Thanks for the reply. I think you write very clearly. I agree with some of your
comments, but not others. For example, I agree that it is possible to turn off
the internal dialogue by becoming engrossed in an activity but is this really
all zen/zazen is about? Of course, a person who is so engaged in an activity
can 'lose themselves' for a while, but when they 'come back' has that
experience taught them anything about their true Self or how to tame their
emotions/desires/aversions? Most of these experiences (sports, driving,
listening to music, painting etc), whilst pleasureable and beneficial, only
scratch the surface of true equanimity.
You mentioned that someone you know sat in Japan for 3 years but became bitter
because they didn't experience satori during this time. I would say that the
problem here lies with our being part of a materialistic society that expects
results comensurate with the time put in. Three years is nothing! It takes more
time than that to become a qualified hairdresser!! Sure, zazen is not the only
way and niether does it come with any guarantees, but IMHO for 99% of us it is
the necessary way to still our minds AND get deeper into the insights found
----- Original Message ----
From: roloro1557 <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Sent: Tuesday, 30 September, 2008 13:16:33
Subject: [Zen] Re: What's after Satori
--- In [EMAIL PROTECTED] ps.com, mike brown <uerusuboyo@ ...> wrote:
> Hi Margie,
> Welcome to the forum. My name is Mike and like you I had a
spontaneous break thru', but unlike you I was fortunate to pick up a
book literally minutes after my experience (a book on kundalini as it
happens). Eventually I was led to Zen and so able to put words (as
such) to my experience. I have found that sitting has helped deepen
that initial experience, although not in the 'whizz, bang, wallop' way
that the initial experience occured. It's helped by allowing the daily
internal chatter to dissapate so that that window of body and mind
just 'dropping away' (Dogen)opens a little longer. Mike.
Thanks for the welcome. And it's good to know that I'm not the only
one who has had a spontaneous Satori.
If meditation works for you, that's wonderful! If it deepens your
experience, helps you turn off the internal dialog, and makes your
life better, then of course you should do it.
But did you know that there is now evidence from neuro-biology (or is
it neuro-physics? I forget...) that the ability to "successfully"
meditate is a matter of wiring? Some people are literally wired for it
and some are not. Some people physically (for lack of a better word)
cannot do it. The other evidence is that your body doesn't know the
difference. In other words 20 minutes of "successful" meditation and
20 minutes of sitting quietly with your eyes closed and "daydreaming"
have the same benefits as far as stress relief, cardio-vascular
Long before the lightning Satori, when I was growing up in the 70's
transcendental meditation was all the rage. I tried and tried. I read
books, I went to gurus, I was given secret mantras, I practiced alone,
I practiced in groups. All that ever happened to me as far as a
different state of consciousness is concerned was that I got so
relaxed I fell asleep. It has just never worked for me. The best way
for me to turn off the internal dialog is to get really involved and
engrossed in something... like "when the dancer becomes the dance" or
"the poem writes itself." I don't know if I'm making myself clear.
Part of the reason I had kept quiet so long about my experience is
that I remembered my days when I was trying transcendental meditation
and all the talk about whether someone had had an "authentic"
experience, etc. I knew my experience was authentic and I didn't feel
any need to have it validated or approved of by anyone else. The
experience was plenty deep and has had a profound effect on my life.
One of the things I like best about zen is the deep respect for
individuality, privacy, and the active principle of minding one's own
business. How can anyone make judgments about someone elses'
experience? How can I fault anyone for meditating? Not meditating?
I cannot know their experience.
So to do zazen or not to do zazen? For me that is not the question.
The question is: Is whatever you are doing working for you, does it
resonate, does it feel right, does it make you stronger, help you
grow? If the answer is yes then I will support you in it with all I've
got. If the answer is no, then I will try to help you find something
that does work for you, but only if you want me to. To me, this is one
of the aspects of compassion that is a natural outgrowth of Satori.
I hope I haven't botched it - words don't always serve well when it
comes to zen.