February 6, 2018

The Mouth of the Universe

Buddhism is not about adding something to your life. Or to your experience. So for example you may expect that through Buddhism you will experience something that you never experienced before. But in fact you do not practice Buddhism in order to experience something you never experienced before, rather to experience completely whatever you may experience. So it would be a big mistake if your Buddhist practice and studies made your life more interesting or entertaining. Or if Buddhism made you a wiser person.

Of course a good teacher may sound wise but that is not the point. The wisdom a teacher wants to convey is very very simple. When you take those famous Chinese zen masters you may believe that actually the words they said made them authentic zen masters. But in fact their own everyday life experience which can never be expressed in words was what made  them authentic zen masters. Because they had true authentic experience of everyday life and at the same time were completely aware of the value and meaning of everyday life experience they could express  in their own words what the meaning of Buddhism is. These days people,  actually anyone can experience the same coldness of cold water and the same warmth coming from a fire that those Chinese masters experienced but it takes a lot of efforts and sincere practice and asking questions before we can fully appreciate the very coldness and warmth of things and even if we can fully appreciate what we experience it is difficult to speak about it if we are too clever or would like to impress others.

 I think although we absolutely need a true teacher who can explain what  Buddhism is and express in their own actions what Buddhism is, it is best to listen to the sound of the fridge or the engine or to paraphrase one Chinese master the sound of the creek in the valley, and find the meaning  of Buddhism there. Actually it is necessary to find the meaning of our own life in the sound of the engine or the dog barking. It is not rocket science but our clever mind doesn't like direct experience of things. So going against our cleverness is one of the challenges of zazen and Buddhist studies.

The most important wisdom of Buddhism does not come from the mouth of zen masters, rather from the mouth of the universe. So it is good to let this mouth speak to us from time to time. Putting aside religion, spiritual teachings, wisdom of masters, it is nice to taste strawberry jam and have some tea. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When I started practice zazen I was surprised how lot of ideas and how quickly are changed/moving in my brain. It is as any game of my brain, may be not it is not reality only game. It was my first very strong experience. The Result was: If the ideas are changed quickly in my brain, so is not need react for these ideas. May be could be better waiting with my reaction some time and may be couldnt be urgently react for them. In this way I am little bit calm and be little bit more in own center/harmony.

Second experience. If am after conflict with my wife I go anything to do (hoovering for example). If I try to do the hoovering in all my mind, so I am not unhappy from conflict with my wife. Conflict was in past.

Is difficult for me remember for these experiences during my everyday life.

I am beginner but these two small experiences give me some undestanding about buddhist view of reality in everyday life.