Hi Edgar,
I don't belong to any particular sect but I do tend to sit in a soto Zen temple 
here in Japan as often as I can. You have assumed from my comments that I 
believe a person who experiences satori outside of zazen practice  would 
somehow suffer psychologically. Maybe, but probably not. There are many cases 
of people having mental problems after experiencing spontaneous kundalini like 
symptoms because they didn't have the framework of yoga and meditation to 
support/explain what just happened to them. In fact, I believe there is an 
emergency centre somewhere in the US for such people. Although a kundalini 
opening and satori per se are quite different the lack of a framework for both 
might have similar less than positive effects.and this is what I was reffering 

No, a person who experiences satori outside of Zen should not have aany 
psychological problems akin to a 'bad trip' and end up in a mental ward (!). 
But without something tangible like zazen practice to underpin their experience 
they might miss the meaning of what just happened to them and put it down to 
something mystical/imaginative/a gift from God etc. and soon to become nothing 
more than just a strange, but pleasant, memory. At worst, I guess, would be the 
possibility that they may try to recapture the experience in the form of drug 
use. I would argue that a person who sits regularly, or who has sat sometime in 
the past, would be better placed to understand what has happened and thus 
intergrate the experience into their lives more confidently. However, please 
bear in mind that I am only talking about a very small number of people who 
might undergo these less than positive outcomes and the majority wouldn't. 

----- Original Message ----
From: Edgar Owen <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Tuesday, 16 September, 2008 21:14:00
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: Antwort:  JUDO


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] net>
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)?



Reply via email to