How a Buddha Shovels Snow

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  • Jishin
    replied
    Originally posted by Jundo
    An old Koan ...

    Falling down in the snow, Zhaozhou yelled: "Help me up! Help me up!"

    A monk came and lay down beside him. Zhaozhou got up and went away.
    This is hilarious! Thank you.

    Gassho, Jishin, ST

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  • Jundo
    replied
    Originally posted by Libby
    Via the Treeleaf Facebook page, reader Holly asks:
    "Thank you, Jundo, this analogy is helpful. My question would be regarding the factor of time. If one wants to live each moment fully, realizing that time of death is uncertain, is it "wiser" to take the pragmatic approach and focus on clearing just enough snow to get one's car out?"
    Clearing just a little, clearing the whole lot, dying now or dying later, in or out ... all the same. Something beyond measure, birth and death, without ins and outs.

    No place to go, so to where are you driving? Nonetheless, engine will not always start when we are late for work on a cold morning.

    We humans always live each moment fully. Each moment is fully just each moment. It is simply that we do not let ourselves realize so.

    An old Koan ...

    Falling down in the snow, Zhaozhou yelled: "Help me up! Help me up!"

    A monk came and lay down beside him. Zhaozhou got up and went away.

    Gassho, J

    SatToday
    Last edited by Jundo; 12-16-2015, 05:25 PM.

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  • Gukan
    replied
    Via the Treeleaf Facebook page, reader Holly asks:
    "Thank you, Jundo, this analogy is helpful. My question would be regarding the factor of time. If one wants to live each moment fully, realizing that time of death is uncertain, is it "wiser" to take the pragmatic approach and focus on clearing just enough snow to get one's car out?"

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  • Ansan
    Guest replied
    Originally posted by Jundo
    Well, the bad news is that this forum has been here for 7 or 8 years. That would take awhile!

    The good news is that, for all that time, the message has been the same, endlessly repeated and is always right before your nose (the very breath, and just your nose too).

    Nothing to "catch up" on, but simply realization of what is right here and right here. One can jump right into the sea anywhere and taste the same salty brine (and anyway, that one has oneself always been the sea. Now, swim swim swim.)



    Well, I am not a teacher of Koan Introspection Zazen, so anything I say may be wrong or misleading as an outsider. But, ultimately, there is no outside or inside.

    In the Rinzai way, a phrase such as "MU" is held in mind in order to merge with such and eventually encounter an experience of the Great Flowing Whole Interpenetration which is Emptiness (so flowing, you and I are just the flowing too). Their way is to pursue, often very hard in search of great Kensho, all while not pursuing for ultimately nothing to pursue. The MU helps them finally pursue so hard that they discover this "nothing to pursue,for right here all along and always so". They non-pursue pursue.

    In the Soto Way, Just Sitting, we also experience the the Great Flowing Whole Interpenetration which is Emptiness (so flowing, you and I are just the flowing too). Our way, however, is to radically not pursue for ultimately nothing to pursue, Kensho in each instant, and that is how we pursue it. We pursue-non-pursuing. This non-pursuing allows us to discover this "nothing to pursue, for right here all along and always so". MU.

    In other words, two sides of a no sided coin. No we or they. Two paths to reach same Buddha mountain (and, anyway, we are standing on the mountain ... we are the mountain ... already all along). That being said, don't just sit on your rump, get walking ... because life's trip is this step and the next.

    We are walking up the mountain, the mountain is walking down us ... just mountain mountaining mountain in each breath.

    Something like that.

    Gassho, J
    Thank you, Jundo, for this thread and the posts! It kinda-sorta clears up some concepts that have popped up in reading and studying various books on Zen, both Soto and Rinzai, specifically "Sitting with Koans." I understand that John Daido Loori is of both the Rinzai and Soto lineage. I did not know this was possible. My ignorance is due to my newness to Buddhism and especially Zen and I am just beginning to understand the differences. I try to read as much as I can get out of the public library, using those from the suggested reading list when I can find them but also books that I am curious about. Namely, MU and Koans but continue to be confused. It might be getting a little clearer than severely muddy. Before sitting, my husband and I read these books together. This I suppose replaces the teachings we could get if we were to attend "live" dharma talks. For now, this is the best we can do in our situation of being very remote with very poor internet transmission and connection.

    I also find Jundo's discussion utilizing "clearing snow" as an analogy to practice to be very helpful. In my case, however, out here in Arizona, snow is a rarity on the desert floor (the mountain tops, of course, do get an admirable smattering of snow at times). I guess I can substitute "dust" and the prevalent dust storms for "snow". We clear our "brown snow" differently here...we sweep incessantly and use a dust pan inside and a spade outside to clear driveways and repack holes after a dust devil attack or rain storm. We are not trying to get to our car (and if we do, we have to clean the dust off the windshield) just to be able to breathe and see through the haze. But there is always a large gust of wind to bring in more dust either on the driveway, the porch or to get rid of the grit off the tables and floors just to live. This thread makes me aware and grateful for the dust and dirt and the "snow"...we can't live without it! I will certainly keep Jundo's comments in mind when I sometimes curse the dust that covers dishes when we are awaiting dinner guests. I realize I sound like I am taking this literally. But it helps to put things in my own perspective corner. I will get back to work sweeping. Thank you Jundo!

    Gassho
    Ansan

    SatToday on a Dusty Cushion
    Last edited by Jundo; 02-22-2015, 03:15 PM.

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  • Tai Shi
    replied
    Elgwyn--here--no snow today, but berr, sub-zero temps tonight--when I write, I just write----Thank you for time! I have time to be free.

    Elgwyn (Chuck)
    sat today
    Gassho
    _/\_

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  • Jakugan
    replied
    Thank you for this teaching Jundo. I have much snow to shovel!

    Gassho,

    Simon.

    Sat today.

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  • Banto
    replied
    Nothing to pursue, no where to go. Tasting the salty brine as I swim and content in the snow shoveling.
    And mountaining.
    Thank you Jundo!
    Gassho
    Rodney SatToday

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  • Nameless
    replied
    Appreciate this thread when it floats about each year during the snowy months.

    Gassho, John
    Sat Today

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  • Jundo
    replied
    Originally posted by Rodney
    Thank you all. Jundo, I've read through those links and found them all very interesting and informative. I think I will read back through again for additional clarity. These forums are just amazing. I think I might soon go back to the earliest topics and posts on the site and read them slowly, forward, as you all have covered so much over time. Invaluable.
    Well, the bad news is that this forum has been here for 7 or 8 years. That would take awhile!

    The good news is that, for all that time, the message has been the same, endlessly repeated and is always right before your nose (the very breath, and just your nose too).

    Nothing to "catch up" on, but simply realization of what is right here and right here. One can jump right into the sea anywhere and taste the same salty brine (and anyway, that one has oneself always been the sea. Now, swim swim swim.)

    I'm still a little stuck wondering how one asks "what is Mu?" or "Who am I?" while walking through daily life and still be present with what is. Mu seems to be a 3rd party, ... when walking in no separation with everything. Unless you're supposed to be "one" with what's in front of you and Mu too at the same time. It seems their prescription of koan practice is to be consumed with the "who?" "what's Mu?" all the time, which sounded to me like missing life during that. But how you all have describe it (mu-ing) here is different than I read or that I was thinking I read about that practice. Which tells me I was reading the books errantly
    Well, I am not a teacher of Koan Introspection Zazen, so anything I say may be wrong or misleading as an outsider. But, ultimately, there is no outside or inside.

    In the Rinzai way, a phrase such as "MU" is held in mind in order to merge with such and eventually encounter an experience of the Great Flowing Whole Interpenetration which is Emptiness (so flowing, you and I are just the flowing too). Their way is to pursue, often very hard in search of great Kensho, all while not pursuing for ultimately nothing to pursue. The MU helps them finally pursue so hard that they discover this "nothing to pursue,for right here all along and always so". They non-pursue pursue.

    In the Soto Way, Just Sitting, we also experience the the Great Flowing Whole Interpenetration which is Emptiness (so flowing, you and I are just the flowing too). Our way, however, is to radically not pursue for ultimately nothing to pursue, Kensho in each instant, and that is how we pursue it. We pursue-non-pursuing. This non-pursuing allows us to discover this "nothing to pursue, for right here all along and always so". MU.

    In other words, two sides of a no sided coin. No we or they. Two paths to reach same Buddha mountain (and, anyway, we are standing on the mountain ... we are the mountain ... already all along). That being said, don't just sit on your rump, get walking ... because life's trip is this step and the next.

    We are walking up the mountain, the mountain is walking down us ... just mountain mountaining mountain in each breath.

    Something like that.

    Gassho, J

    SatToday
    Last edited by Jundo; 02-15-2015, 03:43 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Banto
    replied
    Thank you all. Jundo, I've read through those links and found them all very interesting and informative. I think I will read back through again for additional clarity. These forums are just amazing. I think I might soon go back to the earliest topics and posts on the site and read them slowly, forward, as you all have covered so much over time. Invaluable.

    I'm still a little stuck wondering how one asks "what is Mu?" or "Who am I?" while walking through daily life and still be present with what is. Mu seems to be a 3rd party, ... when walking in no separation with everything. Unless you're supposed to be "one" with what's in front of you and Mu too at the same time. It seems their prescription of koan practice is to be consumed with the "who?" "what's Mu?" all the time, which sounded to me like missing life during that. But how you all have describe it (mu-ing) here is different than I read or that I was thinking I read about that practice. Which tells me I was reading the books errantly

    Kokuu's, "In Soto, we tend to drop the mu bit and just see everything as life itself" resonates so much more clearly with me than the mu-ing from TPZ.

    Gassho
    Rodney who SatToday

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  • Oheso
    replied
    Originally posted by Jishin
    Anyway, I don't think that when I Muuuuuuuuu I Muuuuuuuuu the way a Rinzai dude would Muuuuuuuuu. I am not Muuiuuuing my way into kensho or something like that.

    gassho,

    O, how I sat today!

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  • Jishin
    replied
    How a Buddha Shovels Snow

    Hi,

    I use Mu sometimes as a thought substitution device while not in Zazen when I have disturbing thoughts during the day that interfere with with my day to day activities. It's kind of like giving myself OCD with the word MU to wipe out the bothersome thought when paying attention to what I am doing or following my breath do not work. For that matter, repeating any word would work too. It's just that in my case the word Mu is more neutral than others. Others may pray particular prayers from their faith when distressed. This Soto business can be quite difficult of letting clouds come and letting clouds go and me being a mountain as Jundo illustrates in one of his videos. Anyway, I don't think that when I Muuuuuuuuu I Muuuuuuuuu the way a Rinzai dude would Muuuuuuuuu. I am not Muuiuuuing my way into kensho or something like that.

    Gassho, Jishin, _/st\_
    Last edited by Jishin; 02-13-2015, 01:20 PM.

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  • Jundo
    replied
    Originally posted by Rodney
    This is most interesting.

    When I first read Three Pillars of Zen, I got a bit stuck on the concept of Koan practice though I must admit the prospect of Kensho was alluring. I remember reading there and elsewhere this emphasis of Mu in everything. Eat Mu, drive Mu, sleep Mu, poop Mu. Every where a Mu, Mu. I probably misunderstood and am misunderstanding this practice but if this is the case, it seems to me that this is more like the snow stays on the driveway from the street to the garage during the swath but comes up in one long strip only at kensho. No driveway(or snow) visible whilst shoveling.
    Originally posted by Kokuu
    In my experience with koan practice, mu is life. Everything is mu. You do not need to make everything into mu as everything already is. There is no separation between you and mu, or you and life.
    Yes, all things are ultimately "MU" in the sense of "MU" as the flowing Wholeness of what is often called "Emptiness".

    But if you mean "MU" in the sense of of a specific phrase from a Koan that one is to hold in mind and pierce during Zazen in order to attain some sudden "melting of the snow"., then, yes, our way is rather different (same at heart, different in approach) from the forms of Zazen found in most Rinzai and mixed Soto-Rinzai Lineages (such as those one might read about it the "Three Pillars of Zen", or many Sangha in the Harada-Yasutani-Sambokyodan line such as all Maezumi Roshi's students, Aitken Roshi and the like).

    Here are a couple of old threads which might help in understanding the same-differences:

    Special reading - once born twice born zen
    (part 1)
    Hi All, I thought to post some special reading topics. The theme is "readings that will help in understanding Zen readings". 8) For years and years, after first starting Zen practice, I would read many "Zen Books" but not quite understand why so many seemed to be saying rather different things (or the same

    (part 2)
    Howdy, I'd like to continue this special series of "readings that will help in understanding Zen readings" with a bit more of ... Once-Born, Twice-Born Zen by Conrad Hyers I agree with those folks who think the "Once-Born Twice-Born" categories are a bit black/white and broad brush. I do think the book


    also

    On "Kensho" in the Soto Way ...

    Friends, I have a question and I thought this might be the best forum to help me answer it. I am in correspondence with a small e-group of retired men that discusses spirituality and related matters. A couple of members are keen to share experiences of "enlightenment", what it means and how one approaches it. One man


    More on the Sanbokyodan/Yasutani way here, for those who really want to delve into the history of that flavor of Zen ...



    I hope that is helpful. Zen comes in several wonderful flavors, all precisely the same even though sometimes very very different, frequently different while just the same as MU.

    Gassho, Jundo

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  • Banto
    replied
    Thanks Kokuu. Not sure I get the koan practice... But appreciate the life itself simplicity you refer to with Soto.
    Rodney. SatToday


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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  • Matt
    replied
    Originally posted by Jundo
    One of the great misconceptions about practice (and this is not a matter of "Soto vs. Rinzai", because some Soto people are as guilty of this as others) is that "Seeing True Nature" for a moment is anything more than a point of reference for getting on with the key act of snow shoveling.
    Thank you for this teaching. This is very helpful.

    Deep bows,
    Matt
    #SatToday

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