commitment

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  • Shugen
    Treeleaf Unsui
    • Nov 2007
    • 4535

    commitment

    Stephanie posted something on another thread that has me thinking:

    This is the difficulty, and one of my reservations, about an Internet sangha, that it is easy to be casual, half-engaged about it. One might drop in every once in a while to post a comment, or one might be a persistent presence but not be engaged on any real or personal level.
    How committed am I to my practice? I read the forum daily, I listen to podcasts and watch Jundo's and Taigu's talks on occasion, I sit 4 or 5 nights a week. I don't do metta, or chant. I haven't been doing the zazenkais. I did the jukai ceremony, but rarely if ever wear my rakusa. How is commitment to be judged? Why do I feel unwilling to commit to sewing the okesa? Is this all just my search for "answers" like Stepanie also posted about? I seem to be at an interesting juncture in my practice.

    I am glad you came back Stephanie.

    Ron
    Meido Shugen
    明道 修眼
  • Shohei
    Member
    • Oct 2007
    • 2854

    #2
    Re: commitment

    Hi Shugen

    "How is commitment to be judged?"
    You know the answer there. Others can just point but you know where to look.

    Now as already said before, Some trappings we discover we can do with out, lets say chanting, however explore and exhaust them first before tossing them aside. Now, however in the case of the kesa, it would be better to explore your reluctance FIRST! Sewing and the commitment to the kesa is not required nor is it for every single person!

    The rakusu, however, is not an optional garb, its your commitment, its shikantaza, you should try to wear it every time you sit and bring it with you when you travel (insta zazen its not necessary or always possible but remember your wearing it even when your not!).

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts here and dont mind me blabbering on you just got me thinking too! (so thank you too Steph!)
    Anywho your commitment to practice is inspiring to me, So keep on keeping on!

    Gassho
    Shohei who should also go sit

    Comment

    • Shugen
      Treeleaf Unsui
      • Nov 2007
      • 4535

      #3
      Re: commitment

      "How is commitment to be judged?"
      You know the answer there. Others can just point but you know where to look.
      Sometimes I just need to see my thoughts.

      Last year at this time I was doing Tricycle's "Big Sit" I believe.

      I just can't decide if I need to back off - stop thinking about it so much. Maybe take a break, or really push myself to sit more.

      It's a holiday weekend here, so maybe I'll take some time off and just enjoy cook-outs and beer and swimming pools.

      Dirk, your wisdom is inspiring.

      Thank You,
      Ron

      Jundo quoting Suzuki Roshi on another thread:

      ... When you empty your mind, when you give up everything and just practice zazen with an open mind, then whatever you see you meet yourself. That is you, beyond she or he or me. As long as you are clinging to the idea of self and trying to improve your practice or discover something, trying to create an improved, better self, then your practice has gone astray. You have no time to reach the goal, so eventually you will get tired out, and you will say, "Zen is no good. I practiced zazen for ten years, but I didn't gain anything!"
      Meido Shugen
      明道 修眼

      Comment

      • disastermouse

        #4
        Re: commitment

        Originally posted by rculver
        "How is commitment to be judged?"
        You know the answer there. Others can just point but you know where to look.
        Sometimes I just need to see my thoughts.

        Last year at this time I was doing Tricycle's "Big Sit" I believe.

        I just can't decide if I need to back off - stop thinking about it so much. Maybe take a break, or really push myself to sit more.

        It's a holiday weekend here, so maybe I'll take some time off and just enjoy cook-outs and beer and swimming pools.

        Dirk, your wisdom is inspiring.

        Thank You,
        Ron

        Jundo quoting Suzuki Roshi on another thread:

        ... When you empty your mind, when you give up everything and just practice zazen with an open mind, then whatever you see you meet yourself. That is you, beyond she or he or me. As long as you are clinging to the idea of self and trying to improve your practice or discover something, trying to create an improved, better self, then your practice has gone astray. You have no time to reach the goal, so eventually you will get tired out, and you will say, "Zen is no good. I practiced zazen for ten years, but I didn't gain anything!"
        Or you could always just polish a tile instead.

        /insider Zen humor

        Chet

        Comment

        • Shugen
          Treeleaf Unsui
          • Nov 2007
          • 4535

          #5
          Re: commitment

          When he saw Daoyi meditating he asked, “Why are you sitting in meditation?” Daoyi said, “To become a Buddha.” Master Huaizang took hold of a piece of tile and began rubbing it. Daoyi asked Huaizang “What are you rubbing the tile for master?” “I want to polish it into a mirror.” Huaizang answered. Daoyi felt puzzled. He asked, “How can you hope to polish a piece of tile into a mirror?” Huaizang replied, “Since a piece of tile can’t be polished into a mirror, how can simply practicing sitting meditation make you become a Buddha?”
          “What must I do then to attain Buddhahood?” Daoyi asked. But Huaizang countered with a question, “Take the case of an ox-cart. If the cart doesn’t move, do you whip the cart or do you whip the ox?” Daoyi didn’t know how to answer so he just kept quiet. Huaizang continued, “In learning sitting meditation, do you aspire to learn sitting Zen, or do you aspire to imitate the sitting Buddha? If the former, Zen doesn’t consist in sitting or lying down. If the latter you must know the Buddha has no fixed postures.” Huaizang kept talk to Daoyi, “The dharma goes on forever and never abides in anything. You most not therefore be attached to or abandon any particular phase of it. To sit with the purpose of becoming a Buddha is to kill the Buddha. To be attached to the sitting posture is to fail to comprehend the essential principle.” After listened to Huaizang, Daoyi realized that just practice sitting in meditation is a wrong way to reach enlightenment. This is because Buddhahood is the great clarity of enlightenment; it is not dependent on practicing physical postures.
          Meido Shugen
          明道 修眼

          Comment

          • Rich
            Member
            • Apr 2009
            • 2602

            #6
            Re: commitment

            Ron, you are free to take what you need and leave the rest. I think the most important part of practice is sitting 20-30 minutes morning and evening.

            Regarding answers,
            'If you want something
            You cannot see things as they are'
            _/_
            Rich
            MUHYO
            無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

            https://instagram.com/notmovingmind

            Comment

            • roky
              Member
              • Jul 2008
              • 311

              #7
              Re: commitment

              hi ron - if you didn't sit so damn late in the zen hall, i'd sit with you

              commitment: i've sat at least daily since about age 25, and i just turned 62 -- sure, i've missed a few days, but not many, same as with my jogging -- i'm just not into the online part of the online sangha thing, as it seems to emphasize the intellectual side of practice, and then i find it to be just another philosophy

              more generalizations: we all are beginners/and we aren't: a part of my practice is always new, each day, each moment -- but there is a difference in a practice of 1 year vs. 40, if the practice has been steady -- particularly with the understanding that "its all practice", i.e., the divorces, babies, deaths, aging, supporting family, that is, paying the dues that only come with time

              so about once/month i check to see if the zen hall schedule is still blank(except for ron) -- it is, so i go back to sitting alone

              sorry if it sounds like "ageism", but my fascination with buddhist thought wore off in the '80s -- or at least i think there is about a 90/10 balance of sitting/talking, i.e., i'd need to sit with someone a whole bunch before wanting to discuss buddhism with them

              gassho, roky
              "no resistance"
              thaddeus golas

              Comment

              • Shugen
                Treeleaf Unsui
                • Nov 2007
                • 4535

                #8
                Re: commitment

                Hey Roky,

                Good to hear you're still around.

                I've been thinking I need to S.T.F.U. and just sit.

                Ron

                (Keep checking the sitting schedule, maybe I'll throw in a morning sit now and again )
                Meido Shugen
                明道 修眼

                Comment

                • Stephanie

                  #9
                  Re: commitment

                  Gods, my commitment level is atrocious right now. My resistance to sitting remains extremely high. I can psych myself up all day for sitting when I get home, and get distracted by the first shiny thing that grabs my attention when I walk through the door. My practice, at least on a formal level, is a mess right now. Minimal discipline. And it bothers me, because I know that how lost I feel at times on a spiritual level is directly related to my lack of consistent practice, especially consistent sitting.

                  I do practice in more informal ways in daily life--I don't think I really have any option not to at this point. I've seen too clearly how delusions serve themselves not to notice them at work in my daily activity and reactivity. "Oh, that's just a thought. Got me again!" Other than that, I'm a disaster zone of aggressiveness, distractedness, and bad habits right now. I would make the baby Buddha cry :lol:

                  Anyway, thanks for the welcome back, Ron. Your commitment and practice inspire me.

                  Comment

                  • Shugen
                    Treeleaf Unsui
                    • Nov 2007
                    • 4535

                    #10
                    Re: commitment

                    Meido Shugen
                    明道 修眼

                    Comment

                    • roky
                      Member
                      • Jul 2008
                      • 311

                      #11
                      Re: commitment

                      howdy, steph, glad you're still pounding your head against the wall, together with the rest of us

                      ron, i'll be doing a bit of a retreat from the 7th to the 21st, while my wife is away -- maybe i'll put on the webcam for some of the sits -- i'm less technically challenged since buying a netbook with built in webcam -- even been using skype -- my kinhin may be impaired, as i'm tearing up the floor here while mireille is gone

                      i still think the online zen hall was a great idea, but it just has never taken off -- after my "save the zen hall" post last year, i came to the conclusion that it was not a priority of treeleaf, so gave up

                      roky
                      "no resistance"
                      thaddeus golas

                      Comment

                      • Shugen
                        Treeleaf Unsui
                        • Nov 2007
                        • 4535

                        #12
                        Re: commitment

                        Roky,

                        Hope to see ya!

                        (By the way - what time do you think I sit? It's usually somewhere from 8:30pm Eastern Standard Time and 10pm Eastern Standard Time)

                        Ron
                        Meido Shugen
                        明道 修眼

                        Comment

                        • roky
                          Member
                          • Jul 2008
                          • 311

                          #13
                          Re: commitment

                          ron -- i know its later in the evening then i can do without coffee, which i continue to need to avoid -- even at retreat centers i've always had difficulty with late sits, with a few rare exceptions -- just an old fart, i guess

                          my own theory is that i wear myself down all day with my head games to the point that i'm exhausted by evening -- different rhythms for different folks? -- i'm not exactly what folks would describe as "hyper"

                          anyway, just did a test sit on the new netbook, and it worked beautifully, though so far i have to do it on windows, not linux

                          roky
                          "no resistance"
                          thaddeus golas

                          Comment

                          • Shugen
                            Treeleaf Unsui
                            • Nov 2007
                            • 4535

                            #14
                            Re: commitment

                            I was at work but peeked in on you. Looking Good!

                            Ron
                            Meido Shugen
                            明道 修眼

                            Comment

                            • Taylor
                              Member
                              • May 2010
                              • 388

                              #15
                              Re: commitment

                              Commitment is what you make it. Sometimes it seems to be a blessing, pushing us forward to practice because we have committed ourselves to peace, liberation, zazen. Sometimes a burden; pulling us from things we find more productive, thoughts we find more interesting.

                              Currently, at this very moment, I have terrible heartburn (damn tomatoes find their way into everything I eat, sheesh, I age faster than I realize :roll: ). It is 1 am at my home. I will brush my teeth, and sit. It seems to be a burden now because all I want to do is curl up and sleep this physical pain away. But through rain, through sleet, through acid reflux we sit on! Not because we have to but exactly because we HAVE to! Because without zazen this would be permanent pain, or would seem so. Zazen is exactly zazen, pain, pleasure, storm, and sun. Commitment is zazen and zazen is certainly a commitment. Do whatever is best for you.

                              I apologize if that was ranty, it is the witching hour for ranty posts 8)

                              Gassho
                              Taylor
                              Gassho,
                              Myoken
                              [url:r05q3pze]http://staresatwalls.blogspot.com/[/url:r05q3pze]

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