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Old 12-28-2006, 11:10 PM   #34
Kevin Wilbanks
Location: Seattle/Southern Wisconsin
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 788
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Re: Zazen necessary for training

I see. I must have put too much stock in something I read at some point a long time ago - although I seem to remember getting that same line from several sources. I'm sure Suzuki was one of them. It makes sense that the meaning/reference of a key term like that would be a matter of controversy and dispute.

I was just thinking about what you said about the loss of my art to the world if I had become a zen monk. Putting aside the 'me' portion, that seems to speak to something about buddhism that never sat well with me. What if Beethoven, Michealangelo, Frank Lloyd Wright, or, I don't know, Mick Jagger, Joss Whedon... whoever's work has really floated your boat had decided to sit around in zazen all the time instead of doing whatever it is they did that enriched your life?

I recall Nietzsche dismissing buddhism as a philosophy/religion of a culture which was old, dried up, and mostly longing for extinction. I don't know if I would go that far, but I find the idea that alleviating suffering is the main goal in life a bit defeatist, in the same way that something in me rebels against the idea of spending a major portion of my life sitting still and meditating. I think I subscribe to the good life as something being a lot more torrential and Shakespearean than that... like the recipe includes Shakespeare by the cup and Buddha by the teaspoon.
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