I think 'single-minded sitting' reflects accurately the meaning of shikantaza. 
Others are derivatives.

--- On Thu, 25/11/10, ED <seacrofter...@yahoo.com> wrote:

From: ED <seacrofter...@yahoo.com>
Subject: [Zen] Re: FW: Quote from St. Thomas Aquinas
To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Date: Thursday, 25 November, 2010, 9:52 AM


Both you and Bill are 'right'.
"Shikantaza is a Japanese term for zazen introduced by Rujing and associated 
most with the Soto school of Zen Buddhism, but which also is "the base of all 
Zen disciplines." 
According to Dôgen Zenji, shikantaza i.e. resting in a state of brightly alert 
attention that is free of thoughts, directed to no object, and attached to no 
particular content—is the highest or purest form of zazen, zazen as it was 
practiced by all the buddhas of the past.
The modern Japanese Zen master, Hakuun Ryôko Yasutani says: "Shikantaza is the 
mind of someone facing death. Let us imagine that you are engaged in a duel of 
swordsmanship of the kind that used to take place in ancient Japan. As you face 
your opponent you are unceasingly watchful, set, ready. Were you to relax your 
vigilance even momentarily, you would be cut down instantly. A crowd gathers to 
see the fight. Since you are not blind you see them from the corner of your 
eye, and since you are not deaf you hear them. But not for an instant is your 
mind captured by these impressions." (Introductory Lectures on Zen Training, 
The term is believed to have been first used by Dôgen's teacher Tiantong 
Rujing, and it literally means, "nothing but (shikan) precisely (da) sitting 
(za)." In other words Dôgen means by this, "doing only zazen whole-heartedly" 
or "single-minded sitting." Shikantaza implies "just sitting", and according to 
author James Ishmael Ford, "Some trace the root of this word to the 
pronunciation of the Pâli vipassana, though this is far from certain."

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shikantaza
--- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com, Anthony Wu <wu...@...> wrote:
> Bill,
> As I already said, shikantaza denotes 'only sit'. The rest are derived 
> meanings. For you the derivative of shikantaza is clear mind.
> Anthony

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