Sesshin Lecture

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good morning

yesterday after telling that story about
the handlers maiden olive olivia
someone mentioned that the first time they heard that story it was ah maybe their first machine that she's so told the story
and when they heard that phrase plunging plunging your stumps
they realized that there are screaming inside i can't i can't
but i can't which shall
was something
that needed attention
so you may be feeling i can't i can't at this point or
so are some of you may be feeling that way and others feeling i can i think i can you know like a little engine that could ah
but it doesn't really matter how what we're thinking i can't or i can
what really matters is

practicing fully and wholeheartedly with whatever is coming up in your mind with whatever is arising it's not so important what the content is
as long as you continue
to practice

now we we really do think the content is really really important and
i don't want to
discourage anyone from looking at content if that's necessary but
ah do not think in the for cancer saying he says do not think good or bad
true or false getting caught in good or bad and true and false ah
will be a distraction
there's not much difference in in terms of the nature of the content the true or false ah are both are rising in the same way actually

so our former abbot tap norman fischer once once said and says she net he realized his first machine that there was
and there was not liking the pain
and those were not
those could be separated out
that wasn't just one thing our usual way of thinking is if i don't like something or if there's pain get away changed circumstances but there can be pain
and the concept or the thought or the
idea i don't like it and and there doesn't need to be any action taken
to get away from
i'm not talking about
the kind of pain that does need attention and maybe there's some there's confusion that arises around that to i'm not talking about not taking care of yourself when you're ill or need medicine or
or moving in thousand if ah there's something going on that you really feel is not beneficial but often the pain that we're experiencing
is laced with a restlessness and irritation and annoyance and wanting something to feel better
is not necessarily
what's going on is not harmful that harmful to your body and mind
it's just that we don't like it
so if you can
cheese those apart there's the sensation just the sensation the strong sensation
burning sensation
throbbing you know you can get into a studying what it is pulsing throbbing searing
it cannot pay more
and i don't like it and
and does the i don't like it equal get me out of here or i'm going to get out of here i'm outta here
is there another way to relate to what's happening in our life than i'm outta here
so this is for each one of us to discover ah
we often have strategies okay if i sit this way for this long and then do this than that be okay for this law and we get through by our strategies which is another way that we live our lives
is to have designs to strategize to
create favorable situation for us
to get by
but i feel i can session sheen at a certain point strategies will not work we can't arrange it
how to suit
there's a giving up of all strategies and of all designs
and just resting resting in the moment whatever it is that story about suzuki roshi about resting he didn't get tenure because doing all that rock work because he rested in each moment and
i feel that that resting is the recipe and the nature of mind resting in the truth of our life not so much
just relax being a relaxed person
although that's part of it
but resting in the nature of buying moment after moment
i wanted to read something that dogan says about the body
this emphasis on the body
dog said in the way
schism is the way attained by means of the mind or by means of the body
this is a question that someone or you might have i might have is that by the mind or the body or how do we think about this in the scholastic schools which is early western buddhism they say that body and mind are identical
though they say that the path is attained by way of the body yet they say it is because of this identity
therefore the fact that it is truly the attainment of the body is not made clear
now in our school soto's in both body and mind attained together
between them as long as you use your mind to judge and compare the buddhist teachings you will never attain it in ten thousand yards in a thousand lifetimes when you let go of your mind and abandoned knowledge and understanding that is when you attack
pain or realize you might say instead of attain
the cohens where someone sees form like peach blossoms and illuminates the mind or hears a sound like bamboo a pebble against bamboo
and awakens to the way are also the realization of the body
therefore if you completely abandoned the thoughts and views of the mind and simply sit the path will be found near at hand
thus the realization of the way is accomplished by means of the body
therefore it is my feeling and advice that you should concentrate and sitting alone
you might say that this is commentary on for kansas mg of this universal recommendations to sit just sit
recommending that we abandoned thoughts and views of the mind and simply sit
so i wanted to try and talk about the practice of abandoning thoughts and views are good and bad her true and false
because abandoning in this case is not are letting go of is not trying to get rid of or push out nor is it
taking hold and elaborating and getting very involved in that kind of thinking
so what is it that's neither getting totally involved or pushing away and
it's described as let it go but there's ah
there is attention to what's going on

the the way the mind
functions the natural way that the main functions is that there's only one object
ah consciousness has only one object at a time there's only one object per moment
and as
ah what we understand this phenomenon like this machine that just started up over here to my left and the bird over there to my right and a cough over there in the back
those those are
shop dad those are sounds and they are part of the first scanned scandal a scanner of form within form our
the organs of eye ear nose tongue body
sight sound smell taste and touch which we chant in the heart sutra those are all part of the form the sconto form and then there's an eleventh
which is called a vision up the rupa or subtle form which is material but as such a subtle level that we don't notice it except
over time and
the example is like wrinkles or lines smile lines you know you smile and smile and smile for fifty years thirty five forty years and and then you notice there's smile there's these lines in your face when did those lines appear
so it's it's very suddenly built up but it's in the it's inform form realm
ah so these sounds are phenomena and it could be smell of balls and tastebuds untouchables visible here bulls are all
call the field there in the field of our ah
and they're objects the objects of the oregon's eye ear nose tongue and body half sight sound smell taste touch they come together and when they
what's called contact provisionally called contact there is a consciousness that comes up i consciousness ear consciousness knows consciousness tongue consciousness body consciousness so it's three it's a kind of three part
the organ functions naturally
with this arch its object in the field and when they touch there's consciousness
and we then with another skanda
say bird you know that but that's not part of form it's not part of form that's in
some yeah together
that's the second
form perception that perception
where we go back in our file of other sounds we've ever heard and we go through and we say bird or blue jay
but the way the ear organ and works the ear oregon doesn't know the difference between blue jay or l or tractor or cough
it just or voice is just sound
it's the organ the faculty of hearing the organ and the sound come together and there's sound consciousness and even there it doesn't know blue jay tractor
but the other skanda other scandalous ah better not
whether scanned is associated with mind
no call it something
and that's a there's a concept of bird blue jay and then the some scars condo or the m form perceptions feelings perceptions impulses some skara that's the scanned of where it says i hate blue jays or why don't they stop cough
thing or
she's so boring or you know it has a lot to it's got a lot of commentary about something that's really kind of neutral you know blue jay but some scars skanda is the world that is not neutral it's got ah
due to our own past
ah and experiences and conditioning you know someone hears a blue jay and they say are remind me so much it does sahara i love that in someone else's squawk squawk why don't we get rid of those birds you know that that's worlds we live in our own worlds each person has their own past
resident future that is not a shared it is not it is unable to be truly known are shared with another although we can write poetry and paint and dance and talk and try to express to another our innermost reality
but the truth is
we alone are the one this is our world
so we try you know these worlds try to talk to world's ah
and we get an angry because they don't understand you know how important it is to have
oatmeal for breakfast or whatever you know it's just that whole world
and someone else hates it and also this is but the the taste of oatmeal the oatmeal
ah castel is actually neutral but in the other scanned as we have the emotional content that goes along with it
so when these there's phenomenon
in the world or or the world of phenomena but it is delivered to us through
consciousness which is concepts so
ah the mind when i say that the mine has have only one object per moment this object is a concept
we actually can't grasp its ungraspable to grasp bird sound in some way other than through concepts and it's like conception you know it's
it's birth it's birth rate there that conception like the m
the zygote you know is a and talking about the zygote as yoked together or unified it's the fertilized by bag the gametes help i'm remembering all this i'm female and male sex cells come together
ah and there's a psycho to fertilize their conception right there and this is what happens there's these conceptions over and over and over this is how the mind functions naturally and when we pay attention and turn the light in turn the light back to
like it says in the for kansas mg turn the light inward shine back the light aiko henschel
to look at the concept at the concepts
rather than looking out at phenomena or
of bird or voice her
these tastes intangibles to actually realize these are concepts they are delivered to us as concepts
to rest their to rest in the nature of mind that deals with concepts the concepts come up with phenomena always we wouldn't know or it's not that there isn't something that might be going on outside of what i'm talking about
but we don't know anything about it
we only know
ah in this conceptual way
now there's more about that but i want to just stay here for little bit ah
so while we're sitting let's say we have this
strong sensation body sensation
to allow
the attention to manage caressed his attention you know sometimes we think of mind as just one big giant sort of blob or there's body and mind but there is
in iv dharma there's
ah careful delineations of different ways that different parts of the mind you might say or one one part which is associated with all minds it's it's
meaning wholesome or unwholesome it doesn't matter is is a quality or a dharma called money car which is attention
so the attention if you bring the attention which means turning the light inward to
the awareness of the concept
because that is the way the mind works that's the way it functions naturally there is a resting and a calmness and a tranquility
if that practice
because that's really the way the mind is functioning so
so there's in a deep resting and letting go of involvements and adding and subtracting and good or bad or true or false there's just resting in the attention to what's arising the concept
and this is sometimes called show meta or tranquil abiding

so bodhi dharma are taught that
he said cease involvement in the external or cease external involvement and internally cease coughing or sighing in the mind
with the mind like a wall we enter the way
so the mind like a wall is this mind that it's not like a wall unfeeling and cold and cut off from everybody it's i think of it as this kind of beautiful wall that you'll come upon in some all village that's all mossy and
you know it's it's dry wall you know he could tell human beings fitted together and it just stands there with the rain and snow and the children climbing on it and it just receives it doesn't mind the rain and it doesn't mind the snow and it doesn't mind the squirrels and the children and it just
like that
so the mind like a wall that kind of feeling that's completely willing for whatever is going to come up to come up
with the mind like a wall we enter the way
so that the ammunition or the key is to cease
the external involvement which is the mind not turning the light inward by turning the light outward and
ah elaborating and adding to and
hoping and wishing and fearing and running and
hiding and
without even knowing that we're doing that i think to have hoping inferior arising and relating to them as concepts of mine there's really no problem
so i i also it's it's very easy to go too far and see what you're trying to get rid of emotions and new track she's teaching about
a dead way of living that's not true to my full expression of life
but i'm talking about where the attention is not not getting rid of but how we place our attention on whatever surprising and if we're not paying attention and we're doing the elaborate are ceaseless involving ourselves and storytelling
agreed a dilution sort of
operating freely like the rabbit i was talking about yesterday of quit to the rabbit haphazard posited leaping around there will be confusion bewilderment and panic and
it will be very hard it can be very hard
to find what resting in the moment is
and then internally in the teaching is
internally like go of coughing or sighing coughing or sighing is to me is a kind of complaining and pour me and i never
i always get the short end of the stick and like that that's the kind of coughing and sign and that's a kind of self indulgence also this way to foods who has no self indulgence is but it's no rabbit jumping around ah so we can indulge ourselves in lots of different ways
but a wall you know this garden wall it's not self indulgent it just
it just sits and
with the mind like a wall can enter the way
so i feel like this is maybe our suzuki or when he said i rest in every moment my feeling was as he's working in the garden
this is this may be completely my
project a shit right this is how i understand it he's not thinking gee this is going to be a really good zen garden it's going to be better than those ones that are really famous in japan and people will come from miles around to see the first zen garden in america and i was the editor of the tessa her said
i just have a feeling he wasn't thinking that way i may be wrong but while he's working in the garden i think it's it's there's no gap between you know sensation of rock on skin and sunlight and heat or moving and sweat and it's just wrong
ah turning the light in managed sugar the attention is on the way the mind sees or
relates to concepts it the fish diana or consciousness relates to concepts with just awareness it's just aware of concepts it actually the full functioning of consciousness doesn't relate to concepts
with more concepts
it's just fully aware
it's aware of the concepts and awareness is not the same as making more concepts up about that which you are aware of and there's a resting there because that is how the mine actually functions so if we can be in alignment with the way our mind actually functions
there is
resting in the mine

so we have these days in front of us to practice this way to practice
ah studying our self this way
hour after hour but not just during sitting but during washing dishes time and serving and are or yogi practice
you know this one time i was doing or yogi practicing karaoke and as though i was doing it i was thinking
i love teaching or yogi
i really want to teach more or your or aoki and really have disciples who really love or aoki as well and ah i will put emphasis on this data and then i dropped my my spirit water little ball into the spirit water bucket
i was horrified as the server was horrified and then i had to fish it out
and i wasn't the first one in the row i wasn't sitting in this seat i was in another see so there it was sort of in the bucket in ah
but that was one of the most awakening moments where was i know i was where was i i was
involving myself in externals you know and i was no you the hands on the the little the third bowl and turning it and by i was completely somewhere else self indulging you know in
and it's right there that we have a chance to wake up you know this is that was it was wonderful you know so great it was a great
it was great for me i don't know what it was for the survey
she was here
we talked about it afterwards a little bit but it was too actually
to be brought up brought back you know
and see how far we can how far i can get lost you know
it was wonderful and oreo key practices that's to me what it's about so sometimes i feel that
the there is the beginning of oreo key in the end of or aoki but i feel there's certain for me the beginning of the oreo cookies when we bring the balls and set them in front of us and the last thing we do is after the last chant and we pick up the bulls and set them back
but somehow i feel
what happens often is were out the door you know sitting the bulls back there putting him back in our place we don't remember that you know or think about it or or do we anyway this is something i i want to one bring our attention to the last to me the last the nd of oreo a setting the bulls behind us
us or to the side are
and can we be there completely for that last
form that last former saying the balls down and if so
how do they hit
the would you know what do they make a sound i that the oreo pupils are buddhist head that the balls themselves as symbolic of buddha's head if you were actually taking care of the head of the buddha it's kind of a graphic thought but anyway how would you set it down you know and how would you put
it before you so before we open the bulls there's the practice of or a okay and after we put the balls maybe it's like that that hammer
striking emptiness in its exquisite peel we hear everywhere
there's are we they are we right with our balls then sometimes i feel awkward if we're hungry especially in are celebrating already we just want to open them and get food ah so can we stay with and rest in each moment in the end it's
but i am talking about concepts actually if the what we think of as
body and all these taste and sights sounds smells tastes untouchables
as i said we only understand them through concepts or through consciousness eye ear nose tongue body and mind consciousness so what we're dealing with we we think of these are balls out there in the world but our experience of bowls
can only be through consciousness the feeling on our hand is a concept

we believe that it's a body out there in the world or
and whether there is a body somehow some way we don't we can't really get at we can't get at it we can't grasp it how the body isn't
how the body is in actuality is ungraspable although i have no a note that says always and grasp always available always ungraspable
it's a note from a class from rand
i always available and forever ungraspable are always ungraspable we can't get hold of it in the way we kid ourselves that we can
so our own body as well not just or aoki balls and if you if you do
an analyst station in terms of interdependency with your own body or with the buddha bowls you see there are no balls their meaning the balls are made up of non bowl elements our body is made up of non body elements
and you know thanks to take our hands book p m heart of understanding where he talks about the heart sutra i threw his very clear description i finally felt i had an intellectual grasp of of emptiness or what injured what we're talking
em out when we see interdependent i finally felt i intellectually could i had a conception finally before that it was just
it was overwhelming to hear about emptiness but to have a conception was at least
something to study that i could study finally so the oreo couples just briefly or the clause let's say are made of threads that are cotton and cotton dependent on these cotton fields that dependent on water and earth and sky and cotton pickers and
ah weavers who made the cloth and all those things are in that cotton cloth and take any one away and there are no or yogi clause
and so we look at we see these are or yoga class but there's nothing in the orioles because that is an oreo kick claw it's all made up of non or yoga cloth elements
but for so at and those elements include the entire world in the sun the moon the stars the entire earth and all the ancestors back to the first
people on earth the first zygote you know that made those cotton weaver people are in the planters and it's all there in the oreo he class
so psych or how do you get em made then you have to how do you even talk about it you say
you know please cut the bolt of cosmos
well because so for short just for short we call them or york cause we call it cotton we call it
bowls but actually a secret is it's the entire universe is there the entire universe is there which is you know partly why we raise them up in the air bow and it in a noble posture because we are able to set out buddhists balls and receive food
in practice the way
ah and this is the mystery of our life that we are no different than the entire universe and we are own
unique or aoki cloth we are our own unique being with a name you know someone calls our name we say hi you know
but that's just shorthand really
so so in our practice of oreo yogi to rest so if there or aoki balls out there somewhere in the universe and we don't know about them we only know what we know through our consciousness through are these
ah eye ear nose tongue body and mind consciousness to the is that is our ah
that's the human realm
so there's a co on now
it's a long column at the end of it is the teachers on their deathbed and and he's trying to get his students to understand in they're saying things that he feels are just guesses how miserable you know they're not understanding and he's about to die so he says you should experientially understand what my teacher said
which is before the eyes there are no things the meaning is before the eyes
there are no things before the eyes it's beyond the reach of eyes and ears
so there is meaning all over the place concepts there is mental representation and we each have our
our own meaning our own world we each are the world honored one
but that is that which is before our eyes is beyond the reach of eyes and ears
it's beyond that's outside of our reach its ungraspable but we can be aware of how we operate aware of the functioning of mind aware of
resting in the nature of mind

and and this tranquil abiding
tranquility serenity com calmness on
without the confusion of this involving in externals or coughing and sighing internally just coursing along moment after moment with whatever is which what a ten thousand things come forward to us
uniquely uniquely
and we can study the way we can enter and study the way and
there is ah
top or com body is not the end of the story but it is highly recommended as

a necessary ingredient for insight into interdependence it's very hard to understand our emptiness or interdependence with a confused body and mind so we have these practices that have been passed down through the ages
through all the buddhas and ancestors buddhists and ancestors of old whereas we we in turn will be buddhists and ancestors
so are gratefulness is unending

so this is our mystery that we are both the entire cosmos universe and we are unique breeze of reality is from another column yuneec breeze of reality and these two are not separate
so as we sit working with our own unique experience our own we know what we can't trade it in for another for another model you know
the handling maiden was a know she was abandoned she was abused she was
ah treated poorly she was lied to you know and this happens to us all these things
and we can't trade it in for another model
we we really can just rest there and plunge and with whoever we are
plunging in in this case beans ah
turn the light back plunging there with whatever is arising bring your attention
to the mind that thinks about bird a mind that thinks about this pain in my knees there's a mind this is a sensation but it's it's feeling consciousness
or touchable i should say feeling just to distinguish between the skanda of feeling it's touchable consciousness of touching
and this is a concept

so think back to the mind that
think back turn the light back and pay attention to
to whatever is coming up but not as an external or as an internal but as it's like a mystery
and rest there

thank you very much
me our intention