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Your Favorite Dharma Gems

For discussion of Buddha Dharma, including teachings common to all Buddhist schools, such as the Four Noble Truths, Dependent Origination, etc., that is not specific to Mahayana or Therevada

Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby partofit22 on Sun Jan 17, 2016 7:47 pm

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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby partofit22 on Sun Jan 17, 2016 7:49 pm

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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Sun Jan 17, 2016 7:56 pm

USA Comedian Steven Wright (b. 1955):

"I hate it when my leg falls asleep in the daytime,
'cause then I know it's going to be awake all night."


--Joe

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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Thu Mar 10, 2016 7:26 pm

D.T. Suzuki, on "Emptiness" as expounded in the Lankavatara Sutra. --Joe

"The outside world of form-and-name
and the inner world of thought and feeling
are both no more than the construction of mind,
and when the mind ceases, the weaving-out
of a world of particulars is stopped.


This stopping is called emptiness or no birth,
but it is not the wiping out of existence,
it is on the contrary viewing it truthfully
unhampered by discriminative categories."


    --D. T. Suzuki; STUDIES IN THE LANKAVATARA SUTRA; 1930; 297.
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:52 pm

From Edward Conze, Buddhist Wisdom: The Diamond Sutra and The Heart Sutra (from the Introduction).

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--Joe
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Mar 11, 2016 4:00 pm

This excerpt too is taken from Edward Conze, Buddhist Wisdom: The
Diamond Sutra and The Heart Sutra
(from the Introduction).

A very concentrated, richly informative, and potent excerpt. I think the
final three or four sentences express in particular what practicing Zen
Buddhists -- as Mahayanists -- would emphasize.

(I'll add, too, that it's very interesting, and telling, that Avalokitesvara,
the Bodhisattva of Compassion is the one who is given to be
"Coursing in the deep Prajnaparamita" at the start of the Heart Sutra, not
Manjusri, the Bodhisattva of Wisdom. Thus, Wisdom is not alone, and
Wisdom is not enough, in Awakening: instead (in fact), Wisdom and
Compassion arise together in accord with circumstances.) -- Joe

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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Mar 14, 2016 4:49 pm

Prajna as the Primary Value

Zen Buddhism -- and I think all the Mahayana schools, properly so called -- teach the greater value of prajna above the mere quietism, peace, and rest ascribed to nirvana.

It is prajna which allows the breaking of the ensnarement in Samsara, but yet simultaneously allows the Bodhisattva to remain in Samsara, and develop skillful means there in order to save all beings.

From Albert Low, Roshi; ZEN AND THE SUTRAS; 2000; 29.

    "It is by dwelling in prajna wisdom, not by dwelling in some blessed state of rest, that we may find an end to suffering. Just as full Buddhahood has, with the advent of the Mahayana, replaced samadhi as the ultimate goal of practice, prajna has become the primary virtue, replacing dhyana or samadhi. It is as a consequence of prajna, the sutra tells us, that the bodhisattva 'saw the emptiness of all five skandhas'... ".
I'd add that, indeed, the very first two lines of the Heart Sutra run:

"Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva, practicing deep Prajna Paramita,
Clearly saw that all five skandhas are empty, transforming anguish and distress.
"

:Namaste:,

--Joe
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby Monk Rob on Thu Mar 24, 2016 5:13 am

“A zendo is not a place for bliss or relaxation, but a furnace room for the combustion of our egoistic delusions. What tools do we need to use? Only one. We’ve all heard of it, yet we use it very seldom. It is called Attention.”-Joko Beck
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby fukasetsu on Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:02 am

Do you need Me?
I am there.

You cannot see Me, yet I am the light you see by.
You cannot hear Me, yet I speak through your voice.
You cannot feel Me, yet I am the power at work in your hands.

I am at work, though you do not understand My ways.
I am at work, though you do not understand My works.
I am not strange visions. I am not mysteries.

Only in absolute stillness, beyond self, can you know Me
as I am, and then but as a feeling and a faith.

Yet I am there. Yet I hear. Yet I answer.
When you need Me, I am there.
Even if you deny Me, I am there.
Even when you feel most alone, I am there.
Even in your fears, I am there.
Even in your pain, I am there.

I am there when you pray and when you do not pray.
I am in you, and you are in Me.
Only in your mind can you feel separate from Me, for
only in your mind are the mists of "yours" and "mine."
Yet only with your mind can you know Me and experience Me.

Empty your heart of empty fears.
When you get yourself out of the way, I am there.
You can of yourself do nothing, but I can do all.
And I am in all.

Though you may not see the good, good is there, for
I am there. I am there because I have to be, because I am.

Only in Me does the world have meaning;
only out of Me does the world take form;
only because of Me does the world go forward.
I am the law on which the movement of the stars
and the growth of living cells are founded.

I am the love that is the law's fulfilling.
I am assurance.
I am peace.
I am oneness.
I am the law that you can live by.
I am the love that you can cling to.
I am your assurance.
I am your peace.
I am ONE with you.
I am.

Though you fail to find Me, I do not fail you.
Though your faith in Me is unsure,
My faith in you never wavers,
because I know you, because I love you.

Beloved, I AM there.

~i am there - james dillet freeman - 1947
Everyone for President!
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Wed Mar 30, 2016 6:57 pm

P'ang Yun ("Layman Pang), when he was with Ch'an Master Shih T'ou, was asked a question by Master Shih T'ou:

    "Since you have seen this old man (i.e., me), what have you been doing each day?"
P'ang replied,

    "If you ask me what I have been doing, I do not how to open my mouth (to talk about it)."
Sometime afterward the Layman presented the following poem to Master Shih T'ou:

    "There is nothing special about what I do each day;
    I only keep myself in harmony with it,
    Everywhere I neither accept nor reject anything.
    Nowhere do I confirm or refute a thing.
    Why do people say that red and purple differ?
    There's not a speck of dust on the blue mountain.
    Supernatural powers and wonder-making works
    Are but fetching water and the gathering of wood."
Master Shih T'ou approved the poem and asked if Layman P'ang would join the monastic order, or remain a layman, an upasaka.

P'ang replied: "I will do as I please", and did not shave his head.

(this account is given as above in Lu K'uan Yu's (Charles Luk's) Ch'an and Zen Teaching -- First Series, Shambhala, 1970, p.75).

A. Ferguson, in Zen's Chinese Heritage, Wisdom Publications, Expanded Edition, 2011, p. 109, gives the last two lines of the poem as:

    "How miraculous and wondrous,
    Hauling water and carrying firewood."

--Joe

p.s. Layman P'ang later went to Master Ma Tsu, awakened yet more deeply, and stayed with Master Ma for two years.
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby another_being on Wed Apr 27, 2016 12:58 am

Do not sit with a mind fixed on emptiness.
If you do, you will fall into a neutral kind of emptiness.
Emptiness includes the sun, moon, stars and planets,
The great earth, mountains and rivers,
All trees and grasses,
Bad people and good people,
Bad things and good things,
Heaven and hell;
They are all in the midst of emptiness.

~ Huineng ~
"Some people think they are enlightened, some people think they are not enlightened." -- Denko
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby Nothing on Thu Apr 28, 2016 8:32 am

The practice of meditation is represented by the three monkeys,
who cover their eyes, ears and mouths so as to avoid the phenomenal world.

The practice of non-meditation is ceasing to be the see-er, hearer or speaker
while eyes, ears and mouths are fulfilling their function in daily life. - Wei Wu Wei (Terence James Stannus Gray)
"There is no vestige of a beginning, no prospect of an end" - James Hutton
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby ed blanco on Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:04 pm

ALL HE SEES IS BLUE

When the P'eng bird journeys to the southern darkness the waters are roiled for three thousand li.
He beats the whirlwind and rises ninety thousand lim setting off on the six months gale.
Wavering heat, bits of dust, living things blowing each other about - the sky looks very blue.
Is that its real color, or is it because it's so far away and has no end?
When the bird looks down all he sees is blue too.
CHUANG - TSU
from Gary Snyder's THE GREAT CLOD

:O:
IT SPEAKS IN SILENCE
IN SPEECH YOU HEAR ITS SILENCE

Yongjia Xuanjue
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby another_being on Wed May 25, 2016 4:21 pm

Wayfarers with enlightened eyes strike down both devil and Buddha. If you love the holy and despise the ordinary, you are bobbing in the ocean of birth and death.

- Lin Chi (d 867)
"Some people think they are enlightened, some people think they are not enlightened." -- Denko
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Sat Jun 11, 2016 3:55 pm

Speaking of Zen Buddhist practice, Robert Aitken Roshi (1917-2010) said:

"Our practice is not to clear up the mystery.
It is to make the mystery clear."
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Sat Jun 11, 2016 4:49 pm

David Loy (b. 1947) puts it very succinctly -- how two of the Three Poisons, Ignorance (delusion) and Greed (craving) -- work together to create and prolong a sense of self:

"Delusions collude with cravings to reify the sense of a self
that feels separate from the world it is 'in'."


--David Loy, A New Buddhist Path (2015), p.61.
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Sat Jun 11, 2016 7:32 pm

.
"Before You Can Think out of the Box, You Have to Start with a Box"

    --Twyla Tharp, 2003
(title of Chapter Five of her book, The Creative Habit)
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Wed Jun 15, 2016 2:22 pm

Sariputra (speaking):

    "It is hard, it is exceedingly hard to gain confidence in the
    perfection of wisdom, if one is unpracticed, has planted no wholesome
    roots, is in the hands of a bad friend, has come under the sway of Mara, is
    lazy, of small vigor, robbed of mindfulness, and stupid."
Edward Conze (transl.), The Perfection of Wisdom in Eight Thousand Lines & Its Verse Summary, 1973. Chapter VIII, [186], p. 142.

--Joe
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Sat Jul 23, 2016 4:34 pm

"A soteriological doctrine like Buddhism becomes a 'philosophy' when its intellectual content is explained to outsiders."

    --Edward Conze, Buddhist Thought In India (1962, 1967); p. 28
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Re: Your Favorite Dharma Gems

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Aug 01, 2016 3:20 pm

.
"Ignorance, and not sin, is the root evil. ***

*** Some of it synonyms are delusion, folly, confusion, and self-deception."

--Edward Conze, Buddhist Thought In India (1962; 1967), p. 55.
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