Even if talking of scholar or grasp, Zen hinges at the query. Zen perform doesn't unavoidably specialise in the solutions, yet on discovering an area during which we may well maintain uncertainty and stay current and upright in the course of investigations. Zen Questions starts off via exploring "The international of Zazen,"--the foundational perform of the Zen school--presenting it as an perspective of sustained inquiry that gives us an entryway into precise repose and pleasure. From there, Leighton attracts deeply on his personal adventure as a Zen student and instructor to ask us into the creativity of Zen knowledge and perform. He explores the poetic brain of Dogen with the poetry of Rumi, Mary Oliver, Gary Snyder, or even "the American Dharma Bard" Bob Dylan. what is extra, Leighton uncovers wonderful resonances among the writings of America's Founding Fathers--including Thomas Jefferson and Ben Franklin--and the freeing beliefs on the middle of Zen.
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Extra info for Zen Questions: Zazen, Dogen, and the Spirit of Creative Inquiry
There has been no such debate, at the very least till destiny generations in their successors, even if Dahui did critically critique silent illumination perform as being quietistic and harmful to Zen. Dahui in actual fact used to be now not criticizing Hongzhi himself yet fairly a few of his fans, and probably Hongzhi’s Dharma brother Changlu Qingliao (1089–1151; Jpn. : Chōryo Seiryō), from whom Dōgen’s lineage descends. 22 Dahui’s feedback of silent illumination was once partially legitimate, in keeping with the valid probability of practitioners false impression this procedure as quietistic or passive. Dahui’s critique used to be echoed centuries later via eastern Rinzai critics of simply sitting, corresponding to Hakuin within the eighteenth century. simply sitting can certainly occasionally degenerate into boring attachment to internal bliss states, without responsiveness to the agony of the encompassing international. Hongzhi clarifies that this isn't the purpose of his perform, for instance whilst he says, “In ask yourself go back to the adventure, avail your self of the trail and stroll forward. . . . With the hundred grass guidance within the busy industry graciously percentage your self. ”23 The meditation endorsed via either Hongzhi and Dōgen is firmly rooted within the bodhisattva course and its liberative objective of aiding and awakening beings. Mere idle indulgence in peacefulness and bliss isn't the aspect. the opposite point of Dahui’s feedback on the topic of his personal advocacy of meditation targeting koans as meditation items, explicitly aimed toward producing flashy commencing reviews. Such studies may well ensue in precisely sitting perform to boot, yet mostly were much less valued within the Sōtō culture. the aim of Buddhist perform is common awakening, no longer dramatic reports of beginning from now on than passive states of serenity. yet opposite to a different inaccurate stereotype, use of koans has been frequent in Sōtō instructing in addition to Rinzai. Hongzhi himself created collections of koans together with his reviews, certainly one of which was once the foundation for the real anthology e-book of Serenity (Jpn. : Shōyōroku). Dōgen additionally created koan collections, and (ironically, contemplating his attractiveness as champion of simply sitting meditation) way more of his voluminous writing, together with many of the essays of his masterwork Shōbōgenzō, is dedicated to remark on koans than to dialogue of meditation. Dōgen was once truly instrumental in introducing the koan literature to Japan, and his writings exhibit a very striking mastery of the depths and breadth of the variety of that literature in China. Steven Heine’s smooth paintings Dōgen and the Kōan culture in actual fact demonstrates how Dōgen truly constructed koan perform in new expansive modes that differed from Dahui’s centred process. 24 even though Hongzhi and Dōgen, and lots of the conventional Sōtō culture, didn't increase a proper koan meditation curriculum as did Dahui, Hakuin, and masses of the Rinzai culture, the koan tales have remained a renowned context for Sōtō educating. Conversely, simply sitting has frequently been a part of Rinzai perform, such that a few Sōtō priests within the 19th and early 20th centuries went to Rinzai masters for education in exactly sitting.