Sunday, September 09, 2007

THE NAKED APE



Couple things to get out of the way before we begin. I've received a lot of e-mails and comments lately expressing concern for my financial situation. I'm sorry to have made anyone worry. But, really, my financial situation is just fine for now. I'm trying to get rid of stuff because I have way too much*, not because I need the money. I am still employed. For the time being anyway. And if/when that finishes I'll find another job.

Lately in my Zazen I've been watching my brain invent amazing scenarios based on the most trivial of stimuli. Some idea will pop into my noggin from God only knows where and all of a sudden whole worlds of mental stuff are formed. Sorta like the Big Bang. I've even watched myself start to engage in wholly imaginary arguments over wholly imaginary things. This happens at a subconscious level so that I cannot even comment on the nature and topic of these arguments and what-not because they seem to have none. It's only after they form that anything specific can be assigned to them, more or less arbitrarily. It's just a kind of habitual reaction carried out at a very deep level. So I shouldn't be surprised when people invent vast fictional scenarios about my life based on a couple random sentences in a blog. But, much as I thank you for your concern, there really isn't any need for it.

My new favorite book is The Naked Ape: A Zoologist's Study of the Human Animalby Desmond Morris. I found it at an outdoor bookstall in Greenwich Village. I knew the book by reputation as one of those classic books that are supposed to be real good. But that was all I knew.

I just finished it about half an hour ago and I think it's amazing. It would be far better for people interested in Buddhism to read books like The Naked Apethan just about any of the dodgy pieces of muddle-headed philosophizing in the "spiritual" section of your local McBookbarn.

The author, Desmond Morris, is a British zoologist who turned his zoologist's eye on human beings. The book examines humans as animals, a brainy and carnivorous subspecies of nearly hairless primates. His conclusions, for the most part, seem to be almost completely valid. He articulates very clearly a lot of the things I've come across in my own practice. A lot of people were apparently very uncomfortable with the book when it was first published in 1967, and it's easy to see why. Instead of presenting humanity as lofty spiritual beings encumbered with unsightly material bodies it shows us as we truly are, a very successful species of ape.

Of course, in the Buddhist view, humans aren't just animals. But that doesn't mean we're not animals at all. Only that we are something rather different from the other animals. But then again elephants are different from all other animals and so are sea slugs and scorpions and any other creature. Like all other creatures we have a material as well as an immaterial side. But, again deferring to the Buddhist view, these sides are actually one and the same. The fact that we are highly successful primates -- with bigger wangs and boobies than any of our primate cousins, by the way -- is part of our spiritual nature. Get stuck into that one!

Morris' chapter on fighting is especially relevant. Virtually everything I said in my latest article for Suicide Girls comes from the same point of view he expresses there**. He even explains the workings of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems in much the same way Gudo Nishijima talks about them. Nishijima's view is that the practice of Zazen works to balance these two oppositional halves of our autonomic nervous system and that the "dropping off off body and mind" Dogen talks about is actually the equalization of our autonomic nervous system. Morris never mentions Zazen, of course. I don't even imagine he knows anything about it.

The chapter on comfort is also really interesting. Morris compares the development of medicine in human beings to the grooming instinct present in other primates. Most of our diseases, he says, emerge not from real injuries or germs, but from the deep-seated need to be groomed by our fellow naked apes. I've often thought this myself, but wasn't ever really able to articulate it as well as Morris does. This isn't to say that there are no real physical diseases. There are. But we would do well to look carefully into their origins.

Anyway, it's a good book. So go get it.

Check the entry below to where I'll be next week and remember your attendence is required. Seriously. Please don't imagine I get zillions of people at these things whether you show up or not and use that as an excuse not to show up. I don't get that many. If you like what I do, please support it. OK?

*Even though I seem to have generally far less than most people I know my age. I think it's because of the nature of my stuff that it seems like more. My friend Bob, who also has loads of monster toys and things says of his own situation, "My apartment looks like a 13 year old won the lottery" -- which is pretty much what mine looks like too.

**Though I wrote that piece long before I got the book. And how come so few of the people who posted comments noticed that I said it was extremely unfortunate that we still need vast armies to potect our freedoms? This fact must change if we are to survive as a species. But it won't change if we can't own up to it. Anyway, I guess pacifists like to get pissed off about things and fight against those who disagree with them... ***

*** Ironical, isn't it?

61 comments:

esmerelda_verde said...

Well yes, it was an interesting popular book. It is not really particularly scientific. You might want to read something about the Bonobo chimps for balance. You know how much you really trash the pop Buddhism books? Well its like that.

Anonymous said...

Ironical!!!

Mysterion said...

Naked Ape was a sensational seller.

Yes, humans are one of the five 'great ape' species. Yes, SV40 was transmitted from one monkey to another in one of the biggest accidental experiments using polio vaccine. Us'n, as we are now, evolved just 71,000 years ago - out of necessity. Mount Tubo blew its top and a half dozen years of world-wide winter followed. We became omnivores and ate bugs, rodents, roots, birds, fish, crabs, oysters, clams, and any other number of disgusting things. Then, 1,000 years later things warmed up and we started herding, cultivation, and repopulating - the three things that would lead to the complete and utter destruction of the earth that we are now experiencing. Every story has a happy ending.

Cheers,
Chas

Anonymous said...

Brad,

Don't be an idiot.

Educate yourself concerning the tyrannical nature of standing armies.

And if you think I'm a pacifist, just try breaking into my home uninvited and I guarantee you'll become instantly enlightened when you hear the sound of my pump-action Remington 870.

Mysterion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jinzang said...

I guess pacifists like to get pissed off about things and fight against those who disagree with them ... Ironical, isn't it?

Pacifism isn't defined by gettting angry or not getting angry. It's defined by what you do when you get angry. That is, you don't send tanks and bombers into the country of the people who made you angry.

Gregory said...

Remington 870, that's a good gun. I sold mine years ago. What does that have to do with Brad's post however?

Anonymous said...

"illness as a deep need for grooming"

Yes, one hypothosis is that violence is a way to have contact with another in situations where gentler intimacies are not allowed.

what was the name of that play 'women who slept with men to prevent them from going to war?' what was that about, anyway? I always liked the title

I have wondered if there would be less weird violations of boundaries (sexual abuse, date rape, etc) if there were more socially acceptable venues for touch available

Mysterion said...

Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty.
Albert Einstein

"old dog" said...

"what was the name of that play 'women who slept with men to prevent them from going to war?' what was that about, anyway? I always liked the title"

Lysistrata is the title; she was the leader of a women's rebellion, withholding sex from men until they chose to discontinue a war.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lysistrata

Erg said...

Standing armies are a cost nation states have had to incur because of the increasingly mobile and fast moving nature of warfare. Campaigns that would have taken months now take years. Conscription can fuel a long war, but without an army at point a the war will be over in a month. So if you think the state should prepare for war, and war is inevitable given the current state of humanity, you have to support standing armies.

Anonymous said...

--Old Dog--
thank you re: Lysistrata--
found on web Lysistrata Project--I think that's the one!

Anonymous said...

Buddhism is way closer to cognitive science and anthropology, IMHO, than it is to say, Catholicism.

Roman G. said...

Just so everyone knows:

Thomas Jefferson was a member of the Democratic-Republican party. The modern Republican Party wasn't established until 1854.

The only remnant of Jefferson's party in the modern world is the Democratic Party, which is a splinter group of the original Democratic-Republicans.

Anonymous said...

“Government is at best but an expedient; but most governments are usually, and all governments are sometimes, inexpedient. The objections which have been brought against a standing army, and they are many and weighty, and deserve to prevail, may also at last be brought against a standing government.”
Henry David Thoreau

When we have 6 billion enlightened individuals living in peaceful co-existance on this dirtball floating in space then we can burn our zafus and buddha statues, set aside our weapons and quietly eat a rice cake :)

Anonymous said...

or noisily eat a rice cake.....unless they're stale!

hendrik said...

"And how come so few of the people who posted comments noticed that I said it was extremely unfortunate that we still need vast armies to potect our freedoms?"

Well I did, of course; in fact I noticed the entire article.

"This fact must change if we are to survive as a species. But it won't change if we can't own up to it."

Yes, sounds very plausible.

"Anyway, I guess pacifists like to get pissed off about things and fight against those who disagree with them... ***
*** Ironical, isn't it?"

I"m not really sure what pacifism is, but if it means never to use any violence whatsoever then I suppose it's an idea of limited relevance to real life. For example evicting a cockroach from your kitchen involves chasing and catching it, and denying it the right to nest in your cupboards. Even the act of Zazen exposes countless microbes to the mercy of one's immune system.

But not all dissent from US military policies is grounded in unrealistic principles of non-violence, or voiced by emotional basketcases. Your article gave the impression - to me at least - that there is no sane alternative to the current wars, however regrettable though they may be. Hence the two questions I asked you.

It seems to me that if a Buddhist, or indeed anyone, were to consider backing their government on military action, they would do well to investigate for themselves whether the proposed action is as appropriate as their government says it is. This requires some work because the mass media don't do it for you.

Take Iraq. The country had had its infrastructure comprehensively destroyed during Desert Storm, had no weapons of mass destruction or any means to deliver them with, in fact had no capability whatsoever of launching military strikes against any Western nation, and had nothing to do with either 911 or Al Qaeda. Yet it was presented by the US and UK governments, and virtually all the mass media, as an imminent threat to the West.

The consequences for the people of Iraq have been catastrophic. According to a report that appeared last year in the British medical journal The Lancet, the only scientific investigation into war-induced mortality in Iraq that I"m aware of, it is probable that around 655,000 people died in the period March 2003 - July 2006 as a result of the war. That figure has been rising ever since, and comes on top of the more than 1 million deaths (UN figures), including 500,000 children under the age of 5, caused by the economic blockade preceding the invasion.

There are plenty more indicators of war-induced misery in Iraq for those who are interested; the website http://www.medialens.org/ is an excellent source.

Blake said...

Desmond Morris is great. He did a series (PBS, TLC, Discover?) called "The Human Animal." I recommend watching it. It really does open up some insight into how and why we interact with each other. And of course it's not hard-core science since science is about "how" and not "why."

Anonymous said...

mysterion.. Do you read that stupid ass site christianparty.net regularly? jesus god! Everything you read isn't necessarily true or fascinating to the rest of us in case no one has ever pointed that out to you before. Save your conspiracy paranoia for art bell's blog. or better yet, post that junk on your own blog. Give us a break here please! By the way, your christianparty.net buddies are Nazi's in case you missed that in your reading.

Mysterion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Erg said...

What kills me is the same people who, with good reason, oppose the Iraq war complain about the sanctions.The reason no Iraq war was necessary was because the sanctions worked!

Matthew said...

A great follow-up with more updated science would be Jared Diamond's The Third Chimpanzee.

~Matthew (this past weekend's visitor from Long-Beach-by-way-of-Kent)

Anonymous said...

What kills me is the same people who, with good reason, oppose the Iraq war complain about the sanctions.The reason no Iraq war was necessary was because the sanctions worked!

or they could have just let iraq be and not messed with their shit so much. it's not like they're the only sandwich in the basket of sandwichs

just an idea.

Anonymous said...

"Lately in my Zazen I've been watching my brain invent amazing scenarios based on the most trivial of stimuli. Some idea will pop into my noggin from God only knows where and all of a sudden whole worlds of mental stuff are formed. Sorta like the Big Bang. I've even watched myself start to engage in wholly imaginary arguments over wholly imaginary things. This happens at a subconscious level so that I cannot even comment on the nature and topic of these arguments and what-not because they seem to have none. It's only after they form that anything specific can be assigned to them, more or less arbitrarily. It's just a kind of habitual reaction carried out at a very deep level."


This is very interesting. I've similar experiences. It feels to me as if mind/manufacturing all kinds of 'stories' to make sense of the raw material of reality, keeps everything in a big pot on the back burner just below boil, ready to put it into any shape in less than the blink of an eye.


I'm very glad to hear that financially you are still on your feet, and that the job is still figuring itself out. Monastic priests think lay priests have all the fun....(and they'd be right, except for little things like needing a place to live and needing a job to make sure you have a place to live..)
Lay priests think monastic priests have all the peace and quiet...(and they'd be right, except for all the other monks and neurotic baggage
that comes with each...)
Where can the greener grass be found?

sitting quietly, spring comes and the grass grows by itself

Anonymous said...

"Nationalism always produces war, and the problem is not to be solved by bringing about further nationalism, which is only an avoidance of the fact and an extension of the same poison, but by being free of nationalism, of the sense of belonging to a particular group, to a particular class of society.

Nationalism, the patriotic spirit, class and race consciousness, are all ways of the self, and therefore separative. After all, what is a nation but a group of individuals living together for economic and self-protective reasons? Out of fear and acquisitive self-defence arises the idea of "my country", with its boundaries and tariff walls, rendering brotherhood and the unity of man impossible.

It is because we are nationalists, ready to defend our sovereign States, our beliefs and acquisitions, that we must be perpetually be armed. Property and ideas have become more important to us than human life, so there is constant antagonism and violence between ourselves and others. By maintaining the sovereignty of our country, we are destroying our sons; by worshiping the State, which is but a projection of ourselves, we are sacrificing our children to our own gratification. Nationalism and sovereign governments are the causes and instruments of war."

J. Krishnamurti

Stuart said...

Then, 1,000 years later things warmed up and we started herding, cultivation, and repopulating - the three things that would lead to the complete and utter destruction of the earth that we are now experiencing.

Let's not get over-excited about complete and utter destruction. Worst case scenario is that all creation will return to emptiness, then out of emptiness it will appear again, repeatedly for infinite time.

Stuart
http://home.comcast.net/~sresnick2/socalled.htm
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

yeah, forget nationalism. how bout globalism?

Anonymous said...

What always bugged me when I was a kid about being tolerant was that you are only really tolerant if you tolerate intolerance as well.

This riddle was "solved" (note the quotes) thanks to Zen pratice. I bow to Brad for making me remember this.

I see the point why some Buddhists avoid to join many anti-war demos.

Sidenote: What sick agressive air is vented here. *shudder* I've been away 3 weeks and people stab each other.

--IceBucket

Thom said...

Haven't read the Naked Ape, but like Brad said, I've often felt I oughta. It sorta sounds like Richard Dawkins--we're just social/compassionate/moral because it's evolutionarily advantageous. Or not when it's not.

But I have read a bit of Frans de Waal, and I have to second esmerelda--it aint all biologically determinist the way you might think it is ('we're programmed for violence, aggressive behaviour etc etc'). Bonobos are a salient example of another sort of chimp that do things radically differently to the mainstream species with all its attendant violence, male hierarchies, rape etc etc

You can argue lots of different things from zoology.

Ellen said...

The Naked Ape is a great pop science book. I remember it from my preteen years as quite an enticing yet verboten book - hey, it had naked people on the cover! when I finally got it out of the parents' bookshelves thanks to the ever-useful inattentive babysitter, it turned out to be fascinating, but in a rather different way than I had expected.

How odd that it was so controversial - all it did was recognize that humans are animals, too - specifically primates. That's all, really. And I bet that if any teacher tried to make a class read it today, the creationists would riot and start up some kinda controversy.

Why did, and do, some people get so riled up about looking at reality? We are related to apes. We just are. Cool.

HezB said...

Yet elephant pooh still smells.

Go Dharma!!!

Regards,

Harry.

Mysterion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
hendrik said...

What always bugged me when I was a kid about being tolerant was that you are only really tolerant if you tolerate intolerance as well.

This riddle was "solved" (note the quotes) thanks to Zen pratice. I bow to Brad for making me remember this.

I see the point why some Buddhists avoid to join many anti-war demos.

Sidenote: What sick agressive air is vented here. *shudder* I've been away 3 weeks and people stab each other.


There's no need to get all upset over modern history. I don't see any reason in principle why it can't be pursued more materialistically (i.e. evidence based, with clearly defined notions), like zoology or computing science, than it is now.

Knowledge of modern history is relevant; without it you can't tell whether it's freedom to practice Zazen that's at stake, or some other freedom, like control of oil or land. For example, maybe Islamic extremism wouldn't be as dominant in Iran as it is today if the CIA and MI6 hadn't overthrown the democratically elected Mussadegh government in 1953, over oil, and replaced it with the brutal Shah dictatorship.

Of course Brad's elegant vision of a real solution through Buddhism is one I embrace heartily, and is why I sit Zazen for an hour each day.

Anonymous said...

"What always bugged me when I was a kid about being tolerant was that you are only really tolerant if you tolerate intolerance as well."

one hundred bows to mysterion for being a great teacher of tolerating the intolerable.

Middle-Aged Suburban Housewife said...

Re: Suicide Girls article. Seems pretty superficial. Your rantings are often so black and white. Peace is defined by violence and likewise, violence defined by peace. It's finding the balance in each moment that's of import--- and REALLY so on the international stage right now. Time to put a grown up in charge. Throw the cowboys out of the sandbox.

Perhaps Obama can shift the balance...

Anonymous said...

" one hundred bows to mysterion for being a great teacher of tolerating the intolerable. "


why the hell is everyone pissing on mysterion all the time? ok so some of his comments don't make much sense. so what? i for one like his comments. They're a lot more fun than most of the stuff that gets posted on here.

keep it up mysterion!

John said...

Since the topic is science books that relate to Buddhism, I've got to give a shout out to my favorite:

The Astonishing Hypothesis by Francis Crick (of Watson and Crick fame)

Anonymous said...

"why the hell is everyone pissing on mysterion all the time?"

It is not everybody, it is mostly me. everyone else seems to love him. His posts, like the aids/polio one, annoy me. It's my problem, not his.

esmerelda_verde said...

Henrik said 'Knowledge of modern history is relevant; without it you can't tell whether it's freedom to practice Zazen that's at stake, or some other freedom, like control of oil or land.'

This is an excellent point. Many Buddhists feel that they have a responsibility to be antiwar, some do not. That is fine, but I think we do have a responsibility to be aware and educated about the issues.

I assume the 'pacifists like to get pissed off' comment was humor. I think most of the 'pacifists' are simply disagreeing the currently level of violence is necessary to maintain 'freedoms'.

I started thinking about this and it just doesn't seem worth any one getting killed or maimed for me to have tattoos, listen to rock, not wear a veil, and all the other evil elements of a non Islamic life style, including Zazen. It doesn't matter if they are Islamic fanatics or US soldiers or even Dick Cheney or even that my 'share of the body count' would be less than 100% of a casualty. Mystereon probably knows what that amount works out to be. Its not worth it for any economic advantage, the oil or the jobs generated by the war either. Here in NYC it's not making me safer from terrorists so that cannot be counted.

I am still trying to figure out what extream peace would be like. I would like to try it.

Mysterion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

How glorious it is to serve one's country.

Anonymous said...

"I am still trying to figure out what extream peace would be like. I would like to try it. "

It would be awesome. Everyone would be really good at baking and you could leave your doors unlocked like in the 50's.

yudo said...

" I have wondered if there would be less
" weird violations of boundaries (sexual
" abuse, date rape, etc) if there were
" more socially acceptable venues for
" touch available

It would seem so. The English and the American, who are among the least touch-prone of Western nations, are also the most violent.
The French the Italian and the Spanish will yell more, but seem to be somewhat less violent. Which is not to say that those nations don't know what violence is...

It was a standing army which restaured democracy in Portugal. The problem generally seems to stem from the higher officials, especially those who have been raised with a contempt of democracy. In France, it is very often the case.

As for liberty, the French motto, LIberte, Egalite, Fraternite, although a bit cryptic at first sight, is very interesting. If you don't have equality before the law, this means that the mighty have more liberties than the poor and weak. Which is why one talks of liberties and not LIberty. If you don't have fraternity, you get a mean society where everyone is forever checking his neighbours so that they don't get more than you. Fraternity means that there is some provision for free giving.

Anonymous said...

If anyone practice Zazen everyday, he or she can maintain his or her autonomic nervous system balanced, and if he or she maintains the balance of the autonomic nervous system by practicing Zazen everyday, it is impossible for him or her to violate any kind of morals at all.

Anonymous said...

"why the hell is everyone pissing on mysterion all the time?"

Mysterion is the archetype of the elder internet wacko. You know a lot of the younger geeky conspiracy idiots, insecure, wairing stained pants, full of fear and anger...

Mysterion is not like them!

He is wise and calm but he remained honest to his weirdo roots. I really enjoy his ability to get the most unlikely ideas out. One week he is smarter than any historian in the world, next week he beats the whole of our medical science. MUCH LUV <3

If there is any proof what Buddhism or religion in general can do good to people I think Mysterion would be it.

--IceBucket

Jules said...

anonymous wrote: If anyone practice Zazen everyday, he or she can maintain his or her autonomic nervous system balanced, and if he or she maintains the balance of the autonomic nervous system by practicing Zazen everyday, it is impossible for him or her to violate any kind of morals at all.

I cannot tell a lie. It was Washington who chopped down the cherry tree.

Mysterion said...
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Mysterion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

screw Brad! Mysterion is our new gracious enlightened holy master! Hail Mysterion!

Mysterion said...

the French motto:

Liberte

Égalité (L’égalité parfaite et sincère amitié)

Fraternite

Anonymous said...

@Mysterion: It was dusty as you will probably imagine. I thought 'less is more' more often than ever. Still spledid. Next time, friend.

Do not ridicule Mysterion. He is cool, he has just a different way of expression.

--IceBucket

Mysterion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mysterion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

http://i.somethingawful.com/inserts/articlepics/photoshop/09-14-07-sleepers/Crocz.jpg

dood said...

Not only have the USA spent roughly $452 Billion so far ($2B per week) to murder Iraqis...

http://www.nationalpriorities.org/Trade-Offs.html

But the money is going to the Bush, Cheney, and Bin Laden Families...

http://www.hereinreality.com/carlyle.html

ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTING!!

Anonymous said...

For fans out there: Slowly I turned....step by step, inch by inch.....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Cite?page=Slowly+I+Turned

Films in which the routine can be seen (yes, seeing is believing)

Gents Without Cents, 1944 short film starring The Three Stooges (trigger word: "Niagara Falls")
In Society, 1944 film starring Abbott and Costello (trigger word: "Susquehana Hat Company")
Lost in a Harem, 1944 film starring Abbott and Costello (trigger word: "Pokomoko")
The Abbott and Costello Show, 1952 episode "Jail" (trigger word: "Niagara Falls")
I Love Lucy, 1952 episode "The Ballet," [1] (trigger word: "Martha")
Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid, 1982 film starring Steve Martin (trigger word: "cleaning woman")
"Don't Call Me Dude," 1990 song by Scatterbrain (trigger word: "dude")
Referenced in Godspell by Victor Garber
Referenced in the M*A*S*H episode "Dr. Pierce and Mr. Hyde".
Dinosaucers episode "Allo & Cos-Stego Meet The Abominable Snowman" (trigger word: Himalayas)

Maybe we can get a routine going for HCZ

Slowly I sat.... turned and faced the wall, breath by breath, thought by thought ... delusion by delusion.....

Jinzang said...

Let me interrupt Mysterion's explanation of everything on the installment plan to recommend a new book, Steve Hagen's Meditation: Now or Never. It's always best to learn how to meditate in person from a teacher, but those of you without a teacher will find this book helpful. It explains how to meditate and answers common questions about meditation. Many books on meditation make it into a big production, which is just another form of clinging. I think this book has the right take on the subject.

Mysterion said...

Jinzang sed...
"Let me... recommend a new book, Steve Hagen's Meditation: Now or Never."

Most excellent Perl of wisdom from Jinzang.
$10 American here.

Smoggyrob said...

Hi everyone:

Jinzang, thanks for the tip. Hagen is a great teacher. I have two of his books (and a bunch of audio dharma talks) already and I will RUN out to get this one. I'll even recommend it without having read it yet.

Mysterion, I'm happy that you take all the shit that's thrown at you (both lovingly and with a mean spirit) so well. I want you to know that I hope you stay here forever, even when I find myself annoyed with you. You, and the people responding to you, make this a better blog.

--
Rob

Anonymous said...

Pleasently suprised to see you getting back to Buddhism in this blog.

Stuart said...

if he or she maintains the balance of the autonomic nervous system by practicing Zazen everyday, it is impossible for him or her to violate any kind of morals at all.

If you bash me over the head, that's a bad action, and you'll suffer for it, and it don't make the least bit of difference whether or not you practice no damn zazen.

Stuart
http://home.comcast.net/~sresnick2/socalled.htm
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/