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 Post subject: Is Soto Zen Gradual?
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:33 am 
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This is because you think Soto Zen is a sudden approach.

There are 2 type of zen: Soto and Rinzai

Soto is a gradual enlightenment school of zen
Rinzai is a sudden enlightenment school of Zen

In Soto, besides studying Genjokoan, they also study Heart sutra and Nagarjuna's fundamental of the middle way. All these study are the backbone of their Shikantaza meditation.

Please don't mix them again.

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I am not here nor there.
I am not right nor wrong.
I do not exist neither non-exist.
I am not I nor non-I.
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To All Buddhas, I bow down for the teaching of emptiness. Thank You!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:40 am 
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DarwidHalim wrote:

Soto is a gradual enlightenment school of zen



No, this is not so.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:44 am 
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Only Google can help you.

Find for yourself whether it is true or not.

There are a lot of Zen master here. They will be able to say more about this.

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I am not here nor there.
I am not right nor wrong.
I do not exist neither non-exist.
I am not I nor non-I.
I am not in samsara nor nirvana.
To All Buddhas, I bow down for the teaching of emptiness. Thank You!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:51 am 
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DarwidHalim wrote:

Find for yourself whether it is true or not.
.



I already have.

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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 5:47 am 
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DarwidHalim wrote:
This is because you think Soto Zen is a sudden approach.

There are 2 type of zen: Soto and Rinzai

Soto is a gradual enlightenment school of zen
Rinzai is a sudden enlightenment school of Zen

In Soto, besides studying Genjokoan, they also study Heart sutra and Nagarjuna's fundamental of the middle way. All these study are the backbone of their Shikantaza meditation.

Please don't mix them again.


Don't forget the Shobogenzo. Heedfulness of time, and realizing that suffering originates from our habit of trying to jump outside of time's flow is essential to the "meaning" of Zen. Though meaning is a funny word. Instructions to the cook shows how the mind likes to adorn thing/events with meaning that isn't there.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:01 am 
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DarwidHalim wrote:
In Soto, besides studying Genjokoan, they also study Heart sutra and Nagarjuna's fundamental of the middle way. All these study are the backbone of their Shikantaza meditation.

Please don't mix them again.

From what I have seen in Western Soto Zen, they definitely do not study Nagarjuna's MMK. I once even lived at a Soto temple in Japan, and the monks there hadn't even heard of text. They had heard of Nagarjuna, but thought he was Tibetan.

Nishijima-roshi did recently publish a commentary on the text. But that's more just because of his own personal interests.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:12 am 
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Namdrol wrote:
DarwidHalim wrote:

Soto is a gradual enlightenment school of zen



No, this is not so.

Right, but it's not sudden either.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:20 am 
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tomamundsen wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
DarwidHalim wrote:

Soto is a gradual enlightenment school of zen



No, this is not so.

Right, but it's not sudden either.

If you wanted to, you could try to say it is a gradual school, but that's not entirely correct. Someone might use this passage to justify their claim.

Shobogenzo Zuimonki wrote:
Therefore, even if you don’t have bodhi-mind, once having become familiar with good people and having met good circumstances, you should listen to and look at the same things again and again. Do not think that you don’t need to listen because you have heard it once before. Even if you have aroused bodhi-mind once, though it may be the same thing each time you hear it, your mind will become more refined and you will improve even more. Moreover, even if you still lack bodhi-mind, and don’t find it interesting the first or second time, if you listen to a good person’s words again and again, just like walking through the mist or dew, your clothing naturally gets wet without noticing it; you will naturally feel ashamed and true bodhi-mind will arise.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:25 am 
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tomamundsen wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
DarwidHalim wrote:

Soto is a gradual enlightenment school of zen



No, this is not so.

Right, but it's not sudden either.


The best term is non-gradual.

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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 9:18 am 
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DarwidHalim wrote:
Soto is a gradual enlightenment school of zen
Rinzai is a sudden enlightenment school of Zen


What an absurd idea. If anything, Rinzai could be labled as gradual because of their koan curriculum. But as all lineages originating from Huineng is per definition sudden, you can't find any "gradual Zen". Plus, there's nothing gradual about shikantaza.

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"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)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“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; T2076p461b24-26)


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 9:24 am 
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To practice shikantaza, does it has to be sitted?

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By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 9:45 am 
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No time to argue based on personal idea.

It is better showing fact, fact, and fact.

From Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zen#Sudden ... ightenment
"
Sudden and gradual enlightenment
When the so-called Southern School placed emphasis on sudden enlightenment, it also marked a shift in doctrinal basis from the Lankavatara-sutra to the prajnaparamita-tradition, especially the Diamond Sutra. The Lankavatara-sutra, which endorses the Buddha-nature, emphasized purity of mind, which can be attained in gradations. The Diamond-sutra emphasizes sunyata, which "must be realized totally or not at all".[29] Once this dichotomy was in place, it defined its own logic and rhetorics, which are also recognizable in the distinction between Caodong (Soto) and Lin-ji (Rinzai) chán.[30]
"

From the book Realizing Genjokoan.
In Subchapter "Buddha Nature in Zen"
"
The famous debate between the southern and northern schools of Chinese Zen concerning sudden versus gradual enlightenment turned on the teaching of Mind Only. TRADITIONALLY, the southern school is considered to have emphasized original enlightenment (hongaku), while the northen school emphasized the process of actualization of enlightenment (shikaku). This debate is clearly expressed in the story of the Fifth Ancestor's Dharma transmission to the Sixth Ancestor, found in the biography of Dajian Huineng.
.......
"

_________________
I am not here nor there.
I am not right nor wrong.
I do not exist neither non-exist.
I am not I nor non-I.
I am not in samsara nor nirvana.
To All Buddhas, I bow down for the teaching of emptiness. Thank You!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:54 am 
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DarwidHalim wrote:
No time to argue based on personal idea.
It is better showing fact, fact, and fact.


Good, let's see facts. The Caodong tradition was created in the Song dynasty (see: Morten Schlütter: How Zen Became Zen). Their teachings were mostly the conservative form of Chan, compared to Dahui's innovation of kanhua practice. The teachers considered Caodong in the Tang dynasty were likely related to the Hongzhou school anyway (see: Jinhua Jia: The Hongzhou School of Chan Buddhism in Eighth- Through Tenth-Century China). So it is clear that Caodong masters did not conceive anything like a gradual practice.

Dogen himself was an advocate of inherent buddhahood, very much in line with current Japanese Buddhist thought. He taught no enlightenment to be achieved but zazen itself became buddhahood for him.

Sudden enlightenment was accepted by the early Japanese Soto masters as well. Dogen praised Hui-neng because "once he was suddenly enlightened, he left his mother and sought a teacher."
(Kenneth Kraft: Eloquent Zen, p. 92)

Where Dogen identifies the "right thought" of the nondeluded mind with nonthinking, a classical author like Hui-hai prefers to call it no-thought. To this extent the essential art of zazen seems to have become, in the vulgate Fukan zazen gi, nothing more (nor less) than fixed sitting in sudden enlightenment.
(Carl Bielefeldt: Dogen's Manuals of Zen Meditation, p. 148)

_________________
"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)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“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; T2076p461b24-26)


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:22 am 
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Astus wrote:
Dogen... taught no enlightenment to be achieved but zazen itself became buddhahood for him.

A common misunderstanding of Dogen.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 1:08 pm 
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DarwidHalim wrote:
No time to argue based on personal idea.

It is better showing fact, fact, and fact.

From Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zen#Sudden ... ightenment
...



Good little chortle late on Thursday night ...

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:54 pm 
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tomamundsen wrote:
Astus wrote:
Dogen... taught no enlightenment to be achieved but zazen itself became buddhahood for him.

A common misunderstanding of Dogen.


Hi tom,

I always thought this too:

From Dogen's Bendowa:

    Now then, to think that practice and realization are separate from each other
    is a non-Buddhist view, or a misunderstanding of the Way. In Buddhism,
    practice and realization are completely one and the same. Because it is a
    practice based on being spiritually awake at this very moment, the diligent
    training which springs forth from our initial resolve to seek the Way is, in
    itself, the whole of one’s innate certainty. For this reason, we teach that you
    should not hold in mind any expectation of being enlightened as something
    outside of, or apart from, practice, since this practice directly points you
    towards your own original, innate certainty. Since this certainty is a
    spiritually awakened one that already exists within the practice, your
    certainty will know no limits: since the practice already exists within
    spiritually awakened certainty, your practice will know no beginning.


I thought Dogen's Zen was a completely different animal. Definitely not gradual though. How is it classified?

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:59 pm 
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tomamundsen wrote:
Astus wrote:
Dogen... taught no enlightenment to be achieved but zazen itself became buddhahood for him.

A common misunderstanding of Dogen.


Well then, there are tons of Soto Zen practitioners out there who misunderstand Dogen and there own tradition.

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How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:36 pm 
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Mr. G wrote:
tomamundsen wrote:
Astus wrote:
Dogen... taught no enlightenment to be achieved but zazen itself became buddhahood for him.

A common misunderstanding of Dogen.

I always thought this too:
From Dogen's Bendowa:
...
I thought Dogen's Zen was a completely different animal. Definitely not gradual though. How is it classified?


The quote itself shows Dogen's view of inherent buddhahood and the unity of zazen and enlightenment. That is because in shikantaza one "abides in the buddha-mind".

_________________
"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)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“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; T2076p461b24-26)


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 Post subject: Re: Is Soto Zen Gradual?
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:54 pm 
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Understood. Thanks Astus.

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    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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 Post subject: Re: Is Soto Zen Gradual?
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 5:12 pm 
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Another great source is Keizan's Zazenyojinki.

"Although we speak of realization, this realization does not hold to itself as being "realization". This is practice of the supreme samadhi which is the knowing of unborn, unobstructed, and spontaneously arising Awareness. It is the door of luminosity which opens out onto the realization of Those Who Come Thus, born through the practice of the great ease. This goes beyond the patterns of holy and profane, goes beyond confusion and wisdom. This is the realization of unsurpassed enlightenment as our own nature."
(tr. Dainen & Hoshin)

"And although we talk about enlightenment, we become enlightened without enlightenment. This is the king of samadhi. This is the samadhi that gives rise to the eternal wisdom of the Buddha. It is the samadhi from which all wisdom arises. It is the samadhi that gives rise to natural wisdom. It is the clear gate that opens into the compassion of the Tathagata. It is the place that gives rise to the teaching of the great comfortable conduct (zazen) - It transcends the distinction between sage and commoner; it is beyond dualistic judgment that separates delusion and enlightenment. Isn't this the enlightenment that expresses one's original face?"
(tr. Masunaga)

_________________
"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)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“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; T2076p461b24-26)


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