One problem I have  with karma is  that it assumes some pre-determination to 
our life experience. In my view, most of the problems in society around the 
globe stem from theology  differences.  Let me ask you:  What is so fearful 
about a belief that once our mortal body dies, we are just gone? This fear of 
death has created so many myths and fantasies to explain away death, by 
soothing our ego, so we can believe our "soul" energy is transformed to some 
other type of existence.  This fear of God  /Satan / or karmic retribution only 
encourages a state of fear within, and a judgement of others by comparison.  
What is your worst-possible fear once you die? Once you are aware of the 
answer, deal  with that realization.  It is my feeling that these belief 
structures only reinforce the negativity that keeps us separate  from 
self-awareness and compassion, then extended to  those around us,  and then 
social orders beyond.
I don't know for certain whether  karma exists or not, but I am comfident that 
there is not a person living today who can explain it accurately. I  see it as 
a means to help one stay in fear, rather than compassion. This idea of some 
heavenly or spirit retribution for all your mistakes.  Why  wake up in the 
morning  and get out of bed?  Its all just a means to somehow "earn" the next 
trip back?  So what if I end up a pidgeon or an  ant?  So what if I  simply 
return to the dust of the earth?  According to Mormons, every one has an 
afterlife, as a human being,  in one of three levels of heaven.   Your assigned 
level is dependent on one's behavior and faith in this mortal existence.  If 
you are really good, (and you are male), you will eventually become a God of 
your own world.  
So many different belief systems.
So much of this is rooted in fear and ego-- our deep  need to feel  that we 
matter, somehow.   I'm not judging or balking at those who believe in karma.  
If it works for you, thats fine.  But I know it doesn't work quite the way you 
think it does.. You asked how else to explain some events?  Why does everything 
always need to be rationalized and explained?  (And remember  I  am saying  
this as a science and social scientist). 
I remember learning a fundamental Law  in a 1A physiology class as a freshman.  
Energy can neither be created  nor destroyed:  It is merely transformed.   
Okay, that can be debited to the karma ledger in a mild sense. But it does not 
suggest a theology framework.
I was raised a Christian, and still go to church  at times--like Christmas and 
Easter.  I embrace many buddhist philosophies.  I have some very close Jewish 
friends, and last Thanksgiving, we shared  their traditions.   I practice zen 
daily. For me, these practices simply help refine my character and compassion, 
so that I can focus on doing the right things in this life, rather than the 

--- On Wed, 11/17/10, Anthony Wu <> wrote:

From: Anthony Wu <>
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: FW: Amazon book
Date: Wednesday, November 17, 2010, 3:19 PM


I don't mean to start a new thread, but you can deny karma, as much as you do 
Newton's Law. However, you keep seeing things that cannot be explained away 
other than by karma. Just like you cannot ignore gravity and fly in the sky.

--- On Thu, 18/11/10, Kristy McClain <> wrote:

From: Kristy McClain <>
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: FW: Amazon book
Date: Thursday, 18 November, 2010, 5:25 AM


That simply proves that God has a good sense of humor.

--- On Wed, 11/17/10, Anthony Wu <> wrote:

From: Anthony Wu <>
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: FW: Amazon book
Date: Wednesday, November 17, 2010, 2:20 PM


If karma did not exist, why were you born a smart woman, why I, stupid man? 
What is a better theory than karma?

--- On Wed, 17/11/10, Kristy McClain <> wrote:

From: Kristy McClain <>
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: FW: Amazon book
Date: Wednesday, 17 November, 2010, 6:18 AM


You are starting with a premise that karma exists. How do you know it does?  k 

--- On Tue, 11/16/10, Anthony Wu <> wrote:

From: Anthony Wu <>
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: FW: Amazon book
Date: Tuesday, November 16, 2010, 1:13 PM


Most of us are deeply bound by karma so that we are bored by 'just this'. I 
believe we can find satisfaction by just sitting down and eventual 
enlightenment, but we are way from that 'goal'. So perhaps Bill can improve his 
way of teaching like guiding children away from their toys.

--- On Tue, 16/11/10, Maria Lopez <> wrote:

From: Maria Lopez <>
Subject: Re: [Zen] Re: FW: Amazon book
Date: Tuesday, 16 November, 2010, 7:17 PM


Thank you for both links.  It's been particularly interesting reading 
controversial Brad W reply in connection with Big Mind and Genpo Roshi...and my 
conclusion about the whole thing is,  that hearts feel profoundly grateful for 
having found Thich Nhat Hanh dharma in those years in which his home was not 
too crowded, not too  polluted by westerners speculation, aggression and most 
of it self, ego.  There are teachings that shouldn't be passed onto westerners 
in such a light way.  Big Mind might be one of those (I wouln't know because 
first hearing was in American websites) .  And yet there is the possibility 
that in the original eastern environment (perhaps under a differente name)  
have the effect of a most powerful way of breaking through the self by exposing 
it. Building up a bond in the process with other practitioners sailing in the 
same boat.
People don't want the simplicity of Buddhism and not certainly zen.  I wouldn't 
put the blame to anyone but just in oneself incapacity of seeing what is there 
presented in simplicity.  For instance Anthony himself has  pointed out more 
than once the boredom of "just this" or sitting down.  We look for excitement 
all the time.  No one external to blame afterwards if we get hurt but just 

--- On Tue, 16/11/10, ED <> wrote:

From: ED <>
Subject: [Zen] Re: FW: Amazon book
Date: Tuesday, 16 November, 2010, 5:44


"Big Mind"
"Merzel began developing the "Big Mind" process in 1999, after having taught 
more traditional Zen meditation and koan study for more than twenty years. The 
process is intended to allow anyone — including non-Buddhists — to experience 
"the enlightenment of the Buddha". 
The process is designed as a combination of Eastern meditation and Western 
psychological techniques to transmit the essence of Zen teachings in a way that 
is readily accessible and relevant to Westerners, a realization they can 
further deepen through meditation.
The Big Mind process is claimed to enable participants to get in touch with 
various aspects of themselves by inviting them to identify as and speak from 
these aspects or states of mind. 
The teacher walks participants through interactions with different aspects of 
their mind, including ordinary, finite ones such as the Protector, the Skeptic 
and Desiring Mind; and possibly less familiar, "transcendent" ones such as the 
"Non-Seeking/Non-Grasping Mind", "the Way", and "Big Mind and Big Heart".
Since 1999, he has offered workshops to more than 20,000 individuals all around 
the world. In addition to presentations in cities in North America and Europe, 
Genpo Roshi has made "Big Mind" available on DVDs and online.
Also see:
--- In, Kristy McClain <healthypl...@...> wrote:

To the contrary. I do not recommend Big Mind , necessarily.  In fact, I have 
said here that it is not a process that works for me. It seems a bit like group 
therapy, but not about zen.  
I know it well, as I have a home in UT, (though I live in CA).  Gempo Roshi's  
zen center is just two miles from my home there.   I did attend many 
meditation  groups , classes and even a few  retreats there..   I am friends 
with Diane Musho Hamilton, and she received her transmission from Gempo Roshi.
Actually, I have been critical of this teaching model in the past, but now--  
Well, I truly feel that there are different methods that work for different  
personalities and cultures. So, if one finds Big Mind meaningful, thats okay by 
me. I don't believe in one recipe. I do think it may attract people who would 
not normally include zen, or any spiritual practice in their lives. If so, 
then, I think there is a benefit to society at large.


Reply via email to