March 17, 2009

Lopez on Buddhism and Science, Padmasambhava on avoiding false teachers, Dogen on sitting

Danny Fisher points us to a piece by Buddhologist Donald S. Lopez, Jr. discussing his new book, Buddhism and Science, a cultural history of claims that Buddhism anticipated or is compatible with science, particularly the theories of Einstein. (Buddha and Einstein go way back.)

Konchog calls on the wise words of Padmasambhava to avoid spiritual charlatans. A sample (there's a lot more):

Observe the shortcomings of samsaric misery! Since it is evident that all material things in this life are impermanent, turn your mind toward yourself and think well! Listen to the life stories of how the accomplished masters of the past practiced self-discipline. Find a qualified master and serve him with devoted body, speech, and mind.

At first do not befriend him like an equal acquaintance but cut your misconceptions through learning and contemplation.

Next, keep to constant practice and exert yourself with perseverance.

Finally, assimilate the Dharma in your heart through practice and apply the remedies to disturbing emotions.

Plus, Harry gives us Dogen on sitting:

Very few people realize that the act of sitting is the Buddha-Dharma and that the Buddha-Dharma is the act of sitting. Even if some physically understand sitting to be the Buddha-Dharma, none has realised sitting as sitting. How then can any be maintaining and relying upon the Buddha-Dharma as the Buddha-Dharma?" (Shobogenzo Zanmai-o-Zanmai, Nishijima/Cross trans.)

More here from the White Wind Zen Community, and Dogen's Genjokoan is also discussed in dharma talks by Enkyo Roshi on the Tricycle Community.

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