http://www.UrbanDharma.org ...Buddhism for Urban America


The Urban Dharma Newsletter... February 18, 2003


In This Issue:

1. Blind man with lantern
...Venerable Paravahera Vajiranana
3. Bojjhanga Pabba
(Section on Enlightenment Factors)
Seven Factors of Enlightenment ...by Cathleen Williams
5. Temple/Center/Website- of the Week:
The Chapel Hill Zen Group
6. Book Review: The Heart of Being: Moral and Ethical Teachings of Zen Buddhism
...by John Daido Loori
7. Peace Link: United for Peace & Justice


1. Blind man with lantern

An old Zen master always told this fable to unserious students: Late one night a blind man was about to go home after visiting a friend. "Please," he said to his friend, "may I take your lantern with me?"

"Why carry a lantern?" asked his friend. "You won't see any better with it."

"No," said the blind one, "perhaps not. But others will see me better, and not bump into me." So his friend gave the blind man the lantern, which was made of paper on bamboo strips, with a candle inside.

Off went the blind man with the lantern, and before he had gone more than a few yards, "Crack!" - a traveler walked right into him. The blind man was very angry. "Why don't you look out?" he stormed. "Why don't you see this lantern?"

"Why don't you light the candle?" asked the traveler.

2. THE SEVEN FACTORS OF ENLIGHTENMENT ...Venerable Paravahera Vajiranana

* http://www.edepot.com/budart4.html








*Since “dharma” has two meanings (i.e., the “Buddha’s teachings” as well as “mental and physical phenomena”), this second factor may be understood alternatively as referring to studying the Buddha’s teachings for mental development as well as applying that teaching to its intended ends:  keen investigation of mental and physical phenomena.  The first is preparatory, whereas the second is its fulfillment [Editor’s note].

The Buddha stated: “When the Enlightenment factor of mindfulness (sati) is present, one knows well, ‘I have the Enlightenment factor of mindfulness.’  Or when it is not present, one knows well that it is absent.  One knows well how the arising of the non-arisen Enlightenment factor of mindfulness comes to be how the fulfillment by meditation of the arisen Enlightenment factor of mindfulness comes to be.”

The same holds true for the six remaining Enlightenment factors or bojjhangas.

These Seven Factors of Enlightenment are of penultimate importance in the attainment of Enlightenment.  However, the teaching in full considers seven groups of which these factors are but one.  These are in fact thirty-seven constituents in all.  These thirty-seven succinctly state the Buddha’s teaching regarding the attainment of Enlightenment.

Meditation as a means of obtaining self-Enlightenment implies not only a systematic thinking upon a given subject, but also the systematic development of the higher qualities that tend to produce supramundane wisdom, which in turn makes Enlightenment possible.

The sutras, therefore, emphasize that the disciple should have developed the thirty-seven constituents or principles of Enlightenment in the course of his or her preliminary training.

In the Buddha’s last sermon we find him exhorting his disciples in the following way:

“Now, monks, those doctrines which have been comprehended and taught by me you should grasp, follow, practice, and cultivate in order that this religious life may endure, that it may be of advantage to many, out of compassion for the world, bring profit, happiness, and advantage to deities and human beings alike.

“What are those doctrines comprehended and taught by me which you should learn?”

Grouped together they are:

I.     The Four Foundations of Mindfulness.

II.    He Four Right efforts.

III.   The Four Bases of Psychic Power.

IV.    The Five Faculties.

V.     The Five Powers.

VI.    The Seven Factors of Enlightenment

VII.   The Noble Eightfold Path.

It is in these seven groups that the whole teaching of the Buddha is said to have been summarized as a compendium of the doctrine known as the Bodhi-pakkhiya-dharma, the “qualities constituting Enlightenment.”  The Maha-Sakuludayi Sutra gives them in the list of the disciple’s practices, being certain parts of the whole system of religious training.  In the Maha-Vagga of the Samyutta Nikaya they are treated separately as independent methods of training, and they are there included in the Samyuttas, or collections of teachings arranged in various orders.  It is noteworthy that these seven groups are repeated in different forms throughout the teachings.

3. Bojjhanga Pabba (Section on Enlightenment Factors)

* http://www.buddhanet.net/imol/mahasati/mahasati13.htm

And again, bhikkhus, a bhikkhu dwells perceiving again and again the seven factors of enlightenment (bhojjanga) as just the seven factors of enlightenment (not mine, not I, not self, but just as phenomena). And how, bhikkhus, does a bhikkhu dwell perceiving again and again the seven factors of enlightenment as just the seven factors of enlightenment?

Here (in this teaching), bhikkhus, while the enlightenment factor of mindfulness (sati-sambojjhanga) is present in him, a bhikkhu knows, "The enlightenment factor of mindfulness is present in me"; or while the enlightenment factor of mindfulness is not present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of mindfulness is not present in me." He also knows how the enlightenment factor of mindfulness which has not yet arisen comes to arise; and he knows how the complete fulfillment in developing the arisen enlightenment factor of mindfulness comes to be.

While the enlightenment factor of investigation of phenomena (dhammavicaya-bhojjanga) note86 is present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of investigation of phenomena is present in me"; or while the enlightenment factor of investigation of phenomena is not present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of investigation of phenomena is not present in me." He also knows how the enlightenment factor of investigation of phenomena which has not yet arisen comes to arise; and he knows how the complete fulfillment in developing the arisen enlightenment factor of investigation of phenomena comes to be.

While the enlightenment factor of effort (viriya-sambojjhanga) is present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of effort is present in me", or while the enlightenment factor of effort is not present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of effort is not present in me." He also knows how the enlightenment factor of effort which has not yet arisen comes to arise; and he knows how the complete fulfillment in developing the arisen enlightenment factor of effort comes to be.

While the enlightenment factor of rapture (piti-sambojjhanga) is present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of rapture is present in me"; or while the enlightenment factor of rapture is not present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of rapture is not present in me." He also knows how the enlightenment factor of rapture which has not yet arisen comes to arise; and he knows how the complete fulfillment in developing the arisen enlightenment factor of rapture comes to be.

While the enlightenment factor of tranquility (passadhi-sambojjhanga)note89 is present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of tranquility is present in me"; or while the enlightenment factor of tranquility is not present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of tranquility is not present in me." He also knows how the enlightenment factor of tranquility which has not yet arisen comes to arise; and he knows how the complete fulfillment in developing the arisen enlightenment factor of tranquility comes to be.

While the enlightenment factor of concentration (samadhi-sambojjhanga)note90 is present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of concentration is present in me"; or while the enlightenment factor of concentration is not present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of concentration is not present in me." He also knows how the enlightenment factor of concentration which has not yet arisen comes to arise; and he knows how the complete fulfillment in developing the arisen enlightenment factor of concentration comes to be.

While the enlightenment factor of equanimity (upekkha-sambojjhanga) is present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of equanimity is present in me"; or while the enlightenment factor of equanimity is not present in him, he knows, "The enlightenment factor of equanimity is not present in me." He also knows how the enlightenment factor of equanimity which has not yet arisen comes to arise; and he knows how the complete fulfilment in developing the arisen enlightenment factor of equanimity comes to be.

Thus he dwells perceiving again and again dhammas as just dhammas (not mine, not I, not self, but just as phenomena) in himself…. Being detached from craving and wrong views he dwells without clinging to anything in the world. Thus, bhikkhus, in this way a bhikkhu dwells perceiving again and again the seven factors of enlightenment as just the seven factors of enlightenment.

4. Seven Factors of Enlightenment ...by Cathleen Williams ...Manager, City Center Meditation Hall, San Francisco Zen Center

* http://www.intrex.net/chzg/williams.htm

This will be the most boring lecture–alas, it’s all necessary. It’s about seven ways we can sit down, watch our minds, and develop concentration, discipline, and all the other factors to free ourselves from suffering. “At what cost?” you might think to yourselves, watching me narrowly. At no cost–it’s all free, and it’s all right here. There is the small matter of giving up your own way, but you have to do that anyway when you die. Why not start before? Then death will be another passing event, not a major crisis. Meanwhile you will freely function on the path and think, “What, me worry? Never again!” So with this short introduction, let us pass on immediately to the seven factors of enlightenment.

The seven factors are mindfulness, effort, investigation, joy (or rapture), concentration, tranquility, and equanimity. They are divided into three arousing factors, three stabilizing factors and a central point of application. The three arousing are effort, investigation, and joy. The three stabilizing factors are concentration, tranquility, and equanimity. The common link is mindfulness.

First I want to admit freely that we’re not getting to all the seven factors in this talk. I had planned to combine this lecture with a workshop, and, then (guess what?) things changed. So I’ll be talking only about mindfulness, which is central, and investigation. I feel like I’m leaving you hanging with only two of the seven, but I have some kind of confidence that we are all pretty serious about practice here, and if you find the first two useful, you might be tempted to go right on without me and find out about the last five for yourself.

Here's a metaphor to start with. To begin the path is like being an explorer facing a tangled jungle, which is the unexplored mind. The explorer (us, you and me) intrepidly enters the Way; the end of suffering is in there somewhere in this jungle. We want to find it. At first there seems to be a path, but suddenly it changes, disappears, the treasure map is wrong. We, the novice explorers, get rapidly lost in the emotional and mental paths which branch out all over the place. We start out thinking that the path is clear and apparent, but then it seems to disappear and all we see is a jungle maze for quite a while. We begin with a naïve notion; we have an idea of path which is not the path itself, it’s just an idea, and, like any other idea, subject to change, tumult, suffering…the whole works of illusion and delusion. The path is simply the experience of actually walking, or training, but, at first, you really think you have a goal which is graspable, like the treasure of Nirvana or some such.

The fortunate explorer finds a native guide to help him: someone who knows the territory intimately, who's spent twenty or thirty years walking the paths and now sees the jungle as his home. Well, we know this is the teacher, or senior student we trust, someone who is clearly comfortable with what he does. He or she has some tools to help in the jungle, ones which are well worn and have proved their worth in use. In fact, Buddhism has whole trunks of tools, but we are going to concentrate here on theessential, the pocket kit, the ones which work in any circumstances. There are seven items in this kit, the seven factors of enlightenment. The guide shows us how to employ these factors to calm and stabilize the mind in the midst of this unknown territory. Lucky us, because once we get inside there and start looking around, we might easily panic at the incredible amount of jungle we see.

"The other thing is that not only are we training our wild and jungley minds, our hearts get called into action too. The guide just points out all the other beings out wandering around, how lost they are, just like us, and how much they could use a helping hand. In fact, there’s no difference between one suffering and another suffering, and, pretty soon, we find our hands are going out automatically when things get hard for our fellow travelers. Sometimes it can’t be a hand, sometimes it’s simply thewholehearted wish to ease suffering. More and more, this impulse to ease suffering mysteriously arises. Looking down inside ourselves, we find the same old us, and, yet, joy arises and sentient beings are eased. We are, like the bodhisattvas in the sutras, coming exactly from this treasure we seek so hard to find in our minds and hearts–paradoxical isn’t it? Yet, at the beginning, even in the middle, and almost at the end, the jungle still surrounds us, Buddha Nature can still appear to be just a distant dot on the horizon of zazen.

This treasure, Buddha Nature, is not within our conscious control. We can't simply will to sit down and observe it emerge, but, although it is obscure, nonetheless we feel its effects. If not, you wouldn’t be on this jungle path to start out with. But what is it? You have to ask yourself what you think it is…clouds of glory, power, seeing clearly, manifesting the Prajna Paramita, finding Emptiness, and on and on. I was frequently entranced by the idea of angels appearing, as they did to the Virgin Mary, and telling me some esoteric secret. It just took me forever to get over that one. I really wanted to be a mystic. It was not to be. But my asking this question: “What is the spiritual for me,” brought me to understand slowly, over time, all the ideas I had about spirituality and how they affected my practice, how attached I was (and still am) to certain notions, and how letting them go has led to more settled mind.

I often think that, as we sit down at first and look at what’s in the mind, we take a lot on faith. Yes, there’s an impulse, an urge to do this, but where’s it coming from? We also hear that we are immediately enlightened beings as soon as we sit in zazen, so we root around dubiously in our minds, looking for it. Buddha Nature as a term is wildly and widely used and applied, and almost everybody has an idea, an intellectual construct, of what it is, usually, oh yes, this is the spiritual Self. Its actual appearance is much beyond our usual lives and experience. In fact it is incorrect to say, “we have Buddha Nature.” Putting it this way makes it seems that it is something we can attain, perhaps through enlightenment. But as soon as we talk about anything using the words “I” or “my,” it becomes a question of subject and object, and we are far away from being exactly our true selves. Our true self appears instantly when we let go. 

Just sitting in zazen, without an object, letting things come up, mental or physical, letting them go, without reference to “I” or “mine,” is enlightened practice. This is the place we take refuge, the place which is spiritual, rather than talking about spiritual. This is what Dogen means when he says that in sitting down in zazen you are immediately your original self. True zazen is actually the movement of the heart towards its home. Suzuki Roshi's son said, when I asked him once what zazen was, that he did zazen because it made the heart more tender. The tender heart is naturally in a place of concentration and compassion and non-attachment.

So if you've been around folks who have been practicing this for a while you may feel that their being is a little different from yours; but actually you sense your own being, your true Buddha Nature as it has been revealed by many years of training, concentration, and study of the Dharma. We are not different one from the other, we all have the same nature. We are easily seduced by our senses and mind into believing that everything is different, and, believing this, of course we think the one on the opposite cushion, looking good in black and sitting up straight and never, never moving, has a better practice, is more spiritual, and on and on. Not so. Our connection, our common nature, is so intimate there’s no distinction at all. Do you believe this? It’s true. On the bodhisattva path we learn to let these judgments go, forget about uniforms, doing it right, watching other people and imitating them. How does this happen? With your own aspiration, devotion, practice, and willingness to say “yes” to your life, faith then develops that the trained mind does lead to the heart of zazen, because you, you, not someone else, see that your continued effort bears fruit. Fruit, as every gardener knows, does not leap forth from the tree in Spring. There is a progression of events – planting, fertilizing, and so forth. Just so, the trained mind begins with mindfulness, the solid basis of practice.

Mindfulness…well, mindfulness is just paying attention. “Just paying attention”—three words that convey an awful lot of time and effort on the zafu. So let's re-define it. Mindfulness is paying attention with intent. First how do we pay attention? This is an interesting question, one which draws forth various answers depending on who you're reading or listening to. For instance, it is possible to pay attention in a very broad way, commenting on everything that comes along; or the focus can be greatly narrowed to a fine point of breath, a mental state, or a physical condition. Buddhism has many varied meditative techniques, and they all fall broadly into two categories, concentration and insight.

Concentration practices are pretty interesting because they lead to altered mental states, many of which involve bliss, going out of the self, and so on. They can be quite addictive for these reasons; calmness and bliss are inviting states. Because they are possibilities they should be considered, practiced, and brought into the field of awareness. However, concentration practices, at least in Zen, are not an end in themselves. Concentration, by itself, does not break through the veil of illusion, that is to say, greed, hate, delusion, the idea of a permanent self, and so forth, which we are all seriously involved with inside. It's not just that we want permanency in the world: we want it in ourselves. We don't like the idea that the being we call Bob or Mary will die and dissipate. Well, if you concentrate real hard and seem to lose yourself in some interesting and blissful fashion it's not so bad. But then this is just another illusion. The core of Buddha's teachings is about impermanence, the suffering of impermanence, and the way out of the delusion of impermanence.

This is where insight comes in. Mindfulness as an insight practice is the conscious intention to be as aware as possible of what is going on in the mind. What are you actually doing in the process? You are looking at your illusions. Now you don’t take them for illusion. It’s pretty solid, the stuff that comes up, the memories, stories, the feelings, projects, relationship stories, the history, but, and this is a big but, they change. Mind changes, body changes, world changes, nothing is there that has permanent, unchanging being. To learn this, observe this, is essential practice. Mindfulness is the awareness of the present moment; it is observing and experiencing without reacting, a solid platform without judgment. Uchiyama Roshi called this “opening the hand of thought.” It is a relaxed yet penetrating look at what’s going on.

Mindfulness supports us in several ways. First by observing the present, we stay in the present. Secondly, it supports all the other factors of enlightenment. As it grows, it brings with it calmness, steadiness, and equanimity. All these are fruits of mindfulness. Most people have some experience of sitting down to do zazen when upset in some way and finding that it is a calming experience. This is the stability of mindfulness. After some period of time, zazen serves as point of reference and is our protection from being caught up by our illusory “I”s.

The third function of mindfulness is to balance the mind. When we pay attention with wide awareness, the mind is brought to a point of balance. In this balance, nothing special happens because it is our natural state, Suzuki's Roshi's “Big Mind,” and it is a very powerful one. There usually comes a time in life when you sit down with great pain and misery. Then you find that zazen has an enormous ability to bring balance to any situation.

Let’s go back to our explorer; -the explorer, having experienced hints of treasure, sets out, not knowing what will happen during his journey, but willing to experience the unknown, whatever that is. We do this courageously. No kidding, we all are throwing ourselves into a place where we have never been before, into a place where everything that rises is Dharma, a teaching of the law, and we are constantly told to throw off that ego backpack. You do this practice for a bit, and then you begin to really understand what you’re hearing–no more self–and it’s a little scary, the implications of “no more self,” even though you’re hearing this from folks who swear it’s true and a wonderful release. You might think, “no more self,” as I did, and think, “oh, ugh, death.” But it’s not death, and it’s not total emptiness with nothing in it, as in the absence of flowers in a vase. In fact, “no more self” is hard to get a handle on; it can only be experienced, not thought of.

Nonetheless, the mind, being a busy beast and quite suspicious, demands proof. So our ancestors, in their kindness, point to the path in various ways. The Sandokai which is one of the more famous Zen teachings, says, "Thus in all things the leaves spread from the root; the whole process must return to the source." Investigating, turning the light inward, we see causes and conditions. Understanding the emptiness of causes and conditions, which come and go, leads us to understand that the leaves, branches, trunk and roots have all the same nature, Buddha nature, the absolute, the unconditioned. Everything is rooted in Buddha Nature because nothing is without Buddha nature. Groundless, without base, it requires no awakening; only that you wake up to it.

Don’t be deceived by the death of the leaves each fall. Suzuki Roshi says, "When observing many things, we should look beyond their appearance and know how each thing exists. Because of the root we exist; because of the absolute Buddha nature we exist. Understanding things in this way we have oneness." Only when we try to make the leaves and tree live forever do we have problems. The jungle explorer is faced with myriad possibilities, here a flower, there a snake, here a tiger, there, vines, here a swamp, there a pleasant walk. Every moment another possibility arises from our deep nature. If we try to hold onto it, if we freeze frame it, we lose freedom. Mindfulness and investigation keep us constantly alive to what is going on, in fact, they shed light and dissipate confusion. Both, rightly done, show us the emptiness of cause and conditions, which knowledge leads us towards non-attachment.

I’d like to extend the Sandokai quotation a bit to further illustrate how we return to a state of non-attachment. This is the complete verse: "The four gross elements return to their own natures, like a baby taking to its mother. Fire heats, wind moves, water wets, earth is solid. Eye and form, ear and sound, nose and smell, tongue and taste–thus in all things the leaves spread from the root; The whole process must return to the source." Everything has its own nature. The four elements return to theirs because they are true to themselves. There's no subject/object duality in fire; it burns and purifies. Suzuki Roshi says the nature of water is to contain things; we're mostly water you know, about 98%. The water contains all the rest of us, bones, brain, chemicals. Water does not refuse to contain one thing any more than the earth refuses to support us. If you take the elements down to their essential nature, to the atoms or smallest things, you can't find them anymore. They are simply potential. 

What if you search your mind the same way? We base our conscious interactions on eye, ear, nose, tongue, sensation; what we feel. If we examine sight, sound, smell, taste, sensation, do we find an eternal permanent “I” or just a succession of impressions occurring? Our potential for sensations is constantly evoked, and then it returns to itself. We, pondering on it, believe that we retain a solid impression of the event, but, in fact, we do not. For instance, can you still taste your dinner? Or are you bringing to mind what you ate? These sensations, thoughts, consciousness, pass one by one and disappear. As things rise and fall we have the chance to come over and over again to our potential, our own nature, Buddha Nature. 

Things returning to their own nature is just like a baby taking to its mother. Those of you who have had babies know how this happens; it just happens. Those of you who watch it happen, like the man who wrote this poem, understand that there is no thought of hesitation when the baby turns. The baby's function is completely expressed; the mother's function is completely expressed. They are two yet one. We can call this independence and interdependence but the thing itself is beyond words. This is what mindfulness brings us to, the place beyond words.

I see that I have combined mindfulness and investigation a bit, so I will separate them out and discuss investigation as a separate factor of enlightenment. This factor is exactly what it implies, investigation, that is, looking into the Dharma for ourselves, not based on what someone else has learned or taught, but on our own experience and understanding. Our explorer, who is still hanging in there, started off courageously, remember? We don’t know what’s going to happen on this journey, but we’re willing to experience the unknown, whatever that is. Well, in this instance, the unknown is dinner. Actually, a small, very small dessert. So, how many people ate theirs right away? Uh huh. Hold this in your hand: look, without labeling. What is seen? Bring this to your nose, smell without labeling. What is smelled? Weigh it a bit, up and down, in your hand. What sensed? Hold it up to your ear. Go on, go on, hold it up. What is heard? Now, mindfully observing the event in process, bring this small “arising” to your mouth and place it therein. Now immediately, what happens? What is the event? Now, what is your mind doing, actually doing, at this moment? Someone want to get up and show me the “I” they found?

Investigation done in the correct way, with a spirit of openness and curiosity, deepens practice and enables us to bear with our darkest places. Eventually we can extend investigation to our relationships, our habitual attachments, and we directly observe birth and death. Our good friend, the guide, shows or demonstrates investigation when we're not sure what we're seeing, thus enabling us to be clear about what's going on. He reminds us that investigation means to look at, not to think about, so we don't trip on too much thinking.

Mindfulness and investigation: two of the seven factors of enlightenment. They are especially complementary. Mindfulness brings us to attention, and investigation shows us the truth of what is.

To end, I have a little quotation, one which I did not find in a sutra. “Faith is a candle where Reason is the sun: No one needs a candle until darkness falls.” And this is how it’s applied, at least for me. I study and study the phenomena of emptiness; many great minds have studied, explored, and explained it. I read, I learn, and, occasionally, I even think about these things. But when emotional upset, physical pain, long old histories, fall on me and things get dark, then zazen is my candle.

© Copyright Cathleen Williams, 2000

5. The Chapel Hill Zen Group

* http://www.intrex.net/chzg/

Zen Means "meditation"

Zen is the school of Buddhism which emphasizes the religious practice of meditation. The Buddha taught that Ignorance, created by our greed, hate, and delusion, prevents us from realizing that we are all enlightened. Zen Buddhism teaches that the practice of sitting in meditation (Jap.: zazen) directly manifests our inborn enlightenment, our Buddha Nature. In Zen practice, seated meditation and enlightenment are one. No preliminary training or long preparation is necessary to realize the Way.

Zen Sixth Patriarch

The Soto school of Japanese Zen practice was founded in the 13th century by the Zen Master Eihei Dogen. In his instructions on how to meditate, Dogen writes,

"You should...cease from practice based on intellectual understanding...and learn the backward step that turns your light inwardly to illuminate your self. Body and mind of themselves will drop away, and your original face will be manifest....The zazen I speak of is not learning meditation. It is simply the...gate of repose and bliss, the practice-realization of totally culminated enlightenment. It is the manifestation of ultimate reality."

Zen also stresses that the world of enlightenment is the everyday world we all know. "Carrying water and chopping wood are the activities of the Buddha," and "The everyday mind is Buddha," are two of the most well known Zen sayings. Zen realization shows us that we are directly connected to, and dependent on, all living beings and everything that exists. Compassionate concern for the welfare of others and for the environment flow naturally from this insight.

The Chapel Hill Zen Group came into existence in 1981. It was formed by a small group of friends who took turns meditating in each other's homes in the Durham-Chapel Hill area in North Carolina. In December, 1997, the Board of Directors voted to change the group's legal name to the Chapel Hill Zen Center to reflect the group's growing membership and more established status. Several members of the original group practiced at the San Francisco Zen Center, and the Center is now formally affiliated with SFZC. The S.F. Zen Center was founded by Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. Before he died in 1971, Suzuki also founded the first Zen monastery in America, Tassajara Zen Mountain Center, near Carmel, California. His teaching has been continued by his American disciples.

The Chapel Hill Zen Center now has a permanent meeting place at 5322 North Carolina Highway 86, 2.5 miles north of I-40 Exit 266. All meetings are open to the public and everyone is welcome to attend. (The building has wheelchair access.) See the schedule posted below for times. Zen meditation instruction and orientation can be given on Tuesday evenings or Sunday mornings. Please call (919) 967-0861 to make an appointment before coming for instruction. The Calendar has the dates and times of lectures and other events. E-mail contact: PPhelan@nc.rr.com

6. The Heart of Being: Moral and Ethical Teachings of Zen Buddhism ...by John Daido Loori, Bonnie Myotai Treace (Editor), Konrad Ryushin Marchaj (Editor)

* http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0804830789/wwwkusalaorg-20/

Editorial Reviews

Daido Loori provides an excellent introduction to the often neglected social-ethical dimension of Zen Buddhism. In writing that the precepts of the Buddha can transform our navigation of "the moral and ethical dilemmas of modern life . . . into something frankly wondrous: the life of the Buddha realized as our own life," Daido Loori reminds readers that the familiar enlightenment teachings of Shakyamuni are inseparable from "right action." Included here is a commentary on Master Dogen's Kyojukaimon, as well as Daido Loori's exposition of the precepts exemplified in the three "pure" acts--not creating evil, practicing good, and actualizing good for others--and discussion of koans on moral and ethical teachings. Daido Loori is critical of an Americanized Zen practice he calls buji Zen, the "I do whatever I want" approach to life. His practical, ethical discussion will be of interest to an audience that extends well beyond the boundaries of the Buddhist community. Steve Schroeder

Amazon.com Reviewer: A reader from Culver City, CA USA Well written and informative! Excellent for Zen student preparing for their "Jukai" vows and cermony.

Amazon.com Reviewer: A reader from New York I read this book prior to taking the buddhist precepts and was deeply moved by John Daido Loori's understanding and commitment to the precepts. These issues, morals and ethics are issues that will not go away as the world tries to justify itself. This book will not judge but will open the realm of the buddhist precepts before you.

7. United for Peace & Justice

* http://www.unitedforpeace.org/

About United for Peace & Justice

United for Peace & Justice is a new national campaign that brings together a broad range of organizations throughout the United States to help coordinate our work against a U.S. war on Iraq. At an initial meeting in Washington, DC on October 25, more than 70 peace and justice organizations agreed to form United for Peace & Justice and signed on to the following statement:

The demand placed on us by world events is to deal with the Iraq crisis and to work to stop the war that is being planned. This is unfolding in a global context where other crises can and will erupt in connection to the Iraq crisis and they too will demand our action. In addition, we will oppose new repressive measures at home. We can and will work together now, focused on stopping this war, and as we go forward we will discuss other issues and the larger context. Unite for Peace & Justice and say NO! to war.

United for Peace & Justice welcomes the participation of any and all national, regional and local groups who share our goal and wish to work with others. Decisions are made at meetings of the coordinating committee, which is open to representatives of all participating groups. A smaller administrative committee helps to make sure decisions are implemented. If you are interested in being a part of United for Peace & Justice, contact andrea@globalexchange.org.

Since October 25, United for Peace & Justice has decided to promote the following calendar of anti-war events. In addition, we will be discussing other ways we can work together to build the broadest and strongest anti-war movement.

• November 20: UFP endorsed the "Not In Our Name" call for a national day of student and youth protest

• December 10: UFP is calling for a national anti-war day of action

• Jan. 18-20: UFP endorsed the Black Voices for Peace call for peace and justice events to be held during the MLK Jr. Memorial weekend

• Feb. 15 or 16: UFP is calling for a mass anti-war mobilization in New York City

• March 8: UFP endorsed the Women's Peace Vigil's call for women's peace actions on International Women's Day

• April 5: UFP is calling for a national mobilization in Atlanta, GA on the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (4/4/68) to strengthen the link between justice and peace issues.


The Urban Dharma Newsletter Archives:



The Los Angeles Buddhist-Catholic Dialogue:



To Subscribe or Unsubscribe: