21 de septiembre de 2008

La cosa clara y mística

El Maestro Zen Man Gong se sentó en la alta tribuna para dar una charla de dharma, y dijo, "Originalmente las seis raíces, los seis polvos y las seis conciencias son vacío, pero una cosa clara y mística lo hace todo. ¿La has encontrado? ¿Dónde está?" Toda la asamblea permaneció en silencio. "Nadie lo entiende, así que voy a enseñarles una cosa clara y mística. El pájaro místico no puede soñar sobre el árbol. La flor mística se abre en el árbol que no tiene sombra ni raíces".

  1. Originalmente no hay seis raíces, seis polvos ni seis conciencias. ¿Entonces qué?
  2. ¿Cuál es el significado del pájaro místico?
  3. ¿Cuál es el significado de la flor mística?

Comentario: El oso caza al pájaro y se ríe, "¡Ja, ja, ja!"

Lions and Dogs

Zen Master Dae Kwang

The great Confucian sage Mencius noted that it was natural for the mouth to desire sweet tastes, the eye to desire beautiful colors, the ear to desire pleasant sounds, the nose to desire fragrant odors, and the four limbs to desire rest and ease. But there is an appointment of heaven in connection with them, and the superior person does not say of his pursuit of them, "This is my nature."

The Buddha said that there were two types of practitioners: One type is always chasing after something. They want something from practice. If their minds present them with something that they don't like, they want to get rid of it. If something appears that they like, they want to keep it. They are always trying to keep what they like, perhaps a good feeling, and fix what they don't want, like a problem in their life. This is like a dog chasing a bone. Or, you can be like a lion. If you are out in the bush and you throw a bone to a lion it will ignore the bone and jump on you! Zen Master Seung Sahn often says, "Zen means, 'I don't want anything.'" Zen is very simple: if you attain your "I don't want anything" mind then your big self appears naturally and you can help our world. Our school calls that "just do it, don't check."

Ching Ch'ing asked a monk, "What is that sound outside the gate?"

The monk said, "The sound of raindrops."

Ching Ch'ing said, "Sentient beings are upside down. They lose themselves and follow things."

The monk said, "How about you, Master?"

Ching Ch'ing answered, "I almost never lose myself."

The monk said, "What is the meaning of, "I almost never lose myself?'"

Ching Ch'ing said, "To explain is very easy; to express function through speech is very difficult."

If you don't lose yourself, how can you answer?

The Samadhi of Coolness

Zen Master Soeng Hyang

Excerpt from a letter to a student in our school.

February 11, 1982

Dear Bruce,

You wrote to me about the samadhi of coolness -- coolness of detachment and emptiness. You must be very careful. If you have detachment, you have attachment. If you have emptiness, you have fullness. If you sit on your cushion and have even a second's thought about struggling towards the emptiness beneath the fiery universe of greed and desire, you are already lost. You are lost in the dead realm of opposites. How can you keep your mind present and alive?

Once, when Soen Sa Nim was explaining to someone how to sit, he said something that I found extremely helpful. He said imagine that you have lost your only set of car keys and you have to get somewhere very desperately. Just at that time your mind is totally focused on trying to find those car keys. You don't stop and think about the nature of car keys, or about where they originally came from; nor do you stop and read books about what other people have done when they have lost something that they need very badly. You also don't try to feel detached or empty about the keys. You only look for them! Where are my keys? Where are my keys?

So again I must tell you that I can't accept your answers. You are very lucky that you have such a dilemma. Where is your mistake? What can you do? Drop the particular situations in both kong-ans and try to keep a mind that just doesn't know.

Thank you for your struggle.



Sim Gum Do - Mind Sword Path

Dharma speech given by Zen Master Seung Sahn at the opening of the Cambridge Zen Center Sim Gum Do Institute.

(Hitting the table with the Zen stick three times)

Everybody has been very busy, but you have all come to the opening ceremony of the Cambridge Zen Center Institute of Sim Gum Do. Thank you very much.

What is Sim Gum Do? It is the Mind Sword Path. Then what is Mind? If we had no mind, there would be no action. Matter is important. But without mind, we cannot understand matter. So mind is more important than matter. But mind and matter are not two. Where does mind come from? Where does matter come from? Who made mind and matter? Mind, matter, mountain, river, good, bad, Buddha, God - all these are made by our thinking. If we cut off all thinking, then we become empty mind. Here there are no opposites; there is only the absolute. This is before thinking. Everything in the universe becomes one. This is true mind.

What is Sword? An eminent teacher said, "Sometimes the sword kills, sometimes the sword gives life." It cuts through wrong and helps the right. So if you have a mind of great compassion, you have the true sword. If you have the true sword, you have true freedom and peace over the whole world. Inside, you cut away all attachments and desires and attain the life of no hindrance. Outside, the bad disappears, the good appears. This is the great Dharma sword. Sometimes it is a steel sword, sometimes a hand sword, sometimes a mind sword. And so you will save all people.

What is Path? The path does not change color. It does not waver. It has no hindrance at all. This is the true path. You cut off all desires and leave behind the Small I. You attain emptiness and become the Nothing I. And when you leave even emptiness behind and find the Big I, you will attain the true path. We hope to save all people. So when all people are happy, we are happy; when all people are sad, we are sad. The same action, the same mind - this is the great Bodhisattva path.

So the Mind Sword Path is understanding your true self and attaining the true Dharma, for the sake of all people. But the Mind Sword Path is not the Mind Sword Path. The true mind sword is before thinking, so there are no words for it. When the Mind Sword Path and the whole universe become one, this is the true Mind Sword Path.

Here is a poem for you:

You sharpen it for ten thousand years, then are able to thrust it through the bone of space.
All Buddhas and eminent teachers stick up their hands in surrender.
A cool breeze comes from the East and all clouds are blown away.
The moon with its circle of light shines over the whole universe.

Then what is the true Mind Sword Path?

(Hitting the table with the Zen stick) KATZ!!!

Watch your step.

6 de agosto de 2008

Ceremonia de Apertura de Ojos de Buda

Ceremonia de Apertura de Ojos de Buda - 10 de agosto de 2008

Campanarios coreanos

Si alguna vez has asistido a la práctica vespertina en el Centro Zen de Providence, sabrás que al comienzo de los cantos tocamos la campana grande del templo, ubicada sobre una colina cerca del monasterio. La campana se encuentra en un pabellón, similar a los utilizados en Corea. Sin embargo, muchos de estos “campanarios” coreanos son más elaborados y contienen otros artículos además de la campana: un tambor grande, un pez tallado en madera y un gong en forma de nube. Todos son utilizados al inicio de los cantos matutinos y vespertinos, y sirven para llamar simbólicamente a practicar a todos los seres. Primero, se golpea el tambor en patrones cada vez más complejos. El tambor llama a todos los animales con piel sobre la tierra, es decir, los animales terrestres. Después, se golpea el pez de madera, llamando a todos los animales marinos. Luego, el gong de la nube metálica se golpea, llamando a todos los animales del aire (pájaros, etc.). Finalmente se golpea la campana -28 veces en la mañana y 33 veces en la tarde- para llamar a practicar a todos los humanos. Estos campanarios tienen generalmente dos pisos, con la campana en el primero y los demás artículos en el segundo piso.

La entrevista

Maestro Zen Wu Bong

La entrevista zen es una parte vital del entrenamiento en nuestra escuela. Mientras que la forma y el contenido de la misma dependen por completo del estudiante y del estilo particular del maestro, el propósito es ayudar al estudiante a experimentar sus propias fortalezas y limitaciones. No es muy útil, ni siquiera posible, juzgar la propia práctica, pero es posible experimentar la calidad de nuestra práctica a través de la entrevista zen.

Hay una manera “correcta” y una manera “incorrecta” de acercarse a la entrevista. Si estamos apegados a lo “correcto”, a contestar cualquier kong-an correctamente, a demostrar siempre cuán claros y fuertes somos, la entrevista se convierte en un verdadero calvario. Es este deseo de contestar correctamente, de no mostrar nuestras debilidades, nuestros rincones oscuros, que hace que aparezca el miedo. No es fácil ser capaz de cometer errores, ser estúpido, y de todos modos no examinar eso y seguir intentando. Algunos estudiantes zen tratan de evitar esta situación simplemente evitando la entrevista. Hay otro extremo, que tampoco es muy útil para nuestra práctica. Se manifiesta por medio de una fascinación malsana por los kong-ans y las entrevistas. Esto es especialmente malsano en el caso de los estudiantes cuya práctica entera gira en torno a tratar de responder kong-ans. Estos estudiantes olvidan que sin el fuego de “no sé”, sin un esfuerzo constante, dichas respuestas y entrevistas no pueden conectar con sus vidas y resultan bastante inútiles.

Por último, la entrevista zen es muy importante, pero sólo como parte de nuestra práctica. Si se utiliza correctamente, sin evasión ni fascinación, es una herramienta muy poderosa y ayuda tanto al estudiante como al maestro. Puede proporcionar un vínculo vital entre nuestra meditación y nuestra vida. Es como un laboratorio en el que podemos examinar de manera segura nuestra práctica bajo el fuego. Las situaciones kong-an que se presentan en la entrevista son, por lo general, extremadamente sencillas, e, incluso si cometemos un error, no ocurre ninguna consecuencia seria. Por lo general nuestras vidas no son tan indulgentes, y muchas de nuestras situaciones cotidianas son muy complejas y llenas de sutilezas. Pero el nudo gordiano que eso representa puede cortarse. Las entrevistas zen y los kong-ans nos enseñan cómo hacerlo.