Bill,

I hear you, understand you and appreciate the clear way in which you
explain the matter.

I would not have made the statement had I not out of the blue, whilst
leading a normal and ordinary life, without any zazen or meditation or
spiritual practices or medications or thoughts of enlightenment,
experienced a non-ordinary state that lasted six days.

This experience, which I prefer not to discuss, was never repeated, and
is the basis of any 'faith' I may possess in the potential for
realization of Buddha nature.

--ED



--- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com, <billsm...@...> wrote:
>
> I want to expand a little on one of my answers below to avoid
> misunderstandingÂ…


> The posting exchange was:


> [Anthony] But we can try to use our finger to point to the Moon.


> [Ed] In the final analysis one must just have faith in the reality of
'Buddha mind', yes?


> [Bill!] Yes!



> My answer Yes!, that you do have to have faith in Buddha Mind is meant
for
> the period BEFORE you experience Buddha Mind/Nature for yourself.
AFTER
> that it is experience, not faith.
>
> I often use the word 'zen' as short for 'zen practice', and when I do
I
> don't distinguish between the phases of zen practice. There are 2
distinct
> phases: one before experiencing Buddha Nature and one after. There is
also
> an 'transition phase', especially in Rinzai (See, I spelled it right
this
> time!) Zen Buddhism koan study, where the experience of Buddha Nature
is
> often so sudden that it takes a period of follow-on training to
successfully
> reconcile and integrate that experience into your everyday life.
>
> It is not unheard of to divide zen practice into phases like this.
Take for
> example the 10 (or 8) Ox Herding phases. These are an excellent
depiction
> of the phases one may go through from first wanting a change in your
life
> and having FAITH that you can somehow do that (#1 Seeking the Ox), to
full
> enlightenment, complete integration (#10 Entering the Marketplace With
Arms
> Hanging Loose) - no faith involved here.
>
> You can find this set all over the web. One such place is at
> http://www.terebess.hu/english/oxherding.html
<http://www.terebess.hu/english/oxherding.html>
>
> Â…Bill!


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