Zazen Notes

The Mudra of Zen

Fuxi's Poem

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Mark Foote
Post title: Skill and the Taking of Vows
(Apr 16 2013 at 10:41 AM)

"When formulating lay precepts based on his distinction between skillful and unskillful, the Buddha never made any allowances for ifs, ands, or buts. When you promise yourself to abstain from killing or stealing, the power of the promise lies in its universality. You won't break your promise to yourself under any conditions at all."

(Thanissaro Bhikku, "Getting the Message", accesstoinsight.org)


The difficulty in this point of view is that skillful means is not something that is acquire

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Mark Foote
Post title: The Measure of the Hall
(Mar 13 2013 at 05:39 PM)

I do think some of the Western, second-generation Zen teachers are actually established in the teaching (if I may say so), even though they may not be monsters, as Kobun Chino Otogawa once described his own teacher (the Rev. Chino).

The question is really, can they teach? At least, that's the question in my mind; my take is that Western Zen is a family affair, like Layman Pang and company, and a return to teaching both the esoteric and the exoteric without the closed fist of the teacher an

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Mark Foote
Post title: "Good morning- where am I?"
(Mar 3 2013 at 02:00 PM)

The pain in the left knee, I'm pretty sure is related to the support or lack thereof for the fifth and fourth lumbar vertebrae in inhalation and exhalation.

Cheng Man-Ch'ing prescribed relaxation from the shoulders to the finger tips, from the groin to the soles of the feet, and from the sacrum to the crown of the head, followed by relaxation of the chest, as a means to sink the ch'i to the tan-t'ien. His advice implies a relaxed extension up the spine, both in inhalation and in exhalation.

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