Rest assured that none of us have 'figured it out'. I believe that is so
because there is really nothing to 'figure out'. This is saying the same
thing as Zen Master Seung Shan's (a contemporary zen master living in Rhode
Island) 'Don't Know' mind teachings.
There are many, many things in this universe that we just can't 'know'.
That's either because we don't have the capacity to know them, or they are
not rational so are indeed 'unknowable'. This is okay. We don't have to
know everything to be happy. We just need to accept the 'Don't Know' mind
and go forward with it. It will not lead you astray.
I do think K's (salik888) suggestion below concerning Albert Ellis is worth
checking out. I don't know anything about him, but it might be helpful.
Just use your own judgment, trust your own judgment, on whether or not his
teachings or therapies feel 'right' to you. This is your 'Don't Know' mind.
It won't lead you astray.
From: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com [mailto:zen_fo...@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
Sent: Monday, August 30, 2010 9:51 PM
Subject: [Zen] Re: Death
Namaste, and thank you.
I will think long and hard about your words (I've been doing zazen for
awhile now, but not without difficulty).
I do find some of the comments (and I apologize to anyone here) a little
condescending, like "you haven't figured that out yet?" On another site, I
just got cryptic comments like "fear of death is fear of life," which didn't
really help at all.
--- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com <mailto:Zen_Forum%40yahoogroups.com> ,
"salik888" <novelid...@...> wrote:
> I think there are two things you can do. And I want to take this time to
tell you not to become discouraged by posters that offer obvious solutions
and realizations that are supposedy inherent to their way of living and
thinking. I can tell that it is not useful. You are not going to be able to
think yourself out of this one though.
> Here is what I have found. Anyone who is telling you that they are not
afraid of death, you have to assume that they are lying -- lying to
themselves and others. Even if they are wandering around not thinking about
it, they are avoiding thinking about about it, or sensing it.
> In your case, you have expressed a compulsive disorder with death. I would
do the following.
> Bill Smart and others here can reaffirm of give you explanation of Zazen,
to bring Shikan Taza into your life. I would begin a good practice of Zazen
and stick to it. Put great emphasis (still thinking, thus fearing) observing
your thoughts, non grasping, just letting them go. You can do this with your
> Having said that, the practical matter of things is that you have to walk
around in your life and deal with this throughout your day. I would expose
yourself to the work of Albert Ellis, the cognitive psychologist who started
REBT Therapy. There has been some analysis written on his work and Zen,
since he is basically a sort of ego as function sort of Philosopher. He
doesn't believe in enlightenment that I know of, but what he does offer is
thinking as function and the refuting of obsessional thinking. These two
together may be helpful. I have seen Albert Ellis's Therapy help many
people. It is very practical and very useful.
> Of course I always recommend reading only within of context of learning,
the whole idea of Sufis "learning how to learn, knowing how to know, etc . .
> To the Sufi way of thinking, fear of death operates out of the lower self,
the commanding self, that has been conditioned and enhanced by culture and
the false self (ego). Operating out of the realm can be useful if your
intention is to transcend it, in fact, the fear of death can be more of
blessing than someone who mindlessly goes around says, "well when I'm dead I
won't know it." Oftentimes they are just ameliorating themselves with their
own mind candy.
> Keep this in mind, all human beings fear death in some proportion, you are
just tuning into it. However, it is possible to use this on the so called
> Sometimes with people Yahoo Groups of the so called religious nature you
get posters who are really just posting for themselves, transmitting and
projecting something they want to feel or sense, and want others to feed
back to them. So, don't pay much attention to them.
> Having said that, it really is about Zazen, and feeling a certain
intention and gratitude toward working with your obsession, for it can help
you in the end. No pun intended . . .
> K among the deathers
> --- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com <mailto:Zen_Forum%40yahoogroups.com> ,
"DP" <dave.dplatt72@> wrote:
> > ARe there any good meditations I can do which helps me deal with my fear
of death? I just finished Thich Nhat Hanh's No Death No Fear, and I liked
it, but I feel such a hard time getting around the idea of continuance -
it's too much for my materialist mind. So maybe I need a different tack...
> > How do I confront the reality of death with the aim towards lessening my
fear of this?
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