Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

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a Zen Rōnin
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Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

Post by a Zen Rōnin »

Good morning to all. I have been into Buddhist practice since ten years ago. I have a Zen master who taught me many things about the Buddha Way and zazen. He is an ordained teacher in the Korean Zen tradition. However, we lost communication during the pandemic and I do not know anymore what happened to him since.

I have been reading the two books of Meido Moore Roshi (The Rinzai Zen Way and Hidden Zen). I find his exposition of the Buddha Way relevant to present-day situation of the sangha and also is clear to understand and follow. Because of this, I find affinity to practice Rinzai Zen.

However, I was diagnosed with rectal cancer last year. Been into rounds of radiotherapy and chemotherapy. The tumor have been removed through bowel surgery last February. Now, I am continuing chemotherapy.

My question is: How do I practice zazen in this condition? I still have colostomy bag attached to my right belly and cannot sit comfortably.

I would like to hear from other practitioners here for any suggestions. I will be more grateful if Meido Moore Roshi could somehow read this post and offer some suggestions.

Thank you. (Gassho!) :namaste:
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Re: Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

Post by DNS »

Are you able to sit on a (kneeling position) seiza bench? If not, I believe most centers allow for lying down mediation for those who are very ill.
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Re: Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

Post by Johnny Dangerous »

a Zen Rōnin wrote: Sat Jun 15, 2024 3:55 am Good morning to all. I have been into Buddhist practice since ten years ago. I have a Zen master who taught me many things about the Buddha Way and zazen. He is an ordained teacher in the Korean Zen tradition. However, we lost communication during the pandemic and I do not know anymore what happened to him since.

I have been reading the two books of Meido Moore Roshi (The Rinzai Zen Way and Hidden Zen). I find his exposition of the Buddha Way relevant to present-day situation of the sangha and also is clear to understand and follow. Because of this, I find affinity to practice Rinzai Zen.

However, I was diagnosed with rectal cancer last year. Been into rounds of radiotherapy and chemotherapy. The tumor have been removed through bowel surgery last February. Now, I am continuing chemotherapy.

My question is: How do I practice zazen in this condition? I still have colostomy bag attached to my right belly and cannot sit comfortably.

I would like to hear from other practitioners here for any suggestions. I will be more grateful if Meido Moore Roshi could somehow read this post and offer some suggestions.

Thank you. (Gassho!) :namaste:
Can you sit comfortably in any position? If you can a person can effectively use a chair in a number of ways, or what’s sometimes called the royal ease posture that often see Kannon/Kuan Yin in.

*Not Zen specific advice of course.
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Re: Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

Post by Meido »

As mentioned above, you can explore other options like chairs, meditation benches, etc. Or just lie down and practice in that position.

Working with the conditions you're experiencing is itself an essential point of practice. This is not to say that the classic posture doesn't have advantages: it does. But you can revisit it later after things improve. And ultimately, we can't say it's a limitation even if you're never able to do it.

Relevant words from the Myoshinji site:
The fact that the word zazen means “seated meditation” does not mean that it is limited to the sitting posture. Huineng, the Sixth Patriarch, described seated zazen as follows:

Externally, to be free of all hindrances and undisturbed in mind regarding any circumstances whether good or bad is called “sitting” (za); internally, to contemplate the immutability of your own Original Nature is called “meditation” (zen).

Zazen in this sense is possible regardless of what one is doing, and in fact Zen training is ultimately about learning to maintain the meditative mind—the mind of zazen—throughout all of one’s daily activities. Nevertheless, the seated posture, which facilitates the ideal combination of relaxation and alertness, is the easiest posture in which to practice and deepen the meditative state. It most readily enables the body to be still and relaxed and the mind to be tranquil and settled. The state of zazen is one of union of body and mind attained through the regulation of the breath and the relaxed, open contemplation of our original nature free of discriminative thoughts.
I have a close student who had the same diagnosis, followed by surgery, chemo, and radiation, including colostomy for a time. He passed through it all, and now is back practicing with the group. But during treatment he just practiced in whatever position, and for whatever duration, he could. He credits it with helping him to get through the worst times.

BTW, I'd recommend nanso no ho as an extremely helpful practice right now. I think instructions for it is in both books.

Best wishes, and praying for your speediest possible recovery.
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Re: Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

Post by Genjo Conan »

The specific posture isn't what's important. The intention is what's important. We've had someone who "sits" lying down.
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Re: Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

Post by a Zen Rōnin »

Meido wrote: Sat Jun 15, 2024 4:20 pm As mentioned above, you can explore other options like chairs, meditation benches, etc. Or just lie down and practice in that position.

Working with the conditions you're experiencing is itself an essential point of practice. This is not to say that the classic posture doesn't have advantages: it does. But you can revisit it later after things improve. And ultimately, we can't say it's a limitation even if you're never able to do it.

Relevant words from the Myoshinji site:
The fact that the word zazen means “seated meditation” does not mean that it is limited to the sitting posture. Huineng, the Sixth Patriarch, described seated zazen as follows:

Externally, to be free of all hindrances and undisturbed in mind regarding any circumstances whether good or bad is called “sitting” (za); internally, to contemplate the immutability of your own Original Nature is called “meditation” (zen).

Zazen in this sense is possible regardless of what one is doing, and in fact Zen training is ultimately about learning to maintain the meditative mind—the mind of zazen—throughout all of one’s daily activities. Nevertheless, the seated posture, which facilitates the ideal combination of relaxation and alertness, is the easiest posture in which to practice and deepen the meditative state. It most readily enables the body to be still and relaxed and the mind to be tranquil and settled. The state of zazen is one of union of body and mind attained through the regulation of the breath and the relaxed, open contemplation of our original nature free of discriminative thoughts.
I have a close student who had the same diagnosis, followed by surgery, chemo, and radiation, including colostomy for a time. He passed through it all, and now is back practicing with the group. But during treatment he just practiced in whatever position, and for whatever duration, he could. He credits it with helping him to get through the worst times.

BTW, I'd recommend nanso no ho as an extremely helpful practice right now. I think instructions for it is in both books.

Best wishes, and praying for your speediest possible recovery.
Thank you again, Sensei. I found the pages for "nanso no ho" in your "The Rinzai Zen Way" book. I am now reading it and will follow and apply the instructions.

Thanks again. Gassho :anjali:
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Re: Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

Post by a Zen Rōnin »

Thank you all for the suggestions. I appreciate them all. :namaste:
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Re: Meido Moore Roshi's "The Rinzai Zen Way" and "Hidden Zen"

Post by VolkerK »

Zen training and Buddhism not only include sitting meditation, but it is also about practicing healing and positive thoughts and actions and reducing negative thoughts and actions and training the mind. you can also read and recite sutras, dharanis and mantras, copy sutras (shakyo, kangyou), walking meditation, etc. to improve your health, you can also study Indian Ayurveda or the sutra for curing cancer

https://www.dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.p ... er#p691978
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