Bill, DavidK, Ian all meant well for the enlightenment of everyyone. I can sense your good intentions. The following are traps that I laid out for myself to watch for. I am sharing it here with you.
Trap Number One.
Sutras are for most of the time a recording of the conversation between two people. It is pertinent to that particular moment only. Depending on the "body language", "intent observed", answers could be miles apart. Sutras are for waking us up so that we can meditate dilligently and therefore we don't hold our teachings as absolute as other religious practices. Diamond Sutra said it at the end, "All describable path is like the dream and the bubble."
Trap Number Two.
It is our intent that guides our words and actions. Intent however can not be communicated through this discussion list. If we hold a preconceived notion of the intent of others, then our words actually reflected our intent instead of the ones of others. Buddha said it at the end of his teaching, "I have not uttered a single word."
Trap Number Three
I often fail to keep my words and actions without taking a position. When two or more people communicate, if one takes a position, the communication itself becomes dualistic. The other is easily tempted into either agree or not agreed. Since no paragraph can completely present the entire thought process of anyone, misunderstanding occurs. That is why Rinzai and Soto "yell" or "stick" their disciples. I really wish I could do that too.
I honestly believe, that everyone is here with the same intent. Due to our karmic influences and causation, we see different parts of the "elephant" and walk on different path.
With palms together, wishing everyone a speedily enlightenment,
Jue-Miao Jing-Ming (Donald)
Ordained by the 48th Rinzai Patriarch
Zen Master Wu-Jue Miao-Tian
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