OLD 1969.08.30-serial.00084

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Tonight, I want to discuss with you about our practice and our everyday life, our everyday activity, our everyday life in terms of good and bad, and how you feel about your life. And which doesn't practice help your everyday life or not. This kind of thing will be discussed this evening.


Of course, we Buddhists believe in our innate, complete nature. And when we realize our nature, when we practice Dazen, it is possible for us to understand what is our true nature.


Not in terms of good or bad nature. When we realize our nature, we say we are According to Dorian Jones, we are Inmo, Inmani. Inmani means, Inmo is Chinese.


And it means that it is a kind of question. It is a kind of interactive word. Like what or how. And it also means suchness or justness. It has two meanings. When we are just as we are, and when we find that we are just as we are,


it means that when we practice Dazen and stop thinking, and stop our feeling of pain or disturbance, or distraction, then that is suchness. You know. And when we experience this suchness, then even the pain in your legs is also suchness.


And it is another way of experiencing our true nature. So, why we, why Dorian Jones used this word? Whatever the experience may be, when we realize, when we experience our true nature, then whatever the experience may be, that is another way of experiencing suchness. So not only Dazen practice, but also, in this case, the experience of suchness. So it is not just Dazen practice, but also whatever we do,


that is the experience, real experience of our true nature. So, whatever, you know. In this case, we do not point out some special experience, but that is why we use interrelative words. Whatever it is, or what is it, or how is it, what kind of experience did you have, how was the experience, you know. So, that how can be many things, many different things. And whatever the experience may be,


that is various, those are various way of experience of suchness, or our true nature. In this way, we understand our everyday life. And in this realm, if you have some questions, I want you to ask me. Hi. As we are counting our breath in Dazen,


a certain state of mind is created. During our everyday life, should we concentrate on maintaining that state of mind, or should we continue counting our breath? No, in everyday life, there may be, you know, in everyday life, sometimes you can count your breathing, or you can be concentrated on what you do, or even you can count your breathing, you know. But when you are, you are doing something, by using your thinking mind, you know, you cannot do that.


So, at that time, you should be concentrated on what you do, or what you think, whatever it is. You should be concentrated on what you do. That is, you know, there is also some difference between the concentration of usual person and the concentration of Zen student. Usually, the concentration is just concentration, that's all.


You know, it does not mean so much. But for us, you know, that concentration is more flexible, you know. That is why Andoge Zen uses two words, you know, the words which mean, this is it, and on the other side, the relative words. This is it, but it can be many things, you know. You can substitute it for some other experience, or some other activity. Now, when you eat, you should be concentrated on eating. And when you are even in concentration,


if you, if someone asks you to come, or, you know, if someone asks you to help, to help him, then you can easily stop your practice and concentration on some particular thing, and you can concentrate on some other thing, quite easily. And it is more flexible. That is the meaning. That is why we say what. So, you know, just to concentrate on one thing is not our way.


The concentration should be one of the many ways of concentration. And each activity, each practice, should include everything. So he said, if your practice does not include everything, that is not true practice. When your practice includes everything, whole universe, maybe, then that is our practice. Whatever the practice may be, you know, if the practice includes the whole universe,


that is only one practice. Name is different, but actually it is one practice. For Zen students, Zen students understand concentration in this way. But for usual people, to be concentrated on one thing is not just concentration, and that is his own practice. And it does not include some other's practice, or some other practice of his own, some other practice of him. Do you understand? Is all practice of suchness of equal value, for example,


if you experience suchness with an attitude of gratitude, is that more valuable than if you don't? If you don't, you know, your life will be life of peace by peace, you know. There is no confounding, and there will not be no universality. And your mind will not be in... Your mind will be always shaking. You mean if we practice suchness but without an attitude of gratitude, and this is the way it will be?


Gratitude, yeah, maybe so. Gratitude of including everything. Gratitude of unpredictability. Gratitude of perfect composure. Gratitude of practicing certainly with Buddha. Buddha, you know, Buddha and you, your practice includes Buddha's practice. And Buddha's practice is your practice. So, it may be a great joy, more than joy. Yeah. Do you have some other question?


I don't understand effortless effort. When I do effort, I have to use a lot of effort. Is there something like counting your breaths that will make that possible? Well, if I'm not doing zazen, well, in ordinary life. In ordinary life? In zazen, counting breathing helps a lot, but in ordinary life, I don't think it will help so much. Actually, you cannot count when you do some other things. Is there something we can do to make the effort effortless? Effortless, you know, what I'm saying is to be completely involved in what you do.


To become one with what you do. Not in dualistic sense. But, you know, your experience is not yours. And you vanish into that experience, you know. That which exists is something objective and subjective, and no subjectivity or objectivity. But that which exists is the act or practice you do at that time.


Hmm. One of the problems in your zazen is pain in your legs. But the pain is, you know, very helpful, you know. If you appreciate fully what is pain, it is best way to forget about yourself and pain, mostly stronger than the idea of self. If you are determined to, you know, endure the pain, it continues, you know.


And your practice will naturally continue. Don't you think so? And it is, you know, as long as you feel, you know, you have legs here, I have legs here, which is painful, then it is impossible to endure the pain. And it is very painful. The only way is to shut your eyes and try to become one with pain. That is only one way to endure the pain. So when you completely become with pain, and it is easy, you know, to become pain.


You think it is difficult, but actually it is not so. It is much easier to become with pain than become with something else. And because it is so strong and so actual, so you cannot escape from it. If you try to move it, you know, that is another matter. But if you determine, you know, not to move and endure the pain, the only way is to, you know, to give up my legs or some other's legs. Or to give up the intention to cut off your legs.


Keep it on your body and become one with it. With your whole body and mind, you should endure the pain. The only way is to protect yourself and to become one with pain. Thank you. If one does that, I don't understand what is that. If one does that, so what? So what? You will experience the badness of you and pain. That is very important in our practice.


Because we cannot do that, we have various problems. The, you know, problem is, what is the cause of problem? The cause of the problem is maybe so-called ignorance. What is ignorance? Ignorance is not to know that we have no self. So that is selflessness. The actual experience of selflessness and actual experience of to become one with whole being. Then you have no choice.


Is it better to become one with something that's harder to become one with, like pain, than to become one with something easier, like eating? To become one with eating? You think you become one with eating, but actually you are not. Now when you like something, you know, you will be easily fooled by something. If something is which you don't like at all, you cannot be fooled by it until you become completely one with it, you know. You cannot have composure in it.


You know, I know someone who had this experience fully, completely, and who forgot his body completely. You know, all of a sudden, all the pain stopped, and he lost her weight, you know. She didn't know who she was, and she forgot the pain also. Because when there is only pain, that is not pain anymore. Because you are here, you know, and pain is here, that is pain. There is no difference between pain or, you know, pain or


comfort. Comfort. This, you know, actual experience you may have if you are determined to do it. So, you know, that question like, so fat, will vanish also. This is wonderful, you know. This is the way how to become, how to accomplish our practice, how to attain oneness with everything. Actually, you know, you can do it. Okay.


Okay. As our practice continues, I find things that I used to feel and experience, I don't feel and experience with the intensity, emotional intensity that I used to. And it looks like this is a direction, possibly, of losing maybe some emotional coloring. There are times when I don't experience it all. And that's, it's rather frightening. And I've been wondering whether, this is just a Western idea, we have a concept that to experience fully is good. And if you're not healing,


and you have a new kind of, almost a blankness, and yet I do realize I see, it seems that I see things a little more clearly. Than what I was emotionally involved in. Is this more of a Western difficulty, do you think, than when you were, as a Japanese or Chinese, oriental cultural conditioning? I don't think so, actually. It is too, you know, deep experience, which is beyond, you know, cultural background. Pain is, you know, pain for us. Your pain, I don't think there's a difference between your pain and my pain. But did you, do you recognize this feeling of fear, of losing?


I hear many people say, you know, when you, when he experienced blankness of everything, or experienced to sit at the top of the mountain, you know, where he combined various sights, various view of the world, you know, he feels quite lonely, lonesome feeling. It is a kind of fear. For us too. Dalai Lama also has described this kind of sorrow, or, you know, yeah, sorrow.


Sorrow of, maybe, sorrow of enlightenment, you may say. Maybe. Sorrow, sorrow of some enlightened person. In morning, he said, in morning, such a person. Such a person means, you know, maybe everyone, but everyone can be such a person. But when he become really such a person, who felt this, who have this experience, will feel some sorrow,


which is different from the usual sorrow, but, you know, bottomless sorrow. So, but here also, and he said, sorrow itself, sorrow itself is actual experience of our true nature. So, that sorrow is different from usual sorrow, when we miss someone, or when we are going to die or something.


It is completely, it is not kind of, it is not the same kind, but it is actually a kind of, you know, loneliness. I think this kind of feeling, Buddhist has this kind of feeling, kind of feeling. That is why he is, you know, always humorous, like some comedian. But he himself is not so happy.


He can make, he can make people, you know, in complete disaster, you know. So, when he is, he is personally happy, he is not like that. But he is anyway, he is happy, he is happy, and his mind is almost always open and wide and deep and common, very common,


very plain. He can be very fancy sometimes. Thank you. Thank you. Excuse me, do you have some other questions? Sometimes I get very discouraged about my practice and my life, and I lose my energy and my determination, and I just feel bad. I feel bad in my body and in my mind. How should I approach this kind of thing? First of all, you know,


in your practice, you know, you should experience this kind of experience. That is the shortest path. You cannot be always, you know, you cannot be always in such a state as you have in your practice. But if you have, if you experience this kind of experience, even for ten minutes or five minutes, you will have, you will have some hope. But you will know the direction, which way to go. And then, you know, whatever happens,


that is the chance to to go back to actual practice. Dongen Zenzi, you know, described this kind of thing very well. And he told the story of the king of the highest heaven of desire world. The sixth heaven is


the highest realm of the desire world. And he was the king of the sixth realm. And he was very much proud of his magic power. So he wanted to disturb Buddha's disciple by his magic power. But he thought it may be, he thought it may be the best way. But at last he decided to disturb him by some, in this case of some virtual lady,


and to give him something to eat. You know. So he went, he went in this case of a virtual lady to his disciple. And he presented beautiful, what do you call, necklace. Necklace. For the Buddhist disciple it's not so good. But the Buddha's disciple said, I don't want such a little thing. But anyway I'll receive it.


Instead I'll present you something good too. And he offered something like Hawaiian day. So the king of the sixth world, had to leave. And later he saw, he saw the day which was given to him. And that was a day made of nasty human body. And a snake, dead snake, dead human body. And dead dog,


made of three things. And he was hungry. But he found it very difficult to get out of it. As he was the king of the sixth heaven world, he cannot find anyone powerful enough to help him. So he had to go to home. To someone who is ruling the home world, which is above the sixth world. And he asked Brahman to get rid of him. But that Brahman said,


I cannot do that. Maybe you better go to the disciple of Buddha. Especially if you go to Maha, Maha Guru Yajna, he will get rid of. But he was very reluctant to go to Buddha's disciple again. But he had to, so he went to him and asked him. And he helped, the disciple helped. And he could get rid of the lady. And at that time, Mokren, Buddha's disciple, Maha Guru Yajna, gave him a poem.


And it said, someone who fell on the ground should stand up by the ground. Someone who fell, who stumbled by the ground, there must be some stone or something. Those who stumbled at the stone and fell on the stone should stand up by the stone, like this. And for him there is no reason to seek some other aid. It means that you, you know, made a mistake


with Buddha's disciple. So you should go to Buddha's disciple. And you should stand up there by, by help of Buddha. It means that, you know, if you make some mistake, whatever it is, if you happen to do something good or bad, if it is bad, if it is good, it will be a great help. And even though it is mistake or it is some difficulty, but when you determined to try to stand up, and when you stand up, you know, there is no other place for you to stand up. The place you


make mistake will be the place you find out the way to stand up. So whatever experience you have, that is the place where you should practice our way. And that practice is to stand up by to stand up by is to become one with it, and to be free from it,


and to accept it, and to find complete composure in it. Thank you. Do you have some some more questions? Bill Young said that


you should continue to practice all of your life, that you should not stop. Suppose you get to a point where from now on whether you are sitting or doing some other activity, you do everything the same way. Yeah. Same way. Same way, but where you go may be different, you know. But the point is the same. Because it is the same as he said. That is it. This is it. And the way we practice is not always same, you know. That form of practice may be different each time you practice,


strictly speaking. So it must be what or how. Although it looks very different, it is same. It is the same, what is other? If it is, you know, you cannot have that kind of experience in some other practice. You will be easily fooled by something, you know. If you, you know, if you practice doesn't, even though you practice doesn't,


you will find it's pretty difficult even to count, you know. That is because you are always tend to be fooled by something. Why you keep on counting is opposite. You know, that is a kind of way. So that we can keep the schedule and not have that disease. You know, if you, I think, you know, our schedule is made in that way. We are a little bit wanton sleep, you know. And we don't eat not much strong food, you know. And, you know, we are under some always wanton


something. That is easier to practice our way rather than to have enough sleep and enough food. And, sufficient And that tiredness becomes part of the practice. Yes. Yes, yes. A part of practice. And that is healthy, you know. Respect that. Yes. If you are not, you know, tired, you may know


what will happen to you. Because you are a little bit tired, you know, you can't practice suddenly. Because you have not much, you know, enjoyment in monastic life, you can sit or if you have various enjoyment in monastic life, you will never sit. If I'm too tired in the morning, I can count my breath maybe to three. And then I fall asleep and I start over. Yeah. And sometimes I can arrange my sleeping schedule so I can count to ten or maybe even to seven. Should I push myself to a point where it's hard to count? Or should I maybe get a little more sleep so I


can count to ten? You know, you, anyway, you have to do your best, you know. Sometimes there is choice. No, no choice. Because choice is you know, anyway, anyway of practice. It seems to become harder to make choices. I would think it would become easier if you had good practice. Well, choices seem to become harder at Kasahara to me than they do down there. Yeah. We change


our schedule so many times. So that we can practice our way, you know. I don't know how many times we change our schedule. This is too much. This is not enough. It is a matter of twenty minutes or ten minutes. Whether we should get up twenty minutes earlier or whether we should sleep more. That kind of thing looks like very small things but not so very important. One more question, please. Dorothy,


what should we do when we can't stay awake in the morning? Stay awake? When we can't stay awake. When we can't count beyond three, how can we encourage ourselves as we say? Since we have to keep the schedule. Don't ask me. If I, you know, say yes or no, you know, it will be entrapped by my words, you know. So I don't want to say yes or no for that. Yes. Very hard for us, for me and for you to practice our way.


Thank you very much.