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Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

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Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby another_being on Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:11 pm

Zen Master Seung Sahn, in his book, The Whole World is a Single Flower: 365 Kong-Ans for Everyday Life, writes on page 24:

Three Statements

The Compass of Zen says that there are three kinds of Zen:

Theoretical Zen teaches, "Form is emptiness. Emptiness is form."

Tathagata Zen teaches, "No form. No emptiness."

Patriarchal Zen teaches, "Form is form. Emptiness is emptiness."

[He questions, Which one is correct? What does each mean?]

[His] Commentary: Mountain is water, water is mountain, but originally there is nothing. If you don't make anything, there is no mountain and no water. Then your mind is clear like space, which means it is clear like a mirror: mountain is mountain, water is water. The mirror correctly reflects everything. Of these three statements, which one is correct? If you find the correct one, you lose your life; if you cannot find it, you lose your body. What can you do? Go drink tea -- then it's clearly in front of you: mountain is blue, water is flowing.

----

Zen Master Seung Sahn, in his book, Compass of Zen, writes on page 228:

Utmost Vehicle Zen

"If everything is created by mind alone, what makes mind? Directly attaining the true nature of mind is the aim of Utmost Vehicle Zen. This kind of meditation is further divided into three types. Conceptual, academic or intellectual understanding of Zen is Theoretical Zen. Attaining an experience of emptiness and perceiving the oneness of mind and the universe is Tathagata Zen. Patriarchal Zen means attaining that everything, just like this, is already truth. This means a relaxed mind, the attainment of Big I. Big I is infinite time and infinite space. Actually, the three kinds of Zen are only one, not three. We sometimes separate them to simplify the teaching and to test a student’s understanding."

----
:Namaste:
"Some people think they are enlightened, some people think they are not enlightened." -- Denko
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby Guo Gu on Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:19 am

another_being wrote:Zen Master Seung Sahn, in his book, The Whole World is a Single Flower: 365 Kong-Ans for Everyday Life, writes on page 24:

Three Statements

The Compass of Zen says that there are three kinds of Zen:

Theoretical Zen teaches, "Form is emptiness. Emptiness is form."

Tathagata Zen teaches, "No form. No emptiness."

Patriarchal Zen teaches, "Form is form. Emptiness is emptiness."

[He questions, Which one is correct? What does each mean?]

[His] Commentary: Mountain is water, water is mountain, but originally there is nothing. If you don't make anything, there is no mountain and no water. Then your mind is clear like space, which means it is clear like a mirror: mountain is mountain, water is water. The mirror correctly reflects everything. Of these three statements, which one is correct? If you find the correct one, you lose your life; if you cannot find it, you lose your body. What can you do? Go drink tea -- then it's clearly in front of you: mountain is blue, water is flowing.


zen toys for zen kids!



another_being wrote:Zen Master Seung Sahn, in his book, Compass of Zen, writes on page 228:

Utmost Vehicle Zen

"If everything is created by mind alone, what makes mind? Directly attaining the true nature of mind is the aim of Utmost Vehicle Zen. This kind of meditation is further divided into three types. Conceptual, academic or intellectual understanding of Zen is Theoretical Zen. Attaining an experience of emptiness and perceiving the oneness of mind and the universe is Tathagata Zen. Patriarchal Zen means attaining that everything, just like this, is already truth. This means a relaxed mind, the attainment of Big I. Big I is infinite time and infinite space. Actually, the three kinds of Zen are only one, not three. We sometimes separate them to simplify the teaching and to test a student’s understanding."


thorns around roses;
fish eyes mixed with pearls.
if you understand seung sahn's zen,
thirty-blows!

enjoy,
guo gu
Founder and teacher of Tallahassee Chan Center of the Dharma Drum Lineage of Chan Buddhism
http://www.tallahasseechan.org/
Received inka from Master Sheng Yen (1930-2009) in 1995
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby chankin1937 on Sun Jul 19, 2015 11:41 am

Is Zen complicated into obscurity?
Surely the message is simple :
Nirvana (peace of mind) is the extinction of dukkha (random and habitual conscious mental activity.)
Colin
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby macdougdoug on Sun Jul 19, 2015 1:41 pm

Dear Chankin

Maybe it means that I used to see the world in a certain way (eg. problems can be resolved if I put my mind to it; or solutions shall be forthcoming if logic is applied).
Due to certain insights, I now see the world more clearly (eg. Suffering is psychological - therefore thinking must be part of the problem).
However, freedom, clarity and understanding are not bound by conclusions. (no longer defined by thoughts - beliefs impair sight/action)
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby desert_woodworker on Sun Jul 19, 2015 1:53 pm

Colin,

chankin1937 wrote:Nirvana (peace of mind) is the extinction of dukkha (random and habitual conscious mental activity.)

Nirvana is being able to use all our original Human inheritances freely, including thought, sticking nowhere.

Diamond Sutra reminds:

"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."

--Joe
Last edited by desert_woodworker on Sun Jul 19, 2015 1:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby partofit22 on Sun Jul 19, 2015 1:55 pm

chankin1937 wrote:Is Zen complicated into obscurity?
Surely the message is simple :
Nirvana (peace of mind) is the extinction of dukkha (random and habitual conscious mental activity.)
Colin


Yes, but it doesn't stay that way- Everything changes, including Nirvana-
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby partofit22 on Sun Jul 19, 2015 1:58 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:Colin,

chankin1937 wrote:Nirvana (peace of mind) is the extinction of dukkha (random and habitual conscious mental activity.)

Nirvana is being able to use all our original Human inheritances freely, including thought, sticking nowhere.

Diamond Sutra reminds:

"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."

--Joe


The mind doesn't abide anywhere, anyway- But since it can appear that it does, reminders that it doesn't are nice to have- They are appreciated-
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby another_being on Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:54 pm

Thank you, Guo Gu. :Namaste: "Only don't know" is a good practice for me and I have to revisit it often.

This was a little extra gift for Joe, regarding his question posted some days ago, and for anyone else who happens by.
"Some people think they are enlightened, some people think they are not enlightened." -- Denko
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby Avisitor on Sun Jul 19, 2015 6:07 pm

another_being wrote:Zen Master Seung Sahn, in his book, Compass of Zen, writes on page 228:


"First you must find your True Way, then understand your karma, and then you can use the strong karma you have with other people to help them. Only in this way can you save all beings from suffering."
Disclaimer: There is no intent to be offensive in my posts. None was intended and none should be interpreted as such.
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby desert_woodworker on Sun Jul 19, 2015 6:18 pm

'morning, P., Teresa,

partofit22 wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:Diamond Sutra reminds:

"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."

The mind doesn't abide anywhere, anyway- But since it can appear that it does, reminders that it doesn't are nice to have- They are appreciated-

Yes, I think that is the spirit in which the Diamond Sutra gives it. And it IS a "spirit", of delivery in the scripture, I'd say, a genuine liveliness, celebration, sparkle, bold vitality of Life, and appreciation of participation in this Mind, the mind of all, the mind of the universe which is, well, the universe itself. Also, an admonishment not to get hung-up at any place, not to "abide", not to "lodge", or become mired-down, stuck-up, and attached.

Not that I'm of the Mind-Only School (Vijñaptimātra) of Buddhism! -- expounded on by the half-brothers Asangha and Vasubandhu, and other Yogacarins -- but Zen Buddhism I feel is very close to that in its appreciation of Mind.

Reminds me of the "Certs" twins, contending:

"Certs is a CANDY mint!" "Certs is a BREATH mint!" ...and the moderator proclaiming, "STOP!, you're BOTH right!" ;)

--Joe

Certs_Twins.jpg

...and by all means, see the 1-minute TV ad:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AkN7ZlTPiqs
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby chankin1937 on Mon Jul 20, 2015 10:47 am

macdougdoug wrote:
Maybe it means that I used to see the world in a certain way (eg. problems can be resolved if I put my mind to it; or solutions shall be forthcoming if logic is applied).


Hello Macdougdoug,
Yes, that’s how the world works.

Due to certain insights, I now see the world more clearly (eg. Suffering is psychological - therefore thinking must be part of the problem).


Never a truer word was spoken. Zazen eventually removes the random and habitual thought that plagues the untrained mind leaving a substratum of peace-of-mind beneath every waking moment.

However, freedom, clarity and understanding are not bound by conclusions. (no longer defined by thoughts - beliefs impair sight/action)


If you are talking about meditation, I agree. There really isn’t anything to do.
On the other hand, if you are talking about life in general, I strongly disagree. When I am thirsty , I must find something to drink. “ Problems can be resolved if I put my mind to it; or solutions shall be forthcoming if logic is applied.” Now, however, these actions are much more contenting and fulfilling.
Colin
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby chankin1937 on Mon Jul 20, 2015 11:08 am

chankin1937 wrote:Nirvana (peace of mind) is the extinction of dukkha (random and habitual conscious mental activity.)


Joe wrote: Nirvana is being able to use all our original Human inheritances freely, including thought, sticking nowhere.


Hello Joe,
Nirvāṇa literally means "blown out", as in a candle. It is most commonly associated with Buddhism In the Buddhist context nirvana refers to the imperturbable stillness of mind after the fires of desire, aversion, and delusion have been finally extinguished. The cessation of suffering is described as complete peace.

Diamond Sutra reminds:

"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."


This is open to a variety of interpretations – but not yours.
Colin
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby chankin1937 on Mon Jul 20, 2015 11:34 am

chankin1937 wrote:Is Zen complicated into obscurity?
Surely the message is simple :
Nirvana (peace of mind) is the extinction of dukkha (random and habitual conscious mental activity.)


partofit22 wrote:
Yes, but it doesn't stay that way- Everything changes, including Nirvana-


Hello Partofit22,
The one thing all sentient creatures have in common is awareness. This is like a cup in that it contains things like character, potential and personality, all the things that differentiate one individual from another. But empty that cup (as in zazen) and you are left with an unchanging constant –objectively (what it is) an empty vessel but subjectively (what it feels like), Nirvana. Emptiness is always emptiness – there is nothing there that can change.
Colin
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby chankin1937 on Mon Jul 20, 2015 12:02 pm

Hello all,
"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."

This is an instruction delineating correct zazen.
It means: Abstain from CMA and experience a mind free of the constrictions CMA imposes - profound peace of mind.
Colin
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby partofit22 on Mon Jul 20, 2015 1:13 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:'morning, P., Teresa,

partofit22 wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:Diamond Sutra reminds:

"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."

The mind doesn't abide anywhere, anyway- But since it can appear that it does, reminders that it doesn't are nice to have- They are appreciated-

Yes, I think that is the spirit in which the Diamond Sutra gives it. And it IS a "spirit", of delivery in the scripture, I'd say, a genuine liveliness, celebration, sparkle, bold vitality of Life, and appreciation of participation in this Mind, the mind of all, the mind of the universe which is, well, the universe itself. Also, an admonishment not to get hung-up at any place, not to "abide", not to "lodge", or become mired-down, stuck-up, and attached.

Not that I'm of the Mind-Only School (Vijñaptimātra) of Buddhism! -- expounded on by the half-brothers Asangha and Vasubandhu, and other Yogacarins -- but Zen Buddhism I feel is very close to that in its appreciation of Mind.

Reminds me of the "Certs" twins, contending:

"Certs is a CANDY mint!" "Certs is a BREATH mint!" ...and the moderator proclaiming, "STOP!, you're BOTH right!" ;)

--Joe

Certs_Twins.jpg

...and by all means, see the 1-minute TV ad:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AkN7ZlTPiqs


Thank you, Joe- Also fun to see those two again- :)
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby partofit22 on Mon Jul 20, 2015 1:36 pm

chankin1937 wrote:
chankin1937 wrote:Is Zen complicated into obscurity?
Surely the message is simple :
Nirvana (peace of mind) is the extinction of dukkha (random and habitual conscious mental activity.)


partofit22 wrote:
Yes, but it doesn't stay that way- Everything changes, including Nirvana-


Hello Partofit22,
The one thing all sentient creatures have in common is awareness. This is like a cup in that it contains things like character, potential and personality, all the things that differentiate one individual from another. But empty that cup (as in zazen) and you are left with an unchanging constant –objectively (what it is) an empty vessel but subjectively (what it feels like), Nirvana. Emptiness is always emptiness – there is nothing there that can change.
Colin


Thank you, Colin- I don't know, really- I've always had trouble with empty, in that empty while empty why it doesn't have motion to it, too- Not that movement is attached to it, or that it isn't always what it is, but that it doesn't change? .. I can't see that- Like I said, always an issue for me ..
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Jul 20, 2015 1:55 pm

Colin,

chankin1937 wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:Diamond Sutra reminds:
"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."

This is open to a variety of interpretations – but not yours.

Seems very much a predictable onslaught against "plain English" from you. :lol2:

You may wish to air an interpretation you support here.

The sutra is addressing daily-life, just as Zen Buddhist practice does. Pull-ease don't suppose again that the line is "meditation instruction", or is meant to support CMA ("Chankin1937's meditation advice"). :PP:

Freely ask any teacher about it. Someone here may also recommend a good text of commentary on the Diamond Sutra for you, or you can find one that's handy. Taking the Diamond Sutra to heart (!) will indeed help a person's overall practice in daily life, and help you to better appreciate certain Ch'an and Zen masters' utterances here and there through history to the present, if you want.

Others in the Forum can also give pointers on the Diamond Sutra (some of the comments they've already made can be found by searching the board under certain key-words).

Diamond Sutra is one often referred to in Ch'an and Zen literature, classical and recent.

best,

--Joe
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:10 pm

Colin, et alia,

chankin1937 wrote:Hello all,
author of the Diamond Sutra scripture wrote:"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."

This is an instruction delineating correct zazen.
It means: Abstain from CMA and experience a mind free of the constrictions CMA imposes - profound peace of mind.

Profoundly malodorous and pernicious basura. We can rest assured what the People from Shinola would say about the above "interpreter's" unfounded "take". :lol2:

shinola_brn.jpg

--Joe
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby Avisitor on Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:34 pm

chankin1937 wrote:Hello all,
"Abiding nowhere, let this Mind flow forth."

This is an instruction delineating correct zazen.
It means: Abstain from CMA and experience a mind free of the constrictions CMA imposes - profound peace of mind.
Colin

That may or may not be instructions
It is totally out of context like that
And it is totally wrong to be giving advice out like that
When one begins Zazen, one is given a task to focus the mind .. not abstaining from mental activity
Telling everyone to abstain from mental activity is a disservice to all who come looking for guidance
One needs to know the mind of the student before giving advice on what to do or what method to use
There may be a time when abstaining from mental activity is needed but it is not for everyone

The way one describes one's profound peace ... sound like blood loss to the brain ... that is only an opinion
(There is no offense or malice intended in that statement, I apologize if one feels offended)
(Note: if one does feel offended then must ask where this anger comes from?)
(Cause if the experience was real then where is the compassion and wisdom that accompanies such experiences?)
Since one was not known to us when one has such a profound peace experience, it is difficult to know for sure
Memories are just memories and fade with time?? ... Yes??
Trying to re-experience the memory is a hindrance and keeps one in the past
Disclaimer: There is no intent to be offensive in my posts. None was intended and none should be interpreted as such.
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Re: Theoretical, Tathagata, Patriarchal Zen

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:44 pm

Colin,

chankin1937 wrote:Nirvāṇa literally means "blown out", as in a candle. It is most commonly associated with Buddhism In the Buddhist context nirvana refers to the imperturbable stillness of mind after the fires of desire, aversion, and delusion have been finally extinguished. The cessation of suffering is described as complete peace.

Yes, you parrot probably correctly the consensus textbook and dictionary literal definition of the translation of the three Sanskrit syllables.

If you know nirvana from experience, and not by description, doctrine, or dogma, you'd say that it is the state of enjoyment of the full panoply of original Human inheritances, freely in play. And there is the spontaneous and simultaneous arising of Wisdom and Compassion, in Emptiness, and enjoyment of the paradox of no motion even while things appear to move. There is prevalent the moonlight of Wisdom, and the empty sky of Samadhi, in all our daily-life activities and work.

No candles blown out. Only the miracle of daily-life and the contact of the five or six senses with wondrous mystery. There may be "peace", but I would emphasize naturalness, and no-separation. But I'm one who, like Buddha Shakyamuni, et al., draws no line between "being Awake", and the cessation of karmically-driven "desire", and dissatisfaction. That is, nirvana is being-awake. And being awake is nirvana.

The Buddha said he is awake. And so we call him "buddha". I write nirvana with a small-n because it is not an ideal or unattainable state or condition, but is a technical term that can operationally point to and apply in daily-life to all our relationships, with people, Nature, and abstractions. Nirvana is right here, now. Correct practice, and cooperating causes and conditions, opens us to it and wakes us to it. Such is life!

"This very place is the Lotus-Land;
This very body, the Buddha," as Hakuin Zenji wrote.

Well, g'day. And g'day All,

--Joe
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