Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Zen and AT

Jules said...
Pierre Turlur wrote: So, please, take his challenge seriously. Why don't you try to show all of us what is right?Or even better, take it somewhere else, like to one of Mike Cross' blogs. This is Nishijima's blog about Zen Buddhism. Anyone who is interested in the Alexander technique can find mountains of information through Google or Wikipedia, or buying Alexander's books. If I was selling Turnip Twaddlers(tm) I wouldn't spam every post in your blog with comments about them. Even if your blog was about turnips, which it's not. It would be rude.
3:31 AM
Mike Cross said...
Nishijima Roshi taught me that Buddhism is not a religion but a philosophical search. A search for the truth. He taught me to search not only in the narrow confines of Zen Buddhist temples and Zen Buddhist writings but in books of western philosophy, and books of physiology. Above all he taught me to trust myself totally to the practice of Zazen, with no holds barred, and let others judge my actions as good or bad, polite or rude. In return I served him for many years in his effort to translate Shobogenzo into English. So I think I deserve to have my say on his blog, and am grateful to have the opportunity to do so. I am very grateful that Nishijima Roshi has included my webpage on his own links. My Zazen life brought me to the Alexander Technique. I wholeheartedly believe that FM Alexander re-discovered the secret of Zen for our time. I am not a veteran, either of Nishijima Roshi's Buddhism or of the Alexander Techique. God forbid that anyone should judge either Way by my immature reactions. But is it forbidden for me, just because I am still immature in my Buddhist practice, to proclaim my wholehearted belief,in the truth of FM Alexander's discoveries? Who are you to tell Alexander Teacher to take his comments elsewhere? Who the hell are you? What service have you performed for Buddhism? What have you given up for Buddhism?
5:27 AM
Pierre Turlur said...
Dear Jules, Quite an interesting metaphor ( it happens that I am very familiar with vegetables, as I work in a supermarket), unfortunately Buddhism is not for sale like turnips. No zazen on shelves. I think you think that you know what Zen Buddhism is. That is the only real problem. Don't worry, it is also mine. Good old arrogance. Your belief is getting in the way. Let me just invite you to experience an Alexander Technique lesson and then you might be able to understand the difference between sitting as fixation and sitting as a process. Better, you'll be able to experience the difference between the same and the identical. That subtle difference is a wonderful direction that all Buddhist patriarchs have transmitted: the practice of the ineffable, suchness. In real sitting there are no differences between Zen and AT, for the simple reason that there is no Zen and AT anymore! I remember writing this poem for Nishijima Roshi:"Face to face.Mind in Mind. No trace is left.Fish swimming. Birds flying. Endless water and sky. The old Gudo calls it the no direction of ten directions "The rudeness, Jules, is to assume that we understand. You are rude, Jules even if every fiber of your being feels that this Mike Cross is an absolute disgrace. We are always looking for traces,beliefs and gospels. Dogen wrote Genjokoan for guys like you and me: an invitation for us to release the grip. We bring along many expectations, and the invitation is to drop all of them on the cushion. One you can always start with is the one about zazen and goody-goody behaviour. The real dragon is quite fierce and without mercy. It kills my-your-everybody's stupidity on the spot.Come on, Jules, have a go! wear the kesa, sit, listen to birds ( Kannon's activity) and as Sekito Kisen says in his Song of the Grass-Roof hermitage:(...)let go of hundreds of years and relax completely.And if you want, we'll talk about it again.


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