Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby kirtu » Tue Feb 25, 2014 11:53 pm

Astus wrote:So, what is a Zen teacher? Many possible answers. Let's translate it to English: meditation instructor.


No (I'm surprised you said this too). Buddhist realization instructor/guide. Certainly not just a meditation instructor.

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Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby Astus » Wed Feb 26, 2014 12:01 am

jikai wrote:I hope my posts did not in any way come off as me dismissing the Chan/Zen transmission.


Not at all. :twothumbsup:

And since we're in this topic, let me bring this up. In "The Collected Teachings of the Tendai Lotus School" (BDK edition, p 117) Gishin writes,

"Only the samadhi of following one's own thoughts can be contemplated constantly by both monks and lay persons. Even though one is burdened by the duties of a royal court, one should not avoid [this practice]."

This practice seems to come closest to Zen (see this). One thing is not mentioned in that text, however. How does it relate to the teachings on buddha-nature in Tendai?
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
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Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby kirtu » Wed Feb 26, 2014 12:04 am

Jikan wrote: Why? because as "Tendai people" we're not "Zen people." I would like to plant a seed of doubt regarding the distinction between "Zen" and "Tendai" people. Maybe I will apply to join the American Zen Teachers Association (there is one!), and initiate a Tendai People Working Group.


You should. How "high up" is the criticism? There is a point of course as Zen developed from Tendai and legitimately staked a position separate from Tendai. Nonetheless in the context of Zen Buddhism in the West there should be harmony and mutual support between the Zen and Tendai traditions.

Kirt

http://www.americanzenteachers.org/[/quote]
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Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby Astus » Wed Feb 26, 2014 12:45 am

kirtu wrote:Buddhist realization instructor/guide. Certainly not just a meditation instructor.


You are right, of course, that here "zen" does not actually mean meditation. Although, if we consider what is found in Rinzai Zen, and Korean and Chinese Buddhism, the "zen teacher" is normally the head of the meditation hall. Zen, as another word of buddha-mind, is a differnt matter. As Huangbo remarked, "Do you know that there are no teachers of Chan in all of China?" (Blue Cliff Record, case 11). And Deshan said, "My teaching has neither words nor phrases. It is actually without a Dharma that may be given to others." (Zen's Chinese Heritage, p 198) So, what is a Zen teacher then and what is there to guide to? Realisation is not given or taken, methods, however, are. Meditation is about working directly with one's mind, so giving the right instructions can indeed serve as a short cut to enlightenment. Thus, "meditation instructor" might as well do it. :tongue:
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
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Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby Meido » Wed Feb 26, 2014 4:51 am

Astus wrote:Although, if we consider what is found in Rinzai Zen, and Korean and Chinese Buddhism, the "zen teacher" is normally the head of the meditation hall.


The spirit of this statement is correct for Rinzai Zen in that the master/abbot (shike) is responsible for each trainee at a monastery and the progression of their practice, including the assignment of various practice methods. But just to nitpick: actually he isn't in charge of activities in the meditation hall, and usually would not spend much time there at all.

Not sure how it is in Chinese and Korean places.

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Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby Matylda » Wed Feb 26, 2014 9:42 am

Meido wrote:As for Rinzai practice, I know that in some jukai ceremonies the forehead can be wetted (and it is briefly mentioned in the book Japanese Rinzai Zen Buddhism: Myoshinji, a living religion) but I've also observed many Rinzai jukai ceremonies where there was nothing like that. Then as you know, things sometimes vary from teacher to teacher/lineage to lineage, and there also might be differences between smaller ceremonies and the ones held at a Daihonzan with many people.

I can say that the explanation regarding trikaya is not something I've heard in connection to Rinzai jukai. So maybe that is more a Soto thing. And again, I think what happens in the sanzen room is (practically speaking) the empowerment in Rinzai practice, since there is the possibility to experience awakening through extraordinary means (according to the power of the teacher and the ripeness of the student)...and also shoken is the entrance into being able to undertake koan kufu and other practices closely with a teacher.

So it would be interesting to have information from one of the many Rinzai teachers you know (a nice circumstance!). If you learn anything interesting, I'd appreciate if you'd share it even by PM.

Sorry for off-topic tangent here.

~ Meido


That is interesting indeed.. I witnessed rinzai jukai and even asked for it, there was nothing like shasui/kanjo, but for me main point was the connection to teacher whom I appraciated so much.. Yea I may ask teachers from both inzan and takuju lineage earliest in May I guess when I have to do some translation. At the moment I live in Europe so there is no chance I could ask directly...
By the way once Akizuki Ryomin told me that Harada Sogaku commentary is highly regarded in rinzai, about jukai it would be 200-250 pages from longer commentary to Shushogi. I never asked laer anyone about it, so now I will have some point to clarify. Of course with others, Akizuki passed away... My impression with rinzai jukai was that it looked more like transmission of precepts in tendai.. but I am not sure, again :)

I translated some ritual texts of rinzai tradition and it looked like shukke tokudo is similar to tendai. Soto is distinctively different. I mean the text and all ritual.. also soto both jukai and sukke tokudo include prediction of buddhahood and homage to the future buddha, so it is why rinzai ritual drew my attention. Finally both traditions have exactly same source, Daikan Eno, and for some time were almost same stem... in China there are no any distinctions regarding those things, this I could check with Chinese monks and teachers :)
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Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby Jikan » Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:11 pm

kirtu wrote:
Jikan wrote: Why? because as "Tendai people" we're not "Zen people." I would like to plant a seed of doubt regarding the distinction between "Zen" and "Tendai" people. Maybe I will apply to join the American Zen Teachers Association (there is one!), and initiate a Tendai People Working Group.


You should. How "high up" is the criticism? There is a point of course as Zen developed from Tendai and legitimately staked a position separate from Tendai. Nonetheless in the context of Zen Buddhism in the West there should be harmony and mutual support between the Zen and Tendai traditions.

Kirt

http://www.americanzenteachers.org/
[/quote]

I think the bolded part may be the most essential point.
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Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby Jikan » Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:17 pm

Hi Jikai,

I agree, it may be that the situation here in the US differs significantly from your context in Australia. It may also be that our approach to presenting the teachings differs somewhat (not the content of the teachings, or the practice, but the tactics for meeting people where they are). I hope that is true, actually. I think we're best to "let a hundred flowers bloom" and find out which ones thrive.
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Re: Tendai is a Ch'an school.

Postby Seishin » Mon Mar 03, 2014 2:25 pm

Moderator note: Topic split here Qualities of a teacher

Gassho,
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