#3877 - Thursday, April 29, 2010 - Editor: Gloria Lee
"True, I may appear
unkempt like a rotting tree,
jetsam or flotsam,
but on the right occasion
this old heart can still blossom."~Kengei
From the book; "The Poetry of Zen," published by Shambhala
posted to Daily Dharma by Dainen Kelley
To be enlightened is to be unconditionally intimate with this moment. -Scott Morrison
from 200 good spiritual quotesposted to Wisdom-l by Mark Scorelle
The State of Not-Knowing
The state of not-knowing is a riveting place to be. And we dont have to climb rocks to experience it. We encounter not-knowing when, for instance, we meet someone new, or when life offers up a surprise. These experiences remind us that change and unpredictability are the pulse of our very existence. No one really knows what will happen from one moment to the next: who will we be, what will we face, and how will we respond to what we encounter? We dont know, but theres a good chance we will encounter some rough, unwanted experiences, some surprises beyond our imaginings, and some expected things, too. And we can decide to stay present for all of it.- Elizabeth Mattis-Namgyel
The manner in which "non-dual" has come to be widely used has turned it into a spiritual disease. "Non-duality" has become an "it" among other "its". "It" is considered superior to other "its" and people prostrate themselves to this "it" among all the "its". They listen to the non-dual fascists who proclaim it as the only true way. It has turned into dualism. It has become sectarian and inflexible.- Martin Goldstein[This comment on Facebook generated 102 comments in response, although wierdly, most were about chocolate. :)]
[A slightly different than the usual conclusion is in this version of the 10 Oxhearding pictures. -G.]
IX. Returning to the source
In the ninth picture there is no man, but a beautiful landscape returns. White clouds pass in front of blue mountains; spring comes and the grass grows by itself; trees grow up and water flows down. This picture means that everything in this universe is already completely expressing its inherent Buddha nature. And our sense organs are capable of revealing this truth to us moment by moment.
What we see, smell, hear, taste, and touch is the complete truth. The Heart Sutra names this state anuttara samyak sambodhi, perfect unexcelled truth. In our school we call this condition "only like this." Buddha sat under the tree in a samadhi of unbounded openness, perceived the particularity of the morning star and attained this mind, which we call original enlightenment. That is the essence of the ninth picture.
X. In town with helping hands
But one last step remains. Our school especially emphasizes the tenth picture throughout our entire training. In the last picture the man appears again, but now he is older, bald and a little heavy. He is usually shown in the middle of the city with children all around, and he is like Hotei, passing out dharma presents to these baby bodhisattvas.
This is final enlightenment and it is not special in the way that most of us conceive when we begin our Zen journey. This picture teaches us that we are to return to the existential world. But we return with a simple, clear and unattached mind that focuses on perceiving our correct relationship and correct situation in each moment. If we practice unceasingly with that intention then our actions will become generous, spontaneous, creative, effortless, and compassionate. This is the true meaning of Zen and it is the same as Nam Cheon's everyday mind or Taoism's wu wei (not doing). Our school calls this condition "just like this."
I'll conclude as I began, with another story about my son. Last year at Easter was the first time that he understood what a holiday was, and he had a grand old time. My wife is really into holiday celebrations, so she had presents for the kids and she hid eggs all around the yard and in the house. It was the first time that he had experienced anything like this, so his eyes were as big as saucers all morning. In the afternoon I noticed him in his room, playing with his new toys and singing to himself. As I listened closely I heard that he was singing to himself over and over, "Thank you, rabbit. Thank you, rabbit." He had this completely open, generous kind of mind. And that is the meaning of the tenth picture and the essential meaning of Zen - "just like this" moment by moment for ten thousand years we must try, try, try to keep this clear, generous, and open bodhisattva spirit.A Youtube versionAll thanks to "askasillyquestion22" on Wisdom-l