I sat for 30 min...now what?

Collapse
X
 
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts
  • Andrea1974
    Member
    • Mar 2013
    • 56

    I sat for 30 min...now what?

    It seems to me that what we do or not do while we are sitting in Zazen is not different from what we should do when we are awake. When a random thoguht comes to mind during practice I do not bother with it, but when the same random thought comes to mind when I am awake it suddently feels more important, and it generates several other seemingly important thoughts. The problem is that some of these thoughts we have throughout the day are important indeed, while others (most of them I guess) are clearly brain farts. My question to you is...how do you differentiate between a spontaneous thought (that then leads to "right" action) and redundant usless thinking? How do you apply Zazen to your life?

    Gassho,
  • Juki
    Member
    • Dec 2012
    • 771

    #2
    Wait, are you saying that we are not "awake" during Zazen?

    gassho,
    william
    "First you have to give up." Tyler Durden

    Comment

    • Andrea1974
      Member
      • Mar 2013
      • 56

      #3
      Funny...I wanted to either comment on my use (or misuse) of the world awake or to write "awake" instead. I am glad you caught it.

      Ghasso,

      Comment

      • Jundo
        Treeleaf Founder and Priest
        • Apr 2006
        • 39450

        #4
        In Zazen, we allow all thoughts to go and do not latch on ... without judgement of "good thoughts" or "bad thoughts" or "half and half thoughts". Let'em all just go.

        Now, getting up from the cushion, we have to think about many things all day ... this, that and the other thing, places to go, people to see. Then, if a thought seems rapped up in greed and excess desire, clutching, attachment, anger, jealousy, division ... we should recognize such and not think so, getting untangled from such thinking as best we can. If a thought is loving, compassionate, flowing, free, wise and forgiving ... we should recognize it and encourage such thinking.

        One should also continue to taste, on or off the cushion, that which shines right through and behind good and bad, this and that, places and people, going and coming, all division.

        It ain't rocket science.

        Gassho, J

        PS - I am "awake" on the cushion, so not sure what you mean.
        ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

        Comment

        • Sekishi
          Treeleaf Priest / Engineer
          • Apr 2013
          • 5670

          #5
          Is there any difference between "spontaneous thought" and "redundant useless thought"? Thoughts arrive like rain, one after the other, non-stop. Do they belong to you? Are they you? What makes one important and one a brain fart?

          I'm a newb at this (so take this with a giant chunk of salt), but I personally find that the relationship with thoughts that has developed while on the cushion (thought, notice, let go) slowly seeps out of zazen and into other activities. Some thoughts still seem *important* of course, but the act of recognizing them as thoughts saps them of a little of their power.

          So we sit again! (and again, and again).

          Gassho,
          Eric
          Sekishi | 石志 | He/him | Better with a grain of salt, but best ignored entirely.

          Comment

          • Jundo
            Treeleaf Founder and Priest
            • Apr 2006
            • 39450

            #6
            Originally posted by Ctenny
            t the relationship with thoughts that has developed while on the cushion (thought, notice, let go) slowly seeps out of zazen and into other activities.
            In Shikantaza as I would encourage, one would not even do that. Just don't latch on to thoughts, just let them be.

            A fine distinction, perhaps, but Zazen is not a conveyor belt of "thought, notice, let go ... thought, notice, let go ... thought, notice, let go ... ".

            We simply sit, Buddha sitting, allowing all to be without grabbing on.

            The Sacred-Wholeness-Completeness of "Nothing More Need Be Done" Zazen is described in our "All Always Beginners" series ...



            Gassho, J
            Last edited by Jundo; 04-18-2013, 02:05 PM.
            ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

            Comment

            • Daitetsu
              Member
              • Oct 2012
              • 1145

              #7
              Hi Andrea,

              Who has these thoughts? What brings up these thoughts? Where do they emerge from?
              (No need to give me an answer, ask that yourself from time to time.)

              BTW: Zazen is probably one of those rare occasions during which we can be really "awake".

              Thoughts are thoughts - only we give them importance.

              Gassho,

              Timo
              no thing needs to be added

              Comment

              • alan.r
                Member
                • Jan 2012
                • 546

                #8
                Originally posted by Jundo
                In Shikantaza as I would encourage, one would not even do that. Just don't latch on to thoughts, just let them be.

                A fine distinction, perhaps, but Zazen is not a conveyor belt of "thought, notice, let go ... thought, notice, let go ... thought, notice, let go ... ".


                Gassho, J
                Yes. Coming from Vipassana, this was pretty difficult for me at first, but it is a fine and enormous distinction.

                I just want to add this. How do we bring zazen into our life? How do we differentiate between redundant or important thoughts? To me, these are the wrong questions to be asking, just mental games. If you sit zazen fully full, completely empty, it will just become your life (I mean, please take this with a grain of salt too; I'm no example). You don't have to pull the cushion everywhere after you; if we do that, it becomes like a ball and chain. It's like constantly asking oneself: okay, so how in this situation do I experience the beautiful and all-pervading buddha-nature of all things in this stupid moment? You know? So, I guess, when sitting, just sit. When eating, just eating. When talking with somebody, just talk with them. When eating at a dinner party, do that thing. When thinking and analyzing, think and analyze. No need to figure out if you're zazening all the time. (then again, watch for that lazy, loose thing, too)

                gassho

                edit: ps: I don't mean to suggest these are bad questions, we all have them...I'll leave it there...
                Last edited by alan.r; 04-18-2013, 03:30 PM.
                Shōmon

                Comment

                • Andrea1974
                  Member
                  • Mar 2013
                  • 56

                  #9
                  Thanks Jundo!

                  You said that “In Zazen, we allow all thoughts to go and do not latch on ...without judgement of "good thoughts" or "bad thoughts" or"half and half thoughts". Let'em all just go.”

                  ISEE what you mean but I am not sure I UNDERSTAND it (and probably SEEING is enough). Most thoughts are neither good nor bad, butwhat about those that involve important decisions that may affect my life andthose of other people? When you say that “In Zazen, we allow all thoughts to goand do not latch on...” I already categorize that as a thought that is worthspending some time thinking about. The process of discrimination between athough that “seems rapped up in greed and excess desire” vs another that isbased on "love and compassion" is also thinking. How do we “RECOGNIZE such andnot think so”? I am sure it is hard to answer this in writing, but it wouldhelp if you could elaborate a bit more on this process of recognition.
                  “Itain't rocket science.”
                  Itsurely feels worse that rocket science when I try to explain this logically.However, in those moments when my mind is relaxed and I let things go, thesedifficult questions just...dissolve...until I decide to post them on treeleaf, of course : )
                  Thanksagain for your comments!

                  Gassho,

                  P.S.to clarify your P.S.: I am probably more “awake” (= present) when I sit than when I am awake but my mind wondersaround

                  Comment

                  • Oheso
                    Member
                    • Jan 2013
                    • 294

                    #10
                    I agree about the rocket science stuff. it seems that just as an understanding about "Our Way" begins to form in "my mind', it's undermined by its opposite- making understanding, for me, difficult in extremis- give me that logical, reasonable A + B = C any day. I've never used so many "s in my life-

                    not complaining and actually totally jazzed,

                    Robert
                    and neither are they otherwise.

                    Comment

                    • Jundo
                      Treeleaf Founder and Priest
                      • Apr 2006
                      • 39450

                      #11
                      Hi Andrea,

                      I don't know if I follow your questions.

                      Just sit, letting thoughts go. Do not grab them, do not judge.

                      Getting up from the cushion, one is angry, greedy, clutching, jealous etc. when it feels like anger, greed, clutching, jealousy etc. Try not to do so so much.

                      Beyond that, I really don't see what you are philosophizing about.

                      Have you sat with our We're All Beginner's Series yet?



                      Gassho, J
                      ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

                      Comment

                      • Kyonin
                        Treeleaf Priest / Engineer
                        • Oct 2010
                        • 6742

                        #12
                        Andrea,

                        I am not an expert or anything (and I may be wrong), but at some point years ago I let go of all the questions because they are thoughts too.

                        Part of our practice is to accept things as they are. Thoughts are just thoughts and we accept them, without labeling them at all.

                        And then we just sit.

                        Gassho,

                        Kyonin
                        Hondō Kyōnin
                        奔道 協忍

                        Comment

                        • Sekishi
                          Treeleaf Priest / Engineer
                          • Apr 2013
                          • 5670

                          #13
                          Thank you Jundo and Alan for helping me see the mental habits I have acquired during the course of my practice! Apologies for any confusion I may have brought to the discussion.

                          Sekishi | 石志 | He/him | Better with a grain of salt, but best ignored entirely.

                          Comment

                          • Juki
                            Member
                            • Dec 2012
                            • 771

                            #14
                            Kyonin said "at some point years ago I let go of all the questions because they are thoughts too."

                            I agree. The German poet Rilke was not a Buddhist (although he did write a poem titled "Buddha"). But he expresed this very sentiment in his "Letters to a Young Poet." I read this passage years ago, and come back to it quite often:

                            "have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don't search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer."

                            Gassho,
                            William
                            "First you have to give up." Tyler Durden

                            Comment

                            • MyoHo
                              Member
                              • Feb 2013
                              • 632

                              #15
                              Ahhhhh, that's great stuff William!

                              Gassho

                              Enkyo
                              Mu

                              Comment

                              Working...