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why begin meditation?

A place to share and discuss the practice of Zen Buddhism without teachers. Debates about whether practicing without teachers is possible or desirable are not appropriate here, nor are criticisms of Zen Buddhist practice with teachers.
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A place to share and discuss the practice of Zen Buddhism without teachers. Debates about whether practising without teachers is possible or desirable are not appropriate here, nor are criticisms of Zen Buddhist practice with teachers.

why begin meditation?

Postby klqv on Wed Aug 20, 2014 11:22 am

naturally, i feel some resonance with buddhism - or i wouldn't have made 5000 posts here :lol2: :heya: but,,, what good does formal meditation with a teacher do other people, that cannot be established through something like mindfulness?
this is probably why i have never started: i don't understand how enlightenment / meditation can act in the world.

any answers appreciated.
God is dead!
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby desert_woodworker on Wed Aug 20, 2014 1:35 pm

Luke,

Go find out. Unless you're actually not interested! :lol2:

But "interest" is not all it takes. To seek the best instruction, a person has to have a truly, honestly, motivating aspiration for it, and some get-up-and-go, no matter what. And, well, a person has to seek it (do you have that in you?). Zen Buddhism is not a proselytizing religion: Take responsibility? Now might be a good time!,

best, --Joe

klqv wrote:,,, what good does formal meditation with a teacher do other people, that cannot be established through something like mindfulness? this is probably why i have never started:
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Chrisd on Wed Aug 20, 2014 1:51 pm

From what I can see,
Formal meditation practice with a teacher can change our entire life from the ground up. It uproots the nasty stuff, the foundations of our suffering and selfishness. It also has eliminates our indifference and apathy that comes from our selfishness that keeps us from helping others. This can not not act in the world.

Mindfulness practice from what I've seen is usually undertaken as a stress relief. Which is fine in its own way.
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Avisitor on Wed Aug 20, 2014 2:32 pm

klqv wrote:naturally, i feel some resonance with buddhism - or i wouldn't have made 5000 posts here :lol2: :heya: but,,, what good does formal meditation with a teacher do other people, that cannot be established through something like mindfulness?
this is probably why i have never started: i don't understand how enlightenment / meditation can act in the world.

any answers appreciated.

All I have are crappy answers. But, they are good enough for me.
Formal Zazen with a teacher can bring about the right conditions for enlightenment.

Why meditate?
Four Noble truths .... life is suffering, causes of suffering, end of suffering is possible, the eightfold path leading to the end of suffering.
There is the motivation.

Mindfulness??
Whether one strolls, walks, run or takes a car ... it depends on how far one wants to go.

Act in the world??
It can give one insights.
To see the world as not separate from oneself.
When one sees themselves as separate, one hurts, robs, kills, all in an effort to make oneself bigger and more important/powerful.
Greed, anger, ignorance rules.
When one sees no separation, one acts more like a mother and shows love and protects
Wisdom and compassion shines.
Which is the better world??

Enlightenment??
It is what Buddhism points to.
Shallow ...
To experience the whole of no-self is not separate
Deep ...
There is??

Sorry my answers aren't very good.
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: why begin meditation?

Postby klqv on Wed Aug 20, 2014 4:01 pm

i'm not seeing "insight" though, not inherently but as a means for something else.

my new sig is why i am going to practice tonight :Namaste:
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Avisitor on Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:03 am

klqv wrote:i'm not seeing "insight" though, not inherently but as a means for something else.

my new sig is why i am going to practice tonight :Namaste:

If you are practicing without a teacher then you must be careful to not let it turn mechanical.
The breathing and counting or watching breath needs to be with awareness.
If it turns mechanical then it is just an exercise.
The saying goes not too tight and not too loose
Remember that it is letting go of thought ... not suppressing it.

Many read or hear that the thinking mind must cease and then believe that thinking must be stopped.
It isn't. It is the mind that does the thinking that must cease.
So, don't suppress thoughts. They need to reduce naturally.
Then focus and single minded concentration can be yours.

That is about all the advice I think I should give you.
Strong practice.
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: why begin meditation?

Postby klqv on Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:37 am

i'm aware that i shouldn't suppress thoughts, having been on a retreat before
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Avisitor on Thu Aug 21, 2014 1:04 am

klqv wrote:i'm aware that i shouldn't suppress thoughts, having been on a retreat before


From your previous post it sounded like you had never meditated before.
Sorry for my ignorance and interference.
My intention were to help you not hinder.

klqv wrote:this is probably why i have never started
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: why begin meditation?

Postby fukasetsu on Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:16 am

Chrisd wrote:It uproots the nasty stuff, the foundations of our suffering and selfishness. It also has eliminates our indifference and apathy that comes from our selfishness that keeps us from helping others.


I like it Chris, it takes courage to face our destructive habits/attachments.
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Michaeljc on Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:24 pm

I like it Chris, it takes courage to face our destructive habits/attachments


Not really Fuki - Zazen takes care of this. :)
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby fukasetsu on Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:35 pm

Michaeljc wrote:Not really Fuki - Zazen takes care of this. :)


Sure Mike, my comment was for inspirational purposes, for many it took/takes a lot of courage and a honest look at themselves in order to start practising zazen to begin with. :) In a lot of cultures especially when male you are conditioned to behave a certain way in the objective world, it's still pretty rare that one has the courage to 'look within' instead.
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby desert_woodworker on Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:20 pm

Why begin meditation? Because that's the only way to start.

(But with your teacher and sangha, you will learn other Zen Buddhist practices, too.

Zazen is a key practice, but not the only Zen Buddhist practice, by far. This is what people miss who for personal or practical reasons are denied the benefit of a teacher, and sangha).

--Joe

ps Forum rules lead me to put those last two paragraphs parenthetically; they are not an argument that one cannot attempt some kind of practice without teacher and sangha, granted, however, that such a practice is anemic, compared with the full compliment. I think everyone here understands this, appreciates it, and allows that it is true for most, even if not for themselves. We appreciate, too, that sometimes there are "seasons" of practice: sometimes with, sometimes without, the other entities mentioned. It's all Human.
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Seeker242 on Fri Aug 22, 2014 12:17 pm

klqv wrote: i don't understand how enlightenment / meditation can act in the world.



How does a Buddha act in the world?
Kill a cat, with a dried shit stick, under a cypress tree in the courtyard, while eating three pounds of flax! Only a cow goes Moooo!
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Avisitor on Fri Aug 22, 2014 1:10 pm

Seeker242 wrote:How does a Buddha act in the world?

I don't know how Buddha would act in the world.
Please enlighten us.
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: why begin meditation?

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Aug 22, 2014 3:26 pm

Hiya, Av,

Others will answer for themselves, but the full descriptive list is given in the Buddhist Precepts.

The Precepts are a description of the behavior -- and, hmm, hence, let's say "character" -- of a Buddha.

Again, others may point elsewhere, I dunno.

best!,

--Joe

Avisitor wrote:
Seeker242 wrote:How does a Buddha act in the world?

I don't know how Buddha would act in the world.
Please enlighten us.
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby klqv on Fri Aug 22, 2014 7:39 pm

i know how a buddha would act - SKILLFULLY !!
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Avisitor on Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:02 pm

klqv wrote:i know how a buddha would act - SKILLFULLY !!

All these are a perception of a man long past
I found somewhere that he left his wife and child to go find his enlightenment.
Then sometime after he found it. He returned to ask his wife and child for their forgiveness.
And again, he left his wife and child to teach his words of Nirvana.
Yeah, I don't know how Buddha would act in this world.
Because Buddha was also a man. Knowing that enlightenment allows for wisdom and compassion,
Doesn't mean it excludes him from all sorts of actions.
Only that the probability of his actions followed certain precepts.

It doesn't stop an enlightened man from showing anger to quiet his disciples.
Then without skipping a beat, return to peaceful moment and talk.
So, believe what you wish to believe a Buddha would act in this world.
I will continue to learn and not discount a person for being human while living in this world.
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: why begin meditation?

Postby Seeker242 on Sat Aug 23, 2014 1:12 am

Avisitor wrote:
Seeker242 wrote:How does a Buddha act in the world?

I don't know how Buddha would act in the world.
Please enlighten us.


"The Blessed Buddha once said:
I am a friend and helper to all. I am sympathetic to all living beings.
I develop a mind full of friendly goodwill. I always delight in harmlessness!
I gladden my mind, fill it with joy, and make it immovable and unshakable.
I develop these divine states of mind not cultivated by simple men."

That's how a Buddha acts in the world! :)
Kill a cat, with a dried shit stick, under a cypress tree in the courtyard, while eating three pounds of flax! Only a cow goes Moooo!
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby klqv on Sun Aug 24, 2014 4:43 am

Seeker242 wrote:
Avisitor wrote:
Seeker242 wrote:How does a Buddha act in the world?

I don't know how Buddha would act in the world.
Please enlighten us.


"The Blessed Buddha once said:
I am a friend and helper to all. I am sympathetic to all living beings.
I develop a mind full of friendly goodwill. I always delight in harmlessness!
I gladden my mind, fill it with joy, and make it immovable and unshakable.
I develop these divine states of mind not cultivated by simple men."

That's how a Buddha acts in the world! :)
i would add that a buddha is ALWAYS so :) :)
God is dead!
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Re: why begin meditation?

Postby Redzen on Sat Oct 03, 2015 3:47 am

Meditation is a means to liberation.
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