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All roads lead to rome so why so different?


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#33 C T

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 02:02 AM

Along comes Mazu, another Zen guy, who says, "The Way does not require cultivation --- just don't pollute it. What is pollution? As long as you have fluctuating mind fabricating artificialities and contrivances, all of this is pollution. If you want to understand the Way directly, your everyday, natural mind is the Way. What i mean by everyday, natural mind is the mind without artificiality, without subjective judgements, without grasping or rejection."

Edited by CowTao, 25 May 2011 - 02:02 AM.

Om svabhava shuddha sarva dharma svabhava shuddho 'ham!
Om shunyata jnana vajra svabhava atmako 'ham! 
Om ah hum hra phat!
Om muni muni mahamuni Shakyamuniye svaha! 
  
Appearances are mind, mind is emptiness, emptiness is spontaneous presence, spontaneous presence is self-liberation.
(9th Karmapa)
 

The objects perceived by sentient beings 

are like the appearance of illusions;

Sentient beings themselves are in the nature of illusion

they all arise through dependent origination. - Nagarjuna


#34 Marblehead

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 03:05 AM

There are a lot of end goals for practices and a lot of practices, I think we need to look for masters, schools and systems that have accomplished what we seek to achieve and learn from them, to me that makes the most sense.


Total agreement with that.

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#35 rainbowvein

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 05:43 AM

Along comes Mazu, another Zen guy, who says, [i]"The Way does not require cultivation --- just don't pollute it...."

[Takes a deep breath in agreement.] :D

#36 Birch

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 05:50 AM

Along comes Mazu, another Zen guy, who says, "The Way does not require cultivation --- just don't pollute it. What is pollution? As long as you have fluctuating mind fabricating artificialities and contrivances, all of this is pollution. If you want to understand the Way directly, your everyday, natural mind is the Way. What i mean by everyday, natural mind is the mind without artificiality, without subjective judgements, without grasping or rejection."


I guess you just answered your own "how" question Mr Cow :-)

Still, IME, until you've caught yourself doing any of these things (and I argue there's a very distinct movement/contraction that goes with to start it off until I catch it) it might not be obvious. I like to visualize it as my various brains (or brain areas) kicking in. There's one really stupid one in there somewhere. :) I'm not sure what to do about its development...
"Chi is free!"- "Don't give your chi to your practice" Both unknown, if you know where these come from, let me know!

#37 steve

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 02:52 PM

As Fo-yan said, "If you seek, how is that different from pursuing sound and form? And if you do not seek, how are you different from earth, wood and stone? You must learn to seek without seeking."

That leaves us with the question, "How?" :) :blink:

Awareness - to be aware of everything that is going on in you and around you.
You do not have to do anything. You do not have to seek anything.
And yet you are open to everything.
Steve

When I look inside and see that I am nothing, that is wisdom.
When I look outside and see that I am everything,that is love.
And between these two, my life turns.
- Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

#38 C T

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 03:18 PM

d d pp

Edited by CowTao, 25 May 2011 - 04:06 PM.

Om svabhava shuddha sarva dharma svabhava shuddho 'ham!
Om shunyata jnana vajra svabhava atmako 'ham! 
Om ah hum hra phat!
Om muni muni mahamuni Shakyamuniye svaha! 
  
Appearances are mind, mind is emptiness, emptiness is spontaneous presence, spontaneous presence is self-liberation.
(9th Karmapa)
 

The objects perceived by sentient beings 

are like the appearance of illusions;

Sentient beings themselves are in the nature of illusion

they all arise through dependent origination. - Nagarjuna


#39 C T

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 03:19 PM

Awareness - to be aware of everything that is going on in you and around you.
You do not have to do anything. You do not have to seek anything.
And yet you are open to everything.

When you do Taiji, assuming you are pretty good at it, you forget yourself, yes? There is no doing by you, the form does itself, thru you. Of course, someone looking at you will go, "Hey, there's Steve, see how awesome he moves!" So it appears that there is this guy called Steve doing this beautifully awesome set of movements, but you, you yourself, cannot know where the movement takes you. When you act consciously to observe what you are doing, what happens? Odds are you will fumble and stumble, or overdo something. This is seeking.

Giving up and giving in to the form, complete and utter surrender to the dynamic flow, without expectation, without fear or self-consciousness, losing the 'self' in the process, this is the pinnacle, the ultimate path of 'non-seeking'. The seeker drops away, yet 'you' are still here!

There is no 'self' present to open to anything. Everything is already open... but 'you' and 'I' can never see this. Only when we get so good at forgetting this conscious self, to experience total open-ness without ideating the experiencer, that all is done, and yet, in reality, there is no 'one' to do anything - all is done. We simply allow it... or not.

Edited by CowTao, 25 May 2011 - 03:33 PM.

Om svabhava shuddha sarva dharma svabhava shuddho 'ham!
Om shunyata jnana vajra svabhava atmako 'ham! 
Om ah hum hra phat!
Om muni muni mahamuni Shakyamuniye svaha! 
  
Appearances are mind, mind is emptiness, emptiness is spontaneous presence, spontaneous presence is self-liberation.
(9th Karmapa)
 

The objects perceived by sentient beings 

are like the appearance of illusions;

Sentient beings themselves are in the nature of illusion

they all arise through dependent origination. - Nagarjuna


#40 steve

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 04:46 PM

When you do Taiji, assuming you are pretty good at it, you forget yourself, yes? There is no doing by you, the form does itself, thru you. Of course, someone looking at you will go, "Hey, there's Steve, see how awesome he moves!" So it appears that there is this guy called Steve doing this beautifully awesome set of movements, but you, you yourself, cannot know where the movement takes you. When you act consciously to observe what you are doing, what happens? Odds are you will fumble and stumble, or overdo something. This is seeking.

Giving up and giving in to the form, complete and utter surrender to the dynamic flow, without expectation, without fear or self-consciousness, losing the 'self' in the process, this is the pinnacle, the ultimate path of 'non-seeking'. The seeker drops away, yet 'you' are still here!

There is no 'self' present to open to anything. Everything is already open... but 'you' and 'I' can never see this. Only when we get so good at forgetting this conscious self, to experience total open-ness without ideating the experiencer, that all is done, and yet, in reality, there is no 'one' to do anything - all is done. We simply allow it... or not.

How would we ever know if "you" or "I" were no longer present as witness?
Who would be there to know?
I respect the direction your heading and I've spent many hours with Vedantic inquiry.

I think that as long as we are alive we are aware. Or let me say, where there is life there is awareness. There are senses, there is thought, there is presence or consciousness, or whatever you want to call it. I certainly agree that the "I" behind it all is illusory. It's just another one of the thoughts that stakes a claim as the thinker and conspires with the senses and process of thought to create the illusion of a "me."

Nevertheless, absent the "me" there remains thought and sight and smell and touch and so on and so there is awareness.
Allowing "ourselves" to disappear into that awareness is no different than the process you are describing of allowing ourselves to disappear into Taiji or anything else. And disappearing into awareness encompasses all possible experience - movement, non-movement, thought, non-thought, sight, sound, and so on. In fact, this is an exercise I've used with my Taiji class from time to time. Having everyone simply stand and be and talk them through a guided meditation of surrendering to awareness. I find it to be the easiest way to disappear.

So I sort of think we're saying the same thing.
Awareness does not have to be the action of anyone but it remains nonetheless, until we die.
Steve

When I look inside and see that I am nothing, that is wisdom.
When I look outside and see that I am everything,that is love.
And between these two, my life turns.
- Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

#41 C T

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Posted 25 May 2011 - 10:19 PM

How would we ever know if "you" or "I" were no longer present as witness?
Who would be there to know?
I respect the direction your heading and I've spent many hours with Vedantic inquiry.

I think that as long as we are alive we are aware. Or let me say, where there is life there is awareness. There are senses, there is thought, there is presence or consciousness, or whatever you want to call it. I certainly agree that the "I" behind it all is illusory. It's just another one of the thoughts that stakes a claim as the thinker and conspires with the senses and process of thought to create the illusion of a "me."

Nevertheless, absent the "me" there remains thought and sight and smell and touch and so on and so there is awareness.
Allowing "ourselves" to disappear into that awareness is no different than the process you are describing of allowing ourselves to disappear into Taiji or anything else. And disappearing into awareness encompasses all possible experience - movement, non-movement, thought, non-thought, sight, sound, and so on. In fact, this is an exercise I've used with my Taiji class from time to time. Having everyone simply stand and be and talk them through a guided meditation of surrendering to awareness. I find it to be the easiest way to disappear.

So I sort of think we're saying the same thing.
Awareness does not have to be the action of anyone but it remains nonetheless, until we die.

Yes, you could say we are sort of saying the same thing.

Although i sense that there are many people who are often caught unawares when it comes to stuff, even everyday stuff...

Om svabhava shuddha sarva dharma svabhava shuddho 'ham!
Om shunyata jnana vajra svabhava atmako 'ham! 
Om ah hum hra phat!
Om muni muni mahamuni Shakyamuniye svaha! 
  
Appearances are mind, mind is emptiness, emptiness is spontaneous presence, spontaneous presence is self-liberation.
(9th Karmapa)
 

The objects perceived by sentient beings 

are like the appearance of illusions;

Sentient beings themselves are in the nature of illusion

they all arise through dependent origination. - Nagarjuna


#42 Golden Path

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 03:32 AM

I really dont want this thread to become a fight or anything like that i am hoping for some understanding.

Basicaly in the past here i have come across people telling me i am doing stuff wrong and also that other people are doing stuff wrong. or that they have a different theory and that theres is correct. One example i can recall is that someone said that john chang does not have a dantien but an upper and lower field, when someone else said he had a dantien. or something like that i cant really remeber. But anyways why not try and instead of telling people there way is wrong guide them and say you can do that or this. Only tell them it is wrong if they are going to cause harm to themselves. Cause really who is to say that one way is correct or is not correct.

I knew a guy up at job corps who said i am not here to judge only to observe.

thanks

Hi mewtwo and all other discussants.
This question is very important, indeed there are lot of different methods, practices and schools, and finding that - why it is very difficult, and to understand why all this is necessary where truth and where the profanity is even harder...

Really, there are two main ways: an onward perfection and a reverse perfection.

The onward perfection includes any type of qigong. Methods of Qigong great number, some of them may bring health benefits, some ability to open, some can do more harm (!), very much depends from using mechanisms, and the system used for their development (this is another big topic). IMA also belongs to qigong (ie Taijiquan ).

The reverse perfection -it's only Taoist alchemy (neydan) (or equivalent methods in other traditions). The way of alchemy increases the primordial jing, qi and shen of the human body, as opposed to qigong, which can only follow the law of nature, whereby the human body always follows the order of creation and destruction (death).
Any qigong is just an accessory method in the preparatory phase of Taoist alchemy and any kind of qigong can’t go beyond the preparatory stage of the elixir way.

A true man Zhang Sanfeng(張三丰) said:
"Onward perfection makes profanes, reverse perfection makes Immortals, just between them and the change occurs."

You can read about this in this article:
http://all-dao.com/d...ng-alchemy.html

The article presented by WuLiuPai school, about the difference between qigong and taoist alchemy (From the book of the Teacher of Single Yang )

#43 Pietro

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 06:56 AM

I really dont want this thread to become a fight or anything like that i am hoping for some understanding.

Basicaly in the past here i have come across people telling me i am doing stuff wrong and also that other people are doing stuff wrong. or that they have a different theory and that theres is correct. One example i can recall is that someone said that john chang does not have a dantien but an upper and lower field, when someone else said he had a dantien. or something like that i cant really remeber. But anyways why not try and instead of telling people there way is wrong guide them and say you can do that or this. Only tell them it is wrong if they are going to cause harm to themselves. Cause really who is to say that one way is correct or is not correct.

I knew a guy up at job corps who said i am not here to judge only to observe.

thanks




I don't think that all roads leads to Rome.

And on this I am in open disagreement not just with most people in this forum but also with many of my teachers, Bruce included.

first of all not all tradition have the same concept of salvation. A christian saint, a zen awakened, a taoist immortal are not the same thing.

Now you could say that this is because they are not arrived, but this is a logical fallacy. If you say that the zen enlightened after reaching enlightenment needs to continue you are essentially saying that "zen" does not lead to Rome. But that zen+christianity is needed. But some of the premises in Christianity are simply wrong, false, not accepted in Buddhism. SO now the poor guy needs to develop his own version of Christianity. Something which in different times would have led him to be burned at the stake.


So this is my first claim:
not all tradition lead to the same place, and taking one tradition as a continuation after another is not an acceptable interpretation of the phrase "all roads".

Also some traditions are incomplete. Like some martial arts school. They know what they know, the might have lost some. Still what they teach is valid. SO a meditation school might be able to teach you how to reach a sense of fulfillment. Or feeling one with nature. Or releasing past trauma. Expecting each meditation school to be able to teach all, is just an expectations begging to go unfulfilled.

So some meditation school will teach some things that others will not.

Then we have the issue of side track. While you have a school, that is teaching something that is valid. There are also many wring turns. Things that will make you lose a lot of time. Or just make put you in danger. You can lose your life, health, friends, mental health, and so on. Or just make you addicted to the wrong thing.

And this also applies at the school level. Not only some schools teach different things, but they also can be more or less fast, and more or less safe. Usually there is a compromise that needs to be find between safety and speed. Schools that are faster are usually less safe. And schools that are safer might need more time. Hopefully a school that is both unsafe and slow will go extinct, while a school that is both fast and safe will achieve so much that the others would get extinguished. Evolution at the level of meditative traditions.

So we have different schools. With different aims. With different arrival points. With different speed and different level of safety.

So much for all roads leading to Rome.

I think a more serious point of view would be to look historically where did the idea that all traditions were equivalent came from. In the middle ages no one thought so. And if all roads lead to Rome, why would "the Christ" needed to come and "complete the law", if the law was already leading to a road that was leading to Rome.

I have been looking back and trying to find out where this idea came from, but could not go very far. Gandhi was a great proponent of it. He said he was a Muslim and an Indu and a Christian. I kind of remember that I could go back to William James, but that's about it.

Can someone point out to previous thinkers who suggested it?

Btw, I am going to Rome this week end!

And, Marblehead, the fact of ROme being such a hub, means that you have roads going radially in all directions. So you will hardly find indications for other places, but indications for one of those roads. Like

AURELIA
---------->

"when you are silent they assume you don't have the reply to them

they will never undrestand that you are trying to respect them";

"Spiritual work is no guess work"; "A little knowledge is a dangerous thing";
"no human investigation can be called real science if it can not be demonstrated mathematically"—Leonardo da Vinci

""Those who refuse to learn math are doomed to talk nonsense." — John McCarthy

"Change alone is unchanging"— Heraclitus
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#44 Golden Path

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 07:32 AM

first of all not all tradition have the same concept of salvation. A christian saint, a zen awakened, a taoist immortal are not the same thing.

Earlier, in ancient time, all tradition had the same goal - achieving Immortal levels. So, a Buddha in Buddhism and an Immortal in Taoism - the same, different only words.

Also some traditions are incomplete. Like some martial arts school. They know what they know, the might have lost some. Still what they teach is valid. SO a meditation school might be able to teach you how to reach a sense of fulfillment. Or feeling one with nature. Or releasing past trauma. Expecting each meditation school to be able to teach all, is just an expectations begging to go unfulfilled.
So some meditation school will teach some things that others will not.

Yes, over time, all traditions went into decline and a lot of things had lost. And was lost the most important method - improving in the Tao (the methods Ming).
In Taoism from the neydan remained qigong, Buddhism remained pointless sitting meditation, a yoga- assan in every fitness center ...
Also remain rituals and philosophy, do not help in a perfection in the Tao.

#45 Pietro

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 10:05 AM

Earlier, in ancient time, all tradition had the same goal - achieving Immortal levels. So, a Buddha in Buddhism and an Immortal in Taoism - the same, different only words.



oh, really, I see
and your sources are...

"when you are silent they assume you don't have the reply to them

they will never undrestand that you are trying to respect them";

"Spiritual work is no guess work"; "A little knowledge is a dangerous thing";
"no human investigation can be called real science if it can not be demonstrated mathematically"—Leonardo da Vinci

""Those who refuse to learn math are doomed to talk nonsense." — John McCarthy

"Change alone is unchanging"— Heraclitus
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#46 Otis

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 10:17 AM

When you do Taiji, assuming you are pretty good at it, you forget yourself, yes? There is no doing by you, the form does itself, thru you. Of course, someone looking at you will go, "Hey, there's Steve, see how awesome he moves!" So it appears that there is this guy called Steve doing this beautifully awesome set of movements, but you, you yourself, cannot know where the movement takes you. When you act consciously to observe what you are doing, what happens? Odds are you will fumble and stumble, or overdo something. This is seeking.

Giving up and giving in to the form, complete and utter surrender to the dynamic flow, without expectation, without fear or self-consciousness, losing the 'self' in the process, this is the pinnacle, the ultimate path of 'non-seeking'. The seeker drops away, yet 'you' are still here!

There is no 'self' present to open to anything. Everything is already open... but 'you' and 'I' can never see this. Only when we get so good at forgetting this conscious self, to experience total open-ness without ideating the experiencer, that all is done, and yet, in reality, there is no 'one' to do anything - all is done. We simply allow it... or not.

This is excellent, CowTao, thanks for sharing.

I think there is an argument to be made, within this realization, for starting with no form at all.

Maybe this is the problem, too with "all roads lead to Rome". Well, not all traditions achieve the same thing, if you're interested in traditions and achievement. But yes, I think all human beings have the capacity, within them, to find their own way to freedom.

We all have built into us, our own road map to growth, joy, and freedom. It cannot be (successfully) put into words or into form, because it is merely an awareness.

So rather than following a tradition or a form, we can also follow our inner guidance. In fact, eventually, to be free, I have to follow my own guidance. Otherwise, I am always living someone else's form, someone else's concepts.

The qi gong that arises, spontaneously, from my body, may look like no one else's qi gong. But that doesn't mean that it doesn't work. My experience is that the less I try to force specificity, and the more I'm willing to just follow the path that awareness carves out in front of me, the more freedom I am able to find, and the less suffering and fighting arise within me.
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#47 Marblehead

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 04:12 PM

And, Marblehead, the fact of ROme being such a hub, means that you have roads going radially in all directions. So you will hardly find indications for other places, but indications for one of those roads. Like

AURELIA
---------->


Neat. Once I determined which way I needed to go I realized that I was driving on the Appia Way. That was cool as it wasn't in my plans as something to see.

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#48 Aaron

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 05:50 PM

Hello Mewtwo,

You had noble intentions and I can see that. I'm sure others do as well. The problem is that, even if you can see that all roads lead to Rome, it doesn't necessarily mean others will.

I like to look at this metaphor in a spiritual context like this, regardless of what practice you choose, if you are intent on reaching Rome, then you will. The problem is Rome is many things to many people and not all people can agree. My argument is that if someone is telling you the truth with unwavering loyalty to that truth, then there is no way of convincing them otherwise, in fact they will most likely feel very threatened by what they view as an attack on truth and oppose you by all means necessary.

No one needs to argue with someone else. For me it's very easy to understand what you're pointing out. For those that can't, just let them go and be happy that at least you have the compassion and insight to understand it.

Aaron

edit- I was in Job Corps too. Quite a different world. When I got there I was the only one in my dorm that wasn't court mandated (no lie.) I lived with hardcore gang bangers and criminals for over a year and it really wisened me up to how the world works. First thing I learned is that you get respect by earning it, it's not a given right. The second thing I learned was how to live on a forty dollar stipend every month.

Edited by Twinner, 26 May 2011 - 06:04 PM.

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