchanfellowship.org/


Call Adrian at 250 898 8201,
email adrian2@shaw.ca
Please notify me if you wish to be removed from the email list.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

After Poisonous Zen: Bankei hyper-injects Japanese Zen with a life saving remedy





The Soto Zen that Dogen  had established in 13th century Japan had become by the 17th century  lifeless and academic. Rinzai Zen had become insular: monks could talk the Zen talk and spout the proper words and phraseology, but their understanding did not approach the insight of the Chinese and early Japanese Zen masters. Enlightenment seekers wandered in vain in search of a master who could confirm their 'transmission'. Some even rejected  confirmations of their  enlightenment experiences as being worthless, considering the quality of their own teachers.  Many taught without any formal transmission from any teacher at all.

Meanwhile, in the mid-1600's of China, the Ming dynasty had declared Buddhism to be an enemy of the state. Two Chinese Zen refugees named Dosha Chogen and Ingen Ryuki attempted to establish Chan beachheads in Nagasaki, the only city in which Japan permitted  foreigners to live. They faced an uphill battle. The Japanese Myoshinji-dominated Zen hierarchy rejected the worth of the Chinese Zen teachers. And in Nagasaki, the two Chinese teachers were enmeshed in such a rivalry for power that Ingen attempted to poison Dosha Chogen. Ingen eventually won the battle for power. He stayed on in Japan to produce the Obaku line of Zen, a practice that mixed koan, meditation with chanting and ritual.

Out of this institutionalized and ossified Zen mess, there arose a young aspirant who would re-invigorate Japanese Zen. His name was Bankai. Like Buddha, he resolved to pursue his meditation until his death. His asceticism almost killed him. In his weakened condition, he contracted tuberculosis. Spitting up huge cobs of blood, he resigned himself to dying in his hermit shack. Watching one bloody bolus slide down the wall, he attained an instant enlightenment: the first of many deeper and deeper enlightenments he experienced over his lifetime.....from Perle Besserman and Manfred Skeger in Zen Radicals, Rebels and Reformers, pg 104-105.















Also check out these Chan sites of interest:
 

2. How to chan meditate:
 
3.  Master Sheng Yen in Facebook

4. The Western Chan Fellowship at http://www.westernchanfellowship.org/


Call Adrian at 250 898 8201,
email adrian2@shaw.ca
Please notify me if you wish to be removed from the email list.