Pistol River – Photo Tomas
“…he never has a single thought
of seeking buddhahood.”
If he allows his mind to stray from ‘what is’ right here, right now, he slips back into the dusty world. Once he is in the stream of being ordinary, of simply not striving and of conforming with circumstances from that place of equanimity, he is like a gyroscope: keeping alignment with Big Mind. Any thought of attaining anything or achieving anything causes that gyroscope to wobble. He avoids that.
“After all, you have a father and a mother—
what more do you seek?”
If you have a father and a mother you are in this life and therefore you have all you need to realize who and what you are right now.
“Conforming with circumstances as they are he exhausts his past karma; accepting things as they are he puts on his clothes; when he wants to walk he walks, when he wants to sit he sits; he never has a single thought of seeking buddhahood. Why is this so? Continue reading
Sitting is a term that has a deep meaning in Zen. Krishnamurti calls it ‘complete negation which is the highest form of passion’. Sitting in this sense calls for all of our energy on all levels.When there is any loss of energy through identification with our fears, desires, ambitions, visions, regrets, opinions, etc. etc. then we do not have the energy required for this highest form of passion. Continue reading
Sitting is a certain body posture. More than that however, in zen sitting is a universal metaphor that transmits the deep sense letting all things, including oneself, rest. Letting rest means to exercise fine restraint in one’s whole being, releasing the habitual impulse to do anything and to carry anything over to the next moment.
Whatever action presents itself in the course of how things go, is accepted. One doesn’t resist that natural action that is embedded in the whole. One carefully discerns the shining source in each minute event, and does not overstep this mindfulness at any time. Continue reading
Below is Koan 129 from Dogen’s collection of 300 Koans that goes into “non-thinking” in relation to thinking/not-thinking. First you find “The Main Case” which has, at the end of each line a footnote number. After “The Commentary” and “The Capping Verse” there are “The Footnotes” by John Daido Loori, to which the numbers refer. Below the footnotes I have included John Daido Loori’s Contemporary Commentary on Dogen’s text. Enjoy! Continue reading
This statement could be taken as referring to temporal sequence: first this happens and then that happens. However the word “where” gives us the clue: both life and thought are happening simultaneously. However, if we get the sense of our field of perception actually as a field, like a corn or rice field, then we may find one thing happening in one corner of the field and something else happening somewhere else in the same field. That is the case with our field of perception. Let’s say: thought = the mind pulling up impressions of past events and based on those memories evaluating what is happening now and then creating an image. This image is then the basis for a slightly modified image of some future event as the progression from the present event. The mind is caught in a loop of its own images. Continue reading
My Comment: Today is a day that finds me just drifting from one thing to the next like in a dream. At some point I felt how all is one moving swirl of activities and I am one center of perception among many. Yes, there is also at times the sense of these various centers being like options for the universal activity to look through, to feel through, like channels on the TV. This post then showed up and was comforting in a simple way: just allow the universal movement as I and then also as you to move in its own natural way, whatever that may entail at the moment. I believe most of this excerpt from Alan Watts’ “The Way of Zen” are statements by Linji, but when I made these notes I didn’t keep track of ‘who said what’ – and, after all, it doesn’t really matter.
It (Zen) enters into everything wholeheartedly and freely without having to keep an eye on itself. It does not confuse spirituality with thinking about God while one is peeling potatoes. Zen spirituality is just to peel the potatoes.