"Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

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"Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby DGA » Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:03 pm


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Astus
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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Astus » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:20 pm

With the Zen of "go beyond yourself", "be in the moment", "big mind", "focus on one thing", "be one with it" and such slogans, they could train kamikaze pilots. How is this relevant to the bodhisattva spirit? A fake emptiness is nihilism. Nihilist leaders, well, what is that good for? They should learn compassion and love, not samurai attitude.
Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.



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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby mindyourmind » Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:11 pm

Other than the obvious misuse of cool spiritual terms in the process of making a fast buck, I also think that this type of marketing plays into modern people's short and selective attention spans.

They can Zen-up their life without doing the hard work, a bit of Buddhist pick-and-choose, and it makes them feel more spiritual. Enlightenment by next Monday, no hard work. Superficial, two-dimensional, vacuous nonsense. Great for the masses.
Dualism is the real root of our suffering and all of our conflicts.

Namkhai Norbu

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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby DGA » Mon Apr 23, 2012 11:20 pm


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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Wesley1982 » Tue Apr 24, 2012 12:39 am


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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Astus » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:19 am

Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.



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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby MuMun » Tue Apr 24, 2012 3:29 pm

"Applied Zen!" This was actually the name of a workshop a friend of mine (a Buddhist monastic) was asked to teach at UCLA's Extension, as a single-day adult ed class. "Applied Zen?" Oy. She and I talked about what such a class might be, and I ended up going along with her and "helping" her.

We viewed the premise of "applied zen" similarly to Astus, more or less. The danger of the premise is that people will tend to look for a way to "apply" ideas about zen to some outside situation -- bringing us back to dualism. The eightfold path is not a self-help program. "Self-help" is a symptom of the basic problem. "Applied zen" as exemplified in the kind of books we're talking about is a dualistic approach to satisfying desire -- even if the desire is something noble like "world peace" or "being a better manager."

So we just ended up treating it more or less like part zazenkai, part discussion about practice. We stressed zen practice as a method of radical inquiry, and made the point that the inquiry was the application. Using the precepts wisely as a framework, inquiry and naked attention lead to permanent changes in how we view life and death. And whatever we wanted from "zen" in the first place.

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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby DGA » Mon May 14, 2012 6:26 pm

But wait, there's more!

http://integrallife.com/member/ginny-wh ... zen-leader

Whitelaw is essentially aligning herself directly with Ken Wilber here (AQAL is shorthand for "all lines all quadrants...," which is shorthand for the whole body of Wilber's thing). I have reason to be deeply skeptical of Wilber's approach (see his treatment of Nagarjuna in his book Sex, Ecology, and Spirituality and you'll understand what I mean); I can't help thinking Ginny Whitelaw may have fallen off the beam with this one.

So it goes.

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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby shel » Mon May 14, 2012 7:18 pm


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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby DGA » Mon May 14, 2012 9:26 pm

In that passage? Nothing particularly objectionable to me there. It's also true that the content or the claim of that passage you quoted could have been just as easily expressed without recourse to Wilber's patois. Which is to say, she's using Wilber's words to make a fairly straightforward point: leadership should be at once inwardly reflective & self-critical, and also oriented outwardly toward service to others.

My comment was directed more broadly at the assumption that any one of the all-religions-are-the-same religions (Wilber's is a good example) is unproblematically fungible with Buddhism. I think a more cautious approach is warranted. More specifically, I think Wilber tends to make a mess of Buddhist thought, as in the reference I gave earlier; he tends to use Buddhist terms and categories to describe an approach that is actually a form of shaktism. I don't disapprove of shaktism, or Kashmir Shaivism, or German Idealism (among the many traditions Wilber draws on). They're fine paths in themselves. I don't think they are reducible to one another in the way Wilber presents them to be (e.g., that capital-E Emptiness is somehow to be equated to Spirit in Schelling & Hegel or the "I" of Meister Eckhardt).

Some Buddhists appreciate Wilber's work and his approach; perhaps more of them did prior to 2006 (google the "earpy" episode). Evidently Whitelaw is one. I disagree with her on this move, and that is the extent of my criticism of Whitelaw. That's it.

Here's a more detailed critique of Wilberism from nose to tail if that topic is of interest to anyone:

http://www.integralworld.net/meyerhoff-ba-toc.html

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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby shel » Mon May 14, 2012 9:45 pm


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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Matylda » Tue May 15, 2012 8:34 pm


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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Astus » Tue May 15, 2012 10:09 pm

Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.



Matylda
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Joined: Mon May 14, 2012 3:32 pm

Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Matylda » Tue May 15, 2012 11:20 pm


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Astus
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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Astus » Tue May 15, 2012 11:58 pm

Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.



Matylda
Posts: 554
Joined: Mon May 14, 2012 3:32 pm

Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Matylda » Wed May 16, 2012 7:24 am


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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby DGA » Mon Dec 16, 2013 10:21 pm

I'm bumping this thread because it seems relevant again, given that Ms. Whitelaw has been regularly writing and publishing brief pieces on these themes online. The most recent is called "Embodied Leadership and the Future of Buddhism."

http://integrallife.com/integral-post/e ... e-buddhism

I would excerpt some relevant selections, but I couldn't find the part where she describes the future of Buddhism (this may be behind a paywall, so please understand this is not intended as a personal criticism).

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Re: "Applied" Zen: Ginny Whitelaw on Leadership

Postby Kim O'Hara » Tue Dec 17, 2013 12:11 am

Not my cup of tea. Her rhetoric seems to assume that materialism, consumerism and corporatism are, and should remain, our primary orientation.
:toilet:
Kim


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