Homeless Kodo's "TO YOU" - Chapters 24, 25 & 26

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  • Jundo
    Treeleaf Founder and Priest
    • Apr 2006
    • 39271

    Homeless Kodo's "TO YOU" - Chapters 24, 25 & 26

    Dear All,

    Moving on, although no place to go ...

    As it is a fairly easy read, and chapters are rather short, consisting mostly of small quotes, we will take a few chapters at a time. This week, Chapters 24, 25 and 26.

    The rules of the game are pretty easy: Just mention here, in our discussion, any quotes (none, one or many) that ring your bell and resonate with you, and briefly say why.

    That's it!

    If you need a version to "cut and paste" a quote, there is one here. However, PLEASE PURCHASE THE ACTUAL BOOK! I ask everyone to use the following only for ease in cutting and pasting a quote or two into this discussion, not for purposes of reading the entire book. Thank you!



    What trips your trigger, strikes your fancy, inspires and makes your day? Try to say why it does so for you. (You can also feel free to disagree with Ol' Kodo too, but be prepared to say why!)

    Gassho, Jundo

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE
  • Chikyou
    Member
    • May 2022
    • 569

    #2
    The buddha-dharma isn't an idea. It's about the problem, "How do I deal with myself?"
    I love this so much. I'll be the first to say I'm a huge pain in my own ass and I have no idea how to deal with myself most of the time.

    Gassho,
    SatLah
    Kelly
    Chikyō 知鏡
    (KellyLM)

    Comment

    • Meian
      Member
      • Apr 2015
      • 1722

      #3
      Originally posted by KellyLM
      I love this so much. I'll be the first to say I'm a huge pain in my own ass and I have no idea how to deal with myself most of the time.
      I can relate to this so much.
      [emoji57][emoji38]

      [emoji120][emoji120][emoji120] stlh

      Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
      My life is my temple and my practice.

      Comment

      • paulashby

        #4
        page 145: "empty theories" is what we call it when bystanders play around with terminology.

        Reflection: Yes, but I love a good theory,empty or full.
        Like a foolish dog I can spin and chase a theory like a dog chases it tail...
        What will happen when the teeth catch the tail or the mind an empty theory?
        There are times when to say form is emptiness and emptiness is form is just too much.
        Silence....wind.....leaves spin...glide...decend...embracing everything.

        peace,Paul SATLAH ANANDA

        Comment

        • Daiman
          Treeleaf Unsui
          • Apr 2022
          • 679

          #5
          When no mental phenomena appear, there’s nothing
          to worry about.
          and even when we catch ourselves worrying, this too is nothing to worry about, it is all part of the landscape of being human.

          Bill (Daiman)

          Sat Today/LAH

          Comment

          • Heiso
            Member
            • Jan 2019
            • 824

            #6
            There are so many gems here but I like this from chapter 24:

            What are your real motives? Sooner or later, you’ve got to honestly ask yourself
            this question. Don’t you sometimes unconsciously make yourself into a performer
            who is only concerned with his show?
            “Only you yourself can understand. Others cannot even manage to see it.” (Lotus
            Sutra)
            When it’s about spectators, it’s got nothing to do with the buddha-dharma.
            It's good to keep asking myself this in my zen practice and in daily life, not that there's a difference between those two.

            Gassho,

            Heiso

            StLah

            Comment

            • Tai Do
              Member
              • Jan 2019
              • 1361

              #7
              Chapter 24:
              Tearing away all the Indian myths and all the Chinese myths and only practicing
              the naked content of the Buddha’s teaching that’s leading a Zen life.
              Is Sawaki Roshi saying we leave out the devotional part of Buddhist Practice? Or is he saying we should approach the myths as skillful means to nurture our zazen practice? It seems to me the last.

              Chapter 25:
              The way of Buddha means putting the absolute into practice, realizing it through
              practice.
              It’s the dance of the absolute and the relative that we all live in our practice and as our practice.

              Rather than simply sitting zazen, people try to put a melody on top of it. That’s
              why they are able to sing their Buddhist hymns and somehow feel pious doing it.
              Some of us, like me, tend to add and add to our practice until Zazen turns to another practice, perhaps even a small part of our practice, instead of the heart of it all. Another great insight that Sawaki Roshi brought to us.

              Gassho,
              Mateus
              Satlah
              怠努 (Tai Do) - Lazy Effort
              (also known as Mateus )

              禅戒一如 (Zen Kai Ichi Nyo) - Zazen and the Precepts are One!

              Comment

              • Tairin
                Member
                • Feb 2016
                • 2733

                #8
                Four quotes caught my eye

                The Buddha's teaching has declined these days because practice has declined. People just can't get it into their guts that practice itself is awakening.
                Why is Japanese Buddhism worthless? Because in Japan you'll find the largest number of Buddhist treasures, just no practice. And where there's no practice, there's no buddha-dharma. Even if the seed of Buddha's teaching is there, it can't begin to function as long as it isn't cultivated with practice.
                The two quotes above are critical to me. I “studied” Buddhism and Zen for years and by study I mean read about them. It was a crucial step for me to stop reading and start an actual practice.

                The buddha-dharma is nothing for spectators. It's about you.
                Religion doesn't mean changing the world around myself. It means changing my own eyes, my ears, my way of seeing and my head.
                Again reading about it was one thing but to actually start working with this stuff through a daily practice was crucial to me.


                Tairin
                Sat today and lah
                泰林 - Tai Rin - Peaceful Woods

                Comment

                • ZenKen
                  Member
                  • Mar 2022
                  • 149

                  #9
                  Chapter 25
                  The whole world believes the practice of the Buddha way is about cutting off your illusions one by one, like dimming a lamp until all of a sudden it goes out. But Mahayana practice is "vowing and working towaeds saving all suffering beings before saving myself". It's necessary to deliberately leave the illusions as they are in order to be of use to living beings.
                  This means we've got to be completely human. Being monotonously perfect isn't any good for anyone.
                  I really love this explanation. It can be very easy to start moralising when you see others breaking precepts - even if they don't know they're doing so because they're not Buddhist! - and so this is an excellent reminder that we have to meet people where they are, in the real world full of delusions, and work with them from there. We can't simply show up with our idea of 'perfection' and tell people to act in a certain way. And even if we do talk about the Way, if we do it in such a way that no one can understand, and we tell people to let go of everything before they've seen what we mean, they'll simply ignore us.

                  Not that I believe we should all go out there and moralise and teach, except insofar as we do so by living our lives as best we can in accordance with the precepts. If that inspires people to ask questions, wonderful. If not, well, we work to save them anyway.

                  Chapter 26
                  As long as you don't get sick, you forget your body. Even I forgot my legs when they were still strong enough to walk and run. My legs only seem so important to me now because they're so weak. Whoever is healthy functions without being aware of their own health.
                  It's the flaws that bother us. When no mental phenomena appear, there's nothing to worry about.
                  I take this teaching as a reminder to gratitude - to welcome health when we have it, to celebrate it and recognise that it will not last forever. To be more present in our bodies and minds so that we can honour them for what they do for us, and recognise how they change with time. It seems a good practice to help us be mindful and live in the present moment.

                  Gassho

                  Anna
                  sattoday
                  Prioritising great gratitude.

                  ZenKen (Anna)
                  禅犬

                  Comment

                  • Nengyoku
                    Member
                    • Jun 2021
                    • 536

                    #10
                    If we're not careful, spectators will pop up among religious people. When spectators appear, things aren't anymore like they should be. They turn religion into theater.
                    This one reminds me of a Bible verse "And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others."
                    It is important to examine our actions as they take place. To ask ourselves the intent behind our words and phrases. Am I saying/doing this thing for the benefit of the Dharma? Or am I doing this thing to make myself appear enlightened?
                    We can put on a face all we want, but deep down you can't really lie to yourself once you ask these questions.

                    What are your real motives? Sooner or later, you've got to honestly ask yourself this question. Don't you sometimes unconsciously make yourself into a performer who is only concerned with his show?
                    Same as before.

                    Priests today want to do something for society, so they give money from the rich to the poor and play the merciful ones. This has nothing in the least to do with the Buddha-Dharma.

                    Buddha's teaching can only be practiced by yourself.
                    And
                    There is a certain sort of bad deed that is called "doing good".
                    I read these two as, even when you are doing good in the relative world and trying to relieve suffering, you are still yourself wrapped up in karmic conditions. Even doing good leads us to eventually fall from grace.
                    Our way forward is to remove ourselves from the equation entirely. And then the only good we can do is help others remove themselves too.

                    The buddha-dharma shouldn't be at all separate from your own problem. Separated from yourself, separated from this instant, there is no buddha-dharma.
                    This one really struck me hard, but I can't find the words to say why. Did this one sit particularly with anyone else?

                    I didn't have time for the last chapter today. I will come back with more once I have read it.

                    Gassho,
                    Nengyoku
                    SatLah
                    Thank you for being the warmth in my world.

                    Comment

                    • Onrin
                      Member
                      • Apr 2021
                      • 193

                      #11
                      As long as you don't get sick, you forget your body. Even I forgot my legs when they were still strong enough to walk and run. My legs only seem so important to me now because they're so weak. Whoever is healthy functions without being aware of their own health.
                      It's the flaws that bother us. When no mental phenomena appear, there's nothing to worry about.
                      This one always reminds me of a friend and former personal training client who came to me with a goal of being able to sit zazen comfortably (80-something years young with multiple back, hip and knee surgeries). So we not only got there but he was able to get up and down without using his hands from lying on the floor, do push-ups etc... but then went to a week-long retreat where they had long sits and were pretty strict on position, and he came back literally crippled, hardly able to even walk and in constant pain, and had to get extensive physical therapy not to mention it altered his ability to practice at all.

                      So perhaps this is not what Sawaki meant, but your legs and body are pretty damn important, and neglecting that for some arbitrary length of sitting or posture can be counterproductive to one's practice but above all, life.
                      Gassho,
                      Chris

                      Comment

                      • Heikyo
                        Member
                        • Dec 2014
                        • 103

                        #12
                        Religion doesn’t mean changing the world around myself. It means changing my own eyes, my ears, my way of seeing and my head.
                        I think this sums up what our practice is about very simply. In zazen and being mindful of the precepts we are changing the way we perceive the universe and as a result how we interact with it.

                        Gassho
                        Paul
                        Sat today, LAH

                        Comment

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