--- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com, donald hwong <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> Thank all 23 postings.
> I have some very interesting observation.
> It seems to me that spirituality is defined by most posts as
a "personal spiritual experience." And this experience is quite
different from one to the other. And everyone in the Zen community
seems to agree that there is spirituality in Zen.
> I have also learnt, as Adrian pointed out, Asian spirituality is
part of every day life, while Western separate the physical one from
the spiritual one. (i.e. I am going to be spiritual now) That is very
true, because western philosophers are not popular among common
Asians. Very few heard of Socrates to Sartre. Chinese don't live in
> Chinese have heard of mostly LaoTzu, ChuangTzu, Confucius and
Buddha. They all contain some spirituality. No wonder this word
does not show up readily in China.
> Also, as Bill pointed out, I believe the word "spirituality" may be
Judeo-Christian in nature. The questioner is trying to compare the
two. Because in China, ghost stories, reincarnations, going to hell
are bed time stories. I grew up by listening to my grandma those
stories. Even those who probably don't have "personal spiritual
experience", still may believe or expect such experience. I come to
realize that basic Chinese culture is tainted with some spirituality.
Or you may call it superstition.
> So interesting to learn that one can live a certain life style and
don't have the word and awareness to describe it.
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To draw a thread through the Judeo-Christian concept and Buddhism, I
like the idea Thich Naht Hahn proposed in "Living Buddha, Living
Christ." He basically equates "the holy spirit" to a person is
mindful. I have been reading the new Testament and it actually fits
rather well. Stretch your thinking a bit to accomodate the obvious
differences in terminology:
8: 9 But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are
controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you.
(And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living
in them do not belong to him at all.)10 And Christ lives within you,
so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives
you life* because you have been made right with God.11 The Spirit of
God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you...
8:12 Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to
do what your sinful nature urges you to do.13 For if you live by its
dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you
put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live.
To me this is identical with the instructions given to us by the
Buddha. Be mindful and do what is skillful. Don't do what is not
skillful. The "spirit" is the energy of mindfulness. They call it a
spirit, we just call it being mindful, or don't call it anything!
You know what else is cool, is that in Hebrew the word for Spirit is
the same for the word for "wind." We can think of "wind" as breath
if we want. It all comes back to the breath!
Current Book Discussion: any Zen book that you recently have read or are
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