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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:17 pm 
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:39 pm 
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 5:56 pm 
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Watched the first vid, enjoyed. The youngling to master's right showed showed he's getting quality instruction there.
Any info on master, lineage and temple?
Thanks LL.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2013 2:52 pm 
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He is from Canada and I believe he currently resides at Truc Lam Monastery in Edmonton, Alberta. He was ordained at the age of 7. I am not sure how to categorize his practice. He has been doing what monks suppose to do such as meditation, household chores, chanting, eat about one meal per day, sleep about 4 hours a day, etc. I guess you can say Zen or "Thien" (Vietnamese), but he advocates Pure Land as most Vietnamese monks do even though they don't practice Pure Land because they know Pure Land is a skillful mean. If others are suitable for Zen training, they would encourage that also.

Really Buddhist teaching are comprehensive. It's hard for me to categorize this and that when I know in essence it's all unified and liberating sentient beings from suffering.

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―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 2:29 am 
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LastLegend wrote:
I guess you can say Zen or "Thien" (Vietnamese), but he advocates Pure Land as most Vietnamese monks do even though they don't practice Pure Land because they know Pure Land is a skillful mean.


C'mon... Amitabha may or may not be a skillful means, but the heart of Pure Land practice, buddhanussati/buddhanusmrti is a valid form of practice.

Thanks for the videos!


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:57 am 
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LastLegend wrote:
...even though they don't practice Pure Land because they know Pure Land is a skillful mean.

I don't understand this. 'Skillful means' is a euphemism for something unskillful?


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 9:44 am 
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Would love to meet this master when I visit my home country of Canada this summer. Does the temple welcome visitors?

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In order to ensure my mind never comes under the power of the self-cherishing attitude,
I must obtain control over my own mind.
Therefore, amongst all empowerments, the empowerment that gives me control over my mind is the best,
and I have received the most profound empowerment with this teaching.
-Atisha Dipamkara
brtsal ba'i bkhra drin


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 12:13 pm 
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lojong1 wrote:
LastLegend wrote:
...even though they don't practice Pure Land because they know Pure Land is a skillful mean.

I don't understand this. 'Skillful means' is a euphemism for something unskillful?


For those who are not compatible with Zen training, Pure Land then is a skillful means for liberation in this life time.

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NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Linjii
―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―


Last edited by LastLegend on Fri Feb 15, 2013 12:35 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 12:20 pm 
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PorkChop wrote:
LastLegend wrote:
I guess you can say Zen or "Thien" (Vietnamese), but he advocates Pure Land as most Vietnamese monks do even though they don't practice Pure Land because they know Pure Land is a skillful mean.


C'mon... Amitabha may or may not be a skillful means, but the heart of Pure Land practice, buddhanussati/buddhanusmrti is a valid form of practice.

Thanks for the videos!


Yes, you can say Pure Land might be skillful or not skillful because Zen or Pure Land is not for everyone. For those who wish to be liberated via Pure Land method but not compatible with Zen training, it is skillful. For those who do not wish to be liberated or those who are still ignorant of Dharma, then any means is not skillful. But a practitioner with an average capacities, Pure Land is skillful means for liberation in this life time because he might not make it with Zen training in this life time. A butcher can be liberated through Pure Land in this life time; he might not make it with Zen training. Anyone can be liberated with Pure Land given that they want to be liberated in this life time. Can you say the same with Zen training?

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―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 1:53 pm 
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Am I biased in my view? You can say so. But if you really think about marks and essence, Pure Land is a mark and Mind is the essence. If there is suffering, there are Bodhisattvas and Buddhas to provide means towards liberation. There is this, there is that so to speak. Marks are not permanent and are subject to change. Like ocean is essence, and its waves are marks. Ocean and its marks are of the same. But marks are not essence, but rather expressions of essence. Buddhas and Bodhisattvas don't express but naturally response to expressions of sentient beings. So if there are expressions of sentient beings, then there are expressions (e.i., Pure Land) of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. No expressions of sentient beings, then no expressions of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. If this arises, that arises. If this does not arise, then that does not arise. Interdependent and empty in essence.

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NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Linjii
―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 4:46 pm 
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LastLegend wrote:
PorkChop wrote:
LastLegend wrote:
I guess you can say Zen or "Thien" (Vietnamese), but he advocates Pure Land as most Vietnamese monks do even though they don't practice Pure Land because they know Pure Land is a skillful mean.


C'mon... Amitabha may or may not be a skillful means, but the heart of Pure Land practice, buddhanussati/buddhanusmrti is a valid form of practice.

Thanks for the videos!


Yes, you can say Pure Land might be skillful or not skillful because Zen or Pure Land is not for everyone. For those who wish to be liberated via Pure Land method but not compatible with Zen training, it is skillful. For those who do not wish to be liberated or those who are still ignorant of Dharma, then any means is not skillful. But a practitioner with an average capacities, Pure Land is skillful means for liberation in this life time because he might not make it with Zen training in this life time. A butcher can be liberated through Pure Land in this life time; he might not make it with Zen training. Anyone can be liberated with Pure Land given that they want to be liberated in this life time. Can you say the same with Zen training?


Awww... you've mistaken the story for the technique... how cute!
No wonder you don't think any Zen monks practice Pure Land or that you think it's only a practice for Zen failures...
As someone once said "if you don't find the Pure Land in this life, you're not going to find it after you die."


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 4:52 pm 
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PorkChop wrote:

Awww... you've mistaken the story for the technique... how cute!


I don't understand. Want to explain further? I hope you are not telling me Pure Land is not real or existing. If you do, please study interdependence some more. And look into things such as marks and essence.

Quote:
No wonder you don't think any Zen monks practice Pure Land or that you think it's only a practice for Zen failures...


Uh no. I don't think that or imply that.

Quote:
As someone once said "if you don't find the Pure Land in this life, you're not going to find it after you die."


Taking rebirth in Pure Land is not the same as dying.

_________________
NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Linjii
―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:08 pm 
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LastLegend wrote:
PorkChop wrote:
Awww... you've mistaken the story for the technique... how cute!

I don't understand. Want to explain further?
Quote:
No wonder you don't think any Zen monks practice Pure Land or that you think it's only a practice for Zen failures...

Uh no. I don't think that or imply that.
Quote:
As someone once said "if you don't find the Pure Land in this life, you're not going to find it after you die."

Taking rebirth in Pure Land is not the same as dying.


http://www.urbandharma.org/ibmc/ibmc1/pure.html wrote:
Since Zen is more a methodology than a system of thought, although it certainly does have a system of thought, the self-power of Zen, contains the other power of Pure Land. Once you have self power, you must have other power. After all, the Recitation of the Buddha's name is used as a concentration exercise. This is where Chinese/ Vietnamese Pure Land differs from Japanese forms. The Vietnamese Pure Land adherents also meditate whenever they have the time to, whereas Jodosinshu says that meditation is a mere psychological trick, where you think you are capable of saving yourself. They say we must drop meditation and all thoughts of saving ourselves, and rely only upon Buddha Amitabha to save us. Their practice is to realize exactly who and what they are, without any rosy constructs placed upon their realization.

If your practice is to devoid everything in your mind, does it matter is you use a koan, shikentaza or recreating the Buddha in your mind? All of these techniques work if they are done with great diligence and bring the meditator to the same point, to the satori experience (that is to insight, which Theravadans praise so much.)

When you begin Pure Land practice, you think of the Buddha and his Pure Land as being apart from you. But as you practice it, slowly you come to realize that you and Amitabha are one and the same. You can experience the Pure Land right here and now.

For instance, the great Japanese Zen man, D. T. Suzuki was fascinated by Pure Land. He studied it and translated their writings in to English. He came to the conclusion that Zen and Pure Land Buddhism are the same. And Dr. Thien-An certainly believed it.


The last couple of sentences are very prevalent in both Chan and TianTai circles throughout history.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:13 pm 
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PorkChop wrote:
LastLegend wrote:
PorkChop wrote:
Awww... you've mistaken the story for the technique... how cute!

I don't understand. Want to explain further?
Quote:
No wonder you don't think any Zen monks practice Pure Land or that you think it's only a practice for Zen failures...

Uh no. I don't think that or imply that.
Quote:
As someone once said "if you don't find the Pure Land in this life, you're not going to find it after you die."

Taking rebirth in Pure Land is not the same as dying.


http://www.urbandharma.org/ibmc/ibmc1/pure.html wrote:
Since Zen is more a methodology than a system of thought, although it certainly does have a system of thought, the self-power of Zen, contains the other power of Pure Land. Once you have self power, you must have other power. After all, the Recitation of the Buddha's name is used as a concentration exercise. This is where Chinese/ Vietnamese Pure Land differs from Japanese forms. The Vietnamese Pure Land adherents also meditate whenever they have the time to, whereas Jodosinshu says that meditation is a mere psychological trick, where you think you are capable of saving yourself. They say we must drop meditation and all thoughts of saving ourselves, and rely only upon Buddha Amitabha to save us. Their practice is to realize exactly who and what they are, without any rosy constructs placed upon their realization.

If your practice is to devoid everything in your mind, does it matter is you use a koan, shikentaza or recreating the Buddha in your mind? All of these techniques work if they are done with great diligence and bring the meditator to the same point, to the satori experience (that is to insight, which Theravadans praise so much.)

When you begin Pure Land practice, you think of the Buddha and his Pure Land as being apart from you. But as you practice it, slowly you come to realize that you and Amitabha are one and the same. You can experience the Pure Land right here and now.

For instance, the great Japanese Zen man, D. T. Suzuki was fascinated by Pure Land. He studied it and translated their writings in to English. He came to the conclusion that Zen and Pure Land Buddhism are the same. And Dr. Thien-An certainly believed it.


The last couple of sentences are very prevalent in both Chan and TianTai circles throughout history.


Before I go on, I would like you to answer this question: Is Pure Land real or existing?

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NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Linjii
―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:20 pm 
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LastLegend wrote:
Before I go on, I would like you to answer this question: Is Pure Land real or existing?


Is anything inherently real or existing?
Are there any experiences that are outside of the mind?


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:27 pm 
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PorkChop wrote:
LastLegend wrote:
Before I go on, I would like you to answer this question: Is Pure Land real or existing?


Is anything inherently real or existing?
Are there any experiences that are outside of the mind?


Then why does Pure Land of Amitabha bother you? Do you see anything wrong with taking rebirth in Pure Land?

If everything is not inherently real or existing, then why do you care about Buddhadharma since it's not real or existing also?

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NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Linjii
―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:41 pm 
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LastLegend wrote:
PorkChop wrote:
LastLegend wrote:
Before I go on, I would like you to answer this question: Is Pure Land real or existing?


Is anything inherently real or existing?
Are there any experiences that are outside of the mind?


Then why does Pure Land of Amitabha bother you? Do you see anything wrong with taking rebirth in Pure Land?

If everything is not inherently real or existing, then why do you care about Buddhadharma since it's not real or existing also?


Pure Land of Amitabha doesn't bother me at all.
you're the one who said:
Quote:
but he advocates Pure Land as most Vietnamese monks do even though they don't practice Pure Land because they know Pure Land is a skillful mean.

On that basis koans are a skillful means, zazen is a skillful means, Buddhadharma is a skillful means, as none of it is Awakening.
Whether you intended to or not, you came off very dismissive - as if only stupid people practice Pure Land, when in fact many monks (even Vietnamese ones) have practiced it and continue to practice it and it's not so different from the Zen/Thien you reify so much.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 6:30 pm 
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PorkChop wrote:

Pure Land of Amitabha doesn't bother me at all.
you're the one who said:

On that basis koans are a skillful means, zazen is a skillful means, Buddhadharma is a skillful means, as none of it is Awakening.
Whether you intended to or not, you came off very dismissive - as if only stupid people practice Pure Land, when in fact many monks (even Vietnamese ones) have practiced it and continue to practice it and it's not so different from the Zen/Thien you reify so much.


There is some misunderstanding there. I do not mean Pure Land for the stupid at all. But that is not to deny that most Vietnamese monks (whether they practice both Pure Land and Zen or not) advocate Pure Land. Even the ones who don't incorporate Pure Land as their main practice, or ones who don't incorporate Pure Land at all advocate Pure Land. The point is they all advocate Pure Land.

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NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Linjii
―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 6:42 pm 
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LastLegend wrote:
PorkChop wrote:

Pure Land of Amitabha doesn't bother me at all.
you're the one who said:

On that basis koans are a skillful means, zazen is a skillful means, Buddhadharma is a skillful means, as none of it is Awakening.
Whether you intended to or not, you came off very dismissive - as if only stupid people practice Pure Land, when in fact many monks (even Vietnamese ones) have practiced it and continue to practice it and it's not so different from the Zen/Thien you reify so much.


There is some misunderstanding there. I do not mean Pure Land for the stupid at all. But that is not to deny that most Vietnamese monks (whether they practice both Pure Land and Zen or not) advocate Pure Land. Even the ones who don't incorporate Pure Land as their main practice, or ones who don't incorporate Pure Land at all advocate Pure Land. The point is they all advocate Pure Land.


Ah, I see where you're coming from now.
My bad.
Thanks for clearing that up for me. :consoling:
Sorry for the misunderstanding.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:42 am 
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I am very happy that there is a fully trained monk in the Viet Namese tradition who is giving traditional teachings in English. I have always been embarassed by my lack of knowledge about this tradition.

I think, though, that as the Viet Namese diaspora comes of age and the temples become more dependent on the Western-born generation, we will see a blossoming of teachings in English. At least, I hope.

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In order to ensure my mind never comes under the power of the self-cherishing attitude,
I must obtain control over my own mind.
Therefore, amongst all empowerments, the empowerment that gives me control over my mind is the best,
and I have received the most profound empowerment with this teaching.
-Atisha Dipamkara
brtsal ba'i bkhra drin


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