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What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

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What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby desert_woodworker on Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:42 pm

Is anything obstructing one's awakening to true nature?

Many things. And those many things result in ONE thing. Below I copy what Zen Master Dogen taught about that one thing, that one massive obstruction.

By the way: that one massive obstruction can be removed or surmounted only by correct practice. It cannot be wished-away. Practice is the whisk-broom for removing or dis-empowering sophistications and pollutions. Dogen would emphasize that, too.

From Dogen's Shobogenzo-zuimonki (transl. Thom. Cleary, Timeless Spring -- A Soto Zen Anthology (1980), Weatherhill; p. 104:

    "If those who study the Way do not attain [awakening], it is because they keep their old views".
Ah, but I'd say this "keeping" is a habit. And this habit is not removed except by correct and efficacious practice.

Continuing, without a break, from the Shobogenzozuimonki:

    "Though nobody knows who taught them originally, they think that the mind is thought, and discernment [discrimination]; if you tell them that the mind is grass and trees, they won't believe you.

    They think a buddha must have physical signs of greatness and distinction, with an aura of light; they are startled when it is said that buddha is tiles and pebbles. Attachment to views is not inherited from the father or taught by the mother; these ideas are just things one has come to believe for no reason, just because you have been hearing people say so for so long."
Again, this too-long-shrouded reality requires correct practice to become manifest, and to shine.

Its clear perception (view), and participation in it, can be maintained, as well, by correct practice. We're (incredibly... ) fortunate to know this and to have this transmitted to us. A true teacher is the guide who can guide us on the road, along with the sangha we may find or make, together.

Strong practice,

--Joe
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby macdougdoug on Mon Nov 14, 2016 11:20 pm

My beliefs and I are so intertwined that we have become one - how to untangle 2 things with no independant existences?

Like a dog chasing its tail.
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby Caodemarte on Tue Nov 15, 2016 12:00 am

macdougdoug wrote:...Like a dog chasing its tail.


That is often what I do! I keep telling myself that the only way to end my chasing and the tail from running is to lay down and just stop.
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby Caodemarte on Tue Nov 15, 2016 12:00 am

macdougdoug wrote:...Like a dog chasing its tail.


That is often what I do! I keep telling myself that the only way to end my chasing and the tail from running is to lay down and just stop.
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby macdougdoug on Tue Nov 15, 2016 8:44 pm

If I believe that by holding certain special beliefs I shall finally be able to see clearly; I am chasing my tail. If I think that by struggling with my thoughts, I shall finally find peace; I am chasing my tail.

If I follow my fears and my desires, I shall only find more fears and desires.

First of all : have no fear. Only then sit quietly.
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby Avisitor on Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:34 am

One thought has amused me ... is that there have been some who openly expressed that they wish to become one with the universe??
So, I wondered in what way is that person standing apart from the universe ... apart from the universe which the person was born??
Apart from the universe which one is given the very sustenance to exist here and now??

Now, here ... What's Obstructing (one's) Awakening??
The practice, the sitting ... are expressions of awakening
So what is obstructing it? Don't know

Maybe, I should chase my tail ... to think of self and thoughts as separate
Or to think of self and beliefs are one
Where is the guy who use to say to cease all mental activity ... hahahahaha
I liked the guy who said it is all grist for the mill ... LOL
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby fukasetsu on Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:12 pm

Avisitor wrote:Now, here ... What's Obstructing (one's) Awakening??


One's imagination :heya:
Differences are never in opposition.
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby Avisitor on Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:17 pm

fukasetsu wrote:
Avisitor wrote:Now, here ... What's Obstructing (one's) Awakening??


One's imagination :heya:

Which one?
The imagination that one uses to be creative??
Or the imagination that uses one to live??
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby [james] on Thu Nov 17, 2016 10:34 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:Is anything obstructing one's awakening to true nature?
Many things. And those many things result in ONE thing.


Dogen's Shobogenzo-zuimonki (transl. Thom. Cleary, Timeless Spring -- A Soto Zen Anthology (1980), Weatherhill; p. 104: wrote:Attachment to views is not inherited from the father or taught by the mother; these ideas are just things one has come to believe for no reason, just because you have been hearing people say so for so long."


And some people become attached to the view that some thing is obstructing one's awakening to true nature and come to believe this because they have been hearing other people say so for so long.

What is "inherited from the father or taught by the mother" is the element of confidence and faith in one's own capacity to observe, investigate and discern.
Last edited by [james] on Thu Nov 17, 2016 11:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby desert_woodworker on Thu Nov 17, 2016 10:57 pm

hi James,

[james] wrote:And some people become attached to the view that some thing is obstructing one's awakening to true nature and come to believe this because they have been hearing other people say so for so long.

Folks who are more the experimentalist-types and who actually do the experiments (undertake practice) themselves, and who wake up (in fact), are the better references versus others when they describe what had been obstructing them. Say, folks like Zen Master Dogen.

I'd say Dogen did a good job in pointing to one's old views as major obstructions (of oneself).

What is "inherited from the father or taught by the mother" is the element confidence and faith in one's own capacity to observe, investigate and discern.

I'd agree and say you're on to something, there. The birth and arising of Bodhicitta and its development can be key in devoted practice of the dharma.

--Joe
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby [james] on Fri Nov 18, 2016 12:02 am

desert_woodworker wrote:I'd say Dogen did a good job in pointing to one's old views as major obstructions (of oneself).


As long as it's clear that nine o'clock's view is nine fifteen's "old view".
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Nov 18, 2016 12:22 am

[james] wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:I'd say Dogen did a good job in pointing to one's old views as major obstructions (of oneself).

As long as it's clear that nine o'clock's view is nine fifteen's "old view".

No, I for one don't and can't say that. I don't understand it, either. But what's clear to you is clear to you, and no quibbling from me.

Maybe you mean that for an awakened person time also marches-on, and change is ever yet possible. I'd say that's right. The one constant is change; impermanence. But don't let's forget the difference between delusory views, and the arising of true Wisdom, in the moment in the awakened state, in seamless accord with circumstances and in response to situations just as they arise (views and Wisdom are not the same). Views are not involved in true Wisdom.

I go with what Dogen says in the quote above in the OP. Attachment to delusory views and enslavement by same are inimical to awakening, primarily, I'd say, due to the effects they have on one's willingness to practice with sufficient intensity and duration for the truth to dawn, to overpower the intensity of the assertions of the (eventually depotentiated) objections and insistences of one's long-held "old" views, and to enable them to be mum-ly swallowed and completely forgotten, in name, and in their erstwhile effect(s). Simple, and organic: a process of body and mind (falling away).

Practice is key to awakening. And awakening is touch-stone, the test of true Gold, as well as the Philosopher's Stone; and, it yields a Rosetta Stone, which makes all scripture(s) and commentary read in fact like letters from, well, ...Home. Or from the Universe. Awakening as The Secret Decoder Ring. Dick Tracy Wrist Radio.

--Joe
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby desert_woodworker on Sat Nov 19, 2016 5:02 am

I found this sentence in a piece (c. 1997) by Achaan Thanissaro Bhikku, today:

    "...even in so-called Buddhist countries, the true practice of the Buddha's teachings is always counter-cultural."
And it reminded me that another source of obstruction to one's awakening is the effect of one's society and culture.

The full paragraph containing the Achaan's statement is below:

    "The news of the Buddha's Awakening sets the standards for judging the culture we were brought up in, and not the other way around. This is not a question of choosing Asian culture over American. The Buddha's Awakening challenged many of the presuppositions of Indian culture in his day; and even in so-called Buddhist countries, the true practice of the Buddha's teachings is always counter-cultural. It's a question of evaluating our normal concerns — conditioned by time, space, and the limitations of aging, illness, and death — against the possibility of a timeless, spaceless, limitless happiness. All cultures are tied up in the limited, conditioned side of things, while the Buddha's Awakening points beyond all cultures. It offers the challenge of the Deathless that his contemporaries found liberating and that we, if we are willing to accept the challenge, may find liberating ourselves."
The full piece, "The Meaning of the Buddha's Awakening" is accessible at the link below:

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... ening.html

--Joe
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby macdougdoug on Sat Nov 19, 2016 9:10 pm

[james] wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:I'd say Dogen did a good job in pointing to one's old views as major obstructions (of oneself).


As long as it's clear that nine o'clock's view is nine fifteen's "old view".



Belief is always old, is always of the past.

Say a robot is watching the nine o'clock news, he can only interpret what he sees via his "program code" or his "understanding protocol" (excuses to the IT savvy) which was set up in the past; so even though everything is new, all he sees is old. (Maybe aforementioned IT honchos could now add something mindblowing about machine learning)
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby [james] on Sun Nov 20, 2016 2:00 am

macdougdoug wrote:
[james] wrote:
desert_woodworker wrote:I'd say Dogen did a good job in pointing to one's old views as major obstructions (of oneself).


As long as it's clear that nine o'clock's view is nine fifteen's "old view".



Belief is always old, is always of the past.

Say a robot is watching the nine o'clock news, he can only interpret what he sees via his "program code" or his "understanding protocol" (excuses to the IT savvy) which was set up in the past; so even though everything is new, all he sees is old. (Maybe aforementioned IT honchos could now add something mindblowing about machine learning)


Views as places of attachment are inherently obstacles. In a flash, the new view is the old view yet the clinging remains. To the degree that we are attached to something that has come and gone, that we become comfortable and invested in our experience, we are stuck trying to maintain, sustain and proclaim the fleeting and ephemeral. The obstruction is that we are not where we are but are still where we were.

Sorry, I don't understand your robot analogy.
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby desert_woodworker on Sun Nov 20, 2016 4:20 pm

Really, we mustn't neglect physical practice. It's good to learn it from a teacher who guides students to Awakening.

"Falling away of body and mind" is enabled by the body.

--Joe
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby Avisitor on Mon Nov 21, 2016 4:26 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:Really, we mustn't neglect physical practice. It's good to learn it from a teacher who guides students to Awakening.

"Falling away of body and mind" is enabled by the body.

--Joe

Good Morning Joe.
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: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby desert_woodworker on Tue Nov 22, 2016 1:56 am

Howdy, Av. Hoping all's well and that a good Thanksgiving will be had -- and realized -- by all.

--Joe

Avisitor wrote:Good Morning Joe.
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby Avisitor on Tue Nov 22, 2016 3:15 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:Howdy, Av. Hoping all's well and that a good Thanksgiving will be had -- and realized -- by all.

--Joe


Yes, have a good Thanksgiving!
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Re: What's Obstructing (One's) Awakening

Postby lobster on Thu Dec 08, 2016 2:39 pm

:heya:

Some great posts.

I know the biggest obstacle for me was trying to remove obstacles, paddle to the far shore like a Buddha trying to be a Bodhisattva or a jihadhi trying to reach heavenly virgins.

It never really occured that I needed to actually, for real - change. :blush:

Then I started to think about the qualities, discipline and behavour that might make me teachable or at least supportive of those who had a chance ... :daisy:

Success :dance:
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