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on what are you sitting on?

Discussion of Japanese Sōtō Zen / 曹洞宗

Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby [james] on Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:58 pm

Maybe not.
Is a zen q like a zen g?
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby bokki on Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:39 pm

yes
Another log on the fire,
10,000 frogs singing in the rain
burst into flames

-Linda Anderson, aka LA
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:36 pm

There is no 'zen'. What a whacky notion. There IS however everyday-life (...and especially everyday-life).

There's something to sit on, now... .

Sitting, bro's and sit-sters,

--Joe
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby flutemaker on Sat Jun 17, 2017 5:41 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:I agree.

~ towel flipped - colors reversed | reversed colors - flipped towel ~

desert_woodworker wrote:
flutemaker wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote: (tensioning, really) must continue for about three minutes or more for results to begin.

Unfortunately, this point is quite often missed.

And I'm not sure how this happens.

In invisible ink (to not stray off topic much), here are some thoughts.

The nature of "tensioning", on what level(s) it applies, and the results it is expected to yield are understood by people in a variety of ways. And this indeed can be manifold (not going into details how, and whether or not this differs from the model described in your post). And unless properly realized through one's own practice it is rarely presented correctly to the public.

Drumhead, for example, where "tension" is limited to just South-North, or West-East, cannot technically even produce a sound, not to say play music. There is no place without tension on a perfectly tight skin of a drum. A newly created spiderweb -- has it a single thread which is not tight? A sailing yacht, in a good wind -- has it even a single spot on the entire surface of it's sail that has no tension? This is just an allegory, but the "tensioning" in such manner, without a single spot left untouched by it, is extremely rarely noted, as far as my experience show. Not to say about the many various levels where this works, and how exactly. And why, to work in the ways intended, prolonged application is required.
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby flutemaker on Sat Jun 17, 2017 5:54 pm

bokki wrote:what r u walking on?

We are all walking on a tight rope, balancing (sometimes very unskillfully, and risky) every single moment -- between "life" and "death", with some walking on a sharp blade of a sword, with some over a deep gorge, with some on a burning coals, and so damn often we are not paying enough attention to which things are indeed worth our energy to invest into.
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby Michaeljc on Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:53 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:I find it's good to use a cushion as a "wedge", rather than to be sat on flat as a "lozenge", in cross-legged sitting. This keeps the back-muscles from engaging.

--Joe


Hey Joe: You do sit Zazen (like, every day) ??

I am not picking up the aroma of a steady practitioner in your posts

I have not been sitting regularly over some months. This is why I seldom post :blush:

It will come back

M
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Re: what are you sitting on?

Postby desert_woodworker on Sat Jun 17, 2017 10:01 pm

M.,

Michaeljc wrote:I am not picking up the aroma of a steady practitioner in your posts

Thank you Michael! Not that I'm trying-to, but it seems I'm doing something RIGHT, then. Much appreciated!

Dunno what set you off.

--Joe

p.s. blessings to you and yours on the arrival of your daughter. Pardon my delay in wishing you this! Very, very best wishes. -J.
Last edited by desert_woodworker on Sat Jun 17, 2017 11:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby desert_woodworker on Sat Jun 17, 2017 10:39 pm

flutemaker wrote:In invisible ink (to not stray off topic much), here are some thoughts.

Brilliant! Nice invisible-ink technique.

And, thanks for the thoughts.

By the way, I note that the "tensioning" need be construed in no special way(s) at all, as the tensioning is immediately sensible (by which I mean of course, "feel-able"). One can sense the tensioning. That's for sure! I hope you understand me.

In fact, one of the things that a teacher in the "Yin Yoga" school does, while students in a class are holding a given asana under appropriate "tension" for the long period, is NOT to remain silent, but to TALK about certain things, during the holding. This is particularly compassionate, and often rather sweet, I'd say. The teacher will try to enable the practitioner to be a little bit, a tiny bit, entertained and enriched by information, or other appreciations, while holding under the modicum of discomfort during ...the holding. He or she may mention a point in the Tao Te Ching, or in Buddhist scripture, and we very soon come to know something of the heart of the teacher, helping us. Such a teacher I knew here for a time was visiting us in Arizona from California, when he gave us his workshop one full Saturday at a gathering of the Arizona Yoga Association, in a dance studio here designed by the disciples of architect Frank Lloyd Wright. This teacher was taught by the Grilleys.

The Grilleys were here once too, but I missed them.

--Joe

yin_style_Grilley_book_fifteen_years_ago.jpg
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Re: what are you sitting on?

Postby Michaeljc on Sun Jun 18, 2017 3:24 am

desert_woodworker wrote:M.,

Michaeljc wrote:I am not picking up the aroma of a steady practitioner in your posts

Thank you Michael! Not that I'm trying-to, but it seems I'm doing something RIGHT, then. Much appreciated!

Dunno what set you off.

--Joe

p.s. blessings to you and yours on the arrival of your daughter. Pardon my delay in wishing you this! Very, very best wishes. -J.


Gwenny is doing fine, thanks Joe. One month and one day old. Today I sat with her cradled into one arm. The position accommodated her perfectly. It was kind of special :)

Cheers

M
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Re: what are you sitting on?

Postby jundo on Sun Jun 18, 2017 3:26 am

Michaeljc wrote:Gwenny is doing fine, thanks Joe. One month and one day old. Today I sat with her cradled into one arm. The position accommodated her perfectly. It was kind of special :)

Cheers

M


Congratulations!

Gassho, J
Founder Treeleaf Zendo, Japan. Member SZBA. Treeleaf is an online Sangha for those unable to commute to a Sangha, w/ netcast Zazen, interaction with other practitioners and teachers & all activities of a Soto Sangha, fully online without charge (http://www.treeleaf.org) Nishijima/Niwa
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby Michaeljc on Sun Jun 18, 2017 3:29 am

Thanks Jundo.

How is your youngest doing? Most here will not know of the history behind this. Wonderful story :)

:Namaste:

M

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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby bokki on Sun Jun 18, 2017 10:24 am

Waiting for the Sincere Question
1
My grandmother — we called her Oma — struggled with Alzheimer’s before passing away a few years ago. One evening after dinner, during her last Christmas visit with our family, we were sitting around the table — Oma, my brother, Tracy, and I. Oma took a cookie from her plate, held it up, and asked, “What is it?” One of us, in the gentle way that people do, said, “Oma, that’s a cookie.” She looked irritated. Again: “What is it?” We all glanced at each other around the table. This was awkward. This time, one of us started to explain how a cookie is made. “Well, there’s flour, and egg, and this one has chocolate chips.” Then this 90-plus-year-old woman, who in her lifetime had probably baked about 80,000 cookies, shot us all a very lucid, fiery look, as if we were all disappointments. “I know how to make them,” she said. She held up the cookie again. “What IS it?”
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby jundo on Sun Jun 18, 2017 2:43 pm

Michaeljc wrote:Thanks Jundo.

How is your youngest doing? Most here will not know of the history behind this. Wonderful story :)

:Namaste:

M

Sat-2day


She is 7 now. A lovely way to spend Father's Day, was able to get her up and riding a two wheel bike for the first time today.

Gassho, J

SatToday
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Re: what are you sitting on?

Postby desert_woodworker on Sun Jun 18, 2017 11:24 pm

Dear Michael,

Michaeljc wrote:Gwenny is doing fine, thanks Joe. One month and one day old. Today I sat with her cradled into one arm. The position accommodated her perfectly. It was kind of special

God bless. I can't imagine the joy.

--Joe
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Re: what are you sitting on?

Postby Michaeljc on Mon Jun 19, 2017 12:58 am

"Michaeljc"]I am not picking up the aroma of a steady practitioner in your posts

Thank you Michael! Not that I'm trying-to, but it seems I'm doing something RIGHT, then. Much appreciated!

Dunno what set you off.

--Joe[/quote]

What set me off Joe is that you (apparently to me) evaded the question in the OP


:heya:

m
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Re: what are you sitting on?

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:06 am

M.,

Michaeljc wrote:What set me off Joe is that you (apparently to me) evaded the question in the OP

Ha, nothing new. Thanks!, for the info.

It's none of the fellow's business.

But, ...so ...rather than just to remain mute, I wanted to add some value for others reading, and so posted about some points important about posture.

THAT, I think, is more generally useful than a reply to satisfy the momentary minute curiosity of some impertinent question by an impertinent questioner.

I'm very glad to be able to supply something generally substantive, rather than just something impertinently personal.

"As I see it",

yours,

--Joe
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Re: what are you sitting on?

Postby Michaeljc on Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:31 am

desert_woodworker wrote:M.,

Michaeljc wrote:What set me off Joe is that you (apparently to me) evaded the question in the OP

Ha, nothing new. Thanks!, for the info.

It's none of the fellow's business.

But, ...so ...rather than just to remain mute, I wanted to add some value for others reading, and so posted about some points important about posture.

THAT, I think, is more generally useful than a reply to satisfy the momentary minute curiosity of some impertinent question by an impertinent questioner.

I'm very glad to be able to supply something generally substantive, rather than just something impertinently personal.

"As I see it",

yours,

--Joe


Most odd Joe - I have never found this contributor impertinent. In fact s/he is a fresh young voice simply asking what we sit on.

I sit on a kapok Zafu placed on a chair. This is a treat for this old body after years of lotus and associated pain from degenerative arthritis in the knees

Cheers

m

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Re: what are you sitting on?

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:57 am

M.,

Michaeljc wrote:I have never found this contributor impertinent. In fact s/he is a fresh young voice simply asking what we sit on.

Impertinent... .

--Joe
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby Sparkle on Fri Jun 23, 2017 9:18 pm

I have sat on everything trying to find something that gives pain-free comfort. Sorry to correct... at home for a single sitting it's half lotus on 3 flatfish cushions... 2 half on and one at a slant.

On retreats I can only do this one or two times then the pain becomes impossible.

I can't do seiza because my right knee is goosed. I've had an op' on it but the next step is a full replacement. Something I'm trying to avoid as long as possible.

I have arthritis in my spine (and elsewhere).
They have just recently given me a garden reclining chair to use which for the first time in over 10 years allows me to just sit without trying to deal with pain....wriggling about like a fool. I sit upright as possible with a cushion at my back, and occasionally I lift my feet/legs off the ground.

Sorted!


This haiku is from a while back...PRE-reclining chair.

Pain that will not go
Buckwheat Kapok and foam
Decades pass chairless
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Re: on what are you sitting on?

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Jun 26, 2017 12:42 am

Michael,

(and Dear Ann Landers), :tongueincheek:

Michaeljc wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:I find it's good to use a cushion as a "wedge", rather than to be sat on flat as a "lozenge", in cross-legged sitting. This keeps the back-muscles from engaging.

--Joe

Hey Joe: You do sit Zazen (like, every day) ??

I am not picking up the aroma of a steady practitioner in your posts

Michael, help me, please. I'm still not gettin' it:

Ask any teacher here or at a practice-center about using a cushion as a "wedge", rather than as a lozenge, as I wrote above originally, for those who sit or would like to sit a cross-legged posture. It's just the advice a teacher would give. If not, please let them say so. Please ask them, won't you, if it turns out you're interested.

On another front, what's with calling others' practice into question? I thought that was done-with at ZFI, by universal (ZFI) decree... .

"Perplexed", ;)

--Joe
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