Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness(to Mayka)

2011-01-13 Thread Mel
--- On Wed, 12/1/11, Maria Lopez flordel...@btinternet.com wrote:

MEL: Hi Mayka

M: Thank you for the time spent in writing and thoughtful post. I don´t have 
the material time right now to read in depth and reciprocate  your kindnest but 
I have acknowledge you.  Thank you.

MEL: My pleasure, and thank you as well

in peace
Mel




  




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Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness

2011-01-13 Thread Mel
Hi there Chris!

--- On Thu, 13/1/11, ChrisAustinLane ch...@austin-lane.net wrote:


From: ChrisAustinLane ch...@austin-lane.net
Subject: Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness
To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Cc: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Received: Thursday, 13 January, 2011, 6:29 AM


  



I do not think that followers of Judaism try very much to recruit new converts. 
--
MEL: You're quite right. I do get the impression that they're somewhat more 
subtle though(except in Jerusalem, apparently). Once they know you're 
interested, keen, and genuine, the evangelical hornets do come out of the nest 
 
In Jerusalem, it was reported some time ago that an Armenian congregation 
marching down a path had their old but highly revered wooden cross(200 years 
old?) smashed by a group of very zealous/fanatical Jewish students. In the 
report, it was said that it was also apparently not unusual for devout 
Christians(even priests) to be spat on and verbally abused as well by 
these young boys during pilgrimages to the Holy Land. I would personally 
say...well...yes, this could be a form of Jewish 'evangelism'...sort of . 
---
Christianity and Islam are a bit more evangelistic, 
---
MEL: Yes, they are...especially these days...and those 2 are competing with 
each other for fresh recruits all the time, and I thought the Mormons and JWs 
were bad enough
 
With the Muslims, there seem to be this constant trumpet-blowing about how many 
have left Christendom and  joined Islam every month(or year) according to the 
latest statistics or reports(What reports/statistics??!!). I mean, hey, one's 
gotta do what one's gotta do to increase the army of the child-molestor(the 
prophet), yeah?

but I am left wondering about what you mean by Semitic evangelism. 
---
MEL: I often use the term 'semitic' to save having to type 
Christian/Islamic/Jewish, and for all other Middle Eastern folk near and/or 
around the Fertile Crescent and Gulf regions. Academically, that may not be 
right(especially as I've put the Egyptians and Iranians/Persians in the same 
basket)
 
I'm rather hesitant with the Jews, but I find the other 2 to be quite keen on 
spreading their faith...and therefore why I used the term 'semitic evangelism'

I ask for clarification on this forum because of some threads that asserted 
that westerner folk who pursue zen tend to be more contaminated with Semitic 
ideals of good and evil than those from Eastern societies. 

MEL:...Ummmyou might want to blame that one on me, but that's what I 
personally tend to see. There is no good or evil in Zen. There's only activity. 
Once one starts categorizing which are good or bad, then a problem may 
ensue(Buddha just acts...just is..). For example, I see nothing wrong with. 
 
- capital punishment
- abortion on demand
- contraception
 
...and so on, because that's what comes out of me. We all have our own 
conscience on one thing or another, whether they were learned(drummed into us), 
or not. As adults, we all make our choices. Just my personal view
---
So is it the dualism or the evangelism that is claimed to be Semitic?
--
MEL: The dualism might be ED's(I think, if I remember correctly), and the 
evangelism part is mine 
--
I wonder if you Mel agree with Ed that my original line about the peach And the 
painting was in fact evangelistic? 
--
MEL: I've been looking up the above in the archives and I found the 
'peach' posting but not the 'painting' bit. The thing is(and I think I've 
explained it to ED already, albeit indirectly) that when one is in a spiritual 
and/or religious forum that one will eventually be asked to make the choice 
ofare they in, or are they out? That can be clear and direct, or 
subtle(subtle, but only for a short while). The fence-sitters eventually stick 
out like a sore thumbs, especially by the way they post on forums, or message 
boards...and they often get abused but that is to be expected. I did, when I 
was in an Islamic forum
 
Let's take the Muslims for a moment. I have worked with quite a few of them, 
and I asked

Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness(to Chris/list)

2011-01-13 Thread Mel

--- On Thu, 13/1/11, Chris Austin-Lane ch...@austin-lane.net wrote:

Practice doesn't change the nature of what living is.
-
MEL: It doesn't change the conditions out there, but we can change from within 
according to the BigMind, which is always in operation. For example, I was 
really dying for KFC tonite, but decided to put up with all the dualistic 
cobwebs of desire...and went home to eat what's there(which was more healthy)

The BigMind is always there, and sufficient by itself. It's like a pure, 
pristine rainforest untampered by Man. I'm sure Tarzan and Mowgli know about 
this very well. When unhealthy desires(not just bad food) lead us, then the 
BigMind becomes insufficient. When we keep the BigMind, then all the precepts 
stay automatically, and everything falls into place. Lose the BigMind, and we 
lose all precepts..and we lose ourselves to dualism

On days when I've sat in zazen, I say things I wish I hadn't, get crabby, stub 
my toe, make typos, drop dishes, etc., etc., just like on days when I
have avoided sitting in zazen.

MEL: That's because Homo Sapien is not perfect. We've been endowed with lots of 
bells and whistles that other living things haven't been. Struggle is part of 
that human quality. But...we strive, and strive some more, until the effort 
disappears...and there only is..

peace be with you
Mel








  




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Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness(to Chris/list)

2011-01-13 Thread Chris Austin-Lane
On Thursday, January 13, 2011, Mel gunnar19632...@yahoo.com.au wrote:

 --- On Thu, 13/1/11, Chris Austin-Lane ch...@austin-lane.net wrote:

 Practice doesn't change the nature of what living is.
 -
 MEL: It doesn't change the conditions out there, but we can change from 
 within according to the BigMind, which is always in operation.


The zen practice I am getting trained in does not draw a line between
out there and within. conditions are conditions. It rains, I drop
dishes, i get mad, i get happy, the sun rises.

Also, we change any ways, what ever we think about the way we are. I
am not completely against people trying to change, but I am skeptical.
 It seems to me most people would be better off trying to see their
life clearly and make the current instant better rather than have some
long term project to change themselves eventually. For me, such
projects have screwed up more than they have  fixed. Tomorrow will
take care of itself.

--Chris

I snipped the things I basically agree with.  An enjoyable exchange, thanks.




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Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness

2011-01-13 Thread Chris Austin-Lane
On Thursday, January 13, 2011, Mel gunnar19632...@yahoo.com.au wrote:

Again snipping the Parts I have no comment on, but I am grateful for
your taking the time to answer my questions.

 --
 I wonder if you Mel agree with Ed that my original line about the peach And 
 the painting was in fact evangelistic?
 --
 MEL: I've been looking up the above in the archives and I found the 
 'peach' posting but not the 'painting' bit.

On Saturday, January 8, 2011, Chris Austin-Lane ch...@austin-lane.net wrote:
 To eat the peach or make do with the picture of a lovely peach. It is a daily 
 choice we face.

Back to Mel:

 This is just the thing about Zen...we all eventually become our own counselors

We are all already our own conselors.  Zen adds nothing to this basic
fact of reality.



 my comment about how I sometimes recommend 'sit' as a answer
understanding that people are free 

 MEL: Absolutely Chris, I couldn't agree more. That is what separates us from 
 the Semites. Now, I'm being dualistic here
 but I only say that because some of their flock try so hard to bring me back 
 from being that...well...that 'lost and
 wandering sheep'...*more laughter*and back into Yahweh's fold...

I am currently also a practicing Christian, and the above deleted
phrase is identical to my approach in sharing Christianity, except for
'sit' the thing is 'attend my church'. There is more cultural baggage
attached with the church, so the times when recommending it seem
useful are rarer is the main difference.

For what it is worth, my experience with the church is that most
people who practise Christianity for a long time have a lot of
non-dualistic elements in their understanding of it.  I think that
dualistic perspectives wrap around any thing in our lives, because
that is what our brains do.  and that life keeps on beating us until
we notice the non-dual nature of it. If one is a Christian, but cannot
love neighbors without judging them, I recommend they try zazen :) But
if some one grew up worshipping in a Christian church, but life has
changed their perspectives, but they seem to miss worship as a
community, I will tell them there is no inherent-to-Christianity
reason why they cannot worship in a Christian church as is, and
receive and offer non-judgmental love in that church.  There might be
some church shopping involved, of course. I think God cares less about
our thoughts than a good Zen teacher, and that is very little.



 The sheep's foldand all Semites are sheep, and some in this world 
 obviously think I need another sheep's bath in the fold after having been 
 'lost' for so long

Whoops, my last few sentences are not aimed at you, just an
elucidation of the thinking that might lie behind my offering
attendance at my church during a conversation. Please carry on your
pesonal life as is best.



 A politician visits the wise zen master and asks the secret. The master 
 replies, do what is good and do not do what is not good. the politician 
 rolls his eyes and says, my kid can tell me that! the master says, we all 
 know this, but even this wise zen master has trouble doing it.

 
 MEL:(*BIG LAUGHTER*)...I loved it, thank you!

Despite the reference to good and not good?




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Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness

2011-01-12 Thread Maria Lopez
Dear Mel,

Thank you for the time spent in writing and thoughtful post. I don´t have the 
material time right now to read in depth and reciprocate  your kindnest but I 
have acknowledge you.  Thank you.

Mayka

--- On Wed, 12/1/11, Mel gunnar19632...@yahoo.com.au wrote:

From: Mel gunnar19632...@yahoo.com.au
Subject: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness
To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Date: Wednesday, 12 January, 2011, 6:19







 



  



  
  
   I simply mean that thinking about things and experiencing things are 
different.  Even experiencing thinking is different from thinking about 
thinking.  I may have been hoping to let the lurkers know my observation that 
sittting zazen does make the shift in attention easier, so I notice the 
experiencing before it is covered up in thinking easier when I've sat 
recently). 

--

MEL: Yes, it does make it harder to describe or talk about the experience in an 
internet forum without actually having had the experience. For example, JMJM 
had posted a link to a cartoonized version of zazen on video. I can relate to 
that very much. Flies aren't the problem where I am. Mosquitoes are, especially 
when they carry malaria...but one still carries on. I got up one time with 
multiple mosquito lumps



While doing zazen, one experiences that nothingness, but the 'small' Self 
eventually take over every once in a while because..wellwe lose our 
posture(which I did a few times) due to tiredness, or simply just falling 
asleep. Dualistically-speaking, the 'big' Self is responsible for the natural 
breathing, as it is for other bodily functions we have no control of. Making 
the effort to straighten the spine however, is an act of the smaller variety. 
Falling asleep during zazen can be embarassing(due to snorring) when at the 
temple



The nothingness one experiences is nothing, but something at the same time. 
It's not easy to put into words, but one knows it. In fact, you see it. You 
can't possibly miss it. Is it anything special? Well, it's just...nothing...

--

Scrutinizing the peach and biting into it are not mutually exclusive choices 
for different points in time.



The 'choice' one makes for any moment in time is whatever appears to oneself to 
be the most appropriate choice for that moment.

--

MEL: Of course. Yes

---

Almost anyone here could give others repetitious advice on how to run their 
lives, and their intentions, like those of fundamentalist religionists, 
would no doubt be motivated by good intentions; but, guided by current cultural 
mores, at least in English-speaking countries, most abstain from such 
well-intentioned speech.

--

MEL: Yes. However, due to past Semitic influences of most Westerners, that 
evangelical attitude somehow manages to find itself into even..well...Zen 
practise. Whenever one joins a spiritual and/or religious forum of sorts, one 
does eventually get this. I got such in pagan/NewAge, Christian, and especially 
in Islamic online forums. I had a purely intellectual interest in the Qur'an 
and I donated Islamic books to the local mosque as I didn't need them anymore. 
My intention was to drop the items there, and then go. That didn't happen. I 
was basically lead to sit down and explain myself why or how was it that I 
still wasn't a Muslim after all such reading



In any case, you're quite right of course

- 

 Much, much short cut to  eat the peach rather than to have the poetry and 
 much more often the speculation by the ones who read a lot about  what look 
 like the taste of the peach but never tried, tasted or even see a peach in 
 their life.

--

MEL: Ideally, yes. Unfortunately, not all are suited to zazen practise for all 
sorts of reasons. There will always be those from the Semitic 
fold(Christian/Muslim/Jewish) who will have nothing more but an intellectual 
interest in all things to do with the Buddha or Tao. On the other hand, one 
also finds self-confessed/declared atheists in biblical forums who also have 
the same purpose. But...to touch something of the divine instead of researching 
it...that is different indeed even for Zen which has no god to rule over a 
nation or people



I've seen and experienced it from multiple-spiritual angles(but forget 
Pentecostal...no thanks...*big laughter*), but I've made a choice of coming 
back to Zen this time. There are no morals or god(s) involved and one has 
basically a complete, free hand



in peace

Mel  






 





 



  





Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness

2011-01-12 Thread ChrisAustinLane
I do not think that followers of Judaism try very much to recruit new converts. 
Christianity and Islam are a bit more evangelistic, but I am left wondering 
about what you mean by Semitic evangelism. 

I ask for clarification on this forum because of some threads that asserted 
that westerner folk who pursue zen tend to be more contaminated with Semitic 
ideals of good and evil than those from Eastern societies. So is it the dualism 
or the evangelism that is claimed to be Semitic?  

I wonder if you Mel agree with Ed that my original line about the peach And the 
painting was in fact evangelistic?  

For the record, while I myself answer 'sit' to people seem receptive to that 
method of easing living, I do so with an implicit assertion that they are free 
individuals and will work out their path according to their own lights.  


Thanks,
Chris Austin-Lane
Sent from a cell phone

PS. Obligatory zen story:  

A politician visits the wise zen master and asks the secret. The master 
replies, do what is good and do not do what is not good. the politician rolls 
his eyes and says, my kid can tell me that! the master says, we all know 
this, but even this wise zen master has trouble doing it.

On Jan 11, 2011, at 22:19, Mel gunnar19632...@yahoo.com.au wrote:

 MEL: Yes. However, due to past Semitic influences of most Westerners, that 
 evangelical attitude somehow manages to find itself into even..well...Zen 
 practise. Whenever one joins a spiritual and/or religious forum of sorts, one 
 does eventually get this. I got such in pagan/NewAge, Christian, and 
 especially in Islamic online forums. I had a purely intellectual interest in 
 the Qur'an and I donated Islamic books to the local mosque as I didn't need 
 them anymore. My intention was to drop the items there, and then go. That 
 didn't happen. I was basically lead to sit down and explain myself why or how 
 was it that I still wasn't a Muslim after all such reading




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Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness

2011-01-12 Thread ED


Chris, my humorous comment does not apply to you.



 --- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com, ChrisAustinLane chris@ wrote:

   I do not come to the forum expecting it to be a place just for
practicing zen folk, ...

 To me these read rather differently, but it appears that you are
 making an equation between them, in which case I must apologize for
 conveying a self-righteous message. ...



 On Jan 12, 2011 1:16 PM, ED seacrofter001@... wrote:

 Dear Bodhidharma, I thank you that I am not a sinner like these 
non-practicing Zen folk appear to be.






Re: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness

2010-12-30 Thread Maria Lopez
David:

I´m not in my computer and don´t know how it works in this one sending a link.  
But if you google in videos: Thich Nhat Hanh, Simple Mindfulness, then you will 
be having a very basic teaching of minfulness explained in great simplicity.  
Thich Nhat Hanh is the Master of mindfulness per excellence and strongly 
reccomend you to get the teaching directly from him ideally  by participating 
in a retreat where you would alsi have the chance to put straight away into 
practice and having in that way the direct experience of what is first glimpse 
experience in mindfulness.  But if you can.t attend a retreat then try to 
listen the video in the awareness of the in and out breathing allowing the 
dharma rain penetrate into you. By listening in this way you will be preventing 
discursive thought, distractions.and all the rest is practice and 
practice

Best
Mayka
--- On Thu, 30/12/10, Dave P wookielife...@yahoo.ca wrote:

From: Dave P wookielife...@yahoo.ca
Subject: [Zen] Not understanding mindfulness
To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Date: Thursday, 30 December, 2010, 23:55







 



  



  
  
  I haven't been on here for a long time, and I apologize for just barging 
in with a new topic, but I'm having a hard time with the concept of mindfulness.



I have been suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) for a long time, 
and lately it has gotten worse. I don't want to get into details here, but it 
revolves around both ethical and health choices in diet and just living. 



What I don't understand is how mindfulness can help, because to my mind (pardon 
the pun) mindfulness means paying attention to everything, and if anything OCD 
people pay too much attention. I worry about everything, and intellectually I 
can understand just observing my emotions, but there is the constant feeling 
that I MUST DO SOMETHING, that if I don't do things right I will die. Hence I'm 
much more vigilant.



Am I getting the whole concept of mindfulness wrong? Is there anything I can 
read that could help me with this?