Welcome admin !

It is currently Mon Oct 23, 2017 8:54 am
Pathway:  Board index Zen Discussion Forum Zen Practice & Philosophy Zen Buddhism

Letting go of the ego

Discussions of Zen Buddhism in all shapes and sizes.

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:04 pm

Ani,

Well, we know that Dogen's formula calls for one to "forget" the self.

It's not done as an act of "will" (!), however, and comes about only as a result of correct practice (involving teacher and sangha).

And then, is maintained by further, regular practice, after the "forgetting" or "Great Cessation".

--Joe
User avatar
desert_woodworker
 
Posts: 7246
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:09 am
Location: southern Arizona, USA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby macdougdoug on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:17 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:
It's not done as an act of "will" (!), however, and comes about only as a result of correct practice (involving teacher and sangha).



An act of will is conflict, is ego. True change only comes through understanding. This is a result of open eyes and open heart, and involves the whole universe. The householder may learn much if there is love (and there always is) for delusion is a great master.
User avatar
macdougdoug
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 912
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:11 pm
Location: France

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby macdougdoug on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:22 pm

linguistically, I like : "seeing the ego for what it is"; or "not being a slave to ego" - in fact one is freed when one sees. Each new understanding turns the world on its head.
User avatar
macdougdoug
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 912
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:11 pm
Location: France

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:26 pm

Ani,

I see. Well, I've heard a LOT of such talks by various teachers whom I've practiced intensively and extensively with. And I'd say that they customarily stress no such thing. They stress the practice.

If the practice is correct, then there is no need to give attention to "letting go of" -- nor even "forgetting" -- either "ego", or "self", or "I". In fact, any such extra or added "activity" would be extraneous, and phony (fake, and not effective). So, it's just not done!

As a result, there's no "exact language" to recall, or to quote for you. Hail! That is my experience.

Note that Dogen does not "recommend" forgetting. He mentions it as a result.

I think that any teaching to the contrary of this would be false teaching, and thus neither compassionate nor wise ( ...would not save sentient beings).

--Joe

Anirukta wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:Well, we know that Dogen's formula calls for one to "forget" the self.

My question is solely with regard to the exact language and wording used by native English speakers who are in the business of teaching others. Specifically, if the "letting go of" (either "ego", "self" or "I") is customary when a Zen talk, discourse is given, or a commentary is being written.
User avatar
desert_woodworker
 
Posts: 7246
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:09 am
Location: southern Arizona, USA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby macdougdoug on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:35 pm

Anirukta wrote:"Buddhism does not teach to "let go of" or "destroy" the ego, and I don't know any Buddhist or Zen teacher who would use that language."


maybe because ego is not actually a thing - so cannot be destroyed? Maybe this question needs to get really nerdy, as in what definition of ego are we gonna dissect?
User avatar
macdougdoug
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 912
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:11 pm
Location: France

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:40 pm

mdd,

Heaven forfend!: Nah, the question is moot, since teachers don't actually teach that way.

--Joe

macdougdoug wrote:Maybe this question needs to get really nerdy, as in what definition of ego are we gonna dissect?
User avatar
desert_woodworker
 
Posts: 7246
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:09 am
Location: southern Arizona, USA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby macdougdoug on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:45 pm

in any case if ego gets a bad rap - its due to the sense of separation it implies. however, it probably helps whenever a sense of self worth is needed.
User avatar
macdougdoug
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 912
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:11 pm
Location: France

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby Linda Anderson on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:51 pm

anyhoo, we could say that the ego does not exist
Not last night,
not this morning;
Melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho
User avatar
Linda Anderson
 
Posts: 3890
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:14 pm
Location: Forestville, CA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby fukasetsu on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:53 pm

Anirukta wrote:Does Zen Buddhism teach to "let go of" or "destroy" the ego?


Neither both are based on a misconception.
"Letting go" (which isn't something you can do or an effort of mind) merely points to seeing the ego for what it is, a handy tool, without it you wouldn't be able to type those very words. Only an ego could claim there's something to do about an ego. (like removing, letting go, altering)
The problem is taking the ego as one's self, mistaken identity. When you see things as they are, the struggle of adding and removing, asserting and denying no longer arises.

Who told you to eliminate anything? Look at the void in front of your eyes. How can you produce it or eliminate it?
~Huang Po
Everyone for President!
User avatar
fukasetsu
 
Posts: 7259
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:17 am
Location: The Netherlands

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:57 pm

mdd,

Yessir; I think teachers can be very flexible indeed when they work with us privately (and vice versa), which, fortunately in our tradition, they do.

(I mean, it's not all a matter of "talks", or transcriptions, as some may have mistakenly thought who have not actually experienced Zen teaching, in a practice situation).

--Joe

macdougdoug wrote:in any case if ego gets a bad rap - its due to the sense of separation it implies. however, it probably helps whenever a sense of self worth is needed.
User avatar
desert_woodworker
 
Posts: 7246
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:09 am
Location: southern Arizona, USA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby fukasetsu on Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:01 pm

Linda Anderson wrote:anyhoo, we could say that the ego does not exist


It exists as (it is) a concept, but you cannot conceptualize the non-existence of a concept via a concept, just as much one cannot use mind to get something from mind, so saying something doesn't exist is a concept, aka ego, the same 'thingy' which is responsible for all the sutras and satras, all art, all creation of music. Just don't take it as a forwarding adress, it's a universal natural function. Might as well try live without a brain.
Everyone for President!
User avatar
fukasetsu
 
Posts: 7259
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:17 am
Location: The Netherlands

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby organizational on Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:07 pm

Anirukta wrote:Does Zen Buddhism teach to "let go of" or "destroy" the ego?


Dear friend, "let go of" and "destroy" are two different words.In Zen it is not destroyed rather let go. something like put aside.
Follow White
User avatar
organizational
 
Posts: 652
Joined: Wed Jul 10, 2013 2:53 pm

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby partofit22 on Mon Mar 09, 2015 10:40 pm

fukasetsu wrote:one cannot use mind to get something from mind


I don't understand ..
partofit22
 
Posts: 4900
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 2:36 pm

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby Linda Anderson on Tue Mar 10, 2015 1:08 am

Anirukta wrote:
Anirukta wrote:My question is solely with regard to the exact language and wording used by native English speakers who are in the business of teaching others.

To further clarify it, in the most recent "Ask a Teacher" topic in response to the following question, "Why some teachers put so much emphasis on letting go of the ego?", there followed the answer that reads, "Buddhism does not teach to "let go of" or "destroy" the ego, and I don't know any Buddhist or Zen teacher who would use that language."


That is essentially correct
Not last night,
not this morning;
Melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho
User avatar
Linda Anderson
 
Posts: 3890
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:14 pm
Location: Forestville, CA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby desert_woodworker on Tue Mar 10, 2015 1:14 am

Linda, Ani,

I'd say, further, with no waffling, that it is categorically so. As I've already written, in essence, here in this thread. --Joe

Linda Anderson wrote:
Anirukta wrote: ...there followed the answer that reads, "Buddhism does not teach to "let go of" or "destroy" the ego, and I don't know any Buddhist or Zen teacher who would use that language."

That is essentially correct
User avatar
desert_woodworker
 
Posts: 7246
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:09 am
Location: southern Arizona, USA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby Linda Anderson on Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:35 am

Anirukta wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:Linda, Ani,

I'd say, further, with no waffling, that it is categorically so. As I've already written, in essence, here in this thread. --Joe

Linda Anderson wrote:
Anirukta wrote: ...there followed the answer that reads, "Buddhism does not teach to "let go of" or "destroy" the ego, and I don't know any Buddhist or Zen teacher who would use that language."

That is essentially correct


Then what about the four quotations in the OP. Are they not correct? Sources are given.


that is why is used the word essentially... sometimes it's just skillful means to speak of things using words that ppl can relate to.... it is rather strange, as others have pointed out, that we think we are gods and can let go of anything... but, hey, ride the horse the way it is going... maybe someone will notice that it's not always so
Not last night,
not this morning;
Melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho
User avatar
Linda Anderson
 
Posts: 3890
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:14 pm
Location: Forestville, CA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby desert_woodworker on Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:37 am

Ani,

I'm not one to "say".

But considering we've gotten so far beyond those exemplars in this post... I'd suppose they have only limited correctness. If any.

Considering that we were not "there", where the speakers meant to have maximum impact... . It's diluted, by now. Or, weak as water.

One has to BE there, or ignore randomly recorded irrelevancies, despite their possible perfumy-ness. One just never knows, how they were meant, in correct, actual, context. We shan't say. We can't say!

--Joe
Anirukta wrote:Then what about the four quotations in the OP. Are they not correct? Sources are given.
Last edited by desert_woodworker on Tue Mar 10, 2015 6:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
desert_woodworker
 
Posts: 7246
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:09 am
Location: southern Arizona, USA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby Linda Anderson on Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:38 am

Joe, I'm here, I don't need to be there. So, from here, they said it quite clearly... it's not categorical :peace:
Not last night,
not this morning;
Melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho
User avatar
Linda Anderson
 
Posts: 3890
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:14 pm
Location: Forestville, CA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby desert_woodworker on Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:43 am

Dear Linda,

It's categorical. And directed at practitioners, who are/were THERE. Were you there? :lol2: --Joe

ps I'm HERE. Lucky ME.

Linda Anderson wrote:Joe, I'm here, I don't need to be there. So, from here, they said it quite clearly... it's not categorical
User avatar
desert_woodworker
 
Posts: 7246
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:09 am
Location: southern Arizona, USA

Re: Letting go of the ego

Postby Linda Anderson on Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:45 am

desert_woodworker wrote:Dear Linda,

It's categorical. And directed at practitioners, who are/were THERE. Were you there? :lol2: --Joe

ps I'm HERE. Lucky ME.

Linda Anderson wrote:Joe, I'm here, I don't need to be there. So, from here, they said it quite clearly... it's not categorical


well, you are are thin ice.... you weren't there either. a case of global warming?
Not last night,
not this morning;
Melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho
User avatar
Linda Anderson
 
Posts: 3890
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:14 pm
Location: Forestville, CA

Next

Return to Zen Buddhism

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], bokki, Google [Bot] and 2 guests

 
RocketTheme Joomla Templates

Who is online

In total there are 5 users online :: 3 registered, 0 hidden and 2 guests (based on users active over the past 5 minutes)
Most users ever online was 157 on Mon Sep 19, 2016 8:44 am

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], bokki, Google [Bot] and 2 guests