Shakyamuni's Enlightenment as a Guide to Practice

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Saturday Lecture

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i gay and meditation retreat
to dine stairs like quite below is a little bit better way is a group of about thirty five people
sitting in his ando
actually right neither just finished t
and so i get to play hooky so to speak and come up here and talk

for some reason why it occurred to me to talk about why that shakyamuni buddha's enlightenment
hey i think is westerners
our inclination is more to be buddha and to be buddhist
somehow that's the nature of our intention
and you know then
many of us we come to a dance center and
when they never were asked to become part of an organized activity
it's wonderfully ironic because mostly and students are quite independent minded
just like that one

should we have this wonderful tension between being the buddha that we know we are and
picking on a tradition and and being part of it now do this do that
and everything
by nature by design is prescribed the whole idea of sushi it is to give yourself to i totally prescribed life
and yet it has something to do with being buddha that you are
it's totally unique
has inherent wisdom
that is completely its own resource
and in and then we say
and relies upon nothing
so in some way shakyamuni started off
not quite with this tension over the another kind attention attention he started off was with and
even though fortuitous circumstances given tremendous material and social advantages
he could see that there were certain aspects of life
but whether there
in a foreboding manner
he could see that he was linked to get the suffering the sickness the same way everyone else was
do we took this tension
and set forth with that
and then
as the story goes and it is a story mean we shouldn't forget that
for several hundred years at least several hundred maybe as many as five or six this was an oral tradition people just sat around and told each other this story
and then after that it was written
but there wasn't paper so was written on pommies
i think well we should hi we should hold that in mind is that we should think of the as a story
it can be a guide and can be a like
but we should hold it lightly
which is very helpful actually because it keeps
challenging us to find our own resource to find our own buddha
so the story is that shakyamuni buddha said off renounced his life set off into the forest and visited a number of teachers
from what we can tell these teachers seem to have a different kind of speciality
at one seem to specialize in a certain approach to non dualistic thinking
another seem to specialize in certain concentrated powers had a concentrate the mind and how to develop that kind of concentration
so he visited these teachers and this story is the t
mastered what they had to teach and was invited to join that group as a teacher but decided that it for him that didn't fulfill his
his quest so he would move on to the next teacher
eventually he ended up with a group and end this group and probably through his a initiative and leadership practiced
with great vigor am a very aesthetic life fasting
the kinds of hardships
and then at some point in in this period of time in his life he
he discovered that he was wearing himself i'd
that that he was somehow his quest had turned against them
and was literally eating him up
one description of this story is is that he didn't realize it and it was clearly he was in the midst of it
an adolescent girl
it took pity on him
and gave him a thick creamy and bowl of gruel
a which he ate and then when he aided he realized how much better he felt an unlikely how supportive that was
for this body to pursue its quest
and that
sort of redressing his quest
and and seeing something about that dedication
and hardship aren't exactly the same thing
it started him in a new mode of thinking
an ad mode of thinking started to blossom
and he started to learn something new about meditation
it was a quality of meditation but had to do with
the quality of meditation it had to do with
not questing
but receiving
and as
and it as this started to work its way through and he sat down
an evening
he started to receive
he's starting to open up
and appreciate what life is in very simple manner
i can you sit machine and sometimes just in an ordinary period of meditation when required done we see something as simple as
the i breath follows the nba
but the i'd breath is boring because it began bread
i'm at the in breath is born because of the i'd brag
and this is part of a psycho
we see something about be sold by the bonds
we can find a way to have it somewhat balanced
it supports it's being
so he started to appreciate something about the cycle of life
in its many forms
plantlife human life the life of the brass
the life of insects and animals
and any and with this sort of simple directness he couldn't
truly appreciate this flow of life
but it comes into being
comes into this being
and flows through this being
in in a simple away and breath comes in and flows through
and as he absorbed this
his mind in his body quiet in died
saddled even more
and he started to absorb a little more
how this is
but in the midst of this simplicity
i may be because of this simplicity there is complexity

when we look at am
a wonderful picture of a national forest or a national park you know we see something
we we we we see
the majesty of nature the beauty of nature
something pristine something
but has vitality
in actually when you see am a group of people sitting in his ando
during a period of zazen and you feel the quietness in the room
the same majesty is there
the cm beauty
it it's like the intention the buddha shines through
and yet if we look closely at the national forest you know if we look at the trees well with a young trees
we we seem mature trees we see trees that have fallen over and are riding and in turning back in the soil we we see this order between the insects in the small animals in a large animals
let's see the order between the grasses and plants
and when we look closely
it's complex
when we look very closely it's mysteriously complex
and it's wonderful that now as modern physics learned to a closer and closer
i beat that we've
it has to come up with descriptions
for this complexity
mathematically we call it with theory of chaos
it isn't chaotic it's just very very complex
bewilderingly complex to our mind
an in quantum physics the see him and when we go as far as we can we see the same complexity
but extends beyond our ability to understand it
so is shakyamuni buddha's side
with this became
apparent to him
it is something in him
stop being agitated
and looked and felt
the this a relationship became apparent
the beauty
and the mysterious complexity
and he's and he realized that

there is attention in this
find our path in it
is a difficulty
and then as we search for our path we
we experienced dissatisfaction
as we search for the beauty and majesty and we find
the bewilderment the confusion because we can't grasp at all
because we can't make it work because we can't get what we want
because we can't make it all harmonious
and this pain
you know sometimes when we walked to nature movie when we see a lion devour and beer
hey a
the suffering doesn't seem right
and am
and this is our dilemma
the way things are causes a reaction in us
we search for our relationship to it
and we suffer in our search
so in his ears
with is clear i this is what he saw
and you know each one of us am
as this dilemma has this tension
and the tension between
when you start a spiritual path and
attention between doing retreats during sessions meditating
and going during in job
cleaning your room or your apartment and buying your groceries
attention between trying to talk over a fire sorry

there's always something

so when our hearts comes an idea about being buddha
two for it it's useful for us to think exactly what being booed is gonna do for it you know is it going to fix it will they're never be any more and fire trucks passing by during morning a saturday morning lecture
for strange chanting girl
i am
no it's not in
for this is part of what we need to do we need to reflect on this
and reflect on this in relationship to
what we want
what i want out of this what i want buddha to be
and there are we there again we see attention between
what we want to be what we want to burn it to be and what is
it we see attention between the majesty
and the beauty
the disturbing qualities of ourself
and as we practice in open em
these disturbing qualities are disturbing
we try to follow our breathing and we get distracted
all sorts of notions come up
i am and one of the amazing things when you do an extended sitting and sometimes you're odd
by the nature of things you can think about by the range
by the irrelevancy
by the relentlessness of your desires and and preoccupations
and diversions
but our guiding light
is a shakyamuni buddha's
in the middle of this

become back to
to the moment
and it's not much different from the rest of her life but of the rest of our life creates the limits for us
how much time should i put in there
taking care of the community and the sanga and how much time should i put into
personal interests
how much time should i put in to em
study how much time should i put in the city
wherever we look
we'll see
the there are many ways many demands which tension
the tension between
the tradition of then
and the uniqueness of myself
what's right for me
what kind of practice is most appropriate for me

so it in a way
shakyamuni buddha can be very good guide
he did this several aspects here and it can help with one is
the sense of not letting our quest the virus
and you know it kinda bars in a number of ways it kinda virus by us trying to escape from it
we can try to escape from this this this tension this dilemma with uneasiness
it can virus by
how we engage in it
the were desperate to be that we want something to happen we want to break through we want to
cut through our delusions are suffering
it kinda virus both ways
so something about not being divide
and that's for each one of his to locate well don't avoid it and don't become desperate about it
can you apply yourself
carefully but with some light touch
because the kind of touch the kind of engagement that we can muster up and we can carry through all of our life
that's what's gonna be powerful
if if you just have one short burst of dramatic dedication
and then flap back into whatever you know some recompense some reward or some absence of those values and then your life just gonna become
he's gonna feel like now you're a good person neither a bad person
so how can you embrace all of your life
how can you find a sense of practice good allow house
how would your life to blossom
so this is part of the teaching of shakyamuni buddha
and then
the cultivate that defined
some acknowledgement of the way life is
and here you know we
we espouse meditation
a cross legged sitting
and it's very helpful there is something about sitting still
almost primordial know it's kind of amazing you take a person
you put them in a dark room
and just the workings of their own being now
just what their mind and body produces draw the mean to
a primordial soup
and as they move around in it
a buddha come side
when less glamorous terms you know
each person sees who they are
all us and to do is stay with whom he why
just stay there
and of course our whole life is asking us this office
but we're very slippery
we have a lot invested in getting what we want and getting away from what we don't want
a pet part of the pain of says she is a
our options are limited
and we have a love hate relationship with it
part of this our own inherent wisdom that knows that we're buddha loves it
and another part of his hates it with restriction this limitation with this
being i'm able
to move to what we want and to move away from up we don't want is truly painful
and apart from that a body is painful
two weeks time we sit in a whether it's for seven days or whether we take a vow never to lie dine and sit for the rest of her life and whether it's for fifteen minutes now see him request is there the same dynamic is there
to let go
of wanting this and not wiping mad i'm trying to make buddha something to trying to make this buddhist something that you think it ought to be
are trying to cut through something that you'd like not to have their
this is more work this is more restlessness
what seating is a bite is
discovering the heart of just being at ease
and embracing why it is
and each one of his will go through
i trials or quest and learning
this arises out of our own conditioning
we will leach do our own thing
so you take a bunch of people and to put them all in the xander all doing the same thing but there were all doing their own thing
they're doing it their way
and by asking them to do the same thing they discover their way
and the same with each one of it in our lives
has an order to it
life is always asking something office
it's always asking us to respond appropriately to this moment
it's always asking us to investigate
and respond
so when we sit we am
simplify the situation
at one aspect of it another aspect of it is
we create in some ways in a repeatable situation
i don't have seen the movie groundhog but
what it is it's someone who repeats the same day all the time
until they learn the lesson of of life

the interesting thing is that
they paid attention
they experimented
but they paid attention
what was going on
so this is how our spiritual quest should be
yes we should experiment that's how we will find out the buddha will i but we should pay attention to the experiment
and when we repeat something
the danger of repetition if we think we know it
i know this i did it yesterday
i know how to said i'd done it many times i know this body i know i had to follow my breathing and
this can put us to sleep
because there's nothing to learn it go in an interesting
to the very fact that things are always changing is actually a support
as well as a dilemma
so it's supporters
to realize the truth
we don't know
but each time we sit each time we engage in every activity it's the first time
it's brand new experience we're brand new
it's it's we're born in that moment
self and everything else in that moment come together and created
and out of that creation
this existence happens
so when we said this is a very helpful attitude to have
and it's very helpful in the rest of our life
because it's so easy
when we provide ourselves to believe we know this moment i think we know what's gonna happen next
and at once we know what's gonna happen next we can have a fixed response to it
we can desperately wanted or we can desperately fear it

the moment we know is this moment
i life isn't anywhere else
this moment has never happened before and will never happen again
some meditation can teach us something about this
but so can the rest of our lives
except most of his are slow learners and we need them
we needed the the message repeated
in a similar fashion
several times
this is what the movie grind out was a bite he got the message repeated several times i don't think it was a little hazy and the movie i often been it seems like
the over one hundred
so some ways we get the message repeated
we get the basic laws of the way the world is and the way we are as a human being
and in some way to turn repeatable for that's the combination

so how do we resolve pretensions and the lens of life
in one way of thinking about it we don't
we meet them right in the moment
when we discover how to be in the moment
as completely as clearly as unprejudiced as we can
and another way we do in a very practical way we do because that is going to enrich our life for same way in enriched shakyamuni buddha's awareness of what is
would he brought that presence into his life the clarity that arose out of it
inspired generations of people twenty six hundred years later we're still thinking about it we're still looking to it as a resource
and in a practical way the more we opened to our life
without prejudice the more the see how the world is
the more we see how we are
and the better informed we are to take the next step
so even in in a in a simple practical way and
finding our own buddha
kenneth it can enrich your life
and eternity were in reverse
coming into our life will show is that we are buddha
the wisdom is there

thank you very much
in ten nick or the penetrate