The practice of Zazen

All things related to beginning Zen Practice. Here is where to exchange information between those that have already started Zen training and those planning to do so.
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avisitor
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The practice of Zazen

Post by avisitor » Sat Aug 17, 2019 2:53 am

I know that this topic has probably been beaten to death.
Was on Facebook, saw Jundo Cohen on one of those Zen pages.
There were posts about how Shikantaza was suppose to be done.
It was likened to the big blue sky.
But, isn't it a focused mind??

One starts by counting breathe or watching the breathe go in and out
Letting thoughts come and go. Not to follow the thoughts.
If one gets caught up in thought to let it go.
And through this action, the mind becomes more focused to do this action
Monkey mind calms downs
A sort of focus and concentration.
Much like when someone works with a Koan.
Sesshins are periods of intense practice.

So why would a teacher present Zazen as the big blue sky?
Maybe I was reading it wrong or putting my own interpretations on it.
I don't know. It just sounds like Zazen has turned into day dreaming
Instead of the intense period of time one spends working on oneself

Read somewhere that if one is properly doing Zazen in the winter time that one can melt the snow around one.
Must be that there are too many ways to describe Zazen.

Caodemarte
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by Caodemarte » Sat Aug 17, 2019 3:37 am

Jundo is not wrong.

I have noticed you have many theoretical ideas about what zazen is and many questions about these ideas. If you try vigorously to closely follow the many instructions out there (or better find some actual people who can give you direct guidance), most of these questions will disappear. Discussing zazen without practice is like discussing what an apple tastes like with someone who has never tasted one.

narhwal90
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by narhwal90 » Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:52 am

As far as melting the snow, could be as simple as sitting there long enough to do it. The masterful part is not being distracted by the cold.

i had a zazen session once where the neighbors started clearing some brush with a chainsaw, going pretty much the duration of our session. That wasnt so bad. In another i set my phone down next to my shoes, muted, but forgot to disable vibrate. i got 5 or so texts during, the phone resonating magnificently on the hardwood. i prayed for instant death but did not get up and throw.the damn thing outside.

All these things are training or distraction.

Seeker242
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by Seeker242 » Sat Aug 17, 2019 11:36 am

I would say that’s an accurate description. Shikantaza is a particular type of zazen which is not like breath meditation where you are focused on one particular thing. You could say the mind is unified but not focused on anything in particular. You could say the focus is...everything. It’s a kind of zazen that is open, wide, expansive and all encompassing, like a big blue sky.

But that’s definitely not daydreaming because you’re not following anything. With daydreaming, you follow along with the story. You don’t do that with shikantaza.

avisitor
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by avisitor » Sat Aug 17, 2019 4:59 pm

Thank you for your replies.

Yes, Jundo is not wrong. But, he ignored all that comes before Shikantaza.
One can not just come and do Shikantaza without some prior training.
Just like a baby must learn to crawl before it can learn to walk.
His presentation was to want everyone to do Shikantaza without any ... prep??

Yes, I do have many ideas about Zazen.
And although I have not had any formal training in a Zendo
I have had a teacher and no sangha
And after, have practiced for many years on my own
Have had some experiences ...
Never experienced Kensho
The comment about the melting of snow is meant to signify the intensity of the sitting

Maybe I just jumped into the deep end of the pool and am over my head??

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fuki
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by fuki » Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:18 pm

avisitor wrote:
Sat Aug 17, 2019 4:59 pm
Thank you for your replies.

Yes, Jundo is not wrong. But, he ignored all that comes before Shikantaza.
One can not just come and do Shikantaza without some prior training.
Just like a baby must learn to crawl before it can learn to walk.
His presentation was to want everyone to do Shikantaza without any ... prep??
A "description" or instruction depends on the target audience, knowing Jundo he usually is motivated to get people to the root and both me and him acknowledge there are ppl for who Practise comes natural and don't need any prerequisite instructions, but if one does then ofcourse Jundo would give it depending on whoever asked a question or was his audience, in an online setting you can't "please" everyone, so the "description" might vary depending on the individual. In the end all "meditation" descriptions are about just being aware of awareness (or that one is aware) all the various techniques and trainings and all the books refer back to the most obvious and simple. But due to habit energies (distractions) a multitude of different "explanations" and practises arise based on the various individual needs/habits/predispositions.
meldpunt seksueel misbruik in boeddhistische gemeenschappen.
https://meldpuntbg.nl/

IZIhttp://www.zeninstitute.org/en/iziae/main.html

Spike
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by Spike » Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:38 pm

fuki wrote:
Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:18 pm
In the end all "meditation" descriptions are about just being aware of awareness (or that one is aware) all the various techniques and trainings and all the books refer back to the most obvious and simple. But due to habit energies (distractions) a multitude of different "explanations" and practises arise based on the various individual needs/habits/predispositions.
Yes, that's why "way" is used to correctly describe zen.
Meido Moore's monastery and contact info:
www.korinji.org

Genjo Marinello's temple and contact info:
https://choboji.org/

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[james]
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by [james] » Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:39 pm

avisitor wrote:
Sat Aug 17, 2019 4:59 pm
Maybe I just jumped into the deep end of the pool and am over my head??
Even the shallow end can be deep.
Reminds me of Kōbun Chino Roshi who died with his young daughter as she was drowning in a shallow pool.

http://www.floatingzendo.org/lineage/

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fuki
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by fuki » Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:50 pm

Spike wrote:
Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:38 pm

Yes, that's why "way" is used to correctly describe zen.
:lol:
meldpunt seksueel misbruik in boeddhistische gemeenschappen.
https://meldpuntbg.nl/

IZIhttp://www.zeninstitute.org/en/iziae/main.html

avisitor
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by avisitor » Tue Aug 20, 2019 5:55 am

fuki wrote:
Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:18 pm
A "description" or instruction depends on the target audience, knowing Jundo he usually is motivated to get people to the root and both me and him acknowledge there are ppl for who Practise comes natural and don't need any prerequisite instructions, but if one does then ofcourse Jundo would give it depending on whoever asked a question or was his audience, in an online setting you can't "please" everyone, so the "description" might vary depending on the individual. In the end all "meditation" descriptions are about just being aware of awareness (or that one is aware) all the various techniques and trainings and all the books refer back to the most obvious and simple. But due to habit energies (distractions) a multitude of different "explanations" and practises arise based on the various individual needs/habits/predispositions.
One can not see who is on-line and what the other person is predisposed with .. talent??
Most people, who first learn how to meditate, .... don't have the natural tendency or talent
But, that is just me with lots of ideas about Zazen and people's monkey mind

This isn't about pleasing everyone. It is about practice.
It isn't about the individual needs/habits/predispositions
It is about seeing into one's true nature.

All of Zen begins with the same things.
A meeting with someone, (who pours a cup of tea and have it over flow)
Lots of beliefs and thoughts about what Zen is and is not.
But, the training and practice is always the same
Yes, a multitude of explanations
But, training and practice is the same
There may be many names ... still, one mind, no mind

Tea may fill many different vessels but it is still tea.
Sometimes I feel like I am polishing a roof tile into a mirror ...lol.

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desert_woodworker
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by desert_woodworker » Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:33 pm

What's that about zazen?

Just practice correct zazen.

--Joe

avisitor
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Re: The practice of Zazen

Post by avisitor » Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:25 am

desert_woodworker wrote:
Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:33 pm
What's that about zazen?

Just practice correct zazen.

--Joe
Sorry for being disruptive.
You're right ... just practice correct Zazen ... just sitting

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