Lawyers, Guns and Money

HistoryOfZenSo I’ve been reading Zen Buddhism: A History by Heinrich Dumoulin. This is the classic text on the history of Zen from its beginnings in India to its flowering in Japan. I’ve bought this two volume set several times over the years, always failing to read it. My pattern is that I keep the books for about two years, then realize I’ll never get around to them and sell them to a used bookstore. Then a few years later I come across another set (or perhaps the same one!), buy it again, and then two years later sell it back, unread.

Don’t judge me too harshly. Vol. 1 is 350 pages and Vol. 2 adds another 100 more. It’s not Lord of the Rings either. It’s very dry and scholarly. As befits its title, the book sticks to the history of the Zen movement without trying to enlighten its readers with pearls of kozmic wizdum. Thank the stars.

This time my friend Leslie kindly bought me a set – probably the same set I sold back to the Illiad bookstore when I moved to Philadelphia. I’ve set my sights on finishing the whole damned thing this time. Wish me luck!

In many ways the history of Zen Buddhism is one story told over and over. And that story goes something this this.

Someone meditates for a long time and has a profound insight into the nature of reality. He or she then decides to try and teach that insight and how to reach it to others. This goes fine for a little while, but then an institution is established to try and make the lessons more standardized, efficient and accessible. At this point certain people notice that there are opportunities for power, authority and money to be had within that institution so they get involved. Once these weasels start running things the original purpose is lost. Then someone else has to come along, call bullshit on the institution and start the whole thing up again as an outsider. The same pattern occurs with predictable regularity.

Right now in the West, we are in one of these transitional periods. Back in Japan, Zen has become an orthodox institution that offers its members opportunities for power, authority and sometimes even money. Disgusted with this situation, a few sincere practitioners packed up and moved to America and Europe. They found some genuine students and started a few temples. But now those temples are growing in stature and importance, and ambitious people are starting to see that they might be able to climb their institutional ladders and become powerful. The rot is setting in.

This process is still in its infancy, so things haven’t gotten too bad just yet. Whenever I complain about the organizations who are trying to standardize the Zen curriculum into mind-numbing uselessness I’m always told something like, “Aw, but these guys aren’t a giant evil institution! They’re just a nice group of low-key people who want to do good things.” Which I’m sure is more-or-less true. But you don’t have to be a genius to see where things are heading.

Sex scandals like those involving Eido Shimano and Joshu Sasaki have given our current crop of ambitious power grabbers a convenient handle to grab onto. They use this situation to present themselves as the ones who will deliver us from evil by forming a mighty organization that will crush those who would do harm to poor innocents who decide to check out meditation classes. It’s a well-worn politicians’ trick. I’m sure it’ll work.

If I had a good solution to all of this I’d propose it here. But I don’t. Some people shun institutionalization completely, like U.G. Krishnamurti, for example. This Indian “anti-guru” refused to let people build up an institution to enshrine his work. In the preface to his book Mind is a Myth he says, “My teaching, if that is the word you want to use, has no copyright. You are free to reproduce, distribute, interpret, misinterpret, distort, garble, do what you like, even claim authorship, without my consent or the permission of anybody.”

But look what I just did. I linked the title of his book through Amazon’s Associates program. If you click on that link and buy the book, or indeed any other item from Amazon while in that session, I get like 25 cents or something. It’s very hard to be pure.

Right now I’m working on setting up my own evil empire. I’m trying to start a permanent Zen center in Los Angeles. I think this center will be a good thing, or else I wouldn’t do it. But it has just as much potential to go wrong as any other institution. I keep asking myself; Is it really worth doing?

Sometimes I think it would be more fun to just start a cult. I could be like Father Yod who founded The Source. Go watch the movie The Source Family if you want to see how to do a sex, drugs, rock’n’roll and spirituality cult right. Those people were pretty looney, but they had a damned good time. And, although you could say that people were harmed, they probably weren’t wounded any worse than what you can get if you join pretty much any of our more “normal” religious organizations.

Spirit WivesSadly, I’m not as cool as Father Yod. Much as I’d love to have a swimming pool full of my own “spirit wives,” I probably don’t have the drive and will power necessary to keep anything like that going for very long. I’ve hung out with some polyamorous people and for all the good times they certainly have, there is a price to pay in terms of having to constantly work on multiple relationship issues. While I have no problem with others wanting to do this sort of thing, frankly, I’d rather sit around watching Thundarr the Barbarian instead of pouring my energy into lots of complex interpersonal negotiations.

And so I’m starting a Zen institution of my own. It may be the biggest mistake I have ever made. I certainly anticipate that it is. But I really believe that, for a little while at least, the kind of institution I’m envisioning might have a positive effect, might make people a little happier, a little less uptight, maybe even a tiny bit wiser.

Then, of course, someone will see in my institution an opportunity for authority and power. At that point it’ll be ripe for someone else to call bullshit on it and try again.

UPCOMING EVENTS

March 15, 2015 Ventura, CA Yoga and Zen with Brad Warner and Nina Snow at the Bell Arts Factory 432 N. Ventura Ave from 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM by donation.

April 3, 2015 Pomona, CA Open Door 2 Yoga 6 pm 163 W 2nd St, Pomona, California 91766

April 24-26, 2015 Mt. Baldy, CA 3-DAY ZEN & YOGA RETREAT

May 16-17, 2015 Nashville, TN 2-DAY RETREAT AT NASHVILLE ZEN CENTER

July 8-12, 2015 Vancouver, BC Canada 5-DAY RETREAT at HOLLYHOCK RETREAT CENTER

August 14-16, 2015 Munich, Germany 3 DAY ZEN RETREAT

August 19, 2015 Munich, Germany LECTURE

August 24-29, 2015 Felsentor, Switzerland 5-DAY RETREAT AT STIFTUNG FELSENTOR 

August 30-September 4, 2015 Holzkirchen, Germany 5-DAY RETREAT AT BENEDIKTUSHOF MONASTERY

September 10-13, 2015 Finland 4-DAY RETREAT

ONGOING EVENTS

Every Monday at 8pm I lead zazen at Silverlake Yoga Studio 2 located at 2810 Glendale Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90039. All are welcome!

Every Saturday at 9:30 am I lead zazen at the Veteran’s Memorial Complex located at 4117 Overland Blvd., Culver City, CA 90230. All are welcome!

Registration is now open for our 3-day Zen & Yoga Retreat at Mt. Baldy Zen Center April 24-26, 2015. CLICK HERE for more info!

Plenty more info is available on the Dogen Sangha Los Angeles website, dsla.info

*   *   *

If you want to help me woo my future spirit wives, send a donation! Actually it mostly just helps me get burritos and pay the water bill. Thank you!

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205 Responses

Page 2 of 2
  1. Alan Sailer
    Alan Sailer March 16, 2015 at 3:36 pm |

    Aha, another data point…

    Cheers.

  2. Alan Sailer
    Alan Sailer March 16, 2015 at 3:42 pm |

    Shinchan Ohara,

    Mumbles implied that I have the ability to ban offensive posters, you seem to feel that I can summon trolls from the ether.

    Maybe my zazen practice is finally granting me occult powers…

    Cheers.

    1. Zafu
      Zafu March 16, 2015 at 3:59 pm |

      Only the good sheep should be able to roam this comment section.

      Ba-a-a-a-a-a-a-a

  3. Mumbles
    Mumbles March 16, 2015 at 3:51 pm |

    “SaggingHemorrhoid’s peace is readily disrupted.”

    Bwahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! What “peace” would that be?

    1. Zafu
      Zafu March 16, 2015 at 4:00 pm |

      The piece between his ears?

      1. Mumbles
        Mumbles March 16, 2015 at 4:21 pm |

        That is easily the most turbulent piece, if his continued unhinged comments are any indication. The boy has bitchin’ in his blood.

        1. SamsaricHelicoid
          SamsaricHelicoid March 16, 2015 at 8:22 pm |

          I’m just calling out people’s fakeness.

          What do you want me to do?

          Lie that you’re sincere?

          1. Mumbles
            Mumbles March 17, 2015 at 4:41 am |

            The squeaking of a lame squirrel caught in it’s own trap.

          2. SamsaricHelicoid
            SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:20 am |

            You seem obsessive with comparing yourselves to others. Maybe you should move to Asatru with your bullshit “heroic ideals”, considering how tied it is to the Ethos of the Germanic and Scandinavian peoples, basically Indo-European. It’s a stupid ideal irreconcilable with Zen, so the fact you put down on others based off the inferiority you perceive in them makes you stupid.

            How does it feel to know that no one really remembers you? They just remember an image of you.

          3. Mumbles
            Mumbles March 17, 2015 at 5:03 pm |

            A blood clot’s cough in a dried owl’s menstrual fluid.

  4. Zafu
    Zafu March 16, 2015 at 3:54 pm |

    Once the weasels start running things the original purpose is lost.
    ~ Brad Warner

    The original purpose supposedly being to teach “profound insight into the nature of reality.” How profound could such insight be, if it produces weasels who don’t know what they’re doing.

    The only essential purpose for religion is meaning.

  5. The Grand Canyon
    The Grand Canyon March 16, 2015 at 4:03 pm |

    Banish the demons… with fire.

  6. Mark Foote
    Mark Foote March 16, 2015 at 4:19 pm |

    GC!– I haven’t finished listening to 9 Incher nails yet!

    The only essential purpose for religion is meaning. If you understand that, then why not beat the drum?

    If you don’t understand that, then maybe beat the drum– I find myself looking around for a drum all the time. Beats me.

    Ah… GC was ahead of me.

  7. Mark Foote
    Mark Foote March 16, 2015 at 4:22 pm |

    Learned a lot about Shingon, on Wikipedia- thanks, GC.

  8. Mark Foote
    Mark Foote March 16, 2015 at 4:38 pm |

    Am I right, Gregory, that you are a self-study in Chinese? Like it:

    ‘Heshan handed down words saying, “Rote study is to hear of the meaning. Exhaustive study is near to the meaning. To cross over these two things is indeed genuine crossing over.”
    A monk came out and asked, “So, what is genuine crossing over?”
    Shan said, “Being free to beat the drum.”
    He again asked, “So, what is genuine truth?”
    Shan said, “Being free to beat the drum.”
    He again asked, “As it is heart-mind and as it is Buddha, as it is I do not question. So, what is neither heart-mind nor Buddha?”
    Shan said, “Being free to beat the drum.”
    He again asked, “Turning to the arrival of the superior person, at that time, so, what is received?”
    Shan said, “Being free to beat the drum.”‘

    (“Blue Cliff Record”, 44 Heshan Beats the Drum, trans. Gregory Wonderwheel)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jI_oBXzLNmw

  9. Zafu
    Zafu March 16, 2015 at 4:58 pm |

    The only essential purpose for religion is meaning. If you understand that, then why not beat the drum?

    Because, of course, they are meaningless.

    1. Fred
      Fred March 16, 2015 at 5:03 pm |

      Sometimes you’re beating a dead horse, sometimes you’re beating a dead ass, sometimes you’re beating a dead drum.

      1. Zafu
        Zafu March 16, 2015 at 5:13 pm |

        Some horses need beating.

    2. Mark Foote
      Mark Foote March 16, 2015 at 8:18 pm |

      ‘”The only essential purpose for religion is meaning. If you understand that, then why not beat the drum?”

      Because, of course, they are meaningless.’

      Ya lost me there: are you referring to the cases of the “Blue Cliff Record”, when you say “they”?

      1. Zafu
        Zafu March 16, 2015 at 8:53 pm |

        If you say so.

  10. Shinchan Ohara
    Shinchan Ohara March 16, 2015 at 5:19 pm |

    Sometime you’re just bangin’ the drum… One. Dreadful. Recursive. Fractal. Comment. At. A .Time.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcpbGeyPUD8

    1. Zafu
      Zafu March 16, 2015 at 5:30 pm |

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcpbGeyPUD8

      Dreadful indeed, and kinda gay.

      1. Shinchan Ohara
        Shinchan Ohara March 16, 2015 at 5:33 pm |

        Yup. Thought you’d like it

  11. Shinchan Ohara
    Shinchan Ohara March 16, 2015 at 5:31 pm |
  12. Shinchan Ohara
    Shinchan Ohara March 16, 2015 at 5:41 pm |

    I had an original idea. Maybe, just maybe… religions only exist to provide meaning.

    1. Fred Jr.
      Fred Jr. March 16, 2015 at 5:59 pm |

      Questioner: If God is good, then why is there evil in the world?
      Ramakrishna: To thicken the plot.

    2. Shinchan Ohara
      Shinchan Ohara March 16, 2015 at 6:03 pm |

      Nope. I was mistaken… it’s just about bangin’ the drum

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yX4jeu1nGyo

  13. justlui
    justlui March 16, 2015 at 6:01 pm |

    In the morning, Zafu be like: “I think that today I will dedicate lots of time to telling people that religion only exists to provide meaning. Yes, that will be a good use of my time. I will show them all that. . . religion only exists to provide meaning.”

    At the end of the day, Zafu be like: “Ah. . . my work for the day is done. I did it! I let them all know that religion only exists to provide meaning. Somebody text Jesus and tell him to give me a fucking cupcake”.

    1. Zafu
      Zafu March 16, 2015 at 8:55 pm |

      They didn’t have cupcakes back then, silly.

  14. Alan Sailer
    Alan Sailer March 16, 2015 at 7:02 pm |

    What I really need to know is if there is anyone here who can find the meaning of the hard problem of consciousness?

    It’s about time for some meaningful teamwork…maybe we can get Ufaz and Samba Heisenberg to put their heads together and solve this sucker.

    Cheers.

    1. SamsaricHelicoid
      SamsaricHelicoid March 16, 2015 at 8:27 pm |

      I don’t care about it anymore…

      All I care about is making money and deconstructing mankind’s collective ego in the faith of modernity and industrialization.

      I sympathize with Ted Kaczynski’s views but not with his actions.

      1. Mumbles
        Mumbles March 17, 2015 at 5:01 pm |

        A dead worm in the Unibomber’s testicle beard.

  15. Mark Foote
    Mark Foote March 16, 2015 at 8:25 pm |

    I’m p#ssed off, and I might stop using special characters about it!

    god that was freaky, Shinchan Ohara. Hannya Shinkyo, that is; goes well with horse pucky.

  16. Mark Foote
    Mark Foote March 16, 2015 at 8:34 pm |

    freedom to bang the drum, where’s that at.

  17. SamsaricHelicoid
    SamsaricHelicoid March 16, 2015 at 8:37 pm |

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Conspiracy-against-Human-Race/dp/0984480277

    After reading that book I got into Zen because I realized how life is suffering, Dukkha all around, but all I come across is fakes.

    1. SamsaricHelicoid
      SamsaricHelicoid March 16, 2015 at 8:39 pm |

      The book made me depressed somewhat. Because after reading it and being disillusioned with the prospect of life being a reflection of something. Afterwards, I watched the video “3 guys and 1 hammer”. I went to the backyard and cried for hours and so forth.

      I came to the conclusion that anyone who brings children into this world is selfish.

      If all you’re doing is fucking around and having children in this practice of Zen that requires solitude in natural scenery and much m0re, then you’re wasting your fucking time. This isn’t a practice to justify your hedonistic impulses.

      I don’t have time for all of your bullshit. Reductionist motherfuckers and shit.

      1. SamsaricHelicoid
        SamsaricHelicoid March 16, 2015 at 8:41 pm |

        Reading The Conspiracy Against the Human Race was 4-5 yrs ago and watching that video too. That’s when I slowly got into Zen…

        but all I see are fakes distorting shit for their biases and carnal desires.

        I don’t have time for this shit. Most of you don’t even truly have certainty in the crap you regurgitate over and over again.

        1. mb
          mb March 16, 2015 at 8:54 pm |

          I don’t have time for this shit.
          ———————————————————————————
          Oh yes you do! You may not leave this blog, ever. Permission denied.

        2. SamsaricHelicoid
          SamsaricHelicoid March 16, 2015 at 8:54 pm |

          When I was ~14-16 I read Shake Hands With the Devil: The Failure of Humanity is Rwanda by Romeo Dallaire. No country cared about Rwanda or whatever when the atrocities occurred. That’s because every country is motivated by self-interest just like the average man.

          There is no Buddha nature. There’s just selfishness in varying degrees. Everyone is after their own ass… but all their happinesses rest on delusion.

          “”Every happiness that a man enjoys, and almost every friendship that he cherishes, rest upon illusion; for, as a rule, with increase of knowledge they are bound to vanish. ” – Schopenhauer

          From my time in the Zen center, I came to realize how even the institution rest on delusion. With more knowledge I came to see how it’s all bullshit.

          It’s just losers circle jerking to quoting dogen left and right and developing that sense of “In Group Favoritism” , especially evident here.

          If all I did was quote dogen and warner left and right here, i’d be love…

          but guess what… i don’t need your crippled affections or whatever.

          Go ahead, beat me up. Cut up my body. Burn me at the stake like Mansur Al-Hallaj.

          I no longer given a shit about this despicable life. I no longer care.

          All I want is to destroy God, to destroy the Dharmakaya. I want to be reborn endlessly to destroy the core of this universe… and become my own God…

          I shall create a happy universe like Harvest Moon and fix the miserable mistake that is this universe.

          My mind is unfathomable… My dreams are unfathomable… compared to this shit cyclic universe of suffering. Antonin Artaud understood too, hence why he preferred his dreams over the company of deluded men, such as yourselves

      2. mb
        mb March 16, 2015 at 8:52 pm |

        I don’t have time for all of your bullshit.
        ————————————————
        Apparently you do!

  18. Andy
    Andy March 17, 2015 at 1:38 am |

    On the Zafu
    Do I squeeze one out or let leak?
    – It’s different from farting.

    Off the Zafu
    Does the the full fist release the phallus?
    – Cruciate Vegetables.

    Either on the Zafu or off the Zafu
    What is the meaning of meaning?
    – Ask me three times.

    Plop

    1. Fred
      Fred March 17, 2015 at 6:29 am |

      Only 3 times?

  19. The Grand Canyon
    The Grand Canyon March 17, 2015 at 3:55 am |

    Crazy is like cholesterol: there’s the good kind of crazy, and there’s the bad kind of crazy.

    1. Andy
      Andy March 17, 2015 at 4:36 am |

      Some people require surgery. A plant-based diet can help with the cognitive impairment. Although the jury is out on the build up of linguistic plaque.

  20. Mumbles
    Mumbles March 17, 2015 at 4:57 am |

    “When you first come to meditation, a practitioner may not like him or herself very much. You may feel that you even hate yourself or hate your world. But you continue to practice and to relate with your world and yourself simultaneously, both in meditation and in everyday life situations. Doing so completely, some kind of warmth begins to develop. You find that the phenomenal world is workable after all. It may not be loveable yet, but at least it’s workable, manageable. And you realize that maybe you too are workable and manageable.” -Chogyam Trungpa

    This one is for the trolls, SameoldHashedoutcrap and Fazu. If you can make it on this blog, babies, you can make it anywhere!

    1. Fred Jr.
      Fred Jr. March 17, 2015 at 6:08 am |

      Thou shalt not diminish mine angst!

      1. Fred
        Fred March 17, 2015 at 8:28 am |

        SamsaricHelicoid:

        “I don’t have time for this shit. Most of you don’t even truly have certainty in the crap you regurgitate over and over again.”

        The empty hand grasps the hoe handle
        Walking along, I ride the ox
        The ox crosses the wooden bridge
        The bridge is flowing, the water is still

        1. SamsaricHelicoid
          SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:05 am |

          Stop citing others. Can’t you speak from your own experience?

          You’re like a Turing Machine or Chinese Room:

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_room

          1. Mumbles
            Mumbles March 17, 2015 at 4:56 pm |

            Yellow frog spittle.

    2. Zafu
      Zafu March 17, 2015 at 9:19 am |

      We all know what made the phenomenal world workable for Chogyam Trungpa. But alcohol killed him in the end, so I guess that didn’t really make it workable after all.

      BA-A-A-A-A-A-A

    3. SamsaricHelicoid
      SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:01 am |

      You can go back to supporting sex tourism in lower developed countries, Mumbles. Piece of shit.

    4. SamsaricHelicoid
      SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 2:09 pm |

      All of what you say is deducible given Brad’s repertoire of posts. Nothing original.

      I outline a method to computationally model the recursive nature of this Hive Mind on the bottom.

      Scroll down to “For example, here is how I would go about creating an analogous computer program for the comments sections of Brad’s posts.” Also read the 3 posts above in which I describe how people such as Mumbles can be as an inseparable facet of Brad’s breath, like an ever-shifting ocean of Brad’s babble that gives rise to the self-similar babble in people like Mumbles. There’s an easy way to sum it up: circle-jerk.

      1. Mumbles
        Mumbles March 17, 2015 at 4:56 pm |

        The putrid stench of a puddle of shit burping in a sulphurous ditch.

  21. Alan Sailer
    Alan Sailer March 17, 2015 at 8:23 am |

    Ted Kaczynski is a perfect addition to the philosophical Dream Team.

    Samosa Helicobactor can do the neuroscience. Ted can write the Manifesto. And Ufaz can assure them that it is all just a search for meaning.

    The F-monad of futility will be achieved!

    I wait…

  22. Zafu
    Zafu March 17, 2015 at 9:41 am |

    Ufaz can assure them that it is all just a search for meaning.

    Like all religions, the essential purpose of Zen is to offer meaning. That’s it.

    In this blog post Brad says that the purpose of Zen is to realize “profound insight into the nature of reality.” That is a lie. Brad knows, on some level, that it’s a lie, but as I’ve said many times, religious folk are forced to lie. They have no choice but to lie.

    If the purpose of Zen were realization then why doesn’t it matter that all it produces are “weasels” who inevitably loose sight of the supposed purpose. It doesn’t matter because the purpose is meaning. Meaningful stories don’t need to be real or true, they only need to be meaningful.

    Of course when enough of the sheep realize that the narrative they’ve been clinging to is just a story the story looses meaning, and that’s when the shepherd must put a new spin on the narrative so the sheep will continue to follow. On and on this cycle continues, as Brad points out in the blog post.

    1. Andy
      Andy March 17, 2015 at 10:05 am |

      “Meaningful stories don’t need to be real or true, they only need to be meaningful. ”

      Damn it Zafu! I thought you were lubing up something tight and postmodern. But I just can’t feel the sides on that straw tautology.

      1. Zafu
        Zafu March 17, 2015 at 10:19 am |

        Story A is a true story, and a meaningful story.

        Story B is a fictional story, but a meaningful story.

        As I’ve pointed out, truth of fiction doesn’t matter to religious folk. Indeed they can’t even see a difference.

        1. Andy
          Andy March 17, 2015 at 10:27 am |

          Hmm. Nah. Still nothing. Must be me. I did have a full fist earlier though. Yes, it’s me.

          Here’s a love poem instead. xxx

          Paradoxes and Oxymorons

          This poem is concerned with language on a very plain level.
          Look at it talking to you. You look out a window
          Or pretend to fidget. You have it but you don’t have it.
          You miss it, it misses you. You miss each other.

          The poem is sad because it wants to be yours, and cannot.
          What’s a plain level? It is that and other things,
          Bringing a system of them into play. Play?
          Well, actually, yes, but I consider play to be

          A deeper outside thing, a dreamed role-pattern,
          As in the division of grace these long August days
          Without proof. Open-ended. And before you know
          It gets lost in the steam and chatter of typewriters.

          It has been played once more. I think you exist only
          To tease me into doing it, on your level, and then you aren’t there
          Or have adopted a different attitude. And the poem
          Has set me softly down beside you. The poem is you.

          (Ashbery)

      2. Fred
        Fred March 17, 2015 at 10:25 am |

        “If the purpose of Zen were realization then why doesn’t it matter that all it produces are “weasels” who inevitably loose sight of the supposed purpose.”

        1. Goaless sitting doesn’t have a purpose.
        2. In life there are many people that you could describe as being “weasels”, depending upon your definition.
        3. Some people see through their ” weaselness ” , some don’t, just like some people see through their need for attention by trolling boards.
        4. Loosing sight probably isn’t the same as losing sight, but in your reality it might be.
        5. There is no supposed purpose. If you were a ” Zen Buddhist “, you would know that.

        1. Zafu
          Zafu March 17, 2015 at 10:50 am |

          Someone meditates for a long time and has a profound insight into the nature of reality. He or she then decides to try and teach that insight and how to reach it to others. This goes fine for a little while … weasels start running things the original purpose is lost.
          ~ Brad Warner

          Your shepherd believes there is a purpose. Do you dare defy your shepherd? Perhaps there is hope for you.

        2. SamsaricHelicoid
          SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:25 am |

          ” If you were a ” Zen Buddhist “, you would know that.”

          translated into something more intelligible than Fred’s pseudointellectual manner of speaking:

          Caveman : “Ogoo ogoo! You one of us? if no, go!”

  23. Alan Sailer
    Alan Sailer March 17, 2015 at 10:23 am |

    In the movie “Being John Malkovich”the eponymous character was plunged into the ultimate solipsistic universe where all anyone could speak was “Malkovich”.

    Ufaz is caught in a similar nightmare world where the magic word is “meaning”.

    Someone needs to airdrop that poor guy a Thesarus…

    1. Andy
      Andy March 17, 2015 at 10:28 am |

      Yes!

      1. Andy
        Andy March 17, 2015 at 10:28 am |

        Charlie Kaufman is ace.

        1. justlui
          justlui March 17, 2015 at 10:30 am |

          Agreed!

    2. SamsaricHelicoid
      SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:25 am |

      I hated Being John Malkovich.

      1. Mumbles
        Mumbles March 17, 2015 at 5:19 pm |

        And no one cares.

  24. justlui
    justlui March 17, 2015 at 10:25 am |

    Zafu said, “Like all religions, the essential purpose of Zen is to offer meaning. That’s it.”

    That’s a really zen thing to say. A long time ago a supposedly smart fucker warned against mistaking the finger pointing at the moon for the actual moon. So, if I understand your ground breaking thesis here, Zen would be that finger, but not the moon? Is that what you mean?

    If so, then congratulations, that’s some very insightful, original, and totally pioneering shit you are on to, Zafu.

    I mean, Jesus Tap Dancing Christ won’t somebody give Zafu a trophy, and ribbon, and a mother fucking cupcake.

    1. Zafu
      Zafu March 17, 2015 at 10:44 am |

      Moon, God, Gods… it doesn’t matter what you call it, the call back is all the same:

      Ba-a-a-a-a-a-a-a.

      1. Andy
        Andy March 17, 2015 at 10:51 am |

        Is that, like, a sheep laughing, Zaf? I just Baaaaa. And stare.

        1. Zafu
          Zafu March 17, 2015 at 11:10 am |

          The important thing is that you ba-a-a-a in relative unison.

      2. justlui
        justlui March 17, 2015 at 10:56 am |

        Right, I’m just hoping you don’t think you’re breaking new ground here, man. Obviously religion is only to provide meaning. I would argue that meaning creates the day. The name your mom gave you was to provide meaning as well. This is life. So what?

        Anyway, here’s a sticky dab of meaning:

        “Some dead guy, a famous disciple of some 8th-century Chan smarty pants’, was spending a night at a ruined temple with a few traveling companions. It was fiercely cold and no firewood was to be found. Some now old dead guy went to the Buddha-shrine hall, took down the sacred wooden image of the Buddha, and set it ablaze to warm himself. Reproached by his pissed off friends for this act of sacrilege, he said: “Dude, the fuck is up? I was only looking for the sharira (sacred relic) of the Buddha.” “How can you expect to find sharira in a piece of wood?” asked his asshat fellow travelers. Replied some now old dead guy, “Ah, well then, I am only burning a piece of wood after all. Shall we burn a few more?”

        Again, there Cupcake, I am thinking you’re not exactly trailblazing here.

        1. Zafu
          Zafu March 17, 2015 at 11:21 am |

          Let me help you out, Justlui. Buddhism is supposed to end suffering. That’s a essential belief in the religion. If you don’t believe it you’re not a Buddhist so your opinion is of no value.

          So if you care to make a point, find us a story where some old dead guy sets ablaze the four nobel truths (lies).

          We will wait patiently, lol.

          1. justlui
            justlui March 17, 2015 at 11:43 am |

            I am not a buddhist.

            I understand the 4 truths as meaning :O something like this:

            1) Life can really suck.

            2) The will to exist is creates differences when there aren’t any.

            3) Paying attention to this will to exist can help because since you are all playing a painful and dangerous game, you might as well learn to play well.

            4) Don’t be a dick and know yourself and you won’t need any religion, any doctrine, and any practice other than what you already are.

            Basic stuff man. It’s really so basic that it’s more for ancient people who are still excited about the wheel.

            In my zen, buddhism and it’s teachers all get burned to ashes. . . and then I mix those ashes with water and paint murals dedicated to sexy ass Lucy Liu’s freckles.

            😉

          2. justlui
            justlui March 17, 2015 at 11:48 am |
          3. SamsaricHelicoid
            SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 12:32 pm |

            I’m not at all into magick. The stuff about the “will” resembles the philosophical background of magick practices, like chaos magick. I think Schopenhauer, however, is correct when he says practices like Buddhism is more about the denial of the will.

          4. justlui
            justlui March 17, 2015 at 12:43 pm |

            SH,

            Not magick. What I mean by “will” is the assumption of the self. This action. To act. Karma. I think therefore all this stuff.

            🙂

            Again, totally impossible to explain, but it made sense at the time. Made sense…meaning… Oh no, come dis me , Zafu :O

          5. Zafu
            Zafu March 17, 2015 at 1:27 pm |

            come dis me , Zafu

            I haven’t entirely given up hope for a Zen story about dis’n the four noble truths (lies).

  25. The Grand Canyon
    The Grand Canyon March 17, 2015 at 10:48 am |

    The empty ho gives hand jobs.

  26. The Grand Canyon
    The Grand Canyon March 17, 2015 at 10:53 am |

    Words have meanings, life does not.

  27. Alan Sailer
    Alan Sailer March 17, 2015 at 10:57 am |

    A big giant ole’ cupcake frosted with high fructose meaning.

    Cheers.

  28. SamsaricHelicoid
    SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:02 am |

    “If all I did was quote dogen and warner left and right here, i’d be love…

    but guess what… i don’t need your crippled affections or whatever.”

    – That’s why you guys are afraid to be alone. You don’t know what “standing alone with no support” means.

    It’s not about being meaning or meaninglessness.

    1. Andy
      Andy March 17, 2015 at 11:10 am |

      You don’t know what “standing alone with no support” means.

      It means don’t watch any more snuff movies, silly.

      1. SamsaricHelicoid
        SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:33 am |

        I don’t watch snuff films.

        I watch good art-house films like Urga (“Close to Eden”) directed by Nikita Mikhalkov. I recommend watching it. I saw it a few days ago and it is underrated.

        I also saw Malick’s Tree of Life recently. It was good, but I like Tarkovsky more still.

        1. Andy
          Andy March 17, 2015 at 11:36 am |

          Andrey Rublev rules! Three men and a hammer must have been a budget DIY show, then. My apologies.

          1. SamsaricHelicoid
            SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 12:23 pm |

            I watched it when I was younger and it made me sad. That’s why I like people to speak from experience rather than parroting what the teachers say.

            Constantly parroting and imitating the teachers makes it seem like no one has experiences of their own… People feel compelled to do this because they want reassurance of that which they do not know.

  29. SamsaricHelicoid
    SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:07 am |

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_room

    All of you just keep posting quotes left and right like it’s some kind of thing to ground yourselves into it. It’s like a Turing Machine. You THINK you’ve got it, and when someone challenges you, you throw ad hominems and red herrings…

    “If all I did was quote dogen and warner left and right here, i’d be love…

    but guess what… i don’t need your crippled affections or whatever.”

    That’s how shallow and pathetic you all are. None of you have anything special inside… You’re just all machine-like pieces of shit after your own self-interests and impulses. This is just a game for you guys to rationalize your hedonistic like behaviors or so.

    I don’t see any humanity in most of you.

    1. Andy
      Andy March 17, 2015 at 11:17 am |

      I don’t see any humanity in most of you.

      That’s because I’m a sentence. A sentence. A

      Baaa. And stare.

  30. Alan Sailer
    Alan Sailer March 17, 2015 at 11:16 am |

    “Oh, the Humanity”

    Quote from SamaritanHellboy, on witnessing the flaming destruction of the Hardcore Zen comments section.

    1. SamsaricHelicoid
      SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:30 am |

      Over 10-15 million Persians on the Iranian Plateau died from Mongol invasions.

      “Overall, the Mongol violence and depredations killed up to three-fourths of the population of the Iranian Plateau, possibly 10 to 15 million people. Some historians have estimated that Iran’s population did not again reach its pre-Mongol levels until the mid-20th century.

      Source: Steven Ward, Immortal: A Military History of Iran and Its Armed Forces”

      Then Nader Shah was inspired by that with his genocidal campaign in Taj Mahal…

      The same thing happened to the Jews who then waged a genocidal campaign in Palestine.

      One moment you are the persecuted, the next you are the persecutor. The flow of history on the large scale reflects the thought-patterns of individuals on the small-scale.

      Any moment you judge or condemn or justify or others or so forth, you are not in-line with Zen. You are being deluded. Any moment you feel compassion for all suffering beings, without pity, you are in-like with Zen.

      You don’t respond to ignorance with more ignorance. You respond with compassion.

      I tested people to see if they are full of shit or not. Seems they were.

      1. Zafu
        Zafu March 17, 2015 at 11:34 am |

        I tested people to see if they are full of shit or not. Seems they were.

        Wondering what it would take to convince you.

  31. Zafu
    Zafu March 17, 2015 at 11:25 am |

    I don’t see any hemorrhoids in most of you.

    Cuz we shit in a relaxed posture.

  32. Alan Sailer
    Alan Sailer March 17, 2015 at 11:37 am |

    “We’re Number One in Number Two”

    …promotional sign on a septic tank repair truck.

    I suggest that this as the new slogan of the Hardcore Zen comments section.

    Cheers.

  33. SamsaricHelicoid
    SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 11:56 am |

    Alright, it’s time for the Brad/Mumbles/Alan/minkfoot/Fred’s posse (note, I “/” because they are one entity with faces superimposed upon each other) to move onto Brad’s new post. Let this comment section fade into obscurity as you post the same cyclic stuff in the next comment section with different quotations and crap, to perpetuate the constrictive recursive cycle.

    The only reason you’re all doing this is because the quotes just give you reassurance because deep down you realize how you all have no experiences of your own. If you did you could speak spontaneously from your own experience without quoting others and imitating their rhetorical devices when speaking.

    So yeah, continue this process by just leaving this comment section behind as you move onto the next to do the same thing in different clothes over and over and over again. I mean, if you really had experiences of your own, you could just speak from you experience rather than constantly post here in that contrived, cyclical, iterative manner.

    1. mb
      mb March 17, 2015 at 12:01 pm |

      OK SH, see you over there!

  34. SamsaricHelicoid
    SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 12:22 pm |

    The comments sections of this site coalesce into Brad’s one body that breathes in the fractal complexity of constantly quoting self-similar material in a contrived manner. The multidimensional Mumbles/Alan/minkfoot/Fred are inseparable from the motion of Brad’s breathing, being nothing more than an emanation of it, considering this multitudinous, reverberating voice cannot speak from the original, individual insight.

    I’m tired of this Hive Mind that can’t penetrate “itself for what it is”, for it constantly reassures itself in a self-referential and recursive manner, “Once you have deep experience you’ll understand! No need to let go and speak from my own experience out of fear it won’t jibe well with the standard!” Furthermore, whatever doesn’t fit into “the standards of ‘deepness’ in this comments sections, that forms Brad’s one body that breathing in fractal complexity” is admonished and derogated as delusional. Sadly, it can’t understand its circular logic and incapability to become more original, making it more constrictive than boundless. This has to do with the double-standard inherent in the saying, “No-one and think not-thinking,” as people constantly quote more and more to justify it in a myriad of mechanical, parroting ways.

    Just study the patterns and eventually you can computationally model the comments section with Mumbles/Alan/minkfoot/Fred quoting literature, trying to force an alignment of experiences with them, to substantiate what Brad has to say in some shape or form. Whatever can be computationally modeled definitely has some form of support. The perturbations of this system come in the form of outliers such as myself, who are cognizant of their hypocrisies and shallowness whereas the majority are not aware of the rigid, terse nature of it all… misconstruing it as freeing.

    1. SamsaricHelicoid
      SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 12:26 pm |

      At the end what binds the breath is the constant comparison to a certain standard fabricated in people’s minds, hence why one aspect of Brad’s multitudinous voice called “Mumbles” likes to reference “being remembered” and “the squeaking of a lame squirrel caught in it’s own trap” as a way to filter out what doesn’t unify with the comments sections here that coalesce into the fractal complexity of Brad’s one breath. All one hive mind that limits itself ultimately.

      1. SamsaricHelicoid
        SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 2:04 pm |

        For example, here is how I would go about creating an analogous computer program for the comments sections of Brad’s posts.

        The babble that constitutes these comments sections are like a B6 polytope. It all weakly emerges from the One Voice of Brad. If I were to create a database of everything Brad has said, I could show how the properties of what Mumbles/Alan/minkfoot/Fred say are deducible in principle from the patterns of what Brad babbles about.

        “The high-level phenomenon (i.e., Brad’s inseparable Mumbles/Alan/minkfoot/Fred form) is weakly emergent with respect to a low-level domain (i.e., Brad’s thoughts and opinions as a whole) when the high-level phenomenon arises from the low-level domain, and truths concerning that phenomenon are unexpected, but STILL DEDUCIBLE, given the principles governing the low-level domain.”

        So there is no strong emergence here because in strong emergence high-level phenomenon are not deducible given the principles governing the low-level domain.

        Ultimately, this is one multidimensional babble wherein Brad’s breath gives rise to self-similar voices that are nearly indistinguishable from it. People simply give quotes left and right to substantiate this and that because there is little to no original thought based off personal experiences. It iterates over and over again in an unexpected but still unoriginal manner. It’s like looking into the mirror that reflects “Mumbles/Alan/minkfoot/Fred” but finding nothing but Brad, Brad, Brad, and Brad!

        Therefore, it can all be algorithmically modeled based off the recursion of Brad’s voice and the accompanying Dharmic literature that supplements it.

        I can add a variable that unexpectedly perturbs the system, but when the system is perturbed, it goes back into its cyclical, self-referential mode of sucking Brad’s dick.

        Don’t think you can fool me with your pretensions of deepness, you shallow bastards.

        1. Fred
          Fred March 17, 2015 at 2:23 pm |

          Can’t you just take your meds like a good boy.

          1. SamsaricHelicoid
            SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 3:01 pm |

            As you can see, the system has been perturbed by an outlier, that is “me”, and therefore, Fred responds in a condescending, abusive way by telling me to take meds “like a good boy”.

            Once the system [of these retarded comments] is perturbed, the superficial underpinnings of it are revealed, then it responds with diatribe in order to force the system back into its initial mode of unoriginal contrived nonsense. No real new dialectical possibilities are considered as the constant quoting of this and that reiterates. No real comments originating from personal insight emerge.

            “Trolls” are simply those who do not given into the one multitudinous voice of Brad that represents manifests itself as “Mumbles/Alan/minkfoot/Fred”. There are no discrete moments in this system, just an indivisible and stupid flow. Brad’s Voice is in truth, non-differentiable, the signature of it existing in the singular entity “Mumbles/Alan/minkfoot/Fred”.

            What a remarkable multidimensional nonconscious organism to study!

          2. Mumbles
            Mumbles March 17, 2015 at 4:51 pm |

            The sputterings of a rat vomiting in Plato’s Cave.

          3. SamsaricHelicoid
            SamsaricHelicoid March 17, 2015 at 5:28 pm |

            Stop insulting rats, Mumbles.

            I can tell you a rat is far nobler than most humans. I’ve had to decapitate them for lab, and it was very traumatizing.

            That’s what pisses me off about you: your constant comparisons to a fabricated standard.

            The fact you even view rats as lesser makes you a piece of shit.

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