Before Attainment Ma Tsu Tao I sat in meditation all day at the Ch'uan Fa Temple. One day Master Huai Jang went by to question him; "Great Worthy, what are you aiming at by sitting in meditation?" Ma replied, "I aim to become a Buddha." At that Jang picked up a tile and began rubbing it on the floor. Ma asked what Jang was trying to accomplish rubbing the tile on the floor. Jang said, "Granted, that rubbing a tile will not make a mirror, how can sitting in meditation make a Buddha?"
Dogen in the Shobogenzo writes: When the buddha-tathagatas, each having recieved the one-on-one transmission of the splendid Dharma, experience the supreme state of bodhi, they possess a subtle method which is supreme and without intention. The reason this is transmitted only from buddha to buddha, without deviation, is that the samadhi of receiving and using the self is its standard. For enjoyment of the samadhi, the practice of Zazan, the the erect sitting posture, has been established as the authentic gate.
Seems as though there is a difference of opinion, doesn't it? The simple truth is, in real Zazan, experience AND practice are one, they are not separate phenomenons...so there is no contridiction. The following will help clarify, again, read in the order as presented:
- Questions on Meditation
- How Meditation Works
- ZEN MEDITATION: The Seat of Enlightenment
- Buddhist Meditation
- Meditation and the Self
- Meditation Sickness and Path To Enlightenment
- PRANAYAMA: The Art of Breathing In Meditation and Zen
Very good! If you have read and thoroughly ingested all the information provided by the above links, you are ready to move on to the following. Both amplify and expand on the quote cited above by Dogen. The second of the two gets into the subject with a little more depth. Be sure to read the Question and Answers found farther down in the text.
- THE PRACTICE OF ZAZEN: Commentaries on Dogen's Bendowa (Shobogenzo)
Now with all the heavyweight Dogen stuff the question is, is Dogen "right?" Let's see:
THE ZEN PHILOSOPHER: A Review on Dogen Scholarship in English
When FULLY completed with ALL of the above please go to the folder below titled:
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS REGARDING MEDITATION
GO TO FOLDER SEVEN CONTINUING...CLICK HERE TO ACCESS CONTENTS PAGE
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