I currently believe that zazen does nothing in itself. It is not the "vehicle of change."
I think the point of zen is to live without picking and choosing. To live without clinging to ideas and ideals. To take what is here now in your face, and at your feet, and all the other metaphors of immediacy, and grasp that this is all "it" is. The wood is wood until it is ash. Then it is ash, it is not "was-wood."
Zazen is a great barometer of how well that's going for you, it ain't necessarily what gets you there.
I find I have tons of trouble these days just sitting for 30 minutes. Seems almost laughable when written. "What, you can't just sit for 30 minutes? What's your problem? You call yourself a Buddhist?" Fair engout, but what does it *mean* that I can't sit for 30? It means that my "self" has not accepted "now" as reality. It's churning so hard on things that are not real and are not here and are not now that it can't abide "just sitting."
The intellect is important to we humans because it is with the intellect that we must tee up this shot. We must conceive of the 100 foot pole. We must frame the idea of climbing through the window. But then we must abandon intellect. We must swing with our entire life. We must jump into the nothing around the pole. We must pull our tail through the window without a concept of tail and window to work with.
At least that's how I suppose it should be. That is all intellectual pondering, of course. I won't know what it's like until I stop the pondering, and step fully onto the path of no-hinderance. I think my ego has been partnering with Mara to keep me from this. Secretly giving me "goals" and "embarrassment" about zazen to trip me up. They are conspiring to bind me up in endless strings of thoughts, excuses and pondering.
Who can give me one true word to cut through to the gate-less gate? Come take this seat.
1 week ago