Shikantaza literally denotes an act of single-minded sitting only. It can be 
accompanied or results in dissolution of self, or complete chaos, depending of 
how you direct it.

--- On Wed, 8/12/10, ED <seacrofter...@yahoo.com> wrote:

From: ED <seacrofter...@yahoo.com>
Subject: Re: [Zen] Zen and the Martial Arts
To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com
Date: Wednesday, 8 December, 2010, 12:56 AM


The 'dissolution of self, is not mentioned in the reference below, athough it 
is reasonable to believe that mostly Shikantaza will eventually lead to some 
sort of a 'dissolution of self'. 'dissolution of self'.
"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 Dogen 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, Kapleau)
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 Pali vipassana, 
though this is far from certain.""

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shikantaza
--- In Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com, <billsm...@...> wrote:
> Anthony,
> Well 'single-minded sitting' is what I am trying to describe by using the 
> term. I have heard it also called 'clear-mind' sitting.
> ... Bill!

> Gaijin-san,
> Shikantaza only means single-minded sitting. Anything else you add to the 
> meaning is your additions, not in the original sense of the word.
> Anthony

> Anthony,
> Thanks for the correction. I do understand it is a technique which leads to a 
> state of dissolution of self. We're tugging over nuances of terms. Could you 
> say you are TRYING or ATTEMPTING to sit shikantaza, and it's only when you 
> reach the dissolution of self that you are really sitting shikantaza? That's 
> the sense I have of the word.
> ...Bill!

> Bill,
> Again you got it wrong. Shikantaza (=zhiguan dazuo) is not a state. It is a 
> technique of single-minded sitting, which can result in a dissolution of a 
> self, ... 
> Anthony

> Ed,
> I normally don't use the term 'samadhi', but in the post below I meant
> 'shikantaza' - the state where there is a dissolution of self.
> ...Bill!

> Bill, 'Samadhi' has several meanings; in which sense do you use use
> 'samadhi'? --ED

Reply via email to