Non-dualism teachings and buddhism

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  • Neo
    • Nov 2012
    • 76

    Non-dualism teachings and buddhism

    Hey guys!

    I don't know if this is the right section but. Lately my steam has ben guiding me to looking into some non-dualism teachings. Have you heard of Paul Smit or Lisa Cairns? Anyway I read somewhere that non-dualism could refer to "may refer to the nonduality of absolute and relative (advaya) in the Mahayana Buddhist tradition". I like the concepts taken up and it feels like very simular to buddhism to me.

    But I was wondering about your tell on this non-dualistic teachings and diffrences/simularities with buddhism. thanks!
    .. because he constantly forgets him self,
    he is never forgotten ..
  • Jundo
    Treeleaf Founder and Priest
    • Apr 2006
    • 39074

    Hi Neo,

    I do not know these particular Teachers. "Non-dual" can have a couple of meanings (little pun there!)

    If it means getting beyond the "I" to get in tune with or merge with some "Great Oneness" or "Cosmic Spirit" or "Godhead" or "Universal Consciousness" or the like, it is a little different (another pun!) from most flavors of Zen Buddhism. This is especially the case if this life and world are viewed as some kind of false dream that needs to be escaped somehow, and that this "Universal Consciousness" or "Godhead" or the like is real while this world is not. While there are certainly some Buddhist and Zen Teachers who teach something like that, I believe that most do not.

    Emptiness is a much more subtle non-concept, and we usually avoid to define it or reify it into something like that. I have described Emptyness as more like a Dance which is sweeping us up in the Dancing. We do not need to consider it some "Cosmic Consciousness" or the like, nor are we even overly concerned with what is the Dance, who or what is the choreographer who made the dance (if any).

    Also, instead of needing to feel "oneness" or think in such terms, we are more "not one, not two" in our approach to non-dualism. This world is perhaps something like a "dream" filled with ignorance ... but once we see through such nature, the "dream" is the stage for the Dance and a perfectly good place to be.

    Our Zazen meditation is not aimed at experiencing that certain buzz sometimes described as a "Blissful Feeliing of Oneness". Oh, sometimes we feel such, but we are so "at one" with things that we are even "at one" with feeling all of life, the ups and downs. One might say that it is a Bliss (Big B) that is so Blissful it does not even need to feel blissful and can even feel anything but blissful. It is a Oneness so At One, that it includes when we feel anything but "at one", and when we feel two, three, four, 0, Tree in the Garden, 1/2, 1/16th, MU! or any other number. The Dance includes birth and death, ups and downs, happy times and sad ... and (although from a certain perspective none of those exist as independent things withing the Dance) all are one because all are the Dance that is 1,2,3,4,5! We see through all that, but neither do we push such away ... and seeing through while not pushing away is rather like being free right in and as this sometimes confining world.

    Zen is a bit more subtle that just some "Blissful Feeling of Oneness" or the like.

    Don't know if I explained well enough here.

    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 09-13-2014, 02:53 AM.