Zazenkai Saturday Oct 28th, check the events page
Thank you for all those supporting DZG over Dec and Jan so far. Please enjoy this months koan to contemplate from the Gateless Barrier Collecton of Koans compiled by Wumen in 13thC China and I look forward to Simply Being with you again:
CASE 44. PA-CHIAO’S STAFF.
The Zen teacher Pa-chiao said to his assembly: If you have a staff, I will give you a staff. If you have no staff, I will take a staff from you.”
The later zen guide WU-MEN wrote the COMMENT.
It helps you to cross the stream when the bridge is down. It guides you back to the village on a moonless night. If you call it a staff, you enter hell like an arrow.
And WU-MEN’S VERSE pointing to the answer to this koan
The depths and shallows of the world
Are all in his grasp;
It supports the heavens and sustains the earth –
Everywhere it enhances the doctrine.
HAPPY NEW YEAR DZG FRIENDS! We don't usually chant this version of the Heart Sutra but it is in our sutra books. Looking forward to Simply Being with you love justine
This Wed our festive gathering after the weekly zazen. Please bring a plate to share. DZG will continue with koans and inquiry towards the end of January. enjoy the festive season. A season beyond ying and yang.
MAKING THE WHOLE WORLD WHOLE AND COMPLETE AGAIN: Case 87 from the Blue Cliff Record Collection
Yunmen said to the assembly, ‘Medicine and sickness mutually correspond to each other. The whole universe is medicine. What is the self?'
The whole world is medicine:
Why have the Ancients been so mistaken?
I don’t make the carriage behind closed doors –
The road is naturally quiet and empty.
Though they be as high as the sky, your nostrils have still been pierced.
DZG Bodhisattvas at Climate Action Darwin campaign to Stop Adani Mine
Next weeks talk on the koan from the Gateless Barrier Collection of Koans compiled by the Zen Master Wumen. We look forward to seeing you then. love justine
CASE 22. MAHAKASYAPA’S FLAGPOLE.
Ananda (The Buddha's younger relative) asked Mahakasyapa (the Buddha's Dharma Heir),
“The World-Honoured One transmitted the robe of gold brocade to you. What else did he transmit to you?”
Mahakasyapa said, “Ananda!”
Ananda answered, “Yes!”
Mahakasyapa said, “Knock down the flagpole at the gate.”
The later teacher WU-MEN’s COMMENT:
If you can give a turning word that is intimate with the case, then you will see that the meeting at Mount Grdhrakuta is still vigorously in session. If you cannot, then the first ancient Buddha, who has been striving from earliest times has not yet attained true subtlety.
“The call is good, the answer is intimate”-
How many discuss this with glaring eyes.(wisdom eyes -ie have had their eyes opened.)
Elder brother calls, younger brother answers- the family disgrace;
There is a spring that does not belong to Yin and Yang.
NT BAN FRACKING RALLY bringing together Aboriginal communities, farmers, those concerned wth the environment, climate change and wildlife. One Heart-Mind to protect our water and land.
Like other DZG friends we call for an end to human rights abuses on Manus
The Teacher in Everything:
In taking up Zen Buddhism, we find that the life of the Buddha is our own life. Not only Shakyamuni’s life, but the lives of all the succeeding teachers in our lineage are our own lives. As Wu-men Hui-k’ai has said, in true Zen practice our very eyebrows are tangled with those of our ancestral teachers, and we see with their eyes and hear with their ears. This is not because we copy them, or change to be like them. I might explain Wu-men’s words by saying that in finding our own true nature, we find the true nature of all things, which the old teachers so clearly showed in their words and actions. But the authentic experience of identity is intimate beyond explanation. And it’s not only with old teachers that we find complete intimacy. The Chinese thrush sings in my heart and gray clouds gather in the empty sky of my mind. All things are my teacher.
On the Zen path, we seek for ourselves the experience of Shakyamuni. However, we do not owe fundamental allegiance to him, but to ourselves and to our environment. If it could be shown that Shakyamuni never lived, the myth of his life would be our guide. In fact it is better to acknowledge at the outset that myths and religious archetypes guide us, just as they do every religious person. The myth of the Buddha is my own myth.
Thus, it is essential at the beginning of practice to acknowledge that the path is personal and intimate. It is no good to examine it from a distance as if it were someone else’s. You must walk it for yourself. In this spirit, you invest yourself in your practice, confident of your heritage, and train earnestly side by side with your sisters and brothers. It is this engagement that brings peace and realization.
Robert Aitken (my teacher Subhana's teacher)
DZG retreat/sesshin 2018 Thursday 26th July 6pm until Thursday 2nd August includes Friday 27th Show Day Weekend.
PLEASE PLAN YOUR LEAVE. IT IS UNLIKELY THAT WE WILL OFFER PART-TIME PLACES NEXT YEAR
For more information please email@example.com
The koan form our zazenaki as requested: CASE 45 from the Gateless Barrier Collection, WU-TSU: “WHO IS THAT OTHER?”
The teacher or guide Wu-tsu said, “Sakyamuni and Maitreya are servants of another. Tell me who is that other?”
The later guide WU-MEN wrote the COMMENT.
If you can see this other and distinguish him or her clearly, then it is like encountering your parent at the crossroads. You will not need to ask somebody whether or not you’re right.
WU-MEN wrote a VERSE on this koan.
Don’t draw another’s bow;
Don’t ride another’s horse;
Don’t discuss another’s faults;
Don’t explore another’s affairs.
Thank you to all those who contributed to our wonderful zazenkai. We missed all our friends who attended our recent sesshin but weren't able to be with us....resting in not knowing:
T. S. Eliot. In his Four Quartets, puts it this way
You say I am repeating
Something I have said before.
I shall say it again.
Shall I say it again?
In order to arrive there,
To arrive where you are,
to get from where you are not,
You must go by a way wherein there is no ecstasy.
In order to arrive at what you do not know
You must go by a way
which is the way of ignorance.
In order to possess what you do not possess
You must go by the way of dispossession.
In order to arrive at what you are not
You must go through the way
in which you are not.
And what you do not know
is the only thing you know
And what you own
is what you do not own
And where you are
is where you are not
The Gate by Marie Howe
I had no idea that the gate I would step throught to finally enter this world
would be the space my brothers body made. He was a little taller than me: a young man
but grown, himself by then
done at twenty eight, having folded every sheet,
rinsed every glass he would ever rinse under the cold
and running water.
This is what you have been waiting for, he used to say to me.
And I'd say, What?
And he'd say, This - holding up my cheese and mustard sandwhich.
And I'd say, What?
And he'd say, This, sort of looking around.
Mango by Ellen van Neerven
eight years old
walking under the bridge
insides of tennis balls
bits of fences
meeting the boys
at the dam
bikes in a pile
skater shoe soles
not cold in
boys talking about mangoes
some have never had one
listen to the taste
the squeeze of a cheek
a dog jumps in
they pull on tufts of hair
fill ears with mud
they remember my birthday
To newcomers and outsiders Zen can appear bizarre with the ancient ritual and form and its mysterious koans. But to practice Zen is actually very simple. We see all of life very simply and up close and personal. Closer than close….becoming intimate with everything… nothing left out.
When we practice the form and ritual, we notice our breath, our body, our actions and we begin to take this mindfulness into the everyday small rituals of our life. Although it is simple, there is a precision. We do things precisely. Just as inquiry is about the precision of words, thoughts, beliefs and seeing into them and that they don’t need to cause suffering; so the ritual is about precision in the doing.. inviting us into non-doing and resting in just being….being this now.
This is the invitation. The ritual may seem pedantic, unnecessary, yet it takes away thought, it takes away choice and it does this precisely. We all follow along. It becomes a beautiful dance we do together and in this no choice everyone can enter choice-less awareness.. The self slips away….nothing and no-one…no separation… nonduality. Enjoy the photos of our ritual love justine
Don't forget our upcoming zazenkai, enjoy the ritual of morning tea and oryoki.
Some of our " no-one-everyone group-made" poetry from the DZG friends who enjoyed the wonderful Zen and Nature walk/camp/swim-thanks to Andy for organising and Michelle and Miguel for driving.
life peaceful peaceful
life emerges cascades
dragonflies sharing acrobatics
existence wonder everywhere
here now cicadas
it thoughts mind everywhere
everywhere can embrace serenity
breeze red-tail cockatoo
here dryness nature
wondrous glorious life
rugged hot dry earth
something old rich
Enjoy our Zen and Nature Day at Litchfield. Please contact Andy for more details.
wind in the long grass
every green thing
the current of years
in every shape
from dry leaves
the crackle of lizards
the distant rumble
DOGEN ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE EQUALITY: REFLECT NOW WHETHER ANY BEING IS LEFT OUT OF THIS PRESENT MOMENT:
Know that in this way there are myriads of forms and hundreds of grasses throughout the entire earth, and yet each grass and each form itself is the entire earth. The study of this is the beginning of practice.
When you are at this place, there is just one grass, there is just one form; there is understanding of form and no-understanding of form, there is understanding of grass and no-understanding of grass. Since there is nothing but just this moment, the time-being is all the time there is. Grass-being, form-being are both time.
Each moment is all being, is the entire world. Reflect now whether any being or any world is left out of the present moment.
Gifts of love.