The Importance of the Body

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Ayu
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The Importance of the Body

Post by Ayu »

Osel Hita shared this video on facebook.

In my mind the question arises: is Buddhism neglecting the physical body too much? Is the idea of "Love it or leave it" integrated anywhere in Buddhist philosophy?

phpBB [video]
For the benefit and ease of all sentient beings. :heart:
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by muni »

Hello Ayu,

I like to respond to what is said in the youtube:
Your body is everything, there is nothing else.
This sounds as appearances is all there is, even the body is useful tool. Identifying with the body I really do not think is the way to do. Since the body just as all phenomena/appearances are always changing. But the body is not the problem, clinging to it as being a real independent existence is the problem.

The other problem is when there is said all is illusion or dream, the conceptual mind can think: there is just a void. This is the other extreme. This would be dangerous ideation. Then the child need no food, the sick no medicine...no need for Awaken Nature to awaken “us” since all is void-idea. It would be clinging to concept emptiness. Emptiness and appearances are like a mirror and reflections, the images cannot be taken out as independent things. We should not identify with a reflection, or with form, or with appearance, while no need to reject any at all. Not clinging is not same as rejecting.
Though shifting appearances ceaselessly rise,
just be unattached as a child at play. Tsultrim Gyamtso
Guidance by Awaken Nature and then this can happen to be actualized. In general the union of the two truths (there is no split between) is a way to understand, through investigation and then meditation, through (nondual) equipoise.
*I do not teach separation.* sz.

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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Crazywisdom »

What are Buddha's three doors? BODY, Speech and mind. What is the BODY of a vajrayana practitioner? The DEITY. What is the point of having realized the DharmaKAYA? To manifest the sambhogaKAYA and the NIRMANAKAYA. Actually Buddhism is not negative about the body. To the contrary, in Buddhism the body is God, because this body may benefit all sentient beings, like the Sun. And when this body realized the truth, it absolutely will, because that is its nature.
Vajra fangs deliver vajra venom to your Mara body.
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by dzogchungpa »

As far as I can tell, the Vajrayana is all about the body. In other parts of Buddhism, maybe not Zen so much, the body seems to be somewhat neglected, it's true. The importance of the body is one of the central themes of Reginald Ray's teaching and I think this is a great contribution on his part, see e.g. https://www.dharmaocean.org/meditation/ ... editation/.
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Malcolm »

dzogchungpa wrote:As far as I can tell, the Vajrayana is all about the body. In other parts of Buddhism, maybe not Zen so much, the body seems to be somewhat neglected, it's true. The importance of the body is one of the central themes of Reginald Ray's teaching and I think this is a great contribution on his part, see e.g. https://www.dharmaocean.org/meditation/ ... editation/.
Noticing a central feature of Vajrayāna (the body) that is stressed over and over again in the teachings hardly rates as a "great contribution."

Secondly, the first foundation of mindfulness is the foundation of mindfulness of the body, so one cannot maintain that paths of renunciation neglect the body either.

The reality is that since the body culture of India and Tibet was only come to us in fragments and dribs and drabs, quite often people overlook the vast literature on physical cultural, health, and illness that exists in these traditions, or because of biomedical prejudice, ignore it.
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by dzogchungpa »

Malcolm wrote:Noticing a central feature of Vajrayāna (the body) that is stressed over and over again in the teachings hardly rates as a "great contribution."
Well, Ray does a lot more than "notice" it, but whatevs. :smile:
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by muni »

The body is important tool to realize selflesness nature, like diety practice as example.
This is not merely a flesh and bone 'thing'.
All phenomena outside and inside
Decay each moment, they have no power to remain. Tsultrim Gyamtso.
*I do not teach separation.* sz.

Wisdom beings know that we are not separate. This is why they are able to grant blessings."
https://garchen.net/wp-content/uploads/ ... ditate.pdf
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Grigoris »

My mother always warned me about listening to testosterone-pumped muscle-bound white guys wearing Odin's Hammer around their neck ranting on about how the body is "everything" (the crypto-fascist bells tend to go off really loudly).

But Dominatrix ex-nuns in latex talking about "awakening to their body" well...

http://www.yourlocalguardian.co.uk/news ... ef=mr&lp=5

As for his dumb-ass theory that they cannot take away your body: he should spend some time talking to people in jail, or people that have been tortured, or maybe he can talk to some rape victims or victims of childhood sexual violence.
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by boda »

Ayu wrote:Is the idea of "Love it or leave it" integrated anywhere in Buddhist philosophy?
phpBB [video]


  • My oh my! It hurts sometimes
    Oh my oh my! It hurts sometimes
    I think I’m running out of time
    Before I’m gonna lose my mind


Sounds kinda Buddhist. More so if you replace "sometimes" with "all the time," and "lose my mind" with "be reborn."
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Malcolm »

dzogchungpa wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Noticing a central feature of Vajrayāna (the body) that is stressed over and over again in the teachings hardly rates as a "great contribution."
Well, Ray does a lot more than "notice" it, but whatevs. :smile:

The entire practice of Vajrayana is predicated on the body and the experience of being embodied.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
—Kotalipa
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by boda »

Perhaps a more straightforward question would be: how often do you visit the gym?
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Malcolm »

boda wrote:Perhaps a more straightforward question would be: how often do you visit the gym?

Irrelevant.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
—Kotalipa
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Johnny Dangerous »

Malcolm wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Noticing a central feature of Vajrayāna (the body) that is stressed over and over again in the teachings hardly rates as a "great contribution."
Well, Ray does a lot more than "notice" it, but whatevs. :smile:

The entire practice of Vajrayana is predicated on the body and the experience of being embodied.
He teaches on this in detail. I mean if you have an actual critique of him that's great but, pretending he merely "notices" or only teaches mindfulness of the body etc. is not so.
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Malcolm »

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:
Well, Ray does a lot more than "notice" it, but whatevs. :smile:

The entire practice of Vajrayana is predicated on the body and the experience of being embodied.
He teaches on this in detail. I mean if you have an actual critique of him that's great but, pretending he merely "notices" or only teaches mindfulness of the body etc. is not so.

That is not what I said. What I said was: "Noticing a central feature of Vajrayāna (the body) that is stressed over and over again in the teachings hardly rates as a "great contribution" in response to chung's "The importance of the body is one of the central themes of Reginald Ray's teaching and I think this is a great contribution on his part."

If you have been around the block, Ray's contribution is not "great;" anyone who teaches anything to do with Vajrayāna must by definition frame these things with reference to the body. For example, in the very first teaching on Vajrayāna I ever received from HHST, he made it very clear that the main difference between Vajrayāna and other forms of Buddhism was our emphasis on methods connected with the body which are wholly absent in sūtra. This is why we have yantra yoga, prāṇāyama, and so on in Vajrayāna.

Then I mentioned that in common Mahāyāna etc., there is mindfulness of the body.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Johnny Dangerous »

If you have been around the block, Ray's contribution is not "great;"
I've taken teachings from HHST too, and of course anyone involved in Vajrayana understands the importance of "the body"...I hope.. I don't have a strong opinion on Ray, I like him but he's not a particular source of inspiration for me. That said, I still don't really understand your sharp criticism of him..

If you're saying that he isn't teaching anything new, then I think you are basically right, but he doesn't claim to.
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Malcolm »

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
If you have been around the block, Ray's contribution is not "great;"
I've taken teachings from HHST too. I don't have a strong opinion on Ray, I like him but he's not a particular source of inspiration for me. That said, I still don't really understand your sharp criticism of him..

If you're saying that he isn't teaching anything new, then I think you are basically right, but he doesn't claim to.
JD, I was not objecting to Ray in this case, I was objecting to chung's fanboy exaggeration.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Johnny Dangerous »

Malcolm wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
If you have been around the block, Ray's contribution is not "great;"
I've taken teachings from HHST too. I don't have a strong opinion on Ray, I like him but he's not a particular source of inspiration for me. That said, I still don't really understand your sharp criticism of him..

If you're saying that he isn't teaching anything new, then I think you are basically right, but he doesn't claim to.
JD, I was not objecting to Ray in this case, I was objecting to chung's fanboy exaggeration.
Gotcha.

Well the last thing I will say on Ray is that he does write on this concept in plain language in English, he isn't saying anything different than anyone else really (and like I said, doesn't really claim to I don't think), but he is tryinga kind of Trungpa-style thing of demystified langauge etc. surrounding these concepts. Personally I found some of his writings helpful in de-cluttering my understanding of things, but everyone's mileage is different in that department.
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Malcolm »

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
I've taken teachings from HHST too. I don't have a strong opinion on Ray, I like him but he's not a particular source of inspiration for me. That said, I still don't really understand your sharp criticism of him..

If you're saying that he isn't teaching anything new, then I think you are basically right, but he doesn't claim to.
JD, I was not objecting to Ray in this case, I was objecting to chung's fanboy exaggeration.
Gotcha.

Look, people object often and loudly to my fanboy boosting of ChNN (the greatest master of Dzogchen alive today)...
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Johnny Dangerous »

Malcolm wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
JD, I was not objecting to Ray in this case, I was objecting to chung's fanboy exaggeration.
Gotcha.

Look, people object often and loudly to my fanboy boosting of ChNN (the greatest master of Dzogchen alive today)...
:thumbsup: :lol:
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low
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Re: The Importance of the Body

Post by Johnny Dangerous »

I think the OP video does not quite line up with what "the body" even is in Buddhism, but it nicely points out the emptiness of the person, by constantly referencing "MY body", as if the body is something we own or have dominion over. A nonsensical point of view, but the default one.

Most of western culture has a perverse relationship with "the body", it either fetishizes it or tires to shove it away in favor of a transcendental "mental" world. This dude seems like he is going in the first direction.

Now as to whether some Buddhists neglect taking care of their health..yeah, of course they do, but not IME any more than any other group.

I think it's safe to say that many people doing (for instance) Hatha Yoga these days are from a Buddhist perspective doing more harm than good by (incorrectly) practicing Yoga in a way where their identification with "body as self" grows stronger. With that as a backdrop, I am not sure that there is any real correlation in our culture between the pursuit physical health and...I guess you could say "spiritual" health. I have known a lot of very healthy people with a very warped view of "the body".
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low
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