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"Never complain. Never explain." Variously attributed to Henry Ford II, Benjamin Disraeli, Francis Bacon, and others. Let's call it "Anonymous." Never point out what's wrong about someone; that's complaining. What's "wrong" is holding an opinion that the person is not doing "right". Never explain why what you're doing is "right"; that's defending what needs no defense. That said, I will point out that reaching out to imagined legions of anonymous beings via the Internet is not among the Thirty-Seven Practices Of The Bodhisattva enumerated by the Dalai Lama in his "Essential Teachings": I have observed that the Bodhisattva does not seek to save all sentient beings at once. What is the hurry, when the Bodhisattva has as many lifetimes as are necessary to fulfill his or her Vow? The Vow WILL be fulfilled inevitably, if the Bodhisattva simply practices infinite patience (kshanti), the 27th of the Practices mentioned above. The Bodhisattvas I have met did not seek to amass followers. They just met one sentient being at time, and let him or her go without attachment. It is the example of the perfectly practicing Bodhisattva that saves a sentient being, not his or her attachment to the Bodhisattva. "Just think of the trees: they let the birds perch and fly, with no intention to call them when they come and no longing for their return when they fly away. If people's hearts can be like the trees, they will not be off the Way." - Anon. That is the way of the Bodhisattva. He or she simply abides, bodhicitta outstretched like the welcoming boughs of a tree, and lets sentient beings come and go. Eventually, no matter how many lifetimes it takes, every bird in existence will perch in the tree; take what it needs; and then fly away. Be wary of gathering followers, and of those who gather followers. With followers one gathers power, prestige, wealth, and other delusions. When one has a following one has something to lose, to cling to, to guard jealously. That is not the way of the Bodhisattva.
Toggle Commented Sep 13, 2010 on Internet Following at Ox Herding
By all accounts I've found, Seung San was as big a sexual predator, hypocrite, and self-aggrandizer as Eido Shimano, whom Barry recently excoriated here. Yet Barry doesn't seem to question San's dharma. Why, please?
Toggle Commented Sep 6, 2010 on Seung Sahn: Don't Know at Ox Herding
"the Buddha's teachings undercut the self-deceptions of certainty, rules and structures - or any effort to determine outcomes." And yet, every financially successful guru sells the comforting delusion of certainty, law and order. "Mediate this way, do these things, fulfill these vows, and Enlightenment will surely come eventually." The half-true "Law" of Attraction: what you put out is what you'll get back. Didn't work that way for Jesus, Gandhi, MLK, etc. The full, terrible truth of Karma is this: from every action arise *multiple* effects, each of which has *both* Yin and Yang in unpredictable and uncontrollable proportions. The effects of every cause are chaotic. Chaos, not Law, rules. Scientists and religious people agree that the Universe arose from Chaos and will sink into Chaos. I don't understand why they insist it isn't in Chaos right now. In 1919, an Irishman saved another man from being kicked to death by a mob; a noble, good deed - right? The man whose life he saved was Adolph Hitler. World War II could have been avoided if the Irishman had just refrained from "any effort to determine outcomes." You can do no purely good or purely evil deed. EVERY action gives rise to multiple effects, each of which is helpful to some and unhelpful to others. Therefore striving to do only good is futile, a delusional goal. Keep it simple; every honest, true thing is SIMPLE! "There is one purpose to life and one only: to >> bear witness <<< to and understand as much as possible of the complexity of the world – its beauty, its mysteries, its riddles. The more you understand, the more you look, the greater is your enjoyment of life and your sense of peace. That’s all there is to it. Everything else is just fun and games." ~ Ann Rice in "Servant of the Bones" (Emphasis added) "...come alive to life, as it is, in this moment." Keep it simple.
Law (rigid order) and Chaos are but a manifestation of Yin and Yang. There's a bit of Chaos in every law and a delusion of order in all the Chaos. I think you can tell which factor I favor by my punctuation. :-) "Chaos is not dangerous until it begins to look orderly." ~ Max Gunther, "The Zurich Axioms." Scientists and religious people agree that the universe arose from Chaos and will end in Chaos. I don't understand why they insist that it's not in Chaos right now. "Every actual state is corrupt. Good men do not obey laws too well." ~ Ralph W. Emerson. Law is about order, not justice. Law presumes, it does not observe what is here and now; therefore, preconceived laws, or rules, or expectations are always inappropriate to the actual situation. To deny that there is order and law to the universe, and accept with clear sight its actual Chaos, is to live in harmony with what is. And yet, I impose the illusion of order upon stones and beads and metal to Make jewelry. The Zen Scrivener places words in certain orders to fill the Emptiness between advetisements. The Zen Cueist meditates in seemingly random motion around the chaos of billiard balls, practicing Cue-do, the Way of the Pool Cue. It is all Chaos Magick.
Toggle Commented Feb 16, 2010 on Rigid/Chaos at Ox Herding
I drank daily and heavily for 40 years. One day, my doctor gave me a prescription for something totally unrelated to alcohol and said, "Don't drink with this, it will make you puke." I stopped drinking. When the medicine ran out I still stopped drinking. That was three years ago. It was effortless. But if I run out of cigarettes, I cannot think of anything else long enough to work effectively. I'll fish in public ashtrays until I find a "re-fry" that's long enough for a few drags. Go figure...
Toggle Commented Jan 21, 2010 on Addiction at Ox Herding
Unicornish Buddhism: I'm amused by the scientists who are discovering things that have been known to mystics for millenia. Compare the "holographic universe" theory to Indra's Net, for example. I'm also amused by the mystics who excitedly point to science for validation of their beliefs. "See? There IS a scientific explanation!" "To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible." ~ St. Thomas Aquinas. Faith is the ability to not panic. Each morning I remind myself that absolutely nothing will go as I planned and everything will turn out perfectly... and it does, every time.
Toggle Commented Dec 19, 2009 on materialist trash at The Zennist
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Dec 19, 2009