Hi, I'm Ahmed. I think the questions we are talking about are pretty
important. Especially when I saw the word "skandha," I felt a need to
thoroughly explain the term since it is so deep. Especially when skandhas
are a neat classification system of the universe--all forms and movements,
body or mind--the small dictionary definition will not do. But it would take
a while to explain subsets and subsets of subsets . . . to map things out
would take a great book to guide the discriminative thinking of our mind.

[Please skip eight paragraphs if you agree with the usefulness of mental
discrimination, classification, organization and cutting the world into

Bill Smart, I think you would disapprove of my mental discrimination with me
on this point. "In fact the ONLY thing that is important is to sit (zazen),"
you replied once. Sitting is important but not ONLY.

"Being knowledgeable or understanding things about zen, Buddhism, the
Dharma, Sutras, Taoism, Hindi, yoga, physiology, philosophy, etc..., are not
important at all.  They're fun, but not important."

Can you tell me discrimination is not useful in saving lives, in planning
for the future, in discovering and solving interpersonal issues, and in
advancing science not only for better physical understanding but also
spiritual understanding and acceptance? What about for a job? Does one sit
down and get paid in this world?

Sure, sitting unifies one with the universe so that one has greater energy
and capacity to understand. In fact, one MUST sit and BE in order to evolve
one's theoretical knowledge to insight. But it is hard to imagine that one
comes up with solutions magically from sitting.

Once again, understanding the principles throughout the universe (of yin,
yang and their many products), can these be called unimportant to one's
mundane life and spiritual cultivation? True Buddhas must have "skillful
means," methods of teaching which take into account context, audience, and
environment. Buddhas must know of how the mind works (psychology) and the
positions of others (Hindu, Muslim, Christian, this-and-that philosopher
etc.) in order to compassionately guide him/her out or into a certain train
of thought. Buddhas do not rigidly sit there, teaching corpses to become

I hope I have gotten my point across: mental discrimination is a difficult
process to master, a process that cannot be ignored, despite the paradoxical
nature of ideas, especially if one aims to be a Buddha.

Also, the downside, mental discrimination is a process many people have a
habit of using too much nowadays, me included, and if you tell someone to
"'just sit' they'll probably just be spacing out most of the time becuase
they have no concentration." (dkotschessa)

But with mental discrimination one can logically explain to another personal
the benefits and effects of meditation thus counteracting their
discrimination within their own world of rules. One can even understand the
conditions and causes of meditative rest and better be able to handle issues
when they arise and help others if they request it. This is called using
"fire to fight fire." Using the thinking mind itself to learn to stop

[The previous eight paragraphs were written for the sole purpose of
explaining why discrimination is important, I know it's not complete--I hope
you can fill in the rest.]

The questions that arose about physical stature, hua-tou, skandhas, and what
entails true zen practice were very important. And explanations are long.

A book which desribes this aptly is "How to Measure and Deepen Your
Spiritual Realization: A Short Multi-disciplinary Course on Evaluating and
Elevating Your Meditation Progress and Spiritual Experiences." This book was
written by William Bodri (manager of www.meditationexpert.com) and Huai-Chin
Nan, a enlightened Esoteric master and Zen master, confirmed by many people
all over Asia.

This book will take you through a journey of understanding the different
perspectives and cultivation schemes of different cultures, religions, and
philosophies, the skandha system and it's relevance to cultivation, true
Ch'an practice, the structure behind all sorts of Oriental practices from
physical pranayama to mental visualizations, chi cultivation (hows, whys,
don'ts), the metaphysics of cultivation and skillful means in order to help
all of the universe.

I assure you, after reading this book you will have no questions other than
whether or not you can trust yourself to put forth the effort to go forward.

But this book is darned expensive ($97) even if it has a lot of bonuses.
Even worse, it's an e-book so you have to print it. But I promise it's worth
the pain. Just read the raving excerpts for a taste.

But this 700+ page but comes with a neat guarantee, which is the epitome of
why I think you should try it:

"If you buy this material and after reading it don't find it useful or
instructive at all, not only will I return your money but I will send you
every other ebook on this site for FREE! That's right ... I will send you
every other book for free! Why such a guarantee? I want you to be totally
satisfied with our materials and in this way I'm guaranteeing you'll get
something that can benefit you." -- William Bodri (author)

Good deal if one wants to get some other book on the site which altogether
are probably worth nearly a thousand dollars. Not to even go into the
intrinsic value.

I challenge everyone here to see for yourself because, now, because no
excuses can possibly remain.


But I didn't mean to silence your questions or discussion.

Thank you for listening, anyway. Good luck. Bye.


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Current Book Discussion: any Zen book that you recently have read or are 
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