Friday, September 28, 2007

A Space for Q&A

Black cushion at bottom right is the main place I have been asking questions on Fukan-zazengi every day for the past 12 years, since moving to Aylesbury.

Answers run from right to left along the top.

Are there any questions?


Blogger HezB said...

Yes, did you get that mirror in Ikea?

Its very nice.

Does it conform to the famous mirror principle?



10:05 AM  
Blogger Mike Cross said...

Hello Harry,

When I see and criticize in another a tendency which I don’t wish to see in myself, at the root of my behaviour is the fear of being wrong in myself, which is invariably associated with trying to be right. Top of the list of things I see and criticize in the mirror of others’ behaviour is.... you guessed it: unconscious striving for ends, irrespective of whether the means are wholesome or not -- for short, “end-gaining.”

One of several relevant teachings in Fukan-zazengi might be ZEN AKU OMOWAZU, ZEHI KANSURU KOTO NAKARE “Don’t think good, bad. Don’t care right, wrong.” I will post up photos of these original characters in the next few days.

Marjory Barlow thought that it was a good practice to look at oneself in a mirror -- just to observe, without passing judgement, not accommodating the desire for one’s face or body to be more symmetrical or otherwise different from how they are, refusing to make fiddly postural adjustments, not going down the false path of self-arrangment. It is the same kind of practice as just knowing that a long breath is long, and just knowing that a short breath is short. It is a very simple non-endgaining practice, but one that is not at all easy. The difficulty lies with the insidious nature of end-gaining.

The mirror in the photo is not from Ikea; it cost about £20 from a discount shop in Aylesbury town centre.

4:20 PM  

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