Gazing at a Tree for Ten Eons

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A virtual Dharma talk by Tenshin Roshi for an online gathering of the No Abode Community.

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much the teacher
okay i
i am ah
have been invited to
offer teachings at the time
when we usually have january intensive
i bring out
nineteen and she's missed two thousand
twenty one and
i said okay so we're going to have a kind of teaching intensive
it will be very different from in the past when people came to green gulch
came down into the valley and sat
through the storms and the cold and dark together
so now we're going to offer an online teaching intensive
the focus of the practice and study that i'm offering is the lotus sutra
the wondrous dharma lotus flower sutra
the dharma pondering kasich
so since
i am committing to that focus i have been renewing my study and meditation and contemplation of the lotus sutra

in this process
i have come to consider chapter seven i have the lotus sutra
and day
i thought i might talk to you about
some of the inspirations and perspectives that have arisen in my body and mind about chapter seven
of the lotus sutra
the name of the chapter in the translation
from sanskrit to chinese to english is the magical city
or the conjured city

if i go through on
i can go through this beginning of this chapter
i just go through and try not to comment on it as i do
i'm thinking that would really be hard for me
cause i would be inspired to comment as i go but i'm gonna try to tell you the beginning of the chapter
i'm going to not only try to tell you the beginning of the chapter
but i think i would recommend if you want to you could start reading the lotus sutra if you'd like to participate in the january teaching intensive
today i i will i don't think it's practical for me to go through the whole chapter
seven as a matter of fact i don't think it's practical
for me to even go through in detail the beginning so i'm going to give you like a children's version of the beginning of chapter seven

on the chat which we did at the beginning as we were doing it i thought
both surprisingly and unsurprisingly how relevant the champ that i chanted at the beginning how relevant it is to the lotus sutra
so again i'm not surprised because every time i chant that it's always relevant to whatever i'm planning on talking about and yet i'm still surprised how relevant it is everything i'm gonna talk about

and now i i feel like i should restrain myself i'm getting i'm getting kind of inspired now and so on a calm down reb don't get to inspire inspired about this
but the beginning of the chant
that i did earlier was i vow from this life on through countless life to hear the true dharma
of course that applies to the lotus sutra
i vow to hear the true dharma of the loudest cetera

so here's chapter seven in the the children's version okay ready once upon a time
there was a buddha
great penetrating wisdom excellence

since then buddha passed into extinction
since that buddha passed into complete nirvana
a very long time has passed
and then in the sejarah it goes into

gritty detail on how long ago it was that the buddha that this buddha
passed into nirvana
so part of what the suit to starts are doing is inviting the reader or the writer or the chanter to go into
but do i don't know what they call it he could say mind boggling our mind expanding investigation of
so the beginning of this of the sutra shakyamuni buddha's talking and this shockey money's not the historical shockey money
but you could say the bliss body shockey money
which i'll talk about more
also called sometimes the cosmic shakyamuni buddha is telling us about this
this ancient buddha named
great penetrating wisdom excellence
who lived such a long time ago
now that i'm telling you about this i'm not going to go into the details of telling you how long ago but basically
almost infinite distance in the past this buddha lived
and if you read the sutra reading it might help you sort of like
i mean
yeah if you read it you might have trouble i'm i i would have trouble and i did have trouble reading through the description of how long ago it was
some of us might even give up reading how long ago it was because it takes so long to read how long ago it was
but that's part of what to search is doing is saying initiate yourself by reading this inconceivable language this language of the inconceivable
so then after describing this inconceivable time since this buddha lived then shakyamuni buddha says
he lived such a long time ago but
so here's the kind of them went in some sense the what got them the punch line
he lived so long ago but
this is the setup for shocked and many buddhas little joke but
because i employ
the great function
of the to togheter
when i look
at this buddha
it's as though
i were witnessing this buddha right now
once again he tells us it has been a virtually inconceivably long time
since that buddha passed into
but because i'm a buddha i used the buddhist powers and when i look i can actually look at that buddha who lives a long ago as though i'm witnessing him enter nirvana right now

one of the
qualities of the bodhisattva path
is that it involves
practicing in a way so that we can actually see the ancient buddha's as though they were here right now

and then
shakyamuni buddha goes on to say that this buddha this ancient buddha
who he can see right now

lived a very long time
so he lived a very long time ago and he lived a very long time

and now it comes to the part of the search of that has recently
inspired me so much which is
that it says
this buddha originally sat
on the place of enlightenment
and then says after a one try to translate some translations say after smashing the armies of mara

and the word smashing his is rather on
kind of violent
we could say that of smashing like it may be a little bit and say after subduing
the armies of mara

samarra is
sometimes considered that the head of all the various deadening forces
of our life mars related to to the word marana
so mars the the leader of the deadening forces of
of life

all the ways that living beings not just humans but all the ways that living beings deaden their life
he had subdued them
this buddha had subdued him
and the chat i did earlier i said dumb

i said
i took i chanted that after meeting
the true dharma we will renounce worldly affairs
worldly affairs
our the deadening influences of our life the way their the ways we distract ourselves
from the practice
and in particular for this buddha they are the ways the distractions from sitting on the seat of enlightenment

so again this buddha lived a really long time a really long time ago a shocking when buddha tells us
and he originally sat on
the seat the place of enlightenment
all his just all distractions from sitting on the seat of enlightenment
or another way to put it would be
this ancient buddha
just set
at the place of enlightenment
after subduing
all distractions
sitting at that place and again another way to say it is he sat on that place after turning all distractions
from sitting at that place into opportunities to sit at that place

turning distractions from his from the practice of sitting at the place of enlightenment into opportunities to remember and sit at the place of enlightenment
in this situation
worldly affairs the deadening influences represented by mara
are the ways we
our distract him from sitting like this buddha on the seat of enlightenment
so this buddhas in this buddhist long life is buddha handle managed to not be distracted anymore from where she was
and she sat there
but this isn't the end of the story

here we have now the buddhist sitting undistracted lee at this place of enlightenment

and then
celestial beings come and offer him
a seat upgrade
i keep he was sitting at the place of enlightenment but it was kind of coach class i guess
so then they offered him a first class seat of enlightenment and he accepted the gift and sat on the lion throne on the seat on the place of awakening

then another group of celestial beings
started to rain celestial flowers down on him
and then another group started to play celestial drums started beating celestial drums in honor of his sitting at this place of awakening
and they continued this these flower offerings and these musical offerings
for the rest of his existence all the way to his complete perfect nirvana

now this buddha sitting at the seat he was sitting there and he was he had gotten over all kinds of distractions
he had given up all worldly affairs
but the buddha dharma had still not appeared to him
and because the buddha dharma did not appear to him he
did not realize unsurpassed complete perfect enlightenment
on utara some york somebody it did not realize it
because the dharma of the burden is did not appear even though he had come this far and was sitting in the place he should sit
but he can even though it hadn't appeared he continued to practice
and he practiced sitting there for ten i don't know why they say it but ten minor culpas now culprit is an eon
a very long time but he sat for ten minor yeah aeons not ten big ones are ten little he hands he sat there on this seat upright
fossil i good
an unmoving
and i was talking to someone about this story who's read it and he said it took him i think it took him so long
i think he had to sit for ten yards because these deities were you know distracting him and hassling him with all these offerings
and i thought yeah right

after we sit on the seat of enlightenment
and are not distracted
by any worldly things
then we get a whole new set of distractions offered us by divine forces
in the form of praising us an honoring us
so once was sitting at this seat
totally dedicated to it then we enter into a long period
of being tested by basically the whole universe
offering us opportunities to continue to sit

and i've just briefly mentioned that he did sit for ten yards with this with these celestial distractions being poured upon him and sung to him and drum to him and after ten years
he did finally
the buddha dharma appearing before him and he did realize
ah utara samyang somebody
and that was the breviary did version of the first chapter of the beginning of the for of chapter seven

what i like to emphasize is now back at the seat
to see how this seat is our practice right now
this sutra this dory in this sutra
who is the story being told to for whom is the story being told
i would suggest that the stories being told for us to us and for us what does this have to do with our life now

i guess what i'm suggesting to you at this point to make a long story short and i hear this sutra telling us
that there is not the slightest gap
between that buddha
inconceivably long ago
sitting on that seat
and each of us right now

are sitting right now
is not the slightest bit separate from that ancient buddhist sitting

and everything that comes to us
sitting on this seat we could understand as

celestial flowers falling upon us
to encourage us
to sit
with that buddha
the buddha dharma and great awakening

i see this beginning of this chapter telling us
that we are sitting at that seat
that the practice of the suitors telling us is that we have the same practice
and the same awakening
as that buddha
and all buddhas and all living beings
we have the same practice as all the other living beings who are sitting
at the place of awakening

and as we sit in this place of awakening
we are challenged
by the celestial flowers falling on us
we are challenged by the drumbeat
of this world

challenge to remember that we are on the same path and the same practice as all buddhas
no matter what's happening
we're at this seat no matter what we're doing
we're at this seat
no matter what we see we are at the seat no matter what we here we are at this seat no matter what we are told no matter what we are asked we are at this seat
we are be we are inspired to accept this seat which is where we already are
and realize that everything that happens is reminding us to do the practice of the buddha's
which is to sit like this even for a long time
even though we are on the path which is the same as the buddha the buddhist path is to continue to sit there for a long time
but we are already sitting at the seat with the buddha's
so that's ah
the beginning of chapter seven the story about the magical city is a towards the end of the fascicle
and someday we may get there
and the i could briefly mentioned that the magical city is kind of up
offered to people who
i might feel tired at the prospect of sitting at the seat for ten yards
in our chance
the call the the precious mere samadhi or the jewel mere samadi in that chant one of the line says when about to attain buddhahood one gazed at a tree for ten aeons
that's a
that's referring to this story
when about to attain buddhahood one gazed to a treat for ten aeons like a tiger leaving part of its prey
like a horse with up
white left
leg and our translation is
like i like a wounded tiger like a shoeless horse

can you hear me i i think i made a booboo
well we we can hear you can hear me i have to i accidentally pressed a button which made me am
there are not nine back so
i'm ready for you to respond to this story if you wish

eileen could you call on people lived a if they wish to speak

grab your phone is called is co-hosting and on people
linda h at the end
yeah i no i don't see my so i see you there you will price like this year linda you disappeared for a while but how
that's that was that okay that's interesting
to add to disappear happens too rarely
so i want to ask you if thought in our praise and adoration of you were distracting you from receiving
the true with dharma
yeah well i guess i would say yeah sometimes but sometimes i don't fall for it and i don't get distracted
but if you praise me being praised or blamed both could be
opportunities to remember your job or you could fall into them and like say why don't deserve that right or thank you so praise is another thing which can make you not make you which you can missed as an opportunity to remember your real job
and and also from this story i can check when i have an impulse to to praise you adore you are throw flowers at yourself some thing like that i can check actually what am i actually doing
yeah i think i think i'll throw some flowers out and see if you hate how he does with them
yeah that would that would be just for fun but i didn't know you asked me a question yeah like that your question is is i mean that's like a high-quality celestial flower for me
and then do it and then you can watch how do i handle that and i can watch how do i handle your question so all the questions that come to us all the inquiries are coming to us sitting on this seat
and can we remember and say basically thanks for the question
you reminded me of my work thank you yeah
okay that was fun that was fun

and that inadequate your questions are like to know you playing the dharma drum to entertain yourself and every all beings while your questions are boom boom boom let's play the dharma drum
next is gray stolen
good grace
i read agrees
the way i look at entertainment do look at entertainment as being kind of candy to sustain us during what would otherwise be considered bleak times
i was just trying to get the suit to down
well thank you thank you for that dharma drunk dagomb a flower and
in a way this the name of this chapter could be called
dharma candy
the magical city at which has brought with the buddha conjures is like candy for the for the for the students who will need to take a break
this this magical city is to take a break
the buddha does offer as break time sometimes in this incredibly challenging work right but he offers that when people are going like i just can't sit on the seat anymore to okay then he makes his magical city and they go ah and they rest the say okay you arrested and then
the way so sometimes we do need a break we do need dharma candy as part of the deal as part of what this chapters about so chapter starts with telling us this is our practice and that the and he starts people start complaining is too hard and then buddhist as okay then he makes his
fast too fabulous city everybody goes in rest as a okay you're rested takes it away and everybody goes back to work again
so thank your question anticipated the the finale of the chapter
thank you
next is enrique valdivia
okay enrique
good morning good morning afternoon here i couldn't see your earlier and weekend because your picture was a
your name was blocked off and i couldn't see who now i see who it is you look like you're in in the colosseum in rome
it's the background from her address book where is it the background it's at a temple and of bhutan yeah it looks like your yeah in a temple okay enrique
i'm having trouble renouncing worldly affairs and i've been lost and distraction witches
strange because and are due to kobe do not handsome
health issues i'm not working
it seems like i doubt i shouldn't be distracted you know i don't regard for the house there's not a whole lot going on but find the opposite is happening and and hearing the story hours
i'm wondering is it
am i am i ever see any way even though i'm feeling distracted your i'd i read this story is saying we are all on the seat with the buddha there's not any separation between that buddha and us right now however if when we feel distracted that's why i said the chance to big
getting resonates here if we do feel distracted
we haven't yet fear if we can understand we can't believe and understand that we're already at deceit than we should confess and repent and we don't believe it that we think we're distracted rather than is distraction as reminding us of where we are
like i i often tell the story one of the popular stories i tell which i'm allowed to tell is my story of going to the dmv several years ago and this is going to the dmv like the third time
to get my new license because of various troubles i ran into of dmv losing my license in the mail etc etc
so my third trip to dmv i'm waiting in line and
i a woman way ahead of me in line calls out to me and says rabbi i i say oh i see all high and she leads her place in line ahead of me and cut her on a first of all she said come on up you can see you can be behind me
and i i don't accept her gift so she gives up her seat and comes to talk to me and she says how are you and i say
fine except i'm a dmv again
just what do you mean to well and i tell her the story
which i know it's almost as long as the lotus sutra than a story that i went through to
the dmv this third time and everything between the three times that i went through and now here i am again and she said that she looked at me she said
you're here in dmv for us
so i i was distracted i forgot where that i was sitting at the seat i thought i was being distracted by being in line at the dmv rather than sitting on the lion throne with the all the buddhas and with all beings i got distracted and she reminded me
so but i had to confess i'm distracted i'm i'm not having a good time at dmv i'm not sitting on the seat i had to confess them so she could tell me to so the buddha in the form of this woman could remind me what i'm a dmv for
when you're at the dmv you're there to sit on that seat when yesterday when i was waiting in the drive through at the pharmacy
and the person front of me was sitting in their car at the window for ten minor culpas
i got a chance to remember what i'm sitting in that car for
the sutra came to me and said you're sitting at the seat of awakening in this car waiting to get your pick up your your prescription
and i practiced sitting at that seat
waiting for the nick carr to move and let me come and pick up the prescription
we're always at the but if but if i hadn't if in that case and but in that case i didn't i didn't get distracted i said before i drove up there i was already working on this because i was planning to talk to you about this practice so i've that is driving their i as i was driving there it was the same
you drive to the pharmacy
sitting at the seat
you're right your postcards to encourage people to vote but you're sitting at the seat while you're right the postcards you fill out your ballot and you'd take it to the drop off box but as you're doing these things you don't move from your seat
but if you do move from your seat then you say oh i forgot my seat i forgot that i met the dmv for all beings and i'm sorry and then you practice than your back and then i was back i was back doing my job at the dmv
i was there for all the other people waiting in line
so but i had to confess so she could remind me and you're confessing so i can remind you that all these times when you're distracted
you're there for us
you're there to remember that you're there for us

so this practice is also about patients receive outskirts competition it's about generosity it's about ethics and patients and enthusiasm and tranquility and wisdom is to bought all those practices
and that buddha had been doing those practices and certain that seat however we are sitting in the same seat even though sometimes we seem to have to
apparently the remedial work but it's not really a remedial work it's done at the seat
the lotus sutra saying you don't have to wait to get on the seat you're already on the seat however sometimes when the some celestial flowers
navy our little rotten
maybe sometimes feel like people are throwing compost on you have
but you're sitting at the seat and your job is to continue sitting there no matter what's being offered to you
we all want you to do that
and if you say no thank you add alarming more followers that is another
opportunity to sit at the seat
at your question
next is coma a home i please i need yourself when you're ready to ask

good morning
the morning
thank you for teaching first i said you're teaching but i took the you're out and just teaching thank you for teaching

if i have a hard time ah
to bring bring my thoughts my feelings my emotion into words
because i hear everything you say
same time of hearing
egypt to what i hear i moved to what i hear as though what i hear is beyond
capacity of beak
so the offering of the teaching
what i hear is beyond me
and as long as i haven't me which i call that distraction and the me is my thoughts my feelings my emotions everything everything you talk about it so therefore as long as there's than me
this enlightenment is not in the realm of possibility and i question that why is this me
cece impossibility
know why is this me which is impossibility wants to see what is beyond its own self
that's the question
why is the impossibility
the impossibility
is sitting at the seat of awakening
and that impossibility sitting at the cedars awakening is not the least bit separate from the buddha sitting at the seat of awakening
the impossibility is the same practice
as the buddha
sitting at the
at the inconceivable impossible seat
and the lotus sutra i asked somebody to research for me the lotus sutra says i think ten times in the sutras says this teaching is most difficult to believe and understand
and the
and this very difficult to believe teaching
when you feel that difficulty or the impossibility of this teacher when you feel at that moment
you are the same practice and the same awakening as this inconceivable awaken
so that's there and if you if you fidget
you can confess you're fidgeting but also remember that the fidgeting is at the seat
of awakening
the fidgeting actually beat a seat
the fidgeting itself can that be the seat this is a you could say you get that it is the ceo you can sit your seat can be the fidgeting yes yeah yeah that if i could find that the fidgeting you're if you're fidgeting that you and your at the seat yeah
i that's what i feel that's what i i feel it's it helps my practice to be the fidgety and be that seat of the yes be the fidgeting and and let that fidgeting sit at the seat
because it is the seat yes yes the opportunity
to join that buddhist practice thank you thank you open
next is a showman please i meet yourself

everything you say something your picture on a lot cooking
so i hear this was so much joy and
the year that the access to the
i'm awakened state to the enlightenment as are already here ah not mine but here is just great because a i have a lot of distraction in a in mobile world and or this makes that distraction
better than anything because it has so much love and vibration and
our freedom and so this is great this is so great and i'm startled by am
the last practice we were going through together was about homage though we were paying so much homage to the borders and i'm just struck with these flowers remaining down our own homage like we we're if it's now do we are bowing to the buddhist and the borders are saying and we're here
with you so it's a feeling of like arriving at ah at where we've always been anyway i don't know i don't have any questions so much as just to tell you how important this teaching is to me
i hear you
and i just read that chapter and i got none of what you're telling me from it so it's very clear to me that i need an interpreter in the form of a teacher to like start a spoon feed this is what this is saying are you hearing it
thank you
i am i went to the university of minnesota for quite a long time not an eel but pretty long
i went to a humanities class
taught by a poet
named john berryman
kind of like
amazing being he was so
sensitive at the end of the at at the end of each class when the bell went off he would hear almost he would almost
a guy he gets so shocked by the bell
when he was reading were you we were really don quixote
and so he actually opened the book and read it and here's how ah here's how i remember the beginning of don quixote
in the region of la mancha
there lived a certain gentleman
rather over forty
and john berryman
screamed did you hear that seventies isn't telling us how old he is
and i thought
yeah i didn't really notice that
i didn't really notice that he wasn't gonna tell us how old don quixote was
but the fact that he would see that as like that was like being at the dharma seat
how come i didn't stop and say he's not telling us
he's not telling us how old he is he's intentionally not telling us
and so yeah we do need somebody who's lived with the the searcher for forty years longer than we have a fifty years longer it does help to have somebody who struggle with some text for decades and decades some you know their devotion to the text is
a resource to us so
ah yeah and i will tell stories about my struggles with the lotus sutra and i'm looking at linda i struggle with linda in the largest to do we've we've worked with the suture we've had problems with the sutra you know he's gonna lie it's it's um it's a mess
and so is our life
in our life is not the least bit different from the buddhist sitting on the seat
of awakening
thank you
max is jeffrey lewis and please on meet yourself
i read it's actually me it's not every town you potter young yes judge barbara john and
so in this story the buddha his first ah faces mara and subdues mara how a we know
the i feel a mara is what i face being in the world of
whatever mara may be all of it's presented what's the difference between mara and the flowers and deities i mean maybe
what i had is maybe it's the a like accolades and praise that come with time in agents success in in whatever it is we offer the world but but can you talk to that difference a little bit bigger
cause i feel the oh was so grateful to hear
that these are opportunities that so helpful to be reminded that the distractions which abound are opportunities to combine to recognize being in his seat and so there is my question if you would address that treats and give
re your question
so i would say basically
the the forces of destruction
are not really any different from the celestial flowers
it's just that after you relate to the distractions
and subdue them with love and kindness and sit on the seat then the sick when the same thing comes is like celestial flowers
so before we can really meet all distractions with loving kindness and compassion
that's what makes him distractions if something comes
you know if some
deadening force comes to us and we meet it with loving kindness it's not as successful distraction
it's actually a reminded it was a stimulus for us to respond properly to
however if we feel that when something comes we do not meet it with practice
then in a sense is a successful mara it's a successful distraction
however even while we're still not recognizing that all the distractions are really opportunities even though we miss some of them
i'm saying that the sutra i hear the suture zone we're already sitting at the seat anyway because we're not the least bit different from the ones who we've worked through all these forces and met them with kindness and are no longer distracted by them as soon as we're no longer distracted
we're sitting at the seat but if we feel distracted than we feel like we're not in the seat
sutures not only saying that when you are no longer distracted you're sitting at the seat but even while you're distracted you're still not different from the one who is sitting on the seat
and after you sit on the seat and the same kind of stuff or keep coming it just now is like celestial flowers because it's like well here's another opportunity to not be distracted from the seat oh lovely another opportunity to not be distracted another opportunity for comes
fashion another opportunity for patients another opportunity for ethics another opportunity for justice
but before a certain level of training we feel we kept we can't do that so then we practice with those but even so we're already on the seat we just can't believe it because we haven't learned how to deal with this with these visitors
these these mirrors
i was written up a difference but yeah the difference in how how we interpret the distraction at how to respond yes the difference and but you can see that is what once you learn how to interpret it then there's no difference i have before you
learn how goes looking at the seat is what i'm saying yeah thank you and i'm not the suture does not make that point
at the the suitor does not saying the beginning of the chapter you're sitting at that seat
i'm saying it before it's too late and i've never speed
the same practice as that buddha who has done all that work
of working through all those mars and coming to the seat near the city you're not to bliss bit different from that buddha
one of the great things i learned from your teachings rabbit is to include with it a sense of humor so ah thank you it's not too late to as far as i can feel i'm learning a great deal all these distractions
i really just a setup for the punchline but they're not distractions now
but yeah if you know if you skip over the to set up you know it's not going to be funny
it just a setup you have to feel the setup the setup is not funny
yeah i mean suddenly you see all it is funny
but you have to feel that is not funny
this word the situation rune is not funny we have to feel that right now it's so not funny it's so
you know
not funny
it's really serious and we have to look at how serious it is in order to realize what is here to help us realize so we can show other people this
next is linda cats
thank you ramp her on this morning stock i have a question about
in the story
you said he he sat for all those incalculable aeons and and didn't and the buddha dhamma didn't come to him as out is that what she said
oh i don't understand what that means exactly he was sitting in a seat he was practicing how was it that buddha dharma
what what what was missing
thank you linda you just brought up a on
okay so beef a i just want to make one small point linda which is
that he didn't sit for incalculable aeons at the salt just small m is can small yes i mean even a small yan's incalculable but now wants out for ten incalculable small incalculable so he's spitting and okay all right so he's sitting there and we have that store
he's in the lotus sutra okay and then we have this country called china and in china there was this school called zoom right or chong yes and in that
and so one day
and this is chap this is a case number nine of the game this gate
a monk comes to the teacher and says
great penetrating wisdom excellence to togheter sad for ten yards and the dharma did not appear before him
what's going on with that
and the zen teacher says your direction of your question points directly at the point is right to the point so thank you linda you just enacted the first part of that coin
how come why didn't it
and the answer is your question goes right to the point
then the monk says again say it again linda
how is it better he sat for ten cat small yams and the buddha dharma didn't didn't come to him on teacher yeah that's the second line of the story we just did it again quite naturally right and the teacher says
because he sat for ten yards and the dharma did not manifest before him

that's the on that's it that's it
and rich and a we we will study that call on
but i feel like it's it's a little victim so there it is you guys could you're welcome to look it up and let's talk about that con after you've studied to gone on again the call on is the monk comes and says
great penetrating wisdom excellence to target to set for ten yards but the dharma did not appear to him how come
why not and the teachers of that's right to the point
and then he says again
that buddhist sad for ten aeons but the dharma didn't appear before him how come and the buddha says amid the teacher says
he didn't he didn't say on t cell him because he said
the buddha sat
for ten yards and the diamond didn't appear to him that's why
and it that reminded me when i read that recently people said just as accuracy why do we have seven day sessions and secure as she said because we go one two three four five six seven

right now i feel like the teacher's answer was
to just set it a seat
and to accept the celestial flower of the students' questions
and to respond twice to to questions that's sitting at the seat
is that why you don't don't answer why questions because it's not the point
right i've changed on i'm answering my questions
it's a new aeon
now now why questions are the point
but if i hadn't spent eons not answering why questions it wouldn't be funny now that i'm answering them again
thank you linda for thank you me up the the you bring up why this story is a zen koan
this is one of the this is a lotus sutra story that it became a zen koan
thank you very much were very welcome thank you for bringing this uncommon
without even know your brain is and gone
next is angela nielsen

angela please remove yourself in your race
thank you iran
i get i guess i'm hearing a lot of gratitude
ah the sharing today and
i'm feeling truly great fall
i'm in it helps me to accept this seat
and all the deadening forces that i'm encountering
i think i heard you say that in the lotus sutra shocking and good i am says but because i employ
the great function of the to target town it's as though i'm witnessing that
i'm witnessing that bhutto right now
and when i heard that
it was a relief
i felt on
i felt an opening to this reappearing feeling
that i sat with of em separateness isolation

so thank you for sitting with
great song

and in the in chapter sixteen of the lotus sutra me
ah the buddha said those who practice all virtues
and are
flexible harmonious honest and upright
we'll see me teaching right now
but i draw our attention to them
the first part of that statement witches those who practice all virtues
and i would expand that to say those who practice virtues all virtues with what you just brought up
practice all virtues with a feeling of isolation practice all virtues with the feeling of inferiority
yoga is angie in referring to that statement practice all virtues he says that means to enter the mud and water for the sake of all beings
so if you enter the mud and water of your own all your feelings whatever they are
and you practice being flexible
harmonious upright and honest you will see the buddha right before you now and you will realize you're at the seat
we don't skip over these feelings
we practice virtues with we practiced the all virtues with all these difficult muddy feelings
thank you
next stop tillman and isabel
yes thank you are ready for this talk and you understand me
i did
good next are huge
so i have a question about another story ah which comes to my mind
and the story i think contains the line
i think present teacher probably who says something like don't let the sutra upset you should be you who upsets the sutra something like this
well that's interesting translation i appreciate that that i hadn't heard that transaction before another translation was
don't he would work which could be don't let the suit your turn you you turn the sutra
and another translation is when you're deluded the searcher turns you when you're awakened you turn the sutra
so those are three different renditions of the story it's it's as it's from his own story yeah so how does this so i guess it applies also to the flowers sent to all kinds of it distractions i don't know that store-bought at least
i understood from that story that
everything is sort of the sutra to us or we can see it as that so yeah it's a wonder i'm in the first part are kind of understand we we shouldn't sort of get really distracted by all those things but i mean that's what what i hear you say today or here there's no to such as a little that we shouldn't
really get distracted by the distractions so we shouldn't be upset or turned by them
but now i don't understand the other parts like why do we then turn them or upset them instead
oh okay so on
may i say that your use of the word shouldn't
is a tillman a variation on the story ah yes
however when you say shouldn't shouldn't is an opportunity for you and i to practice all virtues
hmm shouldn't shouldn't some perfectly good opportunity to remember our job to sit at the seat
so another way to say it is not so much shouldn't it just as detritus of its kind of like the ancient teacher the ancients and teacher didn't say shouldn't he said when you're deluded you don't get when you're deluded you get turned by so when you're deluded you could turn by the word shh
when you're deluded you get turned by the words of the lotus sutra they termed when you're deluded you read chapter seven and like when i when i read shut when undiluted and a read chapter seven if the list of if if the description of how long has been going on ah you know
round if i get scared of and i'm wasting my life reading about all this time
and i'm being turned the sutras turning me this was just turning me the searchers teaching me that i'm deluded
because it's turning me i don't realize when i'm deluded i'm turning the sutra i think it's turning me i think it's bugging me i think it's going on too long about how long has been going on
so that's when i'm deluded the suit to turn me
but doesn't say the zen teacher who said that didn't say don't be that way just realized that when the searchers turning you you're just you're playing the delusion role
but it's not too late you can go wrong safe and i'm going to turn the sutra
i'm gonna i'm gonna turn the dharma the sutra
what does it mean i didn't i don't know what that means to turn the sutra i mean
when i got some it means that you don't get turn by what you just said
you turn what you just said
you don't get turn by the with the sutra said you you turn what the searcher said it's not it doing to you it's you doing it
in other words you turn it changed positions you go from enlightenment from delusion to enlightenment
you realize that the situation i've been to of being influenced and turned by the sutra
is an opportunity to remember that you're at the seat
and when you remember that you at to see you just turn the suture because the sutured just told you that but now you do it rather than having a being done to you
so on i feel so current by you
an actress or by your words are meme
yeah i know yet what with that i guess what you'll you'll turn by my words okay
so that's delusion that your turn by my words
but that's not the end of the story
now you can turn them go ahead turn them
i can't i can turn them maybe i do i don't know that okay let enlightenment burn them let enlightenment turn them
i'll do that happen enlightenment turns your being turned into an opportunity to remember that you're sitting at the seat right now
these words that are influencing you are turning you are now opportunities to realize that
your practice right now is at the seat
with the buddha's
when that happens that's enlightenment
but they're turning on each other
it isn't like we shouldn't be the deluded it's that
we sit on the seat with the delusion and we realize that the delusion is never separate from the enlightenment and that's
turning the sutra
that's turning to teaching
the teaching supposed to be turned enlightenment turns it
but when is turning delusion can get pushed around
a when rulers and gets pushed around that's the turning of the dharma
so now
the enlightenment back on the job again
thank you then helped a lot
really does your right
next up is tracey apple
morning an early morning
from the muddy waters over here
i'm when whenever there's gonna be a talk i'm so excited night kind of can't wait when it comes and then you say things that i don't understand some and then i feel embarrassed ah ashamed and then i like
i'm i'm ashamed to ask the questions and public every single time because i keep thinking what we do that if you have spacing lacks of understanding so that's the confession part i just wanted to say so far it's happened almost every single time and it happened again today
thinking i really shouldn't have such basic questions so here's my basic question
soon as we start talking you you mentioned the word seven submerged in the things of the world i immediately
do i freeze do i think oh i'm an imposter i don't belong and zen i am engaged in the things in the world i thought i was posted a thought i'm supposed to be engaging with you know everything that's right here so
and then i think what you know i didn't say i'm not a monastics so aren't exposed to engage in the things in world
so then we went on with the talk today and i'm i hear you talk and everyone else talking back distractions and i can understand distractions and i can i think again and understand the flowers i just don't know what to do with submerged by the things or animals it's buyer and the things of the world
what does that mean what is yeah that's my question what is submerged by the things of the world mean as opposed to distraction
how did this to terms differ
i think they're basically the same
one really i i just think that they're basically the same however
i just a moment ago i quoted
the lotus sutra dog organs comment which is
in the lord suture when it says pratt those who practice all virtues and dog and comment is
that means walking in the mud and water for the wealth for the sake of living beings so
submerged and worldly affairs distractions of field of distractions and worldly affairs so
erie in subject we really should maybe not say distract did rather than distract tions being distract did and being submerged in worldly affairs okay
we should those who walk into that distraction
those who walk into the muddy water of worldly affairs
and practice virtue with those distractions with being distracted with being distract with being submerged those who practice virtues with being dispersed do submerged
they those people those are the people who are sitting at the seat
so what what we're trying what i'm trying to inspire us to do is to set at the seat and and walk into the this being distracted walk into being submerged in the world and see if you if we
remember that were sitting at the seat as we are immersed a submerged in the worldly affairs we are at the seat
now let's see if we can remember it and practice at this seat no matter what's happening
well that's a huge relief that started as a huge relief doctor here to understand that that really is huge relief and also it's a huge job assignment yeah it's think this is where you are try to remember that when you go into you know the muddy waters
i try to remember that you're at the seat and what do you do it deceit seat where you practice all virtues
now the buddha's have been this buddha gray penetrating wisdom excellence to target the this buddha did that this buddha walked in the mud up to her eyeballs for a long time and practice virtues and now consider that seat unmoving never forgetting
her job
no matter how high the mud gets the matter how submerged she remembers her job
and then this is all celestial flowers hassling her still still she's obnoxious some submerged and celestial flowers but she us to deal with that stuff
are equally joyous to work with
thank you very much you're very welcome thank you for your wonderful question
next step is girl cohen
thank you rob
i really appreciate hermetically we all do these talks and and express gratitude for something which this helpful to me and then ask a question if that's okay
yes so the gratitude is you know during the stock and very often when i'm sitting i found myself getting distracted and then i get attached to the distraction i get distracted by that and so on and if you noticed that towards the end of the top you briefly fidgeted and
scratched your cheek and i was like oh thank god he does not too and i actually kind of helped release me from the attachment so thank you i think that's kind of similar to your dmv story on
and he
the question is yeah i think i've heard you say you know today and other times that maybe our practice is non separation kind of within a conventional world where every where things appear as being separated and i guess the question is
are you saying that if we let go of and attachment of wanting something to appear than we can be open to you know things as it is already being there is that kind of like the lotus sutra or saying
yeah it but you have to practice all virtue with these separations the separations on some worldly affairs separations
i've been distracted is a separation
so all this stuff we look at it
and we look at it and we look at it and we like and then looking at it and we listened to it and we listen to it
and it when we let go
without getting rid of it
and then all these things you're talking about all these separations turn into celestial flowers
and and the beating of the dharma drum
we have to meet these
these myriad forms of the appearance of separation we need to walk into them
in practice virtue with them
i remember we're doing and not to get to the seat but
being inseparable from this it
we have the same practices the buddha
who doesn't fall into any that's anymore
because of practicing
confession and repentance when she did fall in the past
and also in the past not falling too many times not falling into these separations
but if teaching is were not separate from the buddha who's sitting at that seat
thank you yeah i'm sorry for me to practice or the not grasping and i appreciate the guidance thank you again the word hard to practice hard
believe hard to understand it's in the lotus sutra over and over
make stop is caring
good morning good morning
thank you for this lovely conversation about the load of sitter
when you and linda we're talking about the come on
i'm this varies i have this very strong kind of emotional response to it and i'm proud and embarrassed as tracy said i'm kind of embarrassed to bring it up but
the response was it was much like when i was a little girl and i would ask my parents thousands of why questions in our weapons were that
and they would try to answer some of them and at some point they would say i would say why they said they would say because
somehow in that and that because was oddly satisfying
who am i
so that was what came up in response to that story and i now forgotten the story i just remember that feeling of
that that was a pretty good answer or it was a bit it was a relaxing answered
thank you
could she said could do
you have any comment on that
i did i i said thank you
okay because

and that that was that was the and i was to teach us to where these teachers and just translated
monk says
since he was sitting at the sight of enlightenment why was he unable to fulfill the way a buddhahood and the teacher said because he did not fulfill the way of buddhahood

thank you thank you
next up is still on in isabel

isn't it
which makes you changed the title of your picture that makes it easier for me he said
and i hope you can hear me because last time and was not very and great and well i i i thought i have the idea that a and is that has done something to the loud and i listened to all the conversation
and it's like and i always thought
it's about like it's about me doing something wrong when undistracted oh yeah and i just had the thought now oh maybe it's just like that it's just being distracted and nothing are wrong
that's what the lot of a thorn and i wanted to share it and ask
yes i can say that like that
yes you can say it like that and also if you were doing something wrong
as just doing something wrong and you can pinch and then you practice virtues with that mud of doing something wrong
and you you'd be gracious towards it
and you be careful of it and patient with it and you and you admit it
and you say it and you say if you feel sorry you say you're sorry
that's also sitting at the seat
that's relating to the caught doing something wrong
like that buddha would relate to it
that's that's the practice
something wrong something right distracted undistracted whatever it is whenever the mud is
you're sitting at the seat
with the buddha's
and with every every be and with all beings you you doing his name practice as me and all beings he joined the same practice at a view and all buddhas were doing the same practice
however if you don't remember it you may be forget that teaching and then you feel really bad and and and yeah you feel really bad and your and your for you're missing an opportunity to turn the wheel of dharma to
turn the flower sutra
but even though you miss the opportunity you're still at deceit and you still doing the same practice as those who are happily turning the dorm and remembering the teach him so some beings are remembering the teaching right now
still to have the same practices them
but if i forget i feel bad
and i'm sorry that i have missed the opportunity to remember it
and life that way is not the way i want to live
i lived the way of remembering the practice but even if i forget i'm not separate from those who remember
thank you you're welcome
next up is steve
okay rob i think this has gotta be related cause the you added with even if i forget i'm not separate from those who remember still we have not separation and
ah and then 's i assured her suzuki says i think something like when zen zen when alan becomes allen so i guess what i'm my question would be is the the on the unity of self effacement with
self expression because if we have you know i think both zen buddhists would be pretty comfortable with saw pablo picasso and is self expression and they'd be in far more uncomfortable with you know adolf hitler and his self expression but
if you have seven and a half billion people self expressing themselves expressing themselves it seems to me either the planet blows operate doesn't blow up i'm inclined to think it does blow up but any rate
ball's in your court

when you first turn talking about be somebody
who forgets
where he is and somebody who remembers
again i thought of that story ah in the dmv when i forgot where i was and somebody else reminded me of where i was
i was at dmv and i forgot i was sitting with all buddhas
i wanted to i thought i'd some of better place to be and then somebody calls to me and reminds me of where i am
and one and therefore i'm sitting at that place for all beings
as my first response to what you said my second response is that i think when zucker as she said when allen is alan or steve is steve zahn a zen but what i'm emphasizing is that
have a really hard time being ourselves which means to sit in that seat so
i would say that people who have
done like us like us people who have done terrible things
when we did terrible things when we express ourselves that way we had not realized
that were sitting on the seat together with all beings we have not realized that we are distracted from them when we're distracted from that we can do terrible things
even though we're still not the least bit different from the buddha's if we don't realize that we can do terrible things
and and we will sometimes but if we realize that we have to realize it together with all beings
and if we don't realize it together with all beings again that means we don't realize it together with this moment

thank you for your question
next up is caroline burke

carolyn your muted
there can you give me now yes thank you i said first of all thank you so much for this lovely talked this morning where it's so helpful and so good to be with everyone then building on what team and said
little while ago about
the being turned and turning that discussion
oh when you want answering
a metaphor that i think you've used more than once came to me that may speak to the situation that was the hinge of the swinging door
am i right and remembering that if you are speaking about the kind of consciousness that we may enter in when we're in this place of
being turned and turning
and i thought perhaps it can mean that we get out of our own way to some extent that we don't think that
it is we who are being turned and we who are doing the turning it's happening as the hinge of the swinging door lets the movement and the opening happen
does does that speak to what
you met when used to tell us about the the the hills of the of the swinging door yes
and does it help us to understand this
i don't know what to call it metaphysical puzzle of the team and wrote of a being turned and turning if we're not in the way somehow it can happen more of it's own accord perhaps
yeah and ah
it can be phrased as when diluted
we are turned by
or maybe when deluded
when awakened turning
good phrases that way without putting we are are you would when did it turn minute diluted being turned awake and turning
all right thank you but also awakened turning means turning
from delusion to enlightenment to
yeah gets gets us out of the way
we just have a cat being turned here and f
cats demonstrate this very well to
thank you for it
you're welcome thank you
next up is stefan nicola

hi rep can you hear me
yeah yes i can hear you
i also want and single on
f two part question i guess
and i will also want to talk about that thing that the man brought up
ah hmm
so if turning and been turned is basically the same thing that is just going together and it's just a effects may be just a question after
and perspective
seen from their perspective after deluded it's been turned and seen from the at the perspective it's turning steps
they i understand that right well
yeah i would say yes or another a put it is instead of same perspective
a which is slightly different it's seeing it this way and seeing it that way talking about what's being seen in two different situations
two different situations no not the jazz waging an illusion and enlightenment or being turned
so that the the being turned or the turning a slightly different from saying seeing it that way are seeing it that way

yes i was wondering if ah
if i'm experiencing myself as
as alluded or
separate than being turned this
for me something
a maybe i completely misunderstood it
i was thinking about that normally there's this protection and that makes me separate from the world and if if the protection
it's now sending
those things what what come can turn me
right that's now being tent as a deluded being as a very good thing as for me at it's like being turned his letter things come and don't protect myself from from them was something like that
yeah and letting them come is more like turning them
at this part i don't well it's experience like that to lift say you i it said if you resist to sing it turns you if you let it be you turn it
yeah yeah so when when you're when you're separate than things move you around
when you're not separate the you move them around
i should say they're moved around when you allow that when you allow them you don't get spun about
but it's also sometimes the feeling of
get getting destroyed by something and that's kind of a positive thing first there's the fear of getting destroyed and but them being destroyed us
also as the delusions also destroyed and will actually the fear is a posit could be a positive thing to the fear of being destroyed and beings just destroyed they both can be positive
but they both kind of movie around being destroyed kind of move terms your little bit
in fear turns you a little bit or maybe to stay fear turns you and being destroyed turns you
but if you if you allow of that than year turning right in the fear and your i should say uterine and there's turning in the fear and then there's turning into being destroyed and then the dharma is
then we have awakening awakening is being
is the turning
and the other ones are being turned they're both good they're inseparable they're both good dharma
yes thank you i don't know if i want to post the second question i think i'm done thank you
you're welcome thank you for your question
there are no more residents are right
well thank you so much again and
after a long saga with various
technologies and companies will not be mentioned
ah know about now has
internet connection so i think maybe next time we have a talk i'll try to give it from know abode
thank you all for your wonderful questions thank you for all your wonderful flowers thank you for all the mud you threw at me along with your flowers it's been wonderful i wish you well and i hope we can meet again soon