September 21st, 1996, Serial No. 01886

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today's control comes out to time to has the words
the why

what begin this morning not worth something from the east bug with something from the west name lay on the myth of sisyphus which i'm sure most of you maybe all of you are familiar with

so this isn't the greek tradition the ancient greeks and
told about
his man sisyphus who was in health
and the particular however he was in
again as most of you probably know is that he was condemned to
push a rock a large bowser his job was to get it to the top of this hill
and he will push it and push it and push it and then just before he got to the top
rockwood escape his grasp and would go rolling back down to the bottom
and then he had to start over again
does this sound familiar to add
an ad

i can easily imagine his struggle and effort and sweat
and trying and trying and trying and trying to get that rock up over the top
and then again and again and again that disappointment
the discouragement of saying it go rolling back down

maybe even a maybe he'd got angry
damn it why can't that crack
lot to that thing
follow and it found some kind of traction device on my hands that would do it in some way of holding that rock and getting and up over the top
maybe he got depressed also
that rock i'll never go up over the top forget it
very sad
so by the chuckle
here chuckle
of familiarity i know that for me this speaks to something very familiar for me and possibly for you also
in your worker in relationships with each other a relationship with another person
trying to push that rock up over the hill get it up over the top and then once it's over the top then you can just coast then things i'm going okay
couple of weeks ago i had lunch with a friend and he asked me how i'm working on i he knows about this it's actually it was care if i had lunch it

a iraq experts
so he knows that i'm working my cell phone a
a long term project something that's very important to me
paul said to me
how's it going i said also so you know he said all i felt i felt you were over the hump
i said nope
not over the hump so that was the inspiration for the title of this talk described
this type is called you from under the hump
since supposed to be
see what happens there

then i speak to that in you at few years under the hump sometimes maybe all the time maybe most of the time maybe in some areas may be in all areas
what do we do when were under the hump
but don't worry
buddhism has the answer but
i'm not going to talk about that today and know yes
so basically there's two ways to go where there's probably more than two but for the purposes of my top was morning now talk about two ways to well one is instructions about how to get over the hump how to get the rock up over the top of the
that's one kind of instruction

but a local but i don't think that's really the central focus of buddhist teaching actually as how to get the rock up over the hill it is possible to do it
and the in
there are real in which the rock is up over the top of the hill
the human around i think is characterized by sisyphus his effort that's what we mostly now is pushing the rack up the hill
wherever else they have been buddhism that were actually there's a different relationship there is the data around in other as six six rounds with six destinies and buddhist cosmology
the berber is the realm of the gods
and that's when the rock is apple google tap with ahead and you just coasting along things go so smoothly and the don't overwhelm everything works out just perfectly in fact the the the beings who inhabit the data around everything is going
so smoothly that they don't bother even with having a body
they don't even have bodies
because it's too much trouble
to really rocks you know if you have a body so we'll just have sensory apparatus that polls then all of these wonderful sensations
that's the day around occasionally we may visit the data around
in you know about topic too literally
there's also be a share around the realm of the fighting god to the folding
the titans there there's sometimes called
we're sure around us will have a very aggressive sense and just exactly what we're going to get that rock up over the top of the hill and nothing's gonna stop you know nobody's going to stab you alone nothing no morals know you're going to just driven by barrier so that you can enter rebuild around
this kind of mentality is very popular in lot our culture theater
a god's telling cia's so to speak
massey was bad
i was listening to the radio every other day and there was some i can't remember what it was something like
they were advertising a book i think the title of the book was something like how to demolish your competition
have a bubble show competition and red birds photo color he and sure it was an usher who was the author of that book disguised as a human being
demolish your competition get that rack up over the top
use your competition's it's as stepping stones to get up over there
so anyway now the thing is that that are buys into a certain perspective a certain view as to what's important and what's not important obviously what's important is getting the rock
up over the hill
but i think actually what we find most refreshing most deeply refreshing a bad zen practice about buddhism is that it doesn't buy into that viewpoint
there's a different viewpoint that's possible
and based on that different viewpoint a different kind of intention
a different kind of intention on direction or idea arises
that's to work when i'm doing with my life
so just so happens to have another rock story involving suzuki roshi and this was back in the late sixties when he spent a fair amount of time down at tassajara and
this story about him and a young man named dan welsh manager at that time he was a young man
he was then maybe twenty six or so
which now i think of as
but he's expanded that time i was twenty two and i thought of him as a
an ancestor in
a very patriotic
he hasn't been around for quite awhile but at that time it for many he's a real he's a real what can i say good bye to serve the way dan can we were at that time he was maybe twenty six or twenty eight or something like that and data a home he will
worked with suzuki or she doesn't care if you used to like to
the rock work met if you'd been to tessera you know there are many many just phenomenally beautiful rocks at ah i
sobeys ban to twenty six let's say you know working with suzuki roshi who at that time was in israeli sixties
after the road for a while dan has wiped out he's completely exhausted suzuki roshi is ready for more
superior she is ready to go you no no no hesitation let's keep working
after arabian notices and says to suzuki roshi how is it that i'm fed us under the new but i get tired and you don't

and since intuition said or well i rest
in the middle of the activity

i rest in the middle of the activity in the middle of action is a pause is nothing
that's like when he was to give instruction about moving to exams and he used to say exhale and then paused for just amendment at the end of the exhalation
hence and now i'll add see what you find there
what do you find if you pause for a moment that the end of the exhalation
you find nothing
that's what the their nothing
is there
a hint of nothing
and there's a literary to understand rest in the midst of activity
but i think also he meant nothing in the midst of something
this is a different perspective was a different point of view that buddhism offices
this is a much wider perspective much more open point of view
then what sisyphus could
maybe wouldn't all issue with i can't remember if i mention this but in the greek system sisyphus was actually and how i did say that it's a kind of hell
but from suzuki roshi point of view push iraq at the here is just what can you say it's just activity
spend necessarily how

this is not a matter of of of of were or far this is this is a matter of changing one's perspective to see what's actually going on opening up one's perspective
one point of view
so that were not caught
and simply and only pushing the rock up a hill we don't have to move that area you can still push a rack up a hill but in the middle of the rock is no rock in the middle of the heroes no ill in the middle of pushing is nothing

that sounds very zen i spam
epic easy to get about bad team
trailer rubric clear and what i'm talking about it's not so it's not so esoteric really
there is another friend to a hassle had lunch with no i just met with him few weeks ago another time also we used to be actually he was a teacher here at zen center a couple of decades ago he hasn't been around for many a year but he was telling me he was a
mean by suzuki roshi
and he was telling me where she felt was suzuki roshi his main teachings

and i'm just digress for a moment that said as a cautionary tale you know because
he tried to get rid of buddhism you know he got rid of his robes he grew his hair we know how to shave ten he and robes and he was abandoned was a teacher and all this he tried to get rid of all this stuff you know he tried to get rid of buddhism and get rid of a with this stuff but he told me i couldn't get rid of so
a commercial system him i couldn't i couldn't run saying they're hooked there is a tina i couldn't get the hook out of my mouth you know i couldn't breathe the teaching em my out of myself
so watch out watch what you get that's what you get involved in
people if you don't like it you have to understand buddhism
once you understand it or once you have a feel for you can't really get rid of it so easily
even if it's consequences are not what you had anticipated
if it isn't even if it isn't the table round that you had hoped it would be there

anyway the
the first thing that he said was
that he felt was the superior she's most important teaching or among his most important teachings was no gaming mind
no gaining mind you could say
the mind that does not seek to gain
the mind that does not seek to get something for yourself
no gaming mind
you can a diagnosis of says obsessed offices brand will get in trouble with to it's ever been suburban so suzuki roshi and sisyphus
and this problem is that he had a gaming mind he wanted a game without a ago he wanted that rock up over the top
that was the narrow perspective that he was stuck in and that caused with to be hell
if he was introduced by suzuki roshi to the teaching of no gaming mind and got feel for it kind a sense of it a cent of it
the aroma of it and nobler wouldn't be quite so oppressive
this effort that we make we will be quite so you know grinding
grind us up

now we have to be careful because our inclination to understand things as rocks and hills and the way sisyphus did is very pervasive and insidious
so guess what
for you the teaching and more of mind and almost deliberately we make no gain in mind into a big rock okay
ever try to push that rock opera open
never want that we we think that's all this is a beautiful spiritual rock called know gaining mind
i get this one up over they have than i can really i can really groove along you know and i'll be very spiritual and enlightened

practice is not a prescription
in november back to so wherever you know such and such and he writes a prescription
there is not a prescription how to get the rock couple with a top of the hill
essentially it is not a prescription that may in fact be prescriptive aspects of buddhist practice
but it's not a prescription it's a description
it's a description of the room things are so food is not i have to do this and i have to do this this is my prescription it's a matter of seeing how things are and then from seeing how things are then that's what's liberating and from that liberation comes
we might say liberated intention or liberated activity
liberal means wide open means having arrived perspective not a crunched down narrow view
so emboldened says when a for folks who may not be familiar with him as a well-known japanese zen teacher actually is that he's kind of the the pool
ancestor in the lineage that suzuki roshi you know came from
in japan from the thirteenth century oh really
an extraordinary teacher
anyone who says various things in one of these things that he wrote and then he says in zazen beyond the boundaries of awakening
he was leap beyond the boundary of awakening leap around the boundary of awakening runes don't make it into a prescription
in a bad look know getting mind into one more rock to try to push up the hill

he could sell that the that there is a prescriptive aspect and and not prescriptive aspect and buddhist teaching but the prescriptive aspect is based on the non prescriptive aspect
rocks and hills are based on know rock know hill
activity is based on no activity
the wrong part of it is the foundation is the original is the fundamental aspect
so when just to a news suzuki roshi to try to help make this more career he said one of the fun things that he said as
you're perfect just as you are
and you could use a little improvement
the represents a great when you're perfect just as you are and you could use a little improvement to
there is that non-prescription and prescription were perfect just as and the not prescriptive element that's the know rock element and you could use a little improvement that's the prescription
you could use a little improvement is based on your perfect just as you want not inspired of your perfect just as you want it's based on that it comes from that
so the teaching of africa russia in the awakening of faith and the mahayana
the world if he talks about that is that each of us is endowed with original awakening
that's perfect just as you are each of us is endowed with original awakening
and the path of practice is based on original awakening it's not based on the fact that you're not awakened and you need to get something that you didn't have before it's based on the fact that original will earn are awakened
already the data is transmitted and it's a matter of common around coming back to that
we lost our way so we have to come back to it

then we also what i'm saying in terms of of traditional teachings for those of you familiar with them in terms of the persian empire meta but i'm trying to talk about his form is emptiness emptiness is form
there is no fun that is no rock and know hill the doesn't have no rock and mobile in it
and there's no to get to perfection there's no way to get to know rock and know hill except through rocks and hills
the point is not to move around of sisyphus the point is to understand it differently

from an emptiness or in the teaching of the sandow chi it's the merging of difference and unity it's the merging of oneness with multiplicity multiplicity is the thousand things it's all the rocks and all the hills in our life
and simultaneously the simultaneous reality with that multiplicity is what's called oneness humanity universality
in the sand or kinds as these two things like forward and backward steps
he can't stay if you're rocking you can't distinguish you know
so back with their books that part of the process way forward and backward steps

this teaching that the critical aspect of practice is what is our point of view how do i understand what is happening
the eight four noble path so one of that one a buddhist earliest teachings is the four noble truths
suffering cause of suffering end of suffering and marga the road to bad hand
and the road to bed and he he'll enumerate a different aspects
but first of those aspects his view
right view
samyang trusting in sanskrit
that's what i'm trying to talk about as rebels road few what is my on of you what is a ride view
and then from view comes the second aspect
the intention
and then from intention then comes action and speech and various other activities that were first thing is a what is red planet blue
and when i'm preparing what i'm trying to terrors is that buddhist practice or zen practice for zazen or zen lined essentially it's a view stretcher
it stretches out the viewpoint that you have
and it makes it very ride

so proud a another section of of his writings he says when you go out and a boat
the the middle of the ocean
we no rounders and site
and in view the four directions
you think that the ocean is circular
i'm it is nothing about circular
but actually the ocean is neither round and or square
it's features are infinite in variety
that is like a jewel
it is like a palace
last things i like this
when he says it's like a german like a palace what he's referring to is that when the fish swims ocean the fish doesn't think airbus is a search of a bottle of rather you know
between asia and the united states and south america and so on when the fish swims in the ocean of fish things this is a palace wow what a place
don't you think so
and when a dragon flies in the sky and a dragon looks down at the earth
the dragon things are one of those beautiful blue journals down there
well if you insist upon being more literal minded we could say an astronaut okay
they actually talk about that and they get up to the moon and they look back at the earth wow
new perspective much wider much more open perspective on the way things are

if you sit zazen you know you come to zen center six thousand four twenty or thirty minutes or see how long have
when our two hours or one day where two years or twenty years
at some point that said will probably occur to you i am in pain
susan it doesn't take too long
i am in pain the nice thing about zaza you were usually in pain the nice thing about thousand innocence that it's so clear so physically my beans are killing me to hear my back hurts like nothing you've ever known before
but the point of zazen is that after a while you are view gets stretched particular the the two-part pain and and i those are the parts that gets stretched out
if you sit long enough
and are open to don't close yourself down you can lock yourself into i am in pain
but if you sit long enough you see that actually pain is not pain it's not exactly pain and looks just like a
it's the looks just like pain and you can easily resume your understanding that it is only paid
three easy it's a very easy understanding to have that actually we have to allow you realize that you can't exactly so this is just pain
if you actually just sit there with sensation that we labor pain
after an hour there is no pink well
pay and no pain and in pain
so if it happens if you look at i
this i that is in pain after a while very hard to identify who the heck business i you know
in fact you know thought i had a really clear idea about it
it be not

a third example of views stretching is some usable i was
talking with them
i get most of my material from these other teachers and staff
this wasn't a man whom many of you know i'm sure male weitzman said one of sense on as teachers and
i was having a hard time and he said well how are you done and i said down well
not doing so good i feel pretty shaky
shooting enter mentor should just to give us a shaky meant i hadn't gotten the rock up over the hell okay
suki monday
what could you say
self doubt and i felt lousy okay that's another word for shaky
i felt badly about things mostly about myself
so then he said or shaky buddha
oh well a shaky buddha
he wasn't and he wasn't complimenting me i mean it wasn't saying all year this wonderful buddha and so on he was talking about the nature of reality
this is the not escape clause of buddhism you can be shaky but you have to be a shaky buddha
you can be angry about you have to be an angry buddha
don't forget buddha
don't forget emptiness in the midst of the activity don't forget resting in the midst of pushing the rock up the hill

this why perspective is considered
you might say this wide perspective is considered the essence of practice
and it's effects are
ah big
to change this perspective to change this perspective as out what i said to change this point of view very big effect
and another section and diamonds works he says
and there's some technical language in this but i think you may get a feel for it he says
when even for a moment
the brothers from in the through actions
the whole phenomenal world becomes the buddhist seal and the entire sky turns into enlightenment
when even for a moment will express the buddhist cl express the rudest zero in the terms that i'm talking about today rings when either for a moment you arrive in your perspective you open your point of view
yeah take out though ride and broad perspective on your life
you know the through actions are the actions of body speech and mind it ruins in the midst of body speech and live activity you see rest you see for nothing
it even for a mammals you can do that
then the have phenomenal robot cause ride
because the buddhist seal
and is an entire sky turns into alignment pretty flashy enough
how can look up at the sky turned into enlightenment

i'll go on just a little bit with this because he he really gets carried away because of this air buddha to target as has the original source
increase their dollar bless and remove and magnificence in the awakening of the way
he's just follow was a rare moment of having a arrived perspective
i better to target is remove their magnificence that will awakening of the way beautiful
service this change of perspective this turn
because it's a very big it's a verb the events of gap that's a very ride
you can put a bid to target as into that gap
a stretching a point of view
so the vimalakirti sutra you have been our kitties this little person who has an extraordinary rye point of view and he's sick and he's in this room is just ten feet by ten feet
and the the the
the content of the villa katie sutra is to a significant degree a debate between not a charity and manjushri
while a bit as follows disciples
but because it seemed like such as it was going to be such hot stephen in a people are so interested in it doesn't first thousand and body surface came to watch the debate and listen in
and they have fit into the room
which was i ten by ten
and they were not tiny body surfaces
a reference sites fence and surface now that each of them sat on a friend
and there was plenty of room they didn't have to say are
there plenty of room in there that i am a sutra that they were rather than system and then they ruined thirty centers because there's so much fun and i made a million body such as to join them you know in the reno check his room and listen in on the rest of the debate
when the weather's fine jump in
that's how big it is that i rob angle this moment is this moment of ripening our perspective

so it sounds pretty good pretty good stuff
so and usually after a by the end of a talk you know frequently i'll be thinking well okay now how do you do that in
that's pretty good but how do you do it have you get this wide angle and you may be wondering how do you do it

have you shift one's perspective had used to retch one's perspective on
rocks and hills

cut was the other extreme so my first suggestion is find find a better way
what is it that's in there
how do you approach it so that it doesn't mean it will become pushing a rock up a hill
and then go gave a doubt that the just push it away don't say well this is just push america has that ahead with it don't know and now have a cup of coffee him religion new york times the head with that there's nothing wrong with having a cup of coffee in new york times but as incense don't give up on it
seek that's what we seek as called really seeking mind the mind that seeks the way the mileage sinks the space between a rock and a hard place that seeks the space between and i do anything and
simply and only pushing a rock up a hill
now here's a hint about that which i think is so from my own experience i believe it so which is that it's mostly a matter of taking away and rather than adding on
but i mean is this is camps campfire came comes from some odd thing that i once read that much they make the distinction between the painting will you make the the object of our by putting on that is you put
oil on canvas to another way you add on
versus sculpture reaches the you create led by taking away like you have a big block of wood and wood chipper a rabbit and the form emerges the form of your artistic expression in marriages
so i'm so that this is mostly or at least initially are primarily a matter of taking away our misspoken ideas rather than adding new ones are

ah ah
ah a well-known seventeenth century zen master been a student to ask him
said to him i have been practicing assiduously for twenty years
but why i thought never cease arising
how do i extend these wild thoughts
barclay said
to think of extinguishing a wild thought he was a wild fat
and then recently as someone mentioned to me they said to me
ninety five percent of a that goes on in my head is junk
there wasn't my names and i was ninety five percent or ninety nine point nine percent
and i said oh that's a that's a wise thought
that's a thought of wisdom
in other words to training our awareness to understanding to turn our whereas toward how we see everything as a rock and the hill is not a rock and a hill
that awareness is something that's not that not those things that moment of awareness as a non-native ride understanding

and my second suggestion mammals to the same as reference to have launched back
has to do took an matzoh ball soup which is
you know when you smell chicken soup
when you smell especially if you like it a lot
you know that in chicken soup he said
have a simple next year and then you can go and find it you know you can go have some
so it isn't i don't know if we can say exactly how to get back because it we said zachary had a get there it's a little bit too much like a rock and a hill you know
but it's like it's a subtle thing like an aroma like chicken soup
so you can go around sniffing for and
and when you hit it you know then you know oh yeah thats yeah they aren't there it is
can follow that followed that cent
okay thank you