Monday, April 11, 2011


Yesterday heading home after retreat, standing on a ferry between the two shores, I felt the pleasure of silence, of practice: sitting meditation, walking meditation, cooking and drinking coffee meditation. There in the ferry I saw how important it is, how much we have to do of it; a clear insight that dismantles the argument of those practitioners who explain their lazyness by saying that ”just being” is enough, or ”being natural” or ”mindfull”. This is not so.

One should sit for aeons in order to have a glimpse of what is not bound by views and practices. Moreover, one should walk for aeons, should stand, should lie down, should sweep the floor, wash the dishes, clean the toilet for a million kalpas in order to realize that practice and life are not different.

Half an hour, won't do.
20 years won't do.
Smart answers won't do either.

Will that turn you into a statue? Those who think this spend more time imagining what sitting meditation is than actually sitting in meditation, while those who sit for kalpas are the ones who walk, stand, sweep and wash for kalpas. Imagining what sitting meditation is, is being a statue (a stone with unmovable views); sitting in meditation is discoverying the constant flow, essenceless and change of every breath, thought, action, view...

The ferry, the sun is shining, spring is welcome and the same sea that two days ago wanted to eat me with its brave waves is in calm today, sparkling, throwing stars, playing with the sun.
I'm in peace, dancing peace, at ease and refreshed as if I had slept for thousand years. I love and kiss with tonge that light-play between the sea, the sky and the sun.

Then, as a fish jumping out of the water, a question arises: ”Oneness, oneness, where is oneness?” And I search for it with the mind-eye, with an open heart, confident in the practice, resting in this peace. I look, I see the sea north and south and the plain and dizzy coast east and west. I look but I don't see this oneness. I scan perception, what is seen, what is heard, what is felt and thought... and I can't find it.

This beauty, this magic moment and yet without oneness?
Wonderfull! Then I know I'm free.

Just like those who don't practice buddhism & zen are bound by their sense of separation, the sickness that is consuming zenbuddhists is that of emptiness, no self and oneness. It made us vomit blood and flowers (and worse things).

In those inspiring moments I could only think of two words to express my insight. Just imagine the setting up: a sunny day, the deck of an old ferry boat, the fresh wind, the taste of meditation, the two words:

Fuck Oneness

In awe, I bow.


  1. I take it it was a good retreat, then? :P

    I don't know what to say, other than go and sit/walk/sweep with you. Deep bows ^^

  2. While on the ferry to the other shore, we discover that there is no other shore and that the ferry is our life. The Wayfarer is only lost when following someone else’s path.

  3. What about when he/she is following someone else's not-path?

  4. 1. Take that ferry
    2. Put your feet in a concret pit
    3. Let it dry
    4. Wait until no shore is seen
    5. Jump into the water
    6. Count to 10
    7. Try that question again
    8. Wait for comments

  5. That sort of realisation seems very remote... not to mention wet and cold.



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  7. Oighir ag leá,
    scairdeadh ag bun an loch.
    Ní sin iargúlta.

  8. Top O' tha mornin' to ya, Mickeen,

    When you can tell me what it is we're all drowning in, I'll write you a sonnet that'll make Shakespear boogie!



  9. Hey, whoa! 'Stop at the lights', 'stall the digger' and all that...

    Maybe I see now why you're going passive-aggressive on my sorry ass...

    I wasn't making any comment on David's practice revelation post (I had'nt even read it properly) when I posed my question in response to Miles' "The Wayfarer is only lost when following someone else’s path" offering (which I found a tad incomplete and partial).

    My point was that, just as doggedly following a prescribed 'path' may be fraught with our own bullshit, so might doggedly following our own latter-day iconoclastic notions and inclinations, or somebody else's iconoclastic notions and inclinations (i.e. someone else's 'not-path').

    The crux of the matter may be in sincere practice in whatever context, on whatever path.

    (The Diamond Sutra has stuff to say about this, about the 'emptiness' of the path, and the 'emptiness of emptiness' and all that jive, but I'm not on form for flogging that dead horse this eve as I'm up to my manboobs in books as it is with college work.)

    For example; I've met one Franciscan priest who springs to mind in particular, and a number of Christian monastics and other quiet practitioners, who, while footing the 'party line' in some respects, also manage to put the average iconoclastic Zen Master to shame when it comes to 'actualising the fundamental point' and all that.

    ...and only a buddhist could make an eightfold process out of telling someone to 'go jump in a lake!'



  10. Hi Dave-shin,

    Splash splash...

    There's a certain flawed grace involved in being a model of human wrongness over and over again... I'm not sure I want to realise anything more impressive and, well, enjoyable, than that.

    Personally I think 'transcendent realisation' is fucking boring... I've been there for a time... it turned me into a dumb, useless asshole having a head trip and wasting food that productive people could have been eating.

    Don't forget us lost souls down here in the salty depths when your mighty ship comes in, oh Maha Bodhisattva!



  11. Don't make waves guys! I will see if I can float while sitting.

    Michael: Gaeilge haikus sound as good as in japanese.

    PS: How do we know if we are on track?

  12. We know we are on track if we keep getting closer to our destination.

    We argue about the route because some of us are trying to get to Hong Fa and some to Amsterdam!

  13. Hi Harry san,

    you got it completely wrong from the start. Shouting, waving your hands and praying to Maha Bodhisattvas will not help in anyway. I've never seen one of those, although people talk of them as the Buddhist rock-stars.

    In the first place, you could have "read it properly" (the post, I mean) instead of jumping into Miles' commentary as a hungry ghost.

    Then, you could have spared the "everybody is against me and therefore I'm more right than them" role if you had read twice my gentle invitation to get to the bottom of the sea with helping concrete. For the shake of clarification I say now, it was not a "fuck you and your comment" invitation, but more a "read it properly and just remain there for a little bit" invitation.

    Come on, Harry san, I came with a nice picture of a ferry boat in the sunshine and you keep on saying that shade in the left corner is your cousin's ghost!!!

    I don't know what you mean by 'trascendent realisation'. It definetly sounds no good after your description; I can't see how my "ferry boat in the sunshine - fuck oneness" post can be set into that box, I simply do not see any trascendence in it, that was exactly the point with the word 'fuck' before 'Oneness'. But, hey, I threw it here, you do with it what you please.

  14. Hi David,

    Okay then, I'll do this with it:

    I'm not really interested in your post. It's standard issue stuff really. Pretty typical Buddhism. The web's full of self congratulatory waffle... much of it by me!

    My response was to a general comment made by Miles, which struck me as an opportunity to point out the orthodoxy here... surprised? Yes, the orthodoxy.

    You're quick to come to conclusions and pass comment on other people's practice, but it seems to me that you haven't understood a hungry ghost at all. When you stop loathing what's near and start disregarding what is remote I think you'll look more kindly on your fellow hungry ghosts, and then I might be able to read your posts without nodding off, because it'll be meaningful to real human beings, real hungry ghosts.


    Maha Hungry Ghost.

  15. Hi Harry,

    it's all right, you do what you please.

    Take care.

  16. Who are you now, Alaister Crowley?

    I shudder to think what would come of the world if every hungry ghost like me just did as he pleased.

    You won't be let off the hook that lightly you know!

    Say a turning word to free me from the body of a hungry ghost.



  17. Words=The blocks that build the walls that divide us.

    Thoughts=The cement the hold them together.

  18. Intimately speaking,
    There's a word that's been said,
    That doesn't mean a thing.

    Can you say it for me?

  19. Michael,
    Closer to our destination? Seriously?

    If you're following, it's a path, whatever the person swinging the machete (or the guy trailing behind) calls it. Everything after that sounds like you need to get laid :-D

  20. Erik, I know, "we do Zen because we do Zen...Ommmmmmmm!"


    We do Zen because we once met a bloke who seemed so much more sorted than us, and we found out he did Zen, so we thought, "I'll take the same medicine!"

  21. Erik,

    Was that some sort of offer? ;-)

  22. I am no one and I dont know anything. So help me to understand. First everyone was talking about a path. What path? When I first started my practice my practice was my path but it is a path of no path. Isn't our practice supposed to lead us to a point where we start thinking for ourselves? George Carlin said "start your own path, it's kinda hard at first because you have to hold the grass down yourself".

    Then the conversation turned to some destination. In all these years I never knew there was a destination. I have spent the last 25 years just trying to be where I am. This pisses me off someone could have told me.

    Now Zen has been compared to medicine. IF we practice Zen as medicine, believing we are sick, it will be impossible to realize the true meaning of practice. Still we compile a list of reasons to justify our practice. It will lower our blood pressure, reduce our stress, calm us down, or increase our concentration. And maybe just maybe if we practice long enough we will be enlightened. All of this is bullshit. Hell everything I just wrote is bullshit. But I wrote it anyway.

    Meditation is useless, to see it any other way is failing to understand it. But do it anyway.

  23. Jizo,

    You wrote what you wrote because you felt your words might achieve something.

    This is significant.



  24. lol, Harry, I was suggesting someone that would make you feel better. Sex with me would surely make you feel worse :-D

  25. I am glad, if only for Harry's sake, that there's still some dualism in Erik's Zen.

  26. "I don't know anything"..."IF we practice Zen as medicine, believing we are sick, it will be impossible to realize the true meaning"..."Meditation is useless"...

    Why say, "I don't know anything", and then state several things you presumably know?

    "Everything I just wrote is bullshit. But I wrote it anyway."

    Is it wise to contribute to the confusion, especially in light of your previous words and thoughts on "words" and "thoughts"?