Of course the satori experiences reported in the Zen accounts will happen to monks who have practiced zazen. After all these are internal accounts of ONLY zen monks so we would not expect otherwise.

As for satori being detrimental to someone who hadn't practiced zazen for many years I'd say that is total sect oriented nonsense. You must have a strange idea of satori as some sort of psychological or psychedelic experience that some people just can't handle without preparation for the 'trip'. Couldn't be further from the truth. Satori is simply seeing things as they actually are and relating to things on that basis. If you get there you are able to 'handle' it. It's not anything at all like going off on a bad drug trip and ending up in a mental ward.....


On Sep 15, 2008, at 8:26 PM, mike brown wrote:

Hi Edgar,
Again, in an ultimate sense I agree with you. Most satori experiences occur off the mat (we cannot determine when they happen so they are a kind of 'Grace', if you like), but for most people these experiences are usually preceded by many years of zazen and rarely occur independently from it (especially in relation to the past Zen masters). In fact, I would add that to receive a satori like experience without already practicing zazen could be detrimental to one's spiritual growth because you would probably not have the 'tools' to be able to integrate the experience into your daily life. I don't completely advocate the 'aching legs' school of Zen Buddhism (see Alan Watts), but as Bill says, I don't see any better way to recognising our inherent enlightenment. Mike.

----- Original Message ----
From: Edgar Owen <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Tuesday, 16 September, 2008 6:16:26
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: Antwort: JUDO

Hi Mike,

When you read the accounts of enlightenment in Zen stories, the enlightenment or satori experience almost never occurs during zazen, but almost always in daily life doing something ordinary, though often in response to some event or words that suddenly enables them to see beyond the ordinary to the ordinary.

Only difference between zazen and daily life is you are (hopefully) dealing with fewer forms so might be easier to see the formless beyond the forms, but the formless is always present whether you are sitting in zazen or not. Just a matter of experiencing it.


On Sep 14, 2008, at 4:12 PM, mike brown wrote:

Hi Edgar,

I agree with you in one sense - we're already 'there'. But sometimes you have to go on a journey just to realise you never really had to go in the first place. Same with zazen, Do you really believe all those past Zen masters would have realised their 'already' enlightened state without zazen? Mike.

----- Original Message ----
From: Edgar Owen <[EMAIL PROTECTED] net>
Sent: Monday, 15 September, 2008 3:33:53
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: Antwort: JUDO

Mike and Bill and Al,

Zazen has nothing to do with Zen whatsoever. And I suspect Bill at least would agree with me. There is no requirement to do zazen or anything else whatever. Zazen may be an exercise that helps some people, others it may just stand in the way. Same about anything else one could possibly think of.

True zen is just finally admitting to yourself that you are already enlightened and have always been, that is just finally realizing what always existed that you just didn't notice before.

True Zen takes no 'work' of any kind whatsoever. You are already there, you just need to realize it.


On Sep 14, 2008, at 12:33 PM, mike brown wrote:

Hi  Al,
I think the tricky thing about zen is that it often feels that 'getting it' is always just around the corner or that if I just read the right book/passage/ haiku/manga comic etc it'll all become clear to me. Unfortunately, this just takes us further than ever away from any kind of 'breakthru' into a zen life. As Bill says, we need to have faith that this thing actually works, but this alone is not enough (as opposed to most theistic belief systems). You have to do the hard work. That means plonking your arse down on a mat and doing zazen. There is no escape (for most of us) from this requirement. Just believing in zen is useless. However, even if you just get a tiny sniff of a breakthru' then a kind of 'knowing' (read - 'not knowing') occurs which surpasses mere faith/belief. True, this can't be measured objectively, but so what? You know the truth of the taste of a cup of tea, and even tho' it can't be measured objectively, you just know - it doesn't matter what anyone else thinks. Same with zen. You just live your life fully and hopefully your actions/words will indicate the truth of zen and how deep your zen is. Mike.

----- Original Message ----
From: Bill Smart <[EMAIL PROTECTED] org>
Sent: Saturday, 13 September, 2008 9:03:15
Subject: [Zen] Re: Antwort: JUDO


Everthing you know and feel is based on belief and faith. Even
science is based on the belief in cause and effect and faith in our
rational capabilities. The belief in enlightenment and the faith
that you can achieve it is what gets you started in zen. It's like
dangling a carrot in front of a horse, or more accurately a picture
of a carrot.

The concept of enlightenment is indeed an illusion as is testified to
over and over again in zen literature.

The only thing that is not an illusion is Only THIS (Buddha Nature),
but the only way you can really know that is to experience it.

And to do that all you need to do is sit (zazen) and allow your
concept of self to melt away.


--- In [EMAIL PROTECTED] ps.com, "Fitness63" <[EMAIL PROTECTED] ..> wrote:
> From: cid830> We can only follow their teachings if we choose to
> them, regardless of whether or not they actually taught them at
all. >
> What we are talking about is the proverbial LEAP OF FAITH that is
> for any belief system, and thus zen, like any other religion or
> requires that the adherent BELIEVE in what may very well be total
> So is Maya the illusion, or is the actual illusion that
enlightenment that
> so many strive to achieve and which cannot be objectively measured.
> all, when a Roshi says that he is enlightened, all we have is his
word on
> it, and the word of his peers. Can you measure or otherwise prove
> enlightenment? Is enlightenment itself not an Illusion (Maya)?

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