Zen Filter

Zen Buddhist websites, news, and discussion

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Blogmandu: Roundup for Apr 23 - 29, 2006

As always, Blogmandu has links to some interesting blogs:

"There is/was a ton of great stuff for Buddhism blog readers to find, written by our noble blogger friends. Hot topics: Ken Wilber, the Dalai Lama, Osho, animal rights, Kabbalah, Hotei on a wall, Peaceful Warrior, Buddhism in the hinterlands, another Danny Fisher sighting, a killer cow, and differences between South Koreans and Americans."

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Exploring Buddhism

Another interesting Buddhist blog. Here's an excerpt from a post titled " Hyperactive mind!":

"Not condemning myself for this, but when I meditated this evening my mind would not quit!"

Been there.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Miraculous Awakening

A Zen talk by Venerable Hyunoong Sunim with translator Ja Gwang:

"We have this miraculous awareness that cannot be expressed in words; and we have to simply experience it. Then automatically the things that we cling to are released. At that point we are no longer attached-- not because we are trying to be unattached but because our nature no longer clings to anything."

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Zen pencils?

More Zen marketing spotted at Paper Frog:

"Introducing Zen Pencils. One might now presumably seek enlightenment while working out the weekly grocery list. What will they think of next?"

Friday, April 21, 2006

Excerpt from "Secret of the Golden Flower"

Translated by Thomas Cleary(1991):

"So should one have no thoughts? It is impossible to have no thoughts. Should one not breathe? It is impossible not to breathe. Nothing compares to making the affliction the medicine, which means to have mind and breath rest on each other. Therefore turning the breath should be included in turning the light around."

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Candle Light from "Zen: The perfect Companion"

A quote from Zen : The Perfect Companion, which I like to read because it has koans, stories, and commentary that follow. The following is from the book.

Candle light

One evening, Zen Master Man Gong lit a candle by the window in his room. He then asked his attendant, "Which is the true light, the candlelight or the light reflected in the window?"
The attendant blew out the candle and said, "Master, what can you do?" Man Gong then re-lit the candle.

No eyes, no light. No mouth, no speech. If you turn on the light, the room is bright. If you turn off the light, the room is dark.

Is Buddhism in its many forms, the Religion of the future?

As I see Buddhism spread among the enlightened world I believe Einstein’s statement may hold true.

Buddhism - The Four Noble Truths, The Eightfold Path, Karma and Meditation Practice

The religion of the future will be a cosmic religion. It should transcend a personal God and avoid dogmas and theology. Covering both the natural and the spiritual, it should be based on a religious sense arising from the experience of all things, natural and spiritual as a meaningful unity. If there is any religion that would cope with modern scientific needs, it would be Buddhism.

Albert Einstein

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

EverydayZen Teachings

Interesting discussion of the cat cutting koan:

"In Zen precepts study it is always noted that there are three level of precept practice- the literal, the compassionate, and the ultimate. On the literal level we just follow the precept according to its explicit meaning- not to kill means not to kill, not even a bug. But on the compassion level we recognize the complexity of living- sometimes not to kill one thing is to kill something else. The network of causality is vast and wide and our human ideas do not encompass it. We recognize that precepts will be broken and we affirm that our guide will be compassion- to follow precepts not only literally but with a strong spirit of compassion as our guide, with unselfishness as our guide. So sometimes we break precepts in order to be compassionate and loving. On the ultimate level we recognize that there is no breaking precepts. This case involves this ultimate level of precept practice- the recognition that Nanchuan and Zhaozhou have, but that the monks lack, that there is no killing, that life can never be killed- or is already dead.

. . . The precepts and not therefore simply rules of ethical conduct- like laws to be obeyed. The precepts- our everyday conduct- take us to the root of what it means to be alive, take us to the center of the human problem of meaning. Nor is it the case that there’s a hierarchy of importance in the three levels of precept practice- with ultimate being the most important. In reality the three levels must be appreciated equally- and seen as they actually are, as all one level. We are always faced with the question whose depths we will never be able to fathom: what do I do?"

Monday, April 17, 2006

Zen/Ch'an FAQ - reading list

A reading list for Zen beginners:
"The following short list of books is meant to help the beginner gain, not only a philosophical understanding of Zen, but also, at least, an intellectual understanding of Law of Buddha."

Zen marketing; XPC Zen computer

I love the pictures, the woman looks like she's meditating and the computer is floating, perhaps due to her deep samadhi?:

"The XPC Zen is an ideal:
Digital hub (music, photos and video);
Desktop replacement;
Home media center;
Home office platform."

Friday, April 14, 2006

more Zen marketing: Zen Shower Curtain

"Zen - Sheer curtain, poly linen/cotton blend."

How . . . Zen.

Upaya Zen Center: Zen Poems

Some Zen poems. Here's one:

"We accept the graceful falling
Of mountain cherry blossoms,
But it is much harder for us
To fall away from our own
Attachment to the world.
Mountain Falling Flowers

by Rengetsu, a Buddhist nun"

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Dharma Sound Zen Center FAQ

I found this answer to the question, "How can I involve my children in my Zen practice?" interesting:

"If, when we are with our children, we are fully engaged in listening and responding to them, then we completely embody Zen practice and become the example from which our children learn. Even a child who expresses no interest in or disapproval of Zen will inevitably learn from our effort to be present in each moment and our desire to help."

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Mindfulness: The practice of being “here” | 43 Folders

Merlin Mann has several mindfulness related quotes on his 43folders site; here's one:

"From the Buddhist perspective, our ordinary waking state of consciousness is seen as being severely limited and limiting, resembling in many respects an extended dream rather than wakefulness. Meditation helps us wake up from this sleep of automaticity and unconsciousness, thereby making it possible for us to live our lives with access to the full spectrum of our conscious and unconscious possibilities."

Monday, April 10, 2006

Huang-po quotes

"This pure mind, which is the source of all things, shines forever with the radiance of its own perfection. But most people are not aware of it, and think that mind is just the faculty that sees, hears, feels, and knows. Blinded by their own sight, hearing, feeling, and knowing, they don't perceive the radiance of the source. If they could eliminate all conceptual thinking, this source would appear, like the sun rising through the empty sky and illuminating the whole universe. Therefore, you students of the Tao who seek to understand through seeing, hearing, feeling, and knowing, when your perceptions are cut off, your way to mind will be cut off and you will find nowhere to enter. Just realize that although mind is manifested in these perceptions, it is neither part of them nor separate from them. You shouldn't try to analyze these perceptions, or think about them at all; but you shouldn't seek the one mind apart from them. Don't hold on to them or leave them behind or dwell in them or reject them. Above, below, and all around you, all things spontaneously exist, because there is nowhere outside the Buddha mind."

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Excerpt from 33 Fingers: A Collection of Modern American Koans

The link pretty much says it all.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Zen Poetry

There are some nice ones here:

"Crossing long fields,
frozen in its saddle,
my shadow creeps by"

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Sesshin Lecture by Ed Brown

Good point:

"When we start practicing meditation, we say, 'What am I supposed to do? What should I do? How do I do it right?' The answer is to stop asking those questions. Do you understand? The point is to find out what is actually happening, exactly here. When you look closely, you will find that the 'supposed to' or 'should' is not found in what is actually happening, but is something we add."

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