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Monday, September 26, 2011

The result of a vexatious mind...



"External phenomena arise because of the mind of vexation. Although it seems that we all share the same objective reality, actually the world I experience is quite different from the world you experience. Each one of us has different feelings and experiences which are reflected in the so-called objective reality around us. The tree I see is not the tree you see. Even those who share the same family or lifestyle may have markedly different perceptions about the world. The world varies as vexations vary. For some, the mind is in constant motion; their heads are filled with ideas, worries and preoccupations. For others, the mind is calmer. Buddhanature, however, does not move at all. It is utterly quiescent.

Buddha-nature, which is also known as Tathagatagarbha, contains the seed of Buddha-hood. It is not that a Buddha arises when someone becomes enlightened, for the Buddha-nature has never been separate from that person. Tathagatagarbha never increases or decreases. It is better to say that with Buddha-nature there is the potential to realize Buddhahood. "Coming and going, arising and perishing" are viewpoints of ordinary sentient beings."...from Master Sheng Yen in Complete Enlightenment, pg. 100.
The Woodcutter's Buddha and Meditation Stool by
Nancy Desjarlais http://nancydesjarlais.blogspot.com/














 



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/

AND in Nanaimo http://www.bodhipeacecollective.org/ and http://nanaimomeditationgroups.weebly.com/


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




Sunday, September 18, 2011

Allowing is Presence or Pure Awareness, and upcoming retreat this wkend

"By allowing the mind to fluctuate, basic unity shines through. These fluctuations are fluctuations of awareness, movement of awareness of to awareness and back; or from focused to unfocused awareness. Allowing is presence or pure awareness, neither focused nor unfocused, neither contracting nor expanding. This pure awareness is, so to say, what fluctuating awareness is 'made of', it is the substance of fluctuating awareness. It is lost sight of through the fluctuations from which content and experience arise. Allowing is a shift from the content away from experience to experiencing itself.

The danger of misunderstanding is great here, because it is a condition that is very similar in appearance to pure awareness but is quite different. It is the condition of awareness of awareness. Many people practice what they consider to be shikantaza, but they are really doing something quite different. Shikantaza, done properly, is to allow the mind to fluctuate. However, instead of alowing the mind to fluctuate, these people sit aware of being aware. It is a form of staring, of staring at the reflection of the mind in the mirror of the mind.

Zen masters call this sitting, because often a torpid, listless state of mind accompanies it, dead void sitting or 'sitting in the cave of phantoms'. The practice, awareness of awareness, can, if done intensely and with dedication, lead the mind to high states of samadhi through a marriage of the opposites, and many ascetic practices are devoted to enhancing the marriage of the opposites. However, in Zen practice, samadhi by itself is a dead end."...in The Butterfly's Dream, in search of the roots of Zen, by albert low, pg. 149-50.

"Zen is not a form of relaxation. Nor is it a direct road to peace. many find that after practicing Zen for a while they begin to experience agitation, fears and anxiety, sometimes anger and depression, that they did not have before. This happens because the inertia of the mind begins to crack. However, with the opening of the mind also comes a deep joy and a faint but real bubbling of new life". ...from the same title, pg. 156.

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1. PLEASE NOTE WE ARE MOVING BACK TO COURTENAY 
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, 2ND FLOOR FOR 
THE FALL/WINTER SESSIONS.

2. Chan (Zen) Lecture

Topic: Zen Life of True Peace & Happiness
September 23, Friday 07:00pm - 09:00pm
Activity Room 1, Bowen Complex
500 Bowen Rd, Nanaimo

Silent Illumination method
September 24, Saturday 10:00am-5pm
The Kin Hut, 2730 Departure Bay Rd

Huatou method
September 25, Sunday 10am-4pm
The Kin Hut, 2730 Departure Bay Rd

Lecture and Workshops are free, donations are welcome;
please register with adrian.
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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.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Upcoming workshops, and Zen Master Albert Low comments on the Vimalakirti Sutra


"Dwelling on the disgusting aspects of the body is sometimes recommended as a meditation procedure. But Vimalakirti says that we do not have to do this. Whether one prizes or rejects the body, it is in principle the same. In both cases we are attached to the body by judgements about it, through the belief that it is something enduring and real.

Vimalakirti says that one should remind the sick person that the body is the cause of misery but should not encourage him to find relief in liberation. We much recognize the first noble truth of Buddha, that life is suffering. By dwelling with that we begin to find the strength to release our grip. It is as the hymn of Jesus says, "If you knew how to suffer, you would have the power not to suffer." To seek liberation from suffering is to deny that life is suffering; this search for liberation comes from the secret belief that the suffering is an accident, that it is not an intrinsic part of life. To see thoroughly into the truth that life is suffering is already liberation; it is liberation from all the suffering that we endure in our attempts to escape suffering.

One should remind the sick person that the body is without a self-entity, but, even so, living beings must be saved. One should also remind him that the body is without substance, but that he ought not to look for peace outside. He should be urged to confess his sins, but not so that he feels he does not have to bear their consequence. He should be encouraged to have compassion for all who suffer, knowing the meaning of suffering from his own experience, now and in the past. He should be encouraged not to give way to depression. He should but use the illness as another way to practice, to rid himself of the need to be something special, and the cravings this need generates. In this way he will be able truly to fulfill the first of the bodhisattva vows, to save all sentient beings."...from Albert Low, The Vimalakiri Sutra in Zen and the Sutras, pg. 109-109

 

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

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

Chan (Zen) Lecture

Topic: Zen Life of True Peace & Happiness
September 23, Friday 07:00pm - 09:00pm
Activity Room 1, Bowen Complex
500 Bowen Rd, Nanaimo

Silent Illumination method
September 24, Saturday 10:00am-5pm
The Kin Hut, 2730 Departure Bay Rd

Huatou method
September 25, Sunday 10am-4pm
The Kin Hut, 2730 Departure Bay Rd

Lecture and Workshops are free, donations are welcome;
please register with adrian.






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


Monday, September 5, 2011

Montreal Zen Master Albert Low on the koan 'MU'



"Mu* is not a recent experiment that someone is trying out. It is not a shot in the dark in the hope or expectation that something might come of it. It is not simply for beginners or advanced people. for iron ladies or men of steel. Millions have worked with Mu over more than a thousand years. Chinese. Koreans. Vietnamese. Japanese. Americans. French. English men and women. artists. professors. businessmen. farmers. homemakers. emperors. soldiers. airmen. monks. nuns. All have swallowed the red hot iron ball of Mu. have perished in the Great Death while rejoicing in the Awakened life. Some have flung themselves into the furnace of Mu: some have impaled themselves on the point of Mu: some have drilled through emptiness and despair with Mu: some have dropped into the chasm of Mu. But all have found Mu to be home. to be that which they had sought since time began. but that which is more close than one's own skin. Some have gnawed at Mu like a rat that sharpens its teeth while gnawing through the wood of the vat to the butter beyond. Some have sat like a cat outside a mouse hole. to all appearances asleep. relaxed. indifferent. but all the while like a steel trap sprung open and ready to shut at the mere appearance of a whisker. Some have wooed. embraced. loved. and adored Mu. like a lover yearning and yearning and yearning. Some have held on to Mu like a lion at the neck of its prey. like a bulldog with jaws bred to clamp. to hold. never to yield. Some have penetrated Mu like a thread penetrates the eye of a needle so small that the point of a needle could never find it. Some have found Mu in the midst of pain in the legs made a burning fire of agony by an accident. and some have found it in the despair of forgetfulness when everything is finally lost in a samadhi of no hope and no tomorrow. But all have worked steadily, consistently. All followed finally what their teacher had been saying patiently, insistently. repeatedly. There is just Mu! Only Mu! Become One with Mu!"...Albert Low in The Iron Cow of Zen, pg. 162-163.  *Mu is a Japanese translation of the Chinese huatou Wu



















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.