Saturday, April 05, 2008
Master Linji taught: "Everywhere people talk about the spiritual path, saying, if you make an effort in the practice you will realize the practice. Make no mistake, even though you have realizations in the practice that's only the cause and effect of action in the cycle of birth and death."
If there's practice, then there's attainment. Even if you attain the path, or the fruit of practice, that's simply karma -- the karma of birth and death. The non-attainment spoken about in the Heart Sutra means that there's nothing we don't have now that we'll have in the future as a result of practice.
Master Linji continues: "If you say that you practice the six paramitas and the 100,000 virtuous actions, I still see that as the production of action as cause and effect. Buddha and the masters have nothing to do."
We may be practicing the six paramitas, the five precepts, or any number of virtues and meditation practices, but we are still creating karma. Buddhas and masters are those who do not seek. And if they seek, they are not Buddhas and masters. So many create an identity around the idea of themselves as "seekers." What and where are they seeking??? In seeking, they create the mind-state of distinction and distance: the more they seek, the more distance they seem to place between themselves and what they think they seek!
Master Linji says: There is a group of blind shaved-heads who, having eaten their full, sit down to practice meditation. They cannot bear noise but like quiet. Those who practice concentrating their mind to contemplate stillness, then take the mind to contemplate outside the mind, or collect the mind inwardly, or stop the mind to enter samadhi, are all doing something and not yet practicing having nothing to do."
Buddha-sasana isn't sitting still in order to seek for complete silence. If we do sitting meditation in order to find a hiding place so that we can be in peace we miss the point completely! Sitting like that and hating the noise and preferring the silence isn't Buddha-sasana.
Master Linji is telling us (PLEASE LISTEN!!!) that you are Buddha just as you are! You suffer, not knowing this, and look for something that you think you don't have! But you contain the whole cosmos. No, you ARE the whole cosmos. What you are cannot practice this realization; what you are can't attain wholeness. You are already whole. You cannot be "more whole!"
This is what we are told in the Sutra in Forty-two Chapters: "My practice is the non-practice practice; my attainment is to attain non-attainment." Please be alert to all those teachers, from any tradition, who use their charisma or repuation to try to sell you something you don't lack! Master Linji says it this way: "If you hold to the words of the Zen masters and say that they constitute the true Path, if you say these masters are good spiritual friends, and if at the same time you think your own mind is so profane you can't dare to estimate them, then truly you are blind. You will carry this prejudicial complex with you all your life. You can't see what your own eyes could allow you."
These are strong words of warning. So many, in blindly following their teachers, sell their seeds. They are cowed into believing that their teachers possess something mysterious that they cannot comprehend, and thus open themselves to manipulation and spiritual slavery. The Buddha didn't ask this of his students. He encouraged them to see for themselves. There was no question of "validation" or "testing" by the teacher.
The Dharma has become "Big Business." This isn't really anything new. Over and over throughout its history, it has found itself in league with the power elite (and just as often persecuted). Throughout its history, people who've had revolutionary ideas and dared to speak truth to power have been shunned and isolated. This is probably a better fate than to have been unquestioningly believed. If you are always believed, you are probably only saying what people want to hear, not what they need to hear!
Ultimately, if we have some idea that we're setting off to follow or practice the Path, the Path will not allow it! In thinking we follow the Path, the path is no longer the Path! Even if we think we are committed to following the path of non-attainment, they that is not Right View. With the sword of wisdom, we let go of the Path and see clearly that the way is the way of ordinary mind. We see that in the darkness is the light and in the light there is the darkness.
Moment by moment, can you see that there is no discrimination between subject and object? Here lies non-attainment.
yours in metta,
pobsa frank jude
.: posted by Poep Sa Frank Jude 9:26 PM