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Digest #12

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  • !Namo@mituofO!
    Zeph&Frens Digest #12 __________________________________ Re: 3 Cups & Ball The remarkable 3 Cups & 1 Ball article is found @
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 2, 2000
    • 0 Attachment
      Zeph&Frens Digest #12
      __________________________________
      Re: 3 Cups & Ball

      The remarkable 3 Cups & 1 Ball article is found @
      http://www.egroups.com/message/zeph/62?&start=32

      Greetings ,

      Zennist@i... has made a very important observation. Too often the practice
      of Buddhism, just as in other religion, deteriorates to the point of being
      ritualistic. Over time the practice is filled with forms without the
      substance. Many practitioners do not even know why they do certain things.
      Once I had dinner with a lady who is a Buddhist. Just before taking her meal
      she bowed and said a "prayer" of thanks. I was quite surprised as prayer of
      thanks is only being practised by Christians, as far as I know. I asked her
      why she did what she did. She told me that after she took her vows her
      teacher told her to do it.

      I think Buddhism, instead of being a practice of liberating her adherents
      from attachments, create more rituals and practices that bound them more to
      the externals. Buddha, just before his death, had actually warned people
      against being too attached to the external Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.
      Instead Buddha Sakyamuni had repeatedly urged his students to abandon the
      raft (Diamond Sutra) when it has served its purpose. In reality everything
      that Buddha Sakyamuni had taught MUST be abandoned when one wants to be
      completely liberated (Heart Sutra- Gate-gate paragate parasamgate bodhi
      svaha).

      In another sutra(can't remember exactly) Buddha Sakyamuni warned against
      having teacher-student relationship as between father and child. Such a
      relationship is one of dependence while Buddha Sakyamuni had always
      encouraged his students to seek for the self on the other shore/within (One
      has to be careful with what "Self" here means as Buddha Sakyamuni had taught
      non-self as well).

      I believe that the Sangha community has the responsibility, moral and
      spiritual obligation of leading the Buddhist community towards the internal
      Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. The external Buddha, Dharma and Sangha should
      slowly be killed off as one progresses towards spiritual maturity.

      Buddha Sakyamuni provided the world with 84000 "tools" for liberating
      oneself. It is our responsibility if we are serious about finding resolution
      to our delusion and sufferring, together with the kind and compassionate
      guidance from the Sangha community to try out which one works for us. One
      day I had an insight that Buddha Sakyamuni understood how we all function
      and had provided 3 basic ways of practice that suit how we are wired up.

      Neuro-scientists today recognises that each of us has a particular preferred
      modality for taking in information(some writers mistook this for learning
      styles). The three major ways in which we take in information are ; visual,
      aural and kinesthetic. The way we store and process this information is
      called learning styles.

      In meditation, if we closed our eyes or just look in front of us, we silent
      the visual input. If we chant the aural input is being "silent" when the
      chanting masked out all other input. When we do prostrations we "silent" our
      body.

      We can see that if our major input modality is kinesthetic, prostrations or
      walking meditation will silent the mind very quickly. If it is aural,
      chanting will work while those who are visual, sitting meditation will work
      best. No one can decide for us and we have to experiment it ourselves to see
      what works for us. The criteria for success or failure of a practice can be
      determined quite easily. When one feels a sense of well-being at the end of
      a practice then that practice works for you. After a period of time you will
      developed a hightened sense of
      awareness.

      A caucasian lady was so put off by zazen (meditation) that she described it
      as "excruciating practice". Here even we should try to adapt. If sitting
      without back support is excruciating then commonsense dictates that we sit
      with back support. There is NO magic bullet or formula in buddhism and one
      shouldn't be promoted.

      To me that's the spirit in which Buddha Sakyamuni had tried to convey to all
      of us. All the precepts, advice, eight-fold path etc. are just tools to be
      abandoned when one intuitively understood what it means. If we have the
      right understanding of RIGHT UNDERSTANDING, we don't need RIGHT
      UNDERSTANDING anymore. This has always been the spirit and intend in which
      buddhism was conveyed. Such notions are to guide us until we have attained a
      deeper and intuitive understanding of the issues involved.

      Buddha Sakyamuni's advice to all to test out his teachings as well as let go
      his teachings when one has understood it or find it not useful, set him out
      to be a Great Teacher. To him there is no good or bad practices, only those
      that works.

      Once when a Zen master was asked if he accepted all that his teacher has
      taught him seeing that his teacher was a prominent teacher, he replied that
      "he accepted half and rejected the other half". To the questioner's derison
      that the zen master was being arrogant, he replied that if he had accepted
      all that his teacher had taught him then he wouldn't be worthy of his
      teacher. It was due to his deep respect for his teacher who had helped him
      grow that he know which half to reject.

      Buddha Sakyamuni once remarked that since the infinity of time there has
      been no new dharma and all dharma are the same. When one recognises this
      then the practice as a buddhist become simple and flows
      easily. We are not so caught up by social expectations, rituals and our
      deluded notions of good
      or evil.

      Buddha once remarked to Bikkhus,"Bikkhus, whoever sees suffering sees the
      making of suffering, the ending of suffering, and the path that leads to the
      end of suffering...". All of Buddha Sakyamuni's teaching is based, not on
      just simple or superficial concepts of ecology, but on a much subtler and
      deeper level of ecology of interbeing. Just as in the Eight fold path if one
      just understands one of them deeply, one understands the other 7(Thich Nhat
      Hanh). When one practises one, one practises the other 7.

      When one is attached to names, forms and self, arrogance, self-righteousness
      and suffering will be the result. In similar vane, when one is aware of
      this, one has launched his/her raft towards the other shore. If not we will
      continue to walk on this side of the shore carrying this raft(burden) of
      "buddhism" on our back. In our self-delusion we think we are practising
      buddhism.

      Once Buddha was asked by the philosopher Vatsitgotra if there was a self.
      Buddha kept quiet. Vatsitgotra persisted, "do you mean there is no self".
      Again Buddha kept quiet. After Vatsitgotra left . Ananda asked Buddha why he
      didn't tell him about non-self as he so often taught. Buddha replied that
      Vatsitgotra was looking for a theory and not a way of removing obstacles.
      All of Buddha's teaching, if it is reduced to theory, rituals and forms
      would be a grave injustice to all that Buddha had tried to teach.

      -Non-buddhist @ no-self: > npkcc@...
      _____________________________________________
      Please feel free to share with us your thoughts on the above
      Missed Previous Zeph&Frens Mails? Go: http://www.egroups.com/group/zeph/
    • Ng Pei Fuen
      Sometime ago I was fully absorbing the doctrine of emptiness or nothingness which was meant to destroy any sense of attachment one had to the idea of
      Message 2 of 2 , Jun 2, 2000
      • 0 Attachment
        Sometime ago I was fully absorbing the doctrine of "emptiness or
        nothingness" which was meant to destroy any sense of attachment one had to
        the idea of permanence. Everything became meaningless, delusions, mere
        attachments, and I actively began to challenge perceptions, beliefs,
        dependence on certain activities.

        It got me unsettled, away from being too comfortable, away from 'forms
        without the substance' as phrased by non-Buddhists.
        It was good until I realised that I became too sceptical. I questioned for
        the sake of being an intelligently questioner. I rejected any type of form/
        symbol/ icon of significance as attachment, as being blind followers of
        convention. I became attached to "nothingness" and "formless". In breaking
        away from form, I attached myself firmly to non-form i.e. the concept.

        It is important to be systematic in Buddhism. We practice morality
        (precepts) before concentration, and concentration before wisdom. Similarly
        we should proceed from using the right tools and methods to settle
        ourselves FIRST, before thinking about abandoning these and moving beyond.

        I've seen many learning Buddhists proclaim rituals as just forms and
        refusing to partake in similar activity, even rejecting them as Buddhist
        practices. But have they even picked up that 'tool' or so called form
        before proclaiming it useless?

        Many try to take short-cuts and aspire to the highest attainment without
        getting a direction from the main, primary road. Tools are out there
        waiting to be used, but these are overlooked and downplayed many times.

        If enlightenment can be attained without grasping? Then why would the
        numerous practice methods in the various traditions spurn out like nobody's
        business?

        Wisdom is knowing why you grasp, and being aware of when you should let go.

        It is not about emptying your savings down the toilet bowl the day before
        you need to pay up your rent.
        It is also not about leaving your ill parent alone to die because you
        shouldn't be attached to her death.

        Wisdom is about knowing why and what is worth grasping, and being aware of
        when it's time to let go.

        The best is to be open and observe everything you come across as something
        new, un judging, and with the attitude of "come and see" (ehi passiko)!

        With metta
        Peifen

        At 09:25 PM 6/2/2000 +0800, you wrote:
        >Zeph&Frens Digest #12
        >__________________________________
        >Re: 3 Cups & Ball
        >
        >The remarkable 3 Cups & 1 Ball article is found @
        >http://www.egroups.com/message/zeph/62?&start=32
        >
        >Greetings ,
        >
        >Zennist@i... has made a very important observation. Too often the practice
        >of Buddhism, just as in other religion, deteriorates to the point of being
        >ritualistic. Over time the practice is filled with forms without the
        >substance. Many practitioners do not even know why they do certain things.
        >Once I had dinner with a lady who is a Buddhist. Just before taking her meal
        >she bowed and said a "prayer" of thanks. I was quite surprised as prayer of
        >thanks is only being practised by Christians, as far as I know. I asked her
        >why she did what she did. She told me that after she took her vows her
        >teacher told her to do it.
        >
        >I think Buddhism, instead of being a practice of liberating her adherents
        >from attachments, create more rituals and practices that bound them more to
        >the externals. Buddha, just before his death, had actually warned people
        >against being too attached to the external Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.
        >Instead Buddha Sakyamuni had repeatedly urged his students to abandon the
        >raft (Diamond Sutra) when it has served its purpose. In reality everything
        >that Buddha Sakyamuni had taught MUST be abandoned when one wants to be
        >completely liberated (Heart Sutra- Gate-gate paragate parasamgate bodhi
        >svaha).
        >
        >In another sutra(can't remember exactly) Buddha Sakyamuni warned against
        >having teacher-student relationship as between father and child. Such a
        >relationship is one of dependence while Buddha Sakyamuni had always
        >encouraged his students to seek for the self on the other shore/within (One
        >has to be careful with what "Self" here means as Buddha Sakyamuni had taught
        >non-self as well).
        >
        > I believe that the Sangha community has the responsibility, moral and
        >spiritual obligation of leading the Buddhist community towards the internal
        >Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. The external Buddha, Dharma and Sangha should
        >slowly be killed off as one progresses towards spiritual maturity.
        >
        >Buddha Sakyamuni provided the world with 84000 "tools" for liberating
        >oneself. It is our responsibility if we are serious about finding resolution
        >to our delusion and sufferring, together with the kind and compassionate
        >guidance from the Sangha community to try out which one works for us. One
        >day I had an insight that Buddha Sakyamuni understood how we all function
        >and had provided 3 basic ways of practice that suit how we are wired up.
        >
        >Neuro-scientists today recognises that each of us has a particular preferred
        >modality for taking in information(some writers mistook this for learning
        >styles). The three major ways in which we take in information are ; visual,
        >aural and kinesthetic. The way we store and process this information is
        >called learning styles.
        >
        >In meditation, if we closed our eyes or just look in front of us, we silent
        >the visual input. If we chant the aural input is being "silent" when the
        >chanting masked out all other input. When we do prostrations we "silent" our
        >body.
        >
        >We can see that if our major input modality is kinesthetic, prostrations or
        >walking meditation will silent the mind very quickly. If it is aural,
        >chanting will work while those who are visual, sitting meditation will work
        >best. No one can decide for us and we have to experiment it ourselves to see
        >what works for us. The criteria for success or failure of a practice can be
        >determined quite easily. When one feels a sense of well-being at the end of
        >a practice then that practice works for you. After a period of time you will
        >developed a hightened sense of
        >awareness.
        >
        >A caucasian lady was so put off by zazen (meditation) that she described it
        >as "excruciating practice". Here even we should try to adapt. If sitting
        >without back support is excruciating then commonsense dictates that we sit
        >with back support. There is NO magic bullet or formula in buddhism and one
        >shouldn't be promoted.
        >
        >To me that's the spirit in which Buddha Sakyamuni had tried to convey to all
        >of us. All the precepts, advice, eight-fold path etc. are just tools to be
        >abandoned when one intuitively understood what it means. If we have the
        >right understanding of RIGHT UNDERSTANDING, we don't need RIGHT
        >UNDERSTANDING anymore. This has always been the spirit and intend in which
        >buddhism was conveyed. Such notions are to guide us until we have attained a
        >deeper and intuitive understanding of the issues involved.
        >
        >Buddha Sakyamuni's advice to all to test out his teachings as well as let go
        >his teachings when one has understood it or find it not useful, set him out
        >to be a Great Teacher. To him there is no good or bad practices, only those
        >that works.
        >
        >Once when a Zen master was asked if he accepted all that his teacher has
        >taught him seeing that his teacher was a prominent teacher, he replied that
        >"he accepted half and rejected the other half". To the questioner's derison
        >that the zen master was being arrogant, he replied that if he had accepted
        >all that his teacher had taught him then he wouldn't be worthy of his
        >teacher. It was due to his deep respect for his teacher who had helped him
        >grow that he know which half to reject.
        >
        >Buddha Sakyamuni once remarked that since the infinity of time there has
        >been no new dharma and all dharma are the same. When one recognises this
        >then the practice as a buddhist become simple and flows
        >easily. We are not so caught up by social expectations, rituals and our
        >deluded notions of good
        >or evil.
        >
        >Buddha once remarked to Bikkhus,"Bikkhus, whoever sees suffering sees the
        >making of suffering, the ending of suffering, and the path that leads to the
        >end of suffering...". All of Buddha Sakyamuni's teaching is based, not on
        >just simple or superficial concepts of ecology, but on a much subtler and
        >deeper level of ecology of interbeing. Just as in the Eight fold path if one
        >just understands one of them deeply, one understands the other 7(Thich Nhat
        >Hanh). When one practises one, one practises the other 7.
        >
        >When one is attached to names, forms and self, arrogance, self-righteousness
        >and suffering will be the result. In similar vane, when one is aware of
        >this, one has launched his/her raft towards the other shore. If not we will
        >continue to walk on this side of the shore carrying this raft(burden) of
        >"buddhism" on our back. In our self-delusion we think we are practising
        >buddhism.
        >
        >Once Buddha was asked by the philosopher Vatsitgotra if there was a self.
        >Buddha kept quiet. Vatsitgotra persisted, "do you mean there is no self".
        >Again Buddha kept quiet. After Vatsitgotra left . Ananda asked Buddha why he
        >didn't tell him about non-self as he so often taught. Buddha replied that
        >Vatsitgotra was looking for a theory and not a way of removing obstacles.
        >All of Buddha's teaching, if it is reduced to theory, rituals and forms
        >would be a grave injustice to all that Buddha had tried to teach.
        >
        >-Non-buddhist @ no-self: > npkcc@...
        >_____________________________________________
        >Please feel free to share with us your thoughts on the above
        >Missed Previous Zeph&Frens Mails? Go: http://www.egroups.com/group/zeph/
        >
        >
        >
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