Recollections of Early Zen

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then you might be tempted to think
that american buddhism would end up being the best buddhism in the world
but what are you gonna do about these other american buddhism's like japanese american buddhism chinese american buddhism korean american buddhism no not that long vietnamese american buddhism and so forth we
there was a few years ago this actually circulated around all that is an issue and the other american buddhism's were dismissed as ethnic buddhism all those are ethnic buddhism
so that left quite american bosom as the only non ethnic

well maybe i was pretty funny when we realized what had been going on and i you know if we allow as the direction that we want america to go into be is one that accepts ah for better or for worse all the cultures that established them so
lives here then we have to say well quite buddhism maybe is also ethnic buddhism and that japanese american buddhism is an american buddhism vietnamese american buddhism is an american buddhism there will not be just one correct american buddhism that's where we are awry
diving right now arriving at that and appreciating that or i hope we can appreciate that
new super
dr responses

where they were suggest

go would they say there are no atheists in foxholes
suzuki was writing about pure land quite early in his life and he regularly wrote essays for our kyoto journal was it are no on eastern buddhist on on on doordarshan are thought and the
our priests in kyoto i met some of them who had great respect for pure land
of course in chinese in and i don't know maybe some periods and to there are temples that often have the zendo and an ubuntu all just across the courtyard from each other and there are people who are doing a pure land number to practice here for people who are doing a more traditional what
doll or koran practice over on this site and they can do both so in num chinese maybe korean buddhism to there's never been to sense that you have to draw a hard and fast line between turkey and duty he between pure land and ah
zen practice or to some extent i think the japanese that are almost artificially reinforced a dichotomy between our therapy practice and gv he practice that is to say practice or g ricky means self effort you make an effort for yourself ah self energy
r m tochigi leaving it up to amida or something or somebody but letting something else do it for you be you provide the grace provide the insight
but the psychology is the same as dog get
basic basically karaoke or or or generation is saying
you have to you have to be able to get out of your own way
body cast away mind castaway
don't stand in your own way this is a lesson that must be learned in zen practice i then they trick you into it by making you think that you can do something for yourself until you finally have to give up
a real you can't do anything for yourself so what are you gonna do
organ the pure land they just start right out saying you can't do anything for yourself ah
and then you wait until you actually believe it
either way it's not as easy as it sounds
there's so much in dogan or that is absolutely like harmonious there with with the jewellers in practice so these two things aren't really necessarily to be set against each other
and it doesn't surprise me know that says he was doing john ocean jodo at the end of his life and he had so much appreciation for what when he was younger
yeah he was a professor at a joseon university right there in kyoto or dundee university now
morimoto roshi just outside the obstetrician kyoto in the south dakota once said to me he was a job ocean a lover and student and he gave tissue often you are using joseon ideas and he was said to me jodo is john oh shit is the only thing that can scold zen
nothing else can scold zen we can protect ourselves from ten die and shoot guns or forthwith
we are very vulnerable to ship
nice of fire viral sheedy said because they point out that we try to hide

well where are we
hold back tears write it down was an government and accuracy
ah he came after suzuki and as a young man as a teenager met suzuki one suzuki visited london as the guest of christmas from trees or gave talks and lectures around london for a period of time at that time he was a fairly young man himself quite fluent in english deep
really impressed alan watts and ellen i certainly is is you know teaching under the influence and in the lineage of d t suzuki is no doubt
we take suzuki or d t suzuki so much as almost our own that we might overlook the fact
ah of how remarkable he was for a turn of the century japanese man
ah laboring under among other things are the pervasive anti or it'll racism in the early years of this century
believe me it was out there are it was intense living in chicago for nine years marrying an american woman taking her back to japan with him where she had to stand up against the anti white racism of the japanese
and ah suzuki and becoming fluent in english which isn't easy and then are actually being the most influential japanese think internationally influential japanese thinker the twentieth century that's who he is the most influential japanese thinker the twentieth century the
japanese don't realize this but this is the guy who had more influence in the world europe and america than any other person in their century from japan it's remarkable
we almost taken for granted because he's so much are on
there was some other question to us citizen
to make the and progression prevent around the back
rubber kind of gauge
a car proposals
okay that's good yeah can be a good time to mention that
not engaged buddhism there's an occidental idea
there is that's a very it for me it was a very strong feeling and for some of my friends and colleagues
it's i was seeing earlier back around the time of the korean war
oh oh feeling that
buddhists she'd have something to say as well as as much as the jehovah's witnesses and the quakers to traditional peace church people were having things to say about our involvement in the korean war of course the vietnam war comes later oh
it's my old cultural conditioning and upbringing or to feel that it's almost an obligation to be a to some degree politically engaged and to take certain stand on issues ah and to study history and
our to try to come up with a sense of what a political direction for your society might be
ah and i had a number of from our friends and peers who felt somewhat the same way even back in the fifties
when to japan and of
i found that there was a or
not much sense of ah a call for political engagement among traditional buddhists
but where it was when it was there it was quite strong the japanese peace movement the anti hiroshima movement the annual the annual hiroshima ah
conferences and get togethers had a large buddhist component and so there was a left so to speak pacifist buddhist element in the japanese peace movement you know from the fifties on but it was not zip it was from our general shin
and from other schools of buddhism that are we're not quite so pricey ah not quite so high class one of the things you have to understand about zunes that is high class
for especially the urban's and especially kyoto sin it's like the episcopalian church only more so
the poor tradesman or former or more middle class salary man would be as hesitant to walk into asia temple and ask when can i come in practice zazen here as a poor lower middle class purse
sun or farmer would be hesitant to walk into an episcopal church and say i feel right coming to church here
they would feel out of their own class
oh if there is any buddhism which the our rulers of japan show a little interest in the captains of industry or the top people in the government exam
ah and are full-body body osho of ryoko in in d'etat koji to name one ah
was a regular adviser and zen teacher to some of the top capitalists and top our players in japanese culture right down to he died in just a few years ago
so that's another you know part of the part of the equation that you have to realize it when japanese people when you go to japan the absence when they look at you askance said well what they're thinking is you don't look rich and powerful
what gives you the right to studies him well that's also changing
but the the high culture connections tea ceremony
our painting and so forth the very very high cultural connections plus the political connections are put especially kyoto's in at the very top of the social scale
i never i took me years to figure out after i'd been in japan about seven or eight years i suddenly started saying to myself gosh i should dress better
no wonder they don't like to have me come around


sotos and has more of a base in in the countryside and is probably more democratic probably has been for a long time so i should qualify what i've been seeing is is that the the big temple big home table based to kill
auto rinzai schools of them are the ones that have had this peculiar are high political status high cultural status
in hell
that's all you know
i think we need to take another little break and then we'll have a ah
another spell of time to wind this up

if we get out here in time to go hiking yeah
not that i'm in a rush
because i'm not i'm enjoying this enormously
so let's get settled
there's a couple of of things that got started that i want to finish responding to
one was
is moot question i believe about engaged buddhism
and like what about that
ah susan was editor of the turning wheel and together with me and several others has long been involved with the buddhist peace fellowship
going back to its early days
and how i as i was saying earlier well i guess that's a nice in the whole thing to be willing to get engaged him
some kind of open ah
political expression and action
whatever it is our then i i stepped back in my discussion and started talking about how the japanese buddhist world has responded to political issues
and said that
only certain groups and in not necessarily huge numbers i were being had been political or been involved be a political sense like a little too much but had been involved in our political expression and then i have to add to that in recent years there have been in the last ten or twelve
years there have been some arm are really quite interesting cases even and xin of individual priests who took on roles near community like one rinzai priest to had a small temple over on the japan sea north of kyoto who became the leader in the organizer
in a movement to block a nuclear reactor are being put in in their area ah
and another rinzai zen priest to my met up in or much modo who has a beautiful old feudal temple in the city of matsumoto in nagano prefecture
who without anybody any reason of push for him to do it became are deeply involved with with the relief efforts for ship journal bill and ah had volunteers are domiciled in the temple had raised money with companies corporations
getting large donations of medicine and supplies and was pressuring airlines into flying freight loads of surprise for the people suffer hit chernobyl that was an individual rinzai zen priest a well of course any individual person can and will do that sometimes ah but he was using the full
power of being a
head priest of a fairly eminent temple shamelessly in on pushing his way or using a using that though that status and power and getting a lot of respect for it from the rest of the buddhist world rather than are
ah an attitude that maybe this was questionable behavior for a buddhist priest and so i think that there again
there's a change in attitude in japan other cases in other countries of course there have been some very political buddhist priests and they've suffered for it gone to prison are all kinds of things can happen to you
but here in america we've had for some years now
our a basically a peace and justice oriented a peace justice and our ecological justice environmental ah lee oriented small movement called the buddhist peace fellowship and i'm sure there are some others for over ten years
and as i recall in or i used to be on the board of directors now i'm on the board of advisors we took the position years ago that
we do not feel that it is the obligation of any buddhist anywhere to necessarily be active or open in political expression that this is our personal choice ah and we are doing good spirit what we don't mean to imply that somebody who is not does not have certain amount of engage
judgment in their buddhist practice is in any way lacking or it's a proof isn't it's an entirely personal choice
in the buddhist world and i understand perfectly well those who criticize engaged buddhism saying ah your first priority should be your practice i understand that i also remember one of the metaphors for one of the sutures which says the water wheel goes route and as it dips down the
picking up water it gives us waterways pulling it off the top and also engagement in the world and deep personal practice or wanted to say and that's an old metaphor yes
haha karen we've been involved in based program together or a benefit for us right and what we've been exploring is how actual engagement the sites of social occasion or social after his sites of practice and practice
as as a wheel turning in his and or daniel when a temple is only one way to practice but actually practicing in the interaction and transaction with this service can be a or a side of practicing as well as in our contemplative practice
can be a price for will really wake up to pass where social structures of oppression and injustice and poverty can internalize so we've been really playing with us too afraid so
breaking a little bit of that dichotomy that i don't know i because hearing him and that sometimes people talk about the practice than going out moving we're talking about going out as practices are coming in new yorker as practice
hire action or hot
a lot to be a life around
in terms of precepts and terms of ethics and on the tentacles right right right good point been very rich for people yeah and you know i admire what i hear of in read about you know how you how you folks are extending that
it's an excellent undertaking with them
the difficulty the difficulties are the same difficulties that all such exercises face and is getting up there being involved in in keeping control of your own emotions if it gets so intimidating or around angry in order it's an ongoing for he asked for the outhouse
interesting other side are unhappy about many as teaching students in are needed their environment korea's and i can come on i'm more aware happening which many of them are at not being able to articulate their spiritual concerns when their environmental practice
not seen as hardness scientists fear are insane
rafa brooklyn
has the parallel with a bottle of breasts concern for action in activists are scientists from parliament was concerned that how to bring this n
shit or that way to public hearings into statements are now saving
that's like asking businesses questions and matches
in the beach interesting man woman that's the i plan on there
in this regard how
i think the time is coming when are those of us who wish to i can be open about being buddhists open and frank about it
and claim the same rights for our religious affiliation the other people claim for their religious affiliations
now i know that there's a certain number of people who doesn't practice or who studies in
who don't think of themselves as buddhists are or who are trying to steer away from what they think of as religion ah and or maybe have something which is more
what psychotherapy
or at least more secular
there is that tendency
or for myself i've always thought of myself first of all as a buddhist shamelessly ah
with all of the trappings and
xin is a practice we didn't have and of course i recognize that dup there's a lot of nutty stuff and some in some mud
questionable stuff in some quarters of buddhism here they're here or there but that's all right to
in the the current national debate about things like values
an ethics
there are times and places when we should be able to step forward and say it is a deep religious value in my teaching
to hold nonhuman beings in high regard
and that i do not necessarily in other words you don't necessarily have to make an environmental point by quantifying damage to the ecosystem with the chart and was statistics although sometimes as the most effective way of making a presentation or but there also the point to be made which is as
real at least for as personally for summer was personally
that this runs against the grain of my very own religious values and there sooner or later of the fact that there are people in our free society who are buddhists who who come to feelings about damage to the environment or threat to individual species simply on that level or with no need to huh
any further scientific data show
or you don't like to have got you don't have to come with our scientific data to justify my killing people
and the same should be true of from or other organisms and species you know i would feel that to be also the case
religious conviction
can a very powerful impact for instance environmentalist and more county i will try and attack to a child's parents were very very long term the mirror and had never come to pass all man
going on and i am i going to just organize is really a little meandering river product with the rabbi and now of priests and myself and the arcade is a group and just have his tenure at a press conference in charles harris heard on just for about it
who is it were yeah he have caught wind of it but a lot of lp at ah
the official the i just found a conviction he was on the phone with the rabbi for hours and was trying that in an organized meetings where everyone can talk it out of our really really that's very interesting yeah
y'all know who charles it is now
a big cage
well i was listening to some of one of those hearings are picked it up on npr the other day
and they were playing by the testimony of several people
at the hearing who were ranting and raving against charles robots personal you know and i was wondering you know isn't there another way to reach that guy
just you know basically cursing the amount on public dollar a public radio which is not going to get anywhere now with him so i'm interested in hear you know that that at least he talked to the rabbi
now we need to get a rabbi who is a deep ecologist
which is not entirely impossible
the senate obama was used there's something about armed robberies and exam and advocates know it
bad news in is necessarily homes where he gives a different voices and
if you put pakistan on the circuit customers from
is that something is happening more mirror
that's true that was having work
well yes
federal cavalry much of what you'd call builders in japan
but are they certainly have a lot of wild nature
ha and yeah that's a that's a good question and i lie would like to talk about that a little bit
our because this also
leads into or the to some of the territory's that i've tried to bring some creative thinking of my own to in ah speaking of of buddhism and speaking of nature
and the term wild as been a
a very productive a term for me as i've explored it and and income to use it i and at the same time i
the idea of the wild and the idea of wilderness is a very potent idea for americans that it has been on it has become an almost archetypal our position of american consciousness to think of speak of
the wild
from and it goes back to our earliest the earliest history of our euro americans on the a continent
get the various ways in which they foot of addressed and went into or this vast new continent and the waste that they interpreted it to themselves one of the most common ways of course was to think of it as a vast howling uninhabited will
furnace as which is some of the language that you see in early writers and in other writers
corrected that are especially after the lewis and clark expedition saying well actually there are people living everywhere
they were lewis and clark were never out of sight of a group of indians were originally ah
the whole time that they were travelling back and forth across north america
and other our early explorers and travelers who described such remarkable biological richness or such beautiful accounts are
the different parts of north america starting with florida who the guys that wrote on florida home
march yeah william bertram ah which has recently been republished in the library of america series are bertram travels in florida are just about the same time as the revolutionary worsening thing by seventeen seventy six
most remarkable accounts of birds and alligators and fish and indian peoples living in a beautiful accounts so we've got a long history with that
and we've had a long
conflict or cultural conflict in our a sense of our our obligation and duty and relationship to this continent which is basically on the one side it's beautiful it's lovely it's ah
unlike anything in europe were so lucky to live in this wonderful natural continent and on the other side this is throughout american history and on the other side we've got to develop it in our source has been this constant term
contradictory are sensibility and and contradictory message that is embedded in american consciousness
like the very the very guys who say
we've gotta have jobs and get out there are the same guys who say god you can't find a good place to fish anymore
ah there they feel it themselves in that without even recognizing the contradictory quality of it
but what the wild and wilderness or two different things
our wilderness a wild is process while does is is a is it describes the self-organizing self propagating self managing our process of nature itself
and got in that sense are by far the greater part of the universe is wild
how that it is that the world goes about its business and organizes them in her propagates itself effortlessly on all sides
and we can only be grateful for that
ah wilderness is a top boss is a place or location a physical place on earth where there is a large quotient of while process in operation ah and are
certain things you know any vacant lot will have wild weeds while plants wild insects and maybe a few wild birds in it and wildness will be active are in a square yard of ground that top you might have quit cultivating or quit scraping which is a wonderful thing to
consider that it's so resilient but at the same time or the diversity or that would represent or one our planet is capable of requires more space and so this is the argument for large size wilderness areas that to keep all of the creatures going
get ah would be here and were here not long ago ah and there are variety of reasons that we can invoke for keeping a large number of creatures going i would say it was a moral obligation if nothing else but you can get a database where you can like
of that takes a larger space then the quality of wildness or the quality of wilderness which in this case would overlap
oh it's a little harder to define but it has there is a respect a profound respect that we feel in an environment that is totally independent and free of us and is totally soft managing ah where we can step back and see em
everything working without any human management process i've been inserted into it
and another quality of the wild is that everything is always in place
nothing is out of place when are a bunch of leaves are shut down by a gust of wind in the forest on the leaves falling on the ground are not in disorder
there is no disorder in a while system and in essence we have to ask ourselves how did we come up with our own notions of order
since in every world but our own everything falls effortlessly into the right place
ours is the only world where things get out of place
interesting thought
oh can we take part of what of your question about asia now
in china and japan
since the lowlands were cultivated
oh the wild areas were in the mountains
and ah
as chinese civilization egret agrarian civilization advanced of course he had to go higher into the mountains to find the wild areas
early shamans early taoists hermits our early meditators or would retreat into the mountains they would set up a cave or a hermitage or a cabin and find a place to do their practices and that is pre buddhist it's very ancient and
far east the tradition of mountain hermits or of sending our or chin immortals the lore of immortals the idea that some individuals by staying in remote places and following certain practices i gain a greater quotient vicinity
a of health of maybe long life of power of spiritual power very deeply rooted asian asian tradition far eastern tradition
oh already well established before buddhism came to china
the early buddhists following in the same vein are did set up their temples or in less populated areas often
end up in the mountains not always in really high mountains but in so slightly more remote place it also probably would have been real estate prices that is to say good a good agricultural lowland where you can grow vegetables and rice is probably more expensive and mountain land is still in are often cheaper
but there are some remarkable are are are sacred mountain table sites in china and in japan and in korea where it's not an easy trip where it's it's a long and very difficult hike to get up into a remote place which then may have dozens or even hundreds of little temples and shrines
in where you can stay the night in a little bored floor dormitory in all kinds of our ceremonies and sacred practices are available to you are so there isn't association a deep archetype of association in the far east with spirituality and malthus
ha we would not necessarily consider those mountains wild today has to say they no longer have tigers living on them
because the trackers are gone the wildlife has been depleted considerably ah but still there is a deep and ancient appreciation and all of the far east or for the possibilities of ofwat spiritual practice in the mountains can be
we have in north america
our willy nilly sort of found our own wilderness a spiritual practice
well before buddhism read henry david thoreau and how he sees his life at walden pond or it is essay walking or which is in some ways even more profound and walden oh what with a
what out of his own reading and his own sensibility he makes of the surrounding swamps and woods of the place he lives and his daily walks there is quite remarkable or take a person like john muir who starts out being raised in a a pretty fundamental strict christian household
ah and mysteriously over a few years some some a breaks out of that to a direct devotional pantheistic worship almost of nature itself it does that all of his own somehow
and then comes up to the west coast and are blockades himself in the sierra nevada and develops a vocabulary of of observation which is quite precise and also a vocabulary of praise and devotion and which is a little bit purple
a little bit too much but that is a homegrown american phenomenon
ah so we have and there are other writers like mary austin and a number of others who have found are almost there way independently into spirituality of wild nature this is an american think i only place else where people have done that and so in that sense while neat
your itself was our teacher in this regard and certainly it was one of my early teachers are mountaineering was like a teacher to me snow peak mountaineering when i was a teenager
what is practice brings a great deal to that and ultimately i think is extremely valuable to that and all the way it was valuable for me was i was a fanatic that seventeen or eighteen i was a mountain fanatic i was a bat
country wilderness fanatic and i know lots of kids that are like that still ah
i did not want to be where there was a sign of human activity if i could help it
my heart soared to be way in the back country and to be way up there you know when half of the landscape is still covered with snow in august
it was some
there was a little excessive you know how much ecstasy that brought me to be in such a place
of in quite quite the unreason also you know not ultimately not practical
so it took on a right
it took some some in some little pointers from buddhist and dallas practices like the line for the person who has wilderness in the heart ah any room in the city will be acceptable
that of are a true appreciation of of the processes of the universe
enables you to see that it does not stop when you enter the suburbs are go into town that you don't draw a line between your favorite variety of real reality in journalist favorite variety of reality it's all real and this is a great buddhist teaching it's a great zone teaching ah are that
the the concrete pavement as the source of infinite aesthetic pleasure if you look at way
yes it just seems to be some sort of forever to what he described about for the mild as a process ah enlightenment terms of a brutal chrome something that is suburbanize vision and has its natural order that he can only discover
come to and how i understood and right motor to do so
small piece
i had a teacher in japan who instructed me when i began doing with our go on practice ah were instructed me to let nature take its course
he said it's a neutral process
just sit and let it work in the colon will fall into your hand when is right joe
or rather than the other kind of advice which is a bang your head against the wall
i got that kind of advice to sometimes but it was interesting that there are was also the language of this is self ripening this is this is once you launch it that and stay with it that it will come about according to its own process
ah and along those lines or something else that i pointed out in my book to practice of the wild are a couple of times is that if we see the wild the to wild as meeting self organizing self are propagating ah
that we can then say that the deep mind is wild
that the imagination or eludes management
that consciousness itself eludes management or that when you're sitting you're sitting to a great degree with wild mind
that was team might a team mind is mind that you call the to produce the yield
when you are working with team mind you are able to do math problems or write an essay but wild mine is creative imagination and leaps in unpredictable directions are the truth is as a rule we can't predict what our next thought is gonna be
and that would tell us that the mind is pretty wild
it's also interesting to consider that language might be wild according to the same terms that the richness and complexity and degree of organization that exists in a natural language in the syntactic structures
have a natural language and in the
capacity of vocabulary recall that in our capacity to effortlessly construct syntactically correct sentences without effort one after another are all qualities of wellness just like wild nature working for us faster than we can catch up and your right
national mind wouldn't allow you to do that i if you had to stop and think about what is the next correct sense and gonna say
in the richness of our own consciousness we are also drawing on this mysterious strength which could be called wild this mysterious process i'd like to think of it that way
well where are we now
one more little north american thing
is our place

a strong distinction are striking distinction between our our north american tribes and the lives of from people in east asia or anywhere else in the world practically
it is our mobility or our lack of history and a place for any length of time ah as compared with people who are still for the most part remember where their ancestral villages even if they don't actually live in it and many of them will still make a new years journey back
to the ancestral village even if the rest of the are they working some big city
the network of buddhist temples for example in japan or is supported by place-based people
judy hi i'm was reminding me during the break she just came back from three week or three months of rinzai practice at a table outside tokyo cocoa wangi
our that the real of foundation of the of the temples life or in economic base is about four hundred families were called the dunker the patrons of the temple
these are families are
all long established local resident family some of the most of them probably going there for generations
they supply a lot of money annually got to the temple and will be available for repair for raising money for repairs or or anything that comes up in not turn oh that temple and all the other temples conduct a steady series is a funeral so
ceremonies and memorial ceremonies are for the households of therefore hundred patrons their duncan
ah and are there will be a graveyard and go back at the temple where these a hawk artist these graveyards are great these gravestones are
ah that support network of local people based there over the generations
ah is not necessarily a group of people that care a whole lot about enlighten or about buddhism or about practice they are in a culture we are in their own japanese buddhist agrarian can nowadays capital of culture they admire or the young people
who will do a lot of zazen it may be ultimately go to kyoto and sit in one of the main monasteries you know admire than a whole lot but they think of it as a very exceptional kind of practice not everybody's gonna do that
from that standpoint another another light that can be thrown on traditional asian buddhist practices that there isn't a huge public support for it or support network for it
that comes from these connections these traditional connections by people who are content in an almost devotional way to be part of it without necessarily having to investigated but will continue to support it
and their since of our or the buddhist practices that we all address ourselves to is that that belongs to a very special population of people so that puts us in the different relationship to it
oh the other thing is of course that each one of those temples finds itself grounded in a place and i know that in north america it's our notion that what we want to learn is ourselves
no ah who am i
self realization
i think it's useful sometimes to ask where you are as well as will you are
ah and or maybe in asia that the question of where you are is not a very critical question because your always in same place
there is a a a certain small spiritual value in asking yourself how you are situated how you are grounded and aqua your neighbors so that line of thought is the basis of some of the essays i've written over the last ten
our essays on watersheds as is on bio regions are essays on sense of place
suggesting that job ha sung ha community is ah one of the three treasures one of the most dog a equally important aspects of buddhist practice
get in a certain said somehow dharma and buddha are all equal
our in that though extensions and metaphors of the meaning of sankar are very rich
ah that the traditional early our interpretation of sanha was that it was ah monks and nuns
and then the next marianna extension of somehow was
the community of lay people and monks and nuns who are all together in their interest in the dharma
our and then a larger mahayana extension of that is that the sanga is all sentient beings
whether they know it or not
and then the largest extension of that which comes with some of the chinese while and philosophers was that everything in the universe since you or nonsense shit y draw the line
the distinctions about this that's all part of our song hot in addition let's not make a distinction between things that exist these that don't exist
farron in the sankar some lovely idea but how do you approach such a scale of saga well my suggestion is you have to start where you are
enlarge your sense of community power or practice your sense of community as it were with the people you practice with it practice with and with the neighbors across the street and over the hill and then with the non-human neighbors as well the are
the owls the coyotes the jack rabbits and the eucalyptus trees are part of the summer so this is you know buddhist the buddhist way of thinking of talking about what the agency guys got ecosystem management
the ecosystem is our neighborhood our neighborhood is the ecosystem and ah you know that that is a little bit too warm technical sounding to put it another terms it's bad manners not to know your neighbors
ah and that is you know it's a matter of that of the etiquette of the wild it's a matter of the etiquette of the wild to be if you are somewhere even if you're not going to stay there for long to be aware of fact that you are somewhere
and to pay your regards and your respects ah
to the whole fabric of the place and then wherever possible to bring your practice into the fabric of that place or to bring that fabric got into your life that's why we try to use local woods in building
ah that's why a good are the tradition of flower arrangement is the plants grasses and flowers through the year of this week and each week for flower arrangement changes following the season
that's why i felt irrationally offended and it was irrational in away when a japanese building built in the united states some years ago was dedicated in a gentle type ceremony use
using shuttle plants flown from japan
rather than using the local plants there was something that had been profoundly missed their
to have more of a practice of place in north america would be are the beginnings of having a community
and how get away are buddhist exercise here in north america has been top-down he's been from the head down it's been from the educated people down has been from the most part the white people down and has been from the city's day
and so still a great part of our american buddhist practice is a urban centers that are visited regularly by college students and professionals and upper middle class or middle class people are passing through that's
one of our schools our social scan for the moment as fine and it's not division of a nap that's the way buddhism came to china to in the first to in the fourth fifth century a d but are the other side of it is our by gradually finding our way to be people of place
are we can begin to have communities and by beginning to have communities in place we can begin to have a place to host the temple
and have a people who live there long enough to support the temple to support the practice are in the more traditional way ah i have a network of people in the community that will be there generation after generation are to help keep it going
because you're in the long range funding is the question
that's about all i have to say i think today i have one little thing to say about speaking of funding a little a funny little inside i hear onto the mahayana sutras why the my on suitors are so long
especially the high end jude and
at the many versions of the president paul minnesota
some of which go on endlessly
and are very repetitive
i've been wondering about that for years
that's it
i decided it was a function of funding
get somewhere in up fourth fifth sixth century idea of china wealthy merchants could be talked into of funding a group of a small group of monks to write a sutra
and the longer you wrote the sutra the longer defending go on
that's an inside i got after being on the california arts council
well it's so it's getting late or thank you very much for your questions and your interaction and
half this has been lot of fun
get you

each i wasn't really wasn't his fault
he of he r loans his temple to another priest who lost a whole money on or a whole lot of money on horse racing
and you know in the japanese system you'd have to take responsibility for somebody else's errors if it was on your watch
they said okay joshua
somebody's got to go to los angeles it looks like it's you