Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Ten Fetters (Fetter #4)



There are Ten Fetters that keep us from getting our Zen on.  This is #3:

SENSUAL DESIRE

Wanting it is just wanting, just like any other wanting except...

The urges of the human body create an added difficulty in that the body wants to procreate.  It is an attribute of our human design.

This fetter is almost one I would want to take off the list.  No one can keep "sensual desire" from happening.  It is best to get it out of the way so you can carry on with your day without thinking about sex all the time.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

The Ten Fetters (Fetter #3)

There are Ten Fetters that keep us from getting our Zen on.  This is #3:

ATTACHMENT TO RITUALS

We all have rituals.  I take a hot bath almost every Sunday morning.  I meditate in the same place in my office, with an incense burning for a timer.  I get a a bag of sunflower seeds on my way to programming school.  Do I have to mention coffee? Rituals are habits, superstitions sometimes, and there isn't anything particularly "wrong" with them.  Some people get lots of peace from routine and rituals.

But it is the attachment to rituals that can keep us from getting our Zen on.  The idea that a ritual can continue indefinitely, the efforts to maintain a ritual when it has run its course, the effort to maintain something that no longer makes sense, or worse, is doing harm in some way, can keep us from liberating the mind.

The only thing constant is change, but rituals are, in a way, an attempt to keep things the same, which is impossible, because nothing is ever the same, not even for a second.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Ten Fetters (Fetter #2)


There are Ten Fetters that keep us from getting our Zen on.  This is #2:

DOUBT:

The second fetter is about doubt. What is there to doubt, when reality is our only teacher? Can you doubt reality? Can you doubt the universe? And what else is going into your brain, except the reality of the great circumstance, which has us all?

The second fetter, the second thing that will keep you from getting your Zen on, is doubt that that practice is worthwhile. The doubt that special effort need be spent on paying attention to the Present Moment. Doubt in the legitimate need to take special pains in order to practice paying attention, which is difficult, what with these reactionary monkey brains of ours.

The doubt that this fetter addresses is the doubt that the mind must be trained.  This type of doubt makes us wonder, what's the point? It is a doubt about the importance of Getting One's Zen On.

It is a doubt about whether or not Zen is important enough to practice.