greum maol stevenson

zen

Because I am a Zen Buddhist and a socialist, many people assume I am a humanist, as they think Buddhism and socialism are both humanist. I think the opposite. The Buddhist understanding of interdependence precludes the arrogant view that is human exceptionalism. And if socialism is only for humans then it is not socialism, because it is still class-based, with bosses and bossed, exploiters and exploited.

Although I have criticisms of the book, I like the subtitle of Timothy Morton’s Humankind: Solidarity With Non-Human People. We need to see not just all clearly-sentient beings as people, but also rocks, walls, pens, machines, as people.

#zen #buddhism #humanism #socialism #animism #HumanExceptionalism #AnimalRights #speciesism #anthropocentrism

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City Cave Zen Sangha

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Enso by daishin
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This evening I reread Sam Hamill’s poem The Orchid Flower. I corresponded with him for years, though we never met. He is among the people who have died whom I cannot bring myself to delete from my email contacts, for reasons I do not understand. When he died in 2018, I wrote this poem:

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I wonder if what those who make Zen our lifelong practice have in common is that when we are young we experience what John Tarrant Roshi describes in his book Bring Me the Rhinoceros: “None of the usual solutions to life that were on offer meant much to me.”

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pigeons perched on veranda railing of flat in housing scheme

In Zen practice, meditation is usually referred to as “sitting.” Some of us think we are unusual because of our practice, but we are not. Everybody sits, but most people do their sitting in front of a TV. We can either sit to distract ourselves from life, or we can sit with, and in, life.

#zen #buddhism #meditation #zazen

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City Cave Zen Sangha

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“Medicine and sickness heal each other. The whole world is medicine.” — The Blue Cliff Record, Case 87

There is a parable that is fitting for these times. I do not know its origin — I have heard different versions, some attributing it to the Zen or Taoist traditions, but I have not been able to find its source, and I do not think it matters. Here is the version I am thinking of:

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Since the pandemic started, City Cave Zen Sangha has been meeting online only, and that has been going so well I want to continue doing it even when the time comes that it is safe to physically meet.

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you pour coffee into your cup in montana

it turns into tea in my cup in scotland

#poetry #friendship #zen

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City Cave Zen Sangha

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According to Lacan, the I which speaks and the I which is spoken of are not the same. The one observes and describes the other.

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“is meaning created by language or language created by meaning?”

hot liquid poured fills cup stays there till you drink it   pour it out something else happens

#poetry #zen #impermanence #discourse #language #meaning #MonoNoAware

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City Cave Zen Sangha

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