Sunday Lecture

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i vow to today's than to the to tie them to as words
the morning

an ancient buddha said the entire universe is the to human body
the entire universe is the gate of liberation
the entire universe is the i have viral china
the entire universe is the dharma body of the self
so those of us who have been living together here at green gold for the last three weeks have been immersing our bodies and minds and a three week intensive
and it just ended yesterday morning with
two hits by handlers wooden mallet

during this study period all of us were benefited by the teaching talent to bar abbess slender with cuts and our dharma teacher senior diamond teacher read manderson
someone once called them affectionately the minnesota twins and map
among the many things that they revealed to us during the practice period was how they met
i tied to believe but over thirty years ago have the minnesota state fair she was selling snow cones and he was delivering the ice

some things don't change
so just about every morning
one of them would deliver a class give us a class on the to core teachings of the buddha wisdom and compassion
and sometimes these two i
image deaths and great bird the two wings one wisdom one compassion which in order for us to be truly him and must beat together
so this is just what all of us are practicing here at gringotts farm and glider port is how to get off the ground sore and safely land
and yet each time with the hit of the malad the study period comes to an end
arising abiding and ceasing
all things
i like this
or so it seems

so what i want to talk about this morning as the practice issue that i was studying during this time
and i think of all the teaching stories about the buddha and there are many
the one that i was most closely intimate with during this time was the story of home leaving
i've often thought of the story of the buddha or any great religious leader teacher guide as a kind of diagram of or how to of leading a spiritual life a holy life
yeah by that i mean a life that's hall
a fully engaged
so the homeliness where it all begins
and i want to propose that if any human being
experiences themselves through these same elements of training
that they will fully engage with this life
and they will experience the multiplicity of insights that come from this engagement
it's just like baseball's into gloves
enquiry and response come up together
sometimes is a lob and sometimes it's a zinger
and speaking of sports
tacoma bridge right there bridge speaking of sports
i was at a restaurant with my friend grace and we were
talking and
i had the great fortune of being seated just next to a television set it was on which i i was raised by a television set so
it's very happy thing
hi mom
and what was on at this time were these two very young and powerful women
it was i think it was the australian open terrain
are amazing and they were pounding this ball back and forth to each other
ah you know and so i don't remember what grace and i talked about i mostly watched this this site and when i got home later i was thinking well how incredibly kind of them to offer each other this chance
to witness their extraordinary capabilities as trained athletes who else but another champion could show you the limits and the outreaches
magnificent you actually are like playing in front of a mirror
and then of course because i'm human too and i have these experiences of for mirror
i recognized in an instant the feeling the young woman had who missed a shot and through her tennis racket on the ground
what is it that happens there at the very outreaches of who we are you know that idea that we might have an arm just in half an inch longer and who is it to blame for this lack

so when this body and mind or any body and mind are fully engaged all of the component parts are completely visible both the sweet and the stinky
the entire universe is the i have viral china the entire universe is the dharma body of the self
and when i believe is important about all of us learning to play out at our edge is that it's the only way we'll really find out how big we truly are and how much we really care
had the fullest extension of that knowing of ourselves
is where the entire universe opens in and out has a free swinging gate of liberation
and anyway that's how them ancient buddhist talk about it
but even so ah are actual practice is very simple
and very common just like tennis and bicycles and freeway driving
we put our bodies in a particular situation and this case upright on a cushion called as awful
and then wholeheartedly we explore
the outreaches of our being
and we do this with this
nearly unnamed bubble element of our life called mind
and the mind of ours very much like the snow cones comes in a large variety of flavors
there's hearing and seeing and smelling and tasting touching
and our very favorite
i'm linda ruth called this flavor daytime television
i think it's useful for each of us to know and to be conscious of which of these particular channels is most clear and frequent for us and it's different for different people i happened to experience
life most vividly through seen
and my friend tier hears things i can't even imagine
she's an a big ear sometimes when we're together is quite funny as she's going to do here that nice juicy there
neither one of us knows what the other one's talking about
for my friend russa it's her nose and for my friend grace his reasoning

so i want to read you a passage from koreans and mastered junio and this is an essay a part of an essay called secrets of cultivating the mind
and it's it reads a little bit like twenty questions
in ancient times a king asked a buddhist sage what is buddhahood
the sage replied saying essence his buddhahood
king said do you see essence
the sage said i see the essence of enlightenment
the king said where his essence
and the sage essence is in function
the king what function is this that it is not now visible
this age it is now functioning it is just that you yourself do not see it
the king does it exist in me
ever hopeful
the sage whenever you act that is it when you are inactive it is again hard to see
the king
what what a when it is to be employed
how many places does it appear
the sage when it appears there must be eight places finally
yeah okay
the sage don't know the king please explain those eight places to me
the sage
in the womb it is called the body
in society it is called the person
in the eyes it is called c
in the ears it is called hearing
in the knows it distinguishes sense in the tongue it talks in the hands it grabs and holds
runs it manifests all over including everything countless worlds are collected in a single atom
those with inside know this is the buddha-nature the essence of enlightenment
on hearing this teaching the mind of the king was opened up to understanding

so the instructions that we give to a person
for exploring themselves in the style of play because in
are very likely instructions that you would give to the audience at the australian open
i was watching a very impressive
you sit still you don't rattle your program you muffle your coughs and sneezes
and you give your full undivided attention to the players on the centre court
withholding all applause and commentary until the final hit of the wooden mallet

so once the body and mind have settled themselves into the sanctuary of peaceful awareness
which is called samanta
it becomes possible for us to reconsider some of our long held opinions and notions about reality
this reassessment from the common practices of sharma top is called be possible or inside practice
first calming the mind
then discerning the real
you know it's hard to appreciate the scenery from a galloping horse

so it was with this two-step effort that i was making my explorations ah into this subject of home leaving
and i wanted to revisit and study my long held views and opinions about this very important aspect of the teaching
there's a part of the traditional story of shakyamuni buddha's home leaving that has always odd disturb me
maybe it disturbs you too
i could appreciate that he was troubled so am i
and that bind by he became a great and inspirational teacher
but i i couldn't put that outcome together with the image of him standing in the room where his wife and child were sleeping and turning his back and walking away
i didn't like that
and it seems to be that old problem of ends justifying the means
so after a lot of years of
understanding this story in a certain way
and being uncomfortable with it
you know a couple of things happened
the first thing that happened which actually was fairly recent was that it dawned on me that the young man who left home was not yet a buddha

ah this man was a beginner he was a learner and i think all of us who are not yet called buddha's do many things that neither we nor other people ah
can understand
and in fact when shocking muni became a buddha he returned home to copy all of us to as a teacher and a mentor to his family and his friends
and many of his disciples were a family members his a long time attendant ananda was his cousin and raw hula his son became a disciple
and his ah
aunt who had nursed him as a baby mob majority also a disciple and all of them teachers in their own right
so the second thing that happened was that i heard another version of this story that i like a lot better
and this version is equally ancient and credible with the more common telling of the home leaving
on this story yasir daraa the young wife
knows very well her husband's ah painful heart they've been friends since childhood
and when the time comes she encourages him to go
she she encourages him to find out if he can whatever it is that he so desperately needs to know
and well supported within her tribal culture unlike us today locked up in a single family units she had friends and family around
she wasn't alone in the house
what the cat
so in this story she becomes pregnant the night of his departure and gives birth many years later at the same moment as the same moment of his enlightenment
the entire universe is the dharma body of the south
so this kind of home leaving his ah
by your leave
it's a blessing and a gift from those who love you
most who know your heart and the pain that you're suffering and who are working together with you to find a cure
enquiry and response rising up together in the context of community family and environment
as what we call sanga
and we like to be together whether we like it or not
and we have to work together we do work together whether we see it or not
as philip whalen or defend his quite ill right now once said we're just a bunch of loners who can't stand to be alone
but the very life of this planet depends on us together finding our way
so maybe for you the trip into the jungle is a weekly session with the where the therapist or some long overdue conversations with your spouse here coworkers are your children
in home leaving doesn't have a particular form
as paemen children once said renunciation means renouncing that which doesn't work
so it's within a a bright circle of family friends and feeds are like that we all take our seats and begin this work of healing the bruising said bar tender hearts
and again whether it's fortunate or not we all have to tell each other what it is that we're feeling from way down in those dark crevices of are hidden pay
and it takes a lot of time and some very faithful attendance in order for all the big name players to take their turn at center court
all the last loves
and then as they begin to make their appearances one by one you may find that ah voicing emerges from out of your throat of long overdue exhalation of anguish ah
and grief
this is the unmistakable sign that a mother is giving birth to a child
in the cry of the young prince shockey mooning over twenty five hundred years ago is still quite audible even to this day
he reached up and cut off his jewelled hair with his sword handing
the reins of his beloved horse to is attendant
turning his back on his much loved city and all those he cared for uttering the lion's roar
i will not enter the city of couple of us to and all i hold dear until i have seen the other shore of birth and death
so unarmed an unknown he left the security of the familiar and entered into the forest of swords
the forest of words that we call the mind
and the story goes from there

so homely been as an element of practice has been a very crucial part of my own life as a student of put us teaching
and of course it was a critical element of my life before i heard of the buddhist teaching when i actually left home
for the first time
the home of my parents
i've been away for a while so i was kind of
if i'd written back home saying you know when i get back i'm going to move out and get my own apartment and get a job and
i was pretty excited my letters for exciting and they believed them
and so when i got back and i went to what had been my room the year before and my mother's sewing machine was sitting there and my brothers extra sweaters
i started to cry
by was mad
i don't belong here anymore do i and my mother i would a poor mom's i wish we could rewrite their scripts for them you know
they will say the wrong thing at the wrong time
so she said honey you don't have to leave you can stay here forever right wrong
no mom you're supposed to say you're right you do have to go it is time to leave
so that was my first home living
and then after coming to practice to residency in this community i use the notion of home leaving and many different ways over the years the first time when i was twenty nine i used it to i quit my job
i give up my apartment nice apartment in san francisco and to say goodbye to a number of very sweet friends as i made my solitary journey south to toss a horror
and then lo and behold within a few years a new home had emerged out of the steaming pots and steaming bas in the los padres national forest
and then i left that home and very shortly thereafter
yet another new home from a tiny little room off kitchen and old westbury long island where i didn't know a single soul for a thousand miles in any direction
except for one old lady
who didn't like me very much
and i don't blame her
and i'm really sorry nanci if you're listening
back to san francisco and to gringotts farm and to finally the subtle realization that the home that i was coming and going from was the one in my very own little heart
you know i'm just like dorothy
on our way back to campus a campus kansas or way back to kansas there is no place like home there's no place like home and home is not a place it's not it oz and it's not in kansas
right here
never apart from one right where one is and yet we continuously look for it outside of ourselves
so this method of rethinking and reworking and resettling our long held opinions and views is a lot like working with bread dough or pottery clay it's a work of the hands
in our usual way with our hands is to grab a hold
out of fear of loss or separation
this other kind of work is the work of release and of creation
flexing those muscles

so the hands of our minds are made up of stories
in fact just about everything
is a story
about everything
there was a teacher gregory bateson who came to zen center years ago i've i've mentioned this before because i like it so much
and he said they've made a computer that can think like a human
and when they tested the computer by typing in the question do you think like a human
the computer replied that reminds me of a story

when i was a child of my tenderest emotions
how worry entwined with
my religious upbringing and teachings from the bible and particularly about jesus this a sweet the lamb
that sweet man with a beard holding a little man you know and all the kids around
very sweet and i for some of you was a sweet stories in the torah or maybe stories fairy tales and myths about nature status or community
so when i heard this piece of music some years ago ah i was really moved by it and i asked someone why is that you know they said is called stabat mater
about mater and i said oh that's really nice of beautiful him so i went i bought it caught the c d and i took it home and i listened to it for a long time was kind of a regular
yeah the lyrics are in latin
so eventually i don't know why i opened the little story in the cd and read the translation
stabat mater means mother stands
and the mother in this music is mary and where she standing is that the foot of the cross while her son is hanging there
and this music evokes that feeling of the mother's heart
this story is hitting us and the very heart of what is meant by non grasping
non attachment
it's not about turning away from the pain
we're stopping the pain it's mother stands
with the suffering
turning away and touching are both wrong for it is like a mass of fire
just to depicted in literary form is relegating it to defilement
it's bright just at midnight it doesn't appear at dawn it acts as a guide for beings it's use removes all pains although it is not fabricated it is not without speech it is like facing a jewel mirror
form an image behold each other
you are not yet
it actually is you
stabat mater mother stands
so i threw the power of stories and poems and art music you know this link between ourselves and the crying of the world is made visible
like piano strings spinal wires
very strong
and they are ageless connections
they have no gender or ethnicity
they're not they don't belong to any denomination
and yet we're around the world they're given a name
we give them a name we give these connections that oftener a woman's name
mary madonna guanyin
have a lucky day swara
stabat mater
mother stands
father stands
and while you're standing the child leaves home
and we know that that home leaving is forever

so this knowing this this knowing of the standing mother
is itself the birth of the heart of compassion
and it's true
the opening of this heart that we are all connected to one another
to all things through all time
there's another i
i find very useful helpful story from the christian tradition that takes place just after the crucifixion
and at this is the story of the breaking open of the stone heart
they bury their grief in a tomb
and when the stone rolls away what is revealed his the light of the world
in this person coming out of the cave of grief is illuminated
and walks forward to greet the world
and this person comes from a generosity of spirit
that results when sorrow yes
i released

the one they called christ had become the standing mother
at home in his own heart with the arrival of all things birth and death
compassion and wisdom the two wings of the bird meeting has one
i was working on this talk yesterday my daughter kept sneaking into my room saying are you done yet are you done yet and i kept saying i wish i were no i'm not and she said finally law
last night when i was tucking her in she said well why are we gonna end it and i said am i don't know do have a good idea and she said yeah say the end love food