Sunday, July 26, 2009

Notion of no-self and the pressure on one self

Right view, right view - what is this right view?,some one asked Buddha. The blessed one said - "It is my dear, the understanding that everything is impermanent and arises because of conditions, nothing exists by itself and in its own right". At another time, Buddha told Bahiya there is "no thing" here - there are just the phenomena like hearing, seeing etc happening. I am not saying at all that this makes a lot of sense when you encounter it first time, but eventually you can start seeing Buddha's point.

The interesting thing is that even though this is Buddha's philosophy, all the texts and all zen writings talk about dhamma in the form of actions of an individual. May be there are texts that talk purely in terms of actions and not actors and I haven't read them yet. And that is how it should be, I guess, till one understands the concept of no-self. HOwever, once if you understand the concept, and thought process still remains as me and others, there will always be guilt and pride. Essentially, everything is just a phenomena and not so much an individual, and it helps to keep the concept strong if one can turn one's thinking in terms of phenomena that are happening, rather than a doer doing an action. It is a shift in the paradigm and quite liberating!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Cannot stop thinking about it..suchness of Universe..good and bad

So..the Universe is such..there is ignorance, the root cause of all suffering. Ignorance about not knowing the real nature of things as impermanent, devoid of self sustainig and self creating cause. This is why we cling, we get greedy and we hurt others mostly because of our greed. BUT this is no one's fault..just like leaves are green and stone is hard, this is the "suchness" of human nature. We are born in this manner. When we hurt others, it is rarely because we intentionally want to hurt, but because we are bound by our nature based on greed and need of security. Rape, theft, war crimes, terror - for all these, people who are doing them absolutely believe that they are doing the right thing. In their minds, this is the best action they can or should take. People hurt others, create bad karma unintentionally and then suffer in return. The thing that is baffling me is that this is how the system is one made it like this..this is how it is..BUT WHY?????????

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Suchness of Universe

Writing after a long time, for one or the other reason, got busy every weekend. Feels good to come back to writing..:). The thought that has been occupying my mind is suchness. For quite some time, I was not sure what suchness is and what is the big deal about it. In my understanding, concept of emptiness directly leads into suchness. Nothing is made of itself and by itself, instead everything is a result of coming together of non-self elements. For example, table is made of all "non-table" elements - wood, screws, glass etc. Humans are made on all non-human elements - skin, hair, nails, flesh, blood etc. None of these things makes a human by itself, only coming together of everything creates one.

As a result,things have a certain nature based on what it is made of - water flows, rose is red, rock is hard, wind blows etc etc and this is there suchness. And there is beauty and harmony because of this suchness. All elements are needed and everything is equally important. A river cannot come into existence without drops of water and a mountain cannot exist without pebbles. Nothing is less or more important, everything has its place and is needed. There is natural transformation of one form of energy to another like clouds turning into rain, but while things have a form they "enjoy" it and not try to become something else. But with us humans, there is constant craving to become something other than what we are. We have forgotten how to enjoy what we are at the moment. We might have been wanting something for a long time, we get it and rather than enjoying it, we move on to next craving. A rose is not trying to become jasmine and jasmine is not trying to become marigold - they enjoy being themselves and gracefully go through cycle of birth and death. Why cannot we do that? When we are water, we want to become fire, when we are fire, we want to become wind and that is what keeps us tied.