There are of course now those that are only peddling zen to make a buck.
That was probably inevitable when zen moved to the West, especially in the
US where avarice is the national pastime.   But I don't look at these as
representative of the zen to which I was introduced in the 1960's by a
couple of Japanese zen masters living very modestly in Los Angeles, nor is
it even remotely associated with the zen I try to practice every day, every
minute of every day.  I don't associate these types of people or groups or
schools with zen, anymore than I associate people like Jim Baker or Oral
Roberts with Christianity, or even Osama Bin Laden with Islam.  What they
preach is based on some parts of some religions, but has been perverted so
much as to be unrecognizable with the original intent.


What you are talking about might in fact be the reason why I'm always
uncomfortable defining en as a sub-set of Buddhism.  I don't see zen as a
sub-set of anything.  It's just a very pure, unfettered, unencumbered and
very clear experience of life.


I practice zen.  I'm not always happy.  I'm not always sad.  Happy and sad
pass through me like clouds pass through the sky.  They're there, they
sometimes hide the sun, but they're not permanent, and they haven't
destroyed the sun.  It's still there and will be revealed again when the
clouds dissipate.


So, I do understand and commiserate with you on the pop nature of zen and
all the problems that brings.  In some ways I wish it were more unpopular
just so it wouldn't be so subject to perversion.  But it is right now.


Clarity!  That's what zen is to me.  (.and I don't need NO STINKING BADGES!)




From: [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] On Behalf
Of Al
Sent: Wednesday, February 20, 2008 7:31 AM
Subject: Re: [Zen] Practice begins


From: <BillSmartI like zazen because it's not a blur, it's clarity.>

I don't see it the same way. Most zen seems like a lot of bullshit and smoke
and mirrors. I thought Krishnamurti had more concrete remarks even though he
basically was ripping off zen. At least he would actually have something to
say. Zen is more along the lines of amorphous clouds of happy faces. The
fact that they never actually say anything means that anything can be
interpretted however the listener wants. That is what charlatans and
con-artists do.

I am not saying that is what it is, just that if you put a zen master and
Hillary Clinton and Barack and McCain all behind a wall and asked them
questions, it would be hard to tell which one was the zen master. They are
all things to all people.

Zen is a business, and business is about selling what people want; a non
denominational, non-judgmental, everything is good, we are what we are,
philosophy of none-ness. Zen is the ultimate burn-out religion in the West.
They are selling easy street.

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