Great Effort teaching Feb 13, 2021

Great Effort, I think of as the hinge-point of our practice. If we don't have this great effort, then we really don't have a practice. Because unless we bring our practice to the difficult parts of our lives, it's not much of a practice. In fact, what often seems to happen is many people will...

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Original Face Jan 29, 2021

Your true self is always shining and free.
Human beings make something and enter the ocean of suffering.
Only without thinking can you return to your true self.
The high mountain is always blue, white clouds coming and going.

By Zen Master Seung Sahn

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Authentic Natural Self teaching Jan 22, 2021

"Before thinking" is easy to talk about but difficult to practice. Our desire, anger, and ignorance are so powerful, so encompassing, and solid that we don’t even recognize their impact. Many people who first hear about before thinking find it absurd. Others feel that it is impossible to...

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Cause and Effect teaching Jan 15, 2021

That combination of the cause and the action leads to a result. That result becomes the next cause. I remember Zen Master Seung Sahn pretending to hold a match in his hand, and he said, “This match is the cause. Fire is the result.” But you need to strike the match in order to...

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This Moment Is The Answer teaching Dec 18, 2020

We're actually more focused on the question than the answer because answers change. There's no one fixed answer. The point of questions is to open us up to the experience of our lives. So, this moment is the answer. Our practice is to open up to this moment. It's usually our ideas, our opinions,...

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The First Noble Truth teaching Dec 11, 2020

The First Noble Truth is "All things are suffering." Life is suffering. The word in Sanskrit is duḥkha. Sometimes it is translated as "unsatisfactory". Situations, this world, and our lives are not what we want them to be. There's almost always a gap between what we want and what is. In as much...

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Self Doubt vs Great Doubt teaching Dec 04, 2020

Self Doubt is quite different than Great Doubt. Self Doubt is more like, "I am no good, what am I doing? "I should be able to do this better." It’s centered on “I”. This "I" is a construct. The fundamental concept of suffering is that attachment to "I". With this self-image,...

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The Doorway Into Liberation teaching Nov 27, 2020

So what am I? We think we know, but we really don't. That not-knowing is the doorway into our liberation. When we walk through that doorway of not-knowing, we let go of the concept, we let go of the belief, we let go of the idea. We ask, “What is it?” If we can let go of what we think...

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Buddhism and Lust teaching Nov 20, 2020

Student: What’s wrong with lust?

Zen Master Bon Soeng: It takes you away from your true nature.

Student: Isn’t it a natural feeling?

ZMBS: Is it? How do we know what’s natural? We think we have an idea of naturalness, but we don’t know naturalness. Maybe we’ve been...

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When The Dream Disappears teaching Nov 13, 2020

So we all have these dreams. We have the dreams of our likes, our dislikes, this story that we weave about ourselves. We carry this story of ourselves, but the story is not true. It’s factually not correct. We embellish, we make it up as we go along and then we protect it. "I am this." "I...

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Don’t Know Mind teaching Nov 06, 2020
This basic teaching we have is Don’t-Know Mind. We want to know, we think we know, we think we’re supposed to know. There’s all of this bias toward knowing. But we don’t really know. We have this radical teaching – how about admitting the truth that we...
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Your Experience Is The True Way teaching Oct 30, 2020
Our job is to really discover what our experience is. Don’t worry too much about what Buddhism says. Use the practice to discover your own experience and use that experience to attain your true self and help all beings. That’s authentic. That’s real. The teachings will help...
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