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Jack's AlteredConsciousness

Registered: 03/29/03
Posts: 6,319
Loc: up on the bidet
Last seen: 4 years, 5 months
    #1700456 - 07/09/03 07:42 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Any diligent Zen practioners out there ?
I'm curious about certain Zen ideas and would love
to discuss in more detail.
Two things I'm having difficultly understanding are:
1. Sometimes it appears that Zen is applied too liberally.
I'll explain. I've heard people say that programming is
very Zen since programmers are often "completely absorbed"
by the task at hand. So, what I'm trying to understand is
that is "complete absorbtion" the goal of Zen ? My understanding
was that Zen is about "completely living every minute of your life"
- which might not be the same as "complete absorbtion" in a task.
2. What exactly does it mean to pay close attention ? i.e.
who defines the "closeness" ? I realize that this could be
interpretted as missing the point of Zen, but I'm a bit confused
about this. One cannot possibly be aware of every single thing
at a particular moment (e.g. u can't be aware of floaters in you
eye while you're biking/painting etc it would be distracting).
One could argue that the idea is to be aware of everything that
"pertains to the task at hand", however how does one define the
task at hand ? there's a great Zen story some Zen students who
approached their master while he was reading a newspaper and
eating breakfast at the same time.
"Master !" they said "u told us to completely
focus on the task at hand" (meaning either breakfast or reading),
and he replied without hesitation "Yes, while reading the newspaper
and eating breakfast, one must completely focus on reading
the newspaper and eating breakfast"
Kinda relevant to my point.
Anyhoos, if my psycho babble is comprehensible to u, please reply,
I'm curious and confused.

"no-mind un-thinks no-thought..."

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Jack's AlteredConsciousness

Registered: 03/29/03
Posts: 6,319
Loc: up on the bidet
Last seen: 4 years, 5 months
Re: ZEN [Re: lucid]
    #1700812 - 07/09/03 10:33 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

2 More questions about ZEN...

3. ZEN seems like a very very obsessive way of living
life - constantly striving to experience each moment.
Isn't obsessionality unhealthy ? But ZEN practioners
seem to be very emotionally healthy people (from what
I've heard - I hardly know any diligent followers).

4. How does ZEN approach sleep ? I can hardly imagine
falling asleep while being aware of each moment. Falling asleep
seems to require distraction away from the mind.
Do ZEN Monks ever get insomnia ?

"no-mind un-thinks no-thought..."

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Has Been AbsentFor Far Too Long
Registered: 04/05/02
Posts: 758
Re: ZEN [Re: lucid]
    #1700814 - 07/09/03 10:33 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

the  only thing i know is that where zen ends, ass kicking begins :laugh:

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T'was born oftrue in the yearof the cock!

Registered: 04/07/03
Posts: 1,500
Loc: a human-infested anthill
Last seen: 14 years, 7 months
Re: ZEN [Re: fjbk47985]
    #1700846 - 07/09/03 10:43 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

lucid: Isn't obsessionality unhealthy?

healthy in comparison to what? how would constant meditation be unhealthy, let us be reminded that the japanese have the highest life expectancy in the world.

enjoy the entertaining indentity i have constructed for you while you can.

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carbon unit

Registered: 01/23/00
Posts: 1,734
Loc: Europe
Last seen: 1 month, 7 days
Re: ZEN [Re: lucid]
    #1701563 - 07/10/03 02:52 AM (14 years, 9 months ago)

I don't know much about Zen, but from what Buddha said there are two elements of buddhist meditation: concentration and mindfulness. The purpose of concentration is to be able to quiet the mind. The purpose of mindfulness is to develop insight into who you are and how your mind works. Together they are supposed to lead to Awakening.

In order to practise concentration you need to be "obsessed" while you're doing it, but mindfulness could be practised in any situation, even when you are distracted by several things at once.

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Registered: 09/13/02
Posts: 573
Last seen: 13 years, 9 months
Re: ZEN [Re: Rhizoid]
    #1702347 - 07/10/03 01:51 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

zen is to an extent complete absorbtion in one task, which ties in to living each moment to the fullest in that you are focusing on and apreciating one task at hand, not constantly being bombarded with images and distractions and sounds all around you. An average person goes through life in a hurried state , with for lack of a better word their heads full of clatter. even in a simple everyday thing like eating breakfast many people sit down, the radio playing in the background, open a newspaper, scan through hundreds of pictures and headlines and advertisments, drinking cofee and eating all at the same time, and most of us STILL have our own seperate trains of half focused thoughts running through our heads. THis lifestyle blinds us from the true essence of living, of self awareness. the goal of zen is partially complete absorbtion in that you aim to be completely absorbed in life, one moment and one task at a time. In a day, if you go walking in the morning, eat breakfast, paint a painting, write in your diary, eat dinner, meditate and go to bed.. then you should be focused on walking when your walking, not thinking about your job or your parents or school or taxes, just enjoying your walk. when you eat breakfast, dont read at the same time, just eat and savour the taste of each bite. when your done eating, paint your picture. the goal is to be absorbed in that picture.. you get the idea. zen argues that to enjoy life you must clear your head and be focused and 'at one'with life, zen connects with each thing you do and thus it can shape your life. the goal of zen meditation is to allow all the subconcioius thoughts yourm ind is constantly throwing up to flow through you without occupying you until you can control these thoughts. if you think you can already control your mind, try just sitting quietly for 5 minuites, your mind will constantly run off without you as it were and dredge up memorys and anxieties and ideas. meanwhile you want to concentrate only on breathing deeply and regularly. this practice is very difficult at first but as you practice you will improve and that will allow you to be more at peace and 'absorbed' in your everyday life

the lotus is the jewel of oneness

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Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,851
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 8 months, 13 days
    #1702565 - 07/10/03 02:46 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Not only all that in the post above mine (very, very nice), but it allows you to play golf like Jack Nicolson, too.

If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:

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Registered: 09/13/02
Posts: 573
Last seen: 13 years, 9 months
Re: ZEN [Re: fireworks_god]
    #1702891 - 07/10/03 04:02 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

i suck at golf :smile:

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My God is anAwesome God

Registered: 12/16/02
Posts: 274
Loc: Under the sea
Re: ZEN [Re: lucid]
    #1707092 - 07/11/03 10:19 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Two of my fovorite quotes on the subject:

So the thing to do when working on a motorcycle, as in any other task, is to cultivate the peace of mind which does not separate one's self from one's surroundings. When that is done successfully, then everything else follows naturally. Peace of mind produces right values, right values produce right thoughts. Right thoughts produce right actions and right actions produce work which will be a material reflection for others to see of the serenity at the center of it all. -Robert Pirsig

The place to improve the world is first in one's own heart and head and hands, and then work outward from there. Other people can talk about how to expand the destiny of mankind. I just want to talk about how to fix a motorcycle. -Robert Pirsig

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General Interest >> Philosophy, Sociology & Psychology

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