Hi again Eugene!

Here's something from that same book you're reading: (where it is in the
book, I can't tell you...I found it on the internet and don't have my copy
of the book on hand)

"So when you eat, just eat. Do not read a magazine, or think "I need to do
something after lunch". Stop your mind. Right now, you are eating. Look at
your food, smell the aroma, taste the flavor, feel the texture. After
eating, you will be drinking water. Give it the same attention. And after
that, you will be doing something else."

It would seem that Suzuki is an advocate of the "do one thing at a time"
school.  I understand your concerns regarding life in "the real world" and
those of us with a busy schedule.  To that end, I found a little something
from a Rev. Master Daizui MacPhillamy, the contents of which can be found
http://www.serenereflections.ca/Articles/2006/EveryMinuteMeditation.html

A couple of interesting suggestions concerning how to deal with this:


*"Doing One Thing at a Time*

*The reason for the first two steps is not hard to see: if we accept that
truth is one and undivided, then it can only be realized by a mind which is
itself unified and aware. Such one-pointedness and mindfulness are
impossible when you are doing two things at once. Thus, when you practice
mindfulness you refrain from eating breakfast, talking to your spouse, and
watching the morning news at the same time. Planning your ten o'clock
meeting while you drive to work is out; so is thinking about your vacation
while you wash the dishes, worrying about your finances while you plant the
garden, and even reading a magazine while you're on the toilet. *

*For most people there are many things which we could (or worse yet, should)
be doing at any given time, and the temptation to do more than one is great.
A person in this situation might find it helpful to add a "step zero" before
the first of the five steps .Step zero is to decide what is the single most
important thing to be doing at this moment. Then, do it." *

So it would seem that we have to "make time" for mindfulness.  Myself,
having not worked in almost two years due to injury, often take it for
granted just how much time I have and how much I am able to do
(practice-wise) because of not having "real life" demands.  So, I'll admit,
my advice isn't the best for busy people.  However, when I was working, no
matter how busy I was (often working 6-7 days a week, upwards of 12 hours a
day), I still found time, as often as possible, for "mindfulness days" where
I was able to apply concepts such as doing one thing at a time.  If I
couldn't get a "mindfulness day" then maybe a "mindfulness hour" or even
"mindfulness minute."
I've probably gotten way off track here and should probably just shut up for
now. :)

Disclaimer:  There isn't a "chance" that I'm wrong...it's more like a "high
probability."  At any rate, I hope some of this helps.  :)


Regards,
Mike



On 5/3/06, Eugene <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
>
> Thanks for your replies to my post, Mike, Blossom and Ahmed. You all
> seem a bit unsure if your reply make sense, but to me they certainly
> do.
>
> I hope Suzuki does NOT mean doing only one thing at a time, or like
> Mike wrote: "If we're washing dishes, for instance, we should be
>
> washing dishes --not washing dishes, trying to balance our
> checkbooks in our head, planning dinner, etc." That would perhaps be
> feasible for a monk in a monastery, but would be very hard in normal
> life. I imagine my neighbour, who is a mother of three children and
> has to do lots of things at the same time: dressing one child,
> watching after her other childs, in the meantime plan all activities
> in order to have them all at school the right time while they are
> already late. She cannot just focus fully on, for example, dressing
> one child. Or, concerning my more simple life, I sometimes have to
> prepare a meeting while driving my car, or type a mail while
> monitoring if a collegue I have to speak has already entered.
>
> So I hope Ahmed is correct when he writes: "I think the passage you
>
> cited does not mean that one should do just one thing at a time
> because what about multi-tasking? Is multi-tasking not a part of
> one's Buddha nature?"
>
> But if multi-tasking is 'allowed in Zen' (don't hit me for this
> phrase...), what does the text of Suzuki mean that I cited in my
> previous post?
>
> Thanks for sharing your thoughts or giving your explanation!
>
>
>
>
>
>
> --- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com, Ahmed <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> >
> > I have read that book as well. So beautifully simple it puts me
> into a
> > trance when I read it.
> >
> > I think the passage you cited does not mean that one should do
> just one
> > thing at a time because what about multi-tasking? Is multi-tasking
> not a
> > part of one's Buddha nature?
> >
> > The book "The Way of Zen" by Alan Watts spells this all out very
> clearly
> > especially where it goes into the details about worrying about
> worrying and
> > how we can actually never do anything wrong in Zen because
> everything is
> > natural. Even unnaturalness is natural. This is the reason why and
> how one
> > can just relax and let everything go.
> >
> > So what it means to me is be naturally in the moment without
> carrying the
> > previous moment (but really you can't ever "carry" the previous
> moment--you
> > only imagine it is so).
> >
> > (I probably didn't make any sense but I think the meaning is
> clearer after
> > reading Alan Watts book.)
> >
> >
> > On 5/2/06, Eugene <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> > >
> > > I am reading the book Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind, of Shunryu
> Suzuki -
> > > an excellent book. It goes into depths while being
> understandable.
> > >
> > > However, there is a concept in it I don't understand. I would
> like to
> > > have some explanation...
> > >
> > > It is about going fully into an activity, leaving nothing of
> yourself
> > > behind. So you are like ash afterwards... who has read this book
> and
> > > can explain?
> > >
> > > thanks!
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
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