Sunday, June 22, 2008

NEW SUICIDE GIRLS ARTICLE

My new Suicide Girls article will be up as of 6AM Pacific Time Monday June 23rd. This would have been my mother's 67th birthday if she were alive. But that isn't what I wrote about. I won't be able to post the link, though, until I return from Tassajara in two weeks. So maybe some clever person can post the link in the comments section of this posting. Also, on June 25th my interview with Randy Blythe of Lamb Of God goes up. So maybe someone will post that link as well.

I looked over a couple of the over 300 posts to my previous thing. Jesus God in Heaven! You people really do need to get yourselves a hobby! For the record, I do not think prison rape is funny. Nor do I think that prisoners are not human beings. In fact, when I made the comment, the idea that Bruno The Snake (who is fictional, I should add) might have raped me did not even enter my mind. Some will call me disingenuous. But believe it or not, folks, I am not disingenuous. I am actually stupid. Talk to people who know me. They'll tell you. Smoggy Rob, Mary Grace, tell them! In any case, I'm sorry the comment upset people so much. But would you have even been able to address the topic had I not written what I did?

The sesshin in Berkeley was very nice, thank you. I have to get up at 5 AM tomorrow to drive for three hours. So forgive me for being brief (that's what she said).

.... It's 4:34 AM. I can't sleep anymore. So I'm going to leave even earlier. But about that sesshin and the new SG article — as the sesshin progressed I was feeling more and more the feelings I expressed in that piece. I hated it. The ceremonial aspects of the thing were so forced and so contrived and everyone there was so into all that silliness. I just wanted out.

The sesshin culminated in a shusho (head monk) ceremony. Go look it up, I haven't got time to explain. This was the worst. After four and a half days of ceremonial nonsense, this was the most nonsensical ceremony yet. Before it started I heard some people gabbing about how beautiful and moving it would be, and beaming glowing love beams at the woman who was to be head monk. I wanted to puke.

But you know something? It was a beautiful and moving ceremony. I was glad to have been there. And, Geri, I don't know you at all. But I know you'll be a great teacher. You told the truth up there. That's such a rare and valuable thing.

And with that I'm off to Tassajara. There are fires on three sides of the place and they're already preparing for evacuation should the closest fire start to threaten the monastery. But the person I'm going to see up there is very dear to me and I'm not going to be deterred.

238 comments:

1 – 200 of 238   Newer›   Newest»
PhilBob-SquareHead said...

Dear Brad,
God bless your mother.


Dear Mysterion,
You are officially enlightened!

Your descriptions on the previous blogs matched to Nishijima Sensei's:
received = idealism
subjective = materialism
procedural = philosophy
constructed = realism

You have earned your BADGE sir!!!

- Phil

PhilBob-SquareHead said...

Enlightened!!!

That's what SHE said!!!
Whoa!!!

Anonymous said...

What were your mom's favorites?
Favorite dessert, favorite music, favorite trinket?

Anonymous said...

gosh darn
I hoped we would get to 400 before Daddy got to see the blog again.
oh phooey

Anonymous said...

I wish I could help you out with the posting the link
to SG for your new article, but I don't know how, so I can't

I look forward to reading it though...

PhilBob-SquareHead said...

My #1 zen master, George Carlin is gone.

We love you George.

Carlin was a closet buddhist.

Anonymous said...

Religion is bullshit.

"I'm not an atheist, and I'm not an agnostic;
I'm an acrostic...
the whole thing puzzles me."

-- George Carlin

Anonymous said...

Brad,

Just to clear it up, why did you describe the fictional person Bruno as your "boyfriend"? The use of that word in a prison context is what creates the rape association for me.

AAA

Anonymous said...

AAA, consensual sex does happen in prison occasionally..

Anonymous said...

Yes, that makes sense, however I am still interested to hear Brad's clarification of his word choice.

AAA

George Carlin said...

"The whole problem with this idea of obscenity and indecency, and all of these things - bad language and whatever - it's all caused by one basic thing, and that is: religious superstition. There's an idea that the human body is somehow evil and bad and there are parts of it that are especially evil and bad, and we should be ashamed. Fear, guilt and shame are built into the attitude toward sex and the body. ... It's reflected in these prohibitions and these taboos that we have." GC - 2004

Anonymous said...

Shit, piss, fuck, cunt, cocksucker, motherfucker and tits!!

Thanks to George Carlin
(and Lenny Bruce and drugs).

dj said...

http://suicidegirls.com/news/culture/23196/

aumeye said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
aumeye said...

Brad'sLatestSuicideGirlsArticle

Mysterion said...

Brad sed:
"Sometimes even when you’re over stuff you still gotta do it anyway. Sometimes you gotta do it especially when you’re over it."

And sometimes you just accept existence. "I am, therefore I am."

Or in 1950's rock and roll parlance: "Wa wa wa waaa-aaa*"

Sometimes, when you sit alone, you find yourself in better company - not in the judgmental sense but in the sense of silence.

*The basic idea of Chado, or tea ceremony, which Rikyu mentioned about, is expressed by four Chinese characters, WA, KEI, SEI, and JAKU. WA means harmony, KEI means respect, SEI means purity, and JAKU means tranquillity.
source

Rich said...

Anon said:
"Yes, that makes sense, however I am still interested to hear Brad's clarification of his word choice."

Brad said he was sorry his comments offended people. that's THE END

Anonymous said...

“Honesty may be the best policy, but it’s important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.”

-GC

mysteriondan said...

“Honesty may be the best policy, but it’s important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.”

George could get himself tossed out of the Zen Master Friar's Club by talking like that. Not that he cares at this point.

Anonymous said...

aumeye--You're the BEST!

Brad--great SG article

Jules said...

Now here's something truly inspiring: a giant Ultraman statue made from a zillion tiny Ultraman action-figures:

http://www.hobbymedia.it/1365

Anonymous said...

Wow! Brad's new suicide girl article was awesome. And he told the story again how he used to go on stage at hardcore shows in the early 80s with long hair and bell-bottoms. Gosh! I never get tired of that story, even after all the times he's told it. My grandpa likes to tell me how all the kids his age ended the war in Vietnam and I believe him.

Sue said...

Brad, whenever I link someone to one of your articles, I always warn them not to read the comments, not under any circumstances whatsoever. I swear, there's something about e-buddhism that brings out the "ooOOoo, lookit me, I'm contradicting someone on the intarwebs, I'm so cool!" ugly in people like nothing I've seen online. Or maybe it's like everything else, but just seems this way to me because the subject's something important to me.
In any case, while I always look forward to reading a new entry from you (you've inspired a lot of healthier thinking in my life and I thank you for that), I wanted to tell you that I'm noticing that as I click the link to have a look, I'm also dreading how much of the entry is going to be devoted to responding to people I suspect don't really have a point other than to prod a reaction from you so they can . . . I dunno, prove they matter or something. And maybe you know that, and have decided you need to say what you're going to say anyways. And maybe I should have just emailed you my comment, because by putting it out here I'm sort of being an attention whore myself. :) In any case, I hope you enjoy your retreat, and thanks again for all the different ways you try to communicate with us.

Alef said...

Thank you aumeye for the link and thank you Brad for a good article.

25 said...

25 !!!

Anonymous said...

I wonder if Sacha Baron Cohen's Bruno was the inspiration for Brad's Bruno.

earDRUM said...

Good articles Brad.

In the past, I have read about strong emotions coming up while doing zazen. I always assumed that this would happen to people with emotional issues happening in their lives... but not to me.
I was wrong.
I did a yoga class and during the last pose - laying with my on the floor with calves resting on a chair, and eyes closed. And it happened. Suddenly I pictured my yoga teacher crying... really hard. And I felt her sadness as if it was my own. And then I had to fight with all my might not to start crying uncontrollably. Then, in an instant, I felt uncontrollable joy. I had to fight the urge to laugh uncontrollably.
It was very strange.
I did some reading about this phenomenon. Apparently, our emotions are tied up with physical blockages. releasing the physical blockages releases the emotional ones. And the emotions don't necessarily have any meaning.
I just found it very fascinating.
I assume that this is the same experience that people have while sitting?


p.s.
Nice to see you here again Aumeye. It has been ages.

z0tl said...

george carlin died, so how about dedicate this moment to learn from a true master and try to come up with a better act for your next suicide?

Jinzang said...

I hated it. The ceremonial aspects of the thing were so forced and so contrived and everyone there was so into all that silliness. I just wanted out.

It's only a problem because you make it a problem. The ceremony can be a meditation too, if you let it be.

Anonymous said...

"It's only a problem if you let it be...ceremonies can be a kind of meditation too"

It's (whatever it is) a problem when it is expwerience as 'problem'
seems like the 'meditation' which ensued was on the problem and not with the problem of having a problem. Staying with it, just as it was, seems (as it were) to have brought an awareness of 'no problem' in fact an availability to fully appreciate the person being ordained (or whatever it was that was happening) I actually think Brad does not a half-bad job explaining this open flexible receiving mind which allows itself to not attach but be fully available--aware of the changes: accepting without reservation or hesitation the next the next the next experience even it there seems to be contradiction
I think its a fine job of trying to convey this phenomenon and it's one of the reasons people (we're talon' regular Joes and Josephinas) have a hard time with 'buddists' and others who arrive at this place: "Make up your mind!" they say "you can't have it both ways!'
Truly what can a person do? Other than tell the truth now and now and now and now

Anonymous said...

OK
in that post it should have been 'experienced' and 'we're talkn' (not expwerince or talon')

So I guess I'm just wonderin' since we're talkn' about what's experienced:

Has anybody ever been?

Smoggyrob said...

Hi everyone:

Brad is stupid, evidenced by his belief that anyone needs supporting testimony to believe he is stupid.

I like "I Am So Over This Buddhism Shit" as the SG article it is and the new book title it could be.

Rob

mysteriondan said...

I don't think you can say shit on a book cover.. interesting title idea though.

and another thing said...

Brad is not stupid
Brad's idea of fun is silliness, is absurdity.
He's a 3 Stooges fan for goodness sakes.
That says it all right there.

Brad's humor requires nothing to understand it--because there is nothing to understand--it's lowest common denominator humor--which means it is available to anyone: you don't have to be well educated or well read, you don't have to have a quick wit.

Brad's appreciation of the inane is endearing (and possibly irritating)--that's if you've had a chance to meet the guy and find him likable.
but if you don't like him, then right away you have available to you a whole arsenal of things to dislike about him and ridicule him for. He makes it too easy. But all that ever gets flung around in his face are pies anyway.
All the mean words and mean things that anyone could possibly say can only turn into pies around
Brad: what else could they become?

I guess I could put it this way: maybe Brad is to authority (of the zen buddhist variety) what dadaism was to the art world: following and breaking rules at the same time, ridiculing and taking seriously at the same time.

Just watch a 3 Stooges movie, you Brad Haters, if
you want to know what you're up against, or, as I once heard

"Apres Moe, le deluge!"

Bozu da Monk said...

They won't let me lead the chanting, They won't let me ring the bell,
But if this Sesshin gets of track,
Just watch who catches hell...

reference NOT

Anonymous said...

not quite Meditation

John said...

a Brad Warner classic

Zen Stooges

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

Brad seems quite smart, actually.

mountaindew rubble said...

"I get tired of people assuming certain things about my political views, for instance. Just because I sit zazen doesn't mean I hate George Bush and will vote for Obama."

Oh man, I know what you mean!
Just because I sit zazen, people assumed I was against japan invading manchuria. Assumed I was against killing innocent women and children.

Now they assume I have some aversion to torturing pesky terrorists or placing unconvicted guys accused of terrorist acts in prison forever. They assume I have some love for civil liberties. They assume I hate war. Even assume I won't use my power to have sex with all my zen students. Stupid people assume I want to clean up the earth and am against pollution and shit. Against GW? Why would I be opposed to setting up a fascist christian theocracy in america? Sounds like a great idea. I say 'f^: em. I can be an asshole and still practice lots of zazen.
It's a perfect expression of my bubba-nature.

Anonymous said...

amen

Anonymous said...

awomen

Mike H said...

eardrum: Re - emotions and body

Yes, it works like that. Emotions which are denied tend to manifest in the body as tension or non-feeling. Releasing parts of the body can trigger emotions.

There is a whole science behind this that is linked with Chakras. I'd like to dismiss it as crap but it does match what I went through before I knew what to expect.

A good book is "Eastern Body, Western Mind" that strips away he mysticism a bit and westernises things.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Brad,

This is a resonse to you SG article.

“mindfulness.” Christ I hate that word. The word seems to indicate some vague state of thinking hard about what you’re doing. And I know we’re all taught that we should think about what we’re doing.

According to who? What Buddhist teachers are saying this? According to your own misunderstanding ? This is a classic Strawman Argument. Vipassana is a little like this with it's 'labelling', but Vipassana is not what most teachers are taking about when they use the term 'mindfulness. They are talking about present moment awareness.

I’m also sick to death of hearing hipster Buddha dudes use the word “skillful” to describe things they like and “unskillful” to describe things they don’t. It’s a total misuse of the old Buddhist idea of upaya, or “skillful means,” by which ancient Buddhist teachers are said to have taught in unorthodox ways.

Well I dare say that some Buddhists might abuse the term. It's not unknown for for Buddhists or Buddhist teachers even to criticise or abuse other people. coughBradWarnercough. Upaya/skillful means just means expedient methods to bring understanding of the dharma/ release from suffering.

I’m also fed up with the concept of the “dharma talk,” which has come to mean something like, “guys in funny robes using buzzwords like ‘mindfulness’ and ‘skillful’ to lull people who think of themselves as ‘spiritually minded’ to sleep.” I’m tired of watching entire audiences nod out like opium addicts while smiling knowingly whenever a favorite word or phrase floats through the haze.

This is generally how the dharma has been taught since the start. Don't like it? Stop doing it!

Whatever. Anyway, after I said this stuff a whole buncha folks got really mad about it. Fine. Be as mad as you want. I, myself, am not the least bit angry about this. I was just fed up with it and continue to be fed up with it.

It seems pretty obvious that you're angry. And most of your wring has this tone. Maybe not breaking down doors like the Hulk angry, but at least... peeved. You'd be more aware of your anger if you developed some Mindfulness. Isn't your approach to Buddhism helping with your anger?

Back when I was first in punk rock, the thing that irked me the most, and finally drove me out of punk rock altogether, was the fact that the philosophy we espoused was all about questioning things. And yet you were not allowed to question punk rock itself.

Any rebellious movement has to be like that in order not to destroy itself. Punk was not really about challenging everything but about challenging mainstream society. Dada did question itself and it self-destructed after a short time. Challenging authority isn't an end in itself nor necessarily the means to arrive at truth.

American Buddhism as it stands today is pretty much the same way. Buddhism isn't that way. But the stuff that lotsa people call "Buddhism" is. It's a subtle distinction, I know. But an important one.

There is a much more (not less) 'free thought' and individualism in American Buddhism than in traditional Asian Buddhism.

So when I started calling bullshit on the idea of mindfulness, and skillfulness and "Dharma talks," the reaction was almost identical to what used to happen when I'd go on stage at hardcore shows in the early '80s with long hair and bell-bottoms. You can't do that! We can challenge everything in the world, but don't you dare challenge us!

There are a couple of flaws with that comparison with punk rock. Firstly, Punk was about challenging authority; Buddhism is about becoming free from suffering by realising the emptiness of phenomena. It is about truth - not rebellion. Sometimes those in positions of authority have more insight into reality than our do. And sometimes they don't. Challenging authority isn't an end in itself. And Buddhism is not about putting our own small-minded, angry, deluded, egotistical opinions above everyone else's.

If Buddhism can’t be challenged it isn’t Buddhism anymore.

Secondly...why are you objecting (once again) to people challenging you? I thought you were for challenging authority? You don't seem to be thinking this through. They are challenging your authority - a monk, author and self-procaimed Bringer of The Real-Deal. Personally I don't care if you are a monk or not. I'm happy to help by telling you when I can see that you're full of shit.

You seem rather caught up with your own opinions and with 'raging against the establishment' as an end in itself so that you don't see clearly at times.

Entertaining sure, but is Zententainment all we're after?

Anonymous said...

clap...

slowclap said...

clap...

Anonymous said...

stop all this mind-ful business
stop it, stop it I say
mind empty, empty mind, mind emptiness all the way

Alef said...

"It seems pretty obvious that you're angry. And most of your wring has this tone. Maybe not breaking down doors like the Hulk angry, but at least... peeved. You'd be more aware of your anger if you developed some Mindfulness. Isn't your approach to Buddhism helping with your anger?"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vn86ZAls6_A

fitty said...

50 !!!

gniz said...

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said..

I wholeheartedly agree with your post, which was thoughtful, insightful and logical.

Thanks for writing that

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Alef,

Do you think this video demonstrates that Brad isn't angry?

Do you think that the 'in person' Brad speaking in front of an audience is the 'real Brad' or the one speaking through the keyboard?

Many people find themselves able to express emotions online (or written on post-it notes in the case of one of my old flatmates) which they wouldn't find themselves able to express in person. Actually, I think most people are like this - which is why Internet discussions are usually a mess.

Anyway, Brad has publicly admitted in the past that he has an anger problem.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Buddhism is not about 'sticking it to the Man'. It's about finding truth being seeing through the delusions of the personal mind. If anything, we're challenging our own authority.

aumeye said...

Thanks, eardrum. I'm often here, just quiet.

andronymous said...

I think Brad has publicly admitted to once having had an anger problem.. That's not quite the same thing as admitting that he is currently dealing with one. I think a lot of people are way too busy looking for nits to pick off of Brad's ass rather than taking what they can use from his writing and flushing the rest. People really love their own ideas about what Buddhism is and isn't. Some bloggers, in the past, have criticized Buddhists types for trying to be nicer than they really were.. Some will criticize people for being too harsh. Anyone can be criticized for anything if you want to go down that road. I think Brad knows he would be better off shutting up at times but he has this writing gig now. He has to say something. And as far as Buddhism not being about 'sticking it to the Man', Who the fuck knows.. It's pretty obvious you couldn't get very many here to agree on what Buddhism is, let alone who toppled the WTC.

Alef said...

wake up and smell the dharma!,

No, I don't think so.
Do you think Brad's writings demonstrate that he is angry?

We don't know if he's angry or not, and we certainly don't know who the 'real Brad' is.
Actually, it doesn't really matter (to us) if he's angry or not. If he really is he's the one who has to deal with it, right?
I'm more concerned with making sure I get past all the supposed anger and see what it really is that he wants to say.

Jinzang said...

Regarding your Suicide Girls article:

There's no reason to scrap Buddhist terms like mindful, skillful means, etc. just because they're misused in Buddhist circles. Quantum mechanics is even more misunderstood and misused, but I can't see scrapping it. If people react defensively when you correct their mistakes, well, you should have realized by now that pointing out someone's mistakes does not endear you to anyone.

The Buddhist teacher walks a fine line between comforting people in their delusions and pissing them off so much they don't hear what you have to say. It's a hard job, but you volunteered for it.

mountaintop smegma said...

Wake up and smell the dharma:

Yeah. What he said!

Standing ovation and hat's off to you.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Andronymous,

I think Brad has publicly admitted to once having had an anger problem.. That's not quite the same thing as admitting that he is currently dealing with one.
Well AFAIK he hasn't said that he has eliminated the anger either. Only his wife knows for sure. For whatever reason, he has a writing style which is often aggressive, insensitive, reckless and arrogant.

I think a lot of people are way too busy looking for nits to pick off of Brad's ass rather than taking what they can use from his writing and flushing the rest.

Well we could say the same about Brad. Why doesn't he take what he can from other people and flush the rest? Why does he make (often completely unjustified) criticisms, personal comments etc about people whose ideas he doesn't like? Is he afraid that if he drops the 'punk' tabloid sensationalism that no one will read him? Brad's critics pull their punches a lot more than Brad does.

People really love their own ideas about what Buddhism is and isn't.
True. Especially Brad.

Some bloggers, in the past, have criticized Buddhists types for trying to be nicer than they really were.. Some will criticize people for being too harsh. Anyone can be criticized for anything if you want to go down that road.

Criticising other people isn't what Buddhism is about. We need to focus on our own delusions not other people's. One of the Soto Zen precepts is not to criticise others.

6. DO NOT CRITICISE OTHERS/DO NOT TALK OF THE FAULTS OF OTHERS

7. DO NOT PRAISE SELF AND SLANDER OTHERS

I realise that I'm doing it now of course. I held my tongue for a long time and I might be wrong, but in my judgement its occasionally necessary to say something if it's well motivated. Brad makes a career of it.

I think Brad knows he would be better off shutting up at times but he has this writing gig now. He has to say something.

And if he says things which are endless and usually unjustified whinging about 'other Buddhists' then other people will say something to him. Is he so desperate as a career Buddhist that he needs to post any old crap?

Who the fuck knows..

If that's all that you can say about Buddhism then maybe you're hanging out in the wrong places?

It's pretty obvious you couldn't get very many here to agree on what Buddhism is,

Who cares what people here agree or don't agree on. Do you honestly think that this is the place where deep understanding of Buddhism happens?

Cuppa dharma in the a.m. said...

Dear Wake Up
It is pretty clear Brad and his writing are things you love to hate.
I am sorry that you are you, because you don't have a chance to come here and read what you write from any other perspective than your own, a shame, really.
Now that we all know your dislike of Brad and every other sentence he writes....
Why do you spend so much time on a person and a blog space when clearly he and it disgust you?
Why subject yourself to such pain?
There isn't a single teacher who is good for everyone. But I can tell you this about all zen teachers: they are good for Nothing.
This no-thing-ness is ultimately good for all of us.
Please wake up, Mr. Wake Up, your dharma smells like it's of the extra dark roast variety.

gniz said...

Cuppa dharma in the a.m. said...

This person is exactly the kind of Brad fan that seems to be the core of Brad's audience on this blog. In other words, this person uses nasty put-downs and insults that attack the person who takes issue with anything Brad writes.

This is actually similar to the way certain right-wingers (and left-wingers) attack a person who criticizes George Bush or certain American policies. In some peoples minds, criticizing something means you HATE it, makes you unAMerican.

But far from it, Wake up and Smell the Dharma, as well as myself, have probably been reading Brad's blogs and writings as long or longer than most others here reading this.

And i believe that we've both admitted to really liking a lot of what Brad's written. If I've criticized anything, it's been a seeming deterioration in the writing, as Brad has seemed to become more and more critical, nasty and derogatory in his writings.

And along with that, he's attracted a nasty type of fan, who seems to adore everything he writes and blast anyone who says differently.

I think thats a shame.

Aaron

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

It is pretty clear Brad and his writing are things you love to hate.

Not at all. Actually I enjoy Brad's blog and I'm enjoying this. I'm glad that Brad's around and writing. I think it's healthy for Western Buddhism to be subject to criticism. I also think its healthy for Brad's ideas and his style to be subject to criticism itself. Which is the role I'm playing right now. It's called 'free debate'.

I am sorry that you are you, because you don't have a chance to come here and read what you write from any other perspective than your own, a shame, really.

Hmmm...isn't it you who is suggesting that anyone who disagrees with Brad should be quiet? So who is narrow-minded? There's a difference between being narrow-minded and not agreeing with everything someone says. Anyway, everything you've said to me about criticising Brad can be applied to Brad's criticisms.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Well said Gniz.

And yes, I've been following Brad from well before he had this blog or published Hardcore Zen. I've enjoyed and been inspired by his writing for a long time. But that doesn't mean he's above criticism.

Anonymous said...

Why not sum up your criticism and direct is as a question towards the writer? After all, these are comments to a blog entry.

Bassline Circus said...

Come on Db dont't delete your comment, respond to mountaindew Rubble's flame!
I was looking forward to see how you'd wriggle out of it.

andro said...

Aaron, I do not see a deterioration in Brad's writing unless you are comparing his blog to his books, which isn't fair. You found out after your own short lived blog vow that it ain't easy putting yourself out there week after week. Brad does it better than most.. You were the original nasty type of fan-boy so I'd guess you know what you are talking about but.. Brad allows each and every comment no matter how crazy or mean for a purpose. Because each and everyone of us is crazy and mean as anyone who has ever sat zazen for a while knows full well. Isn't it good to know you are not alone?

And Justin, I have no idea what you are up to.. You wrote:

6. DO NOT CRITICISE OTHERS/DO NOT TALK OF THE FAULTS OF OTHERS

7. DO NOT PRAISE SELF AND SLANDER OTHERS

"I realise that I'm doing it now of course."

So are you pointing out that you are just as poor a Buddhist as Brad is?

Anonymous said...

Instead of focusing on the person who is the writer, why not take a closer look at the words, for example:

6. DO NOT CRITICISE OTHERS/DO NOT TALK OF THE FAULTS OF OTHERS

What's this all about? How is it useful? Are there cases where it should be disregarded?

whoops! said...

displaced, repressed anger

mtroll said...

"But far from it, Wake up and Smell the Dharma, as well as myself, have probably been reading Brad's blogs and writings as long or longer than most others here reading this."

Same here, gniz. I really liked Brad's early essays and Hardcore Zen. Some of his present writing is good too, but I've noticed the same deterioration as you pointed out.

No way of knowing for sure, but if it were me, I'd say it was due to the fame of being published along with being given such an important position in DZI. Even when you've had a glimpse of what's beyond ego, ego can still reassert itself unless the awakening was complete. And I know of no-one who's awakening is complete.

When Brad criticizes others, even teachers or others with much more experience with zazen, it is seen by many here as justified, as him pointing out wrong views or wrong doctrines. Never is it viewed as blatant egotism or tribalism when he compares himself to others or his sect to other sects.

When a few of us take issue with just some of what Brad writes, it is considered cruel and egotistical.

Anonymous said...

It is a rare person who truly understands his own motivations.

Anonymous said...

Why do you believe? What is your evidence? How can you be sure? Is there possibly another explanation?

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Why not sum up your criticism and direct is as a question towards the writer?
I responded to his article point by point. If he wants to respond to my points he can.

So are you pointing out that you are just as poor a Buddhist as Brad is?
That's easy! Just read all of what I wrote:
I realise that I'm doing it now of course. I held my tongue for a long time and I might be wrong, but in my judgement its occasionally necessary to say something if it's well motivated. Brad makes a career of it.

DO NOT CRITICISE OTHERS/DO NOT TALK OF THE FAULTS OF OTHERS
What's this all about? How is it useful? Are there cases where it should be disregarded?

I think it's to discourage in-fighting, egotism and sectarianism. Do we see any of that here?

displaced, repressed anger
Well, quite. But I'm not Brad's therapist, I don't even know him, so I'm not going to diagnose him. But this sort of thing is very common.

Anonymous said...

DO NOT CRITICISE OTHERS/DO NOT TALK OF THE FAULTS OF OTHERS

Criticism reinforces the idea of an 'other' and that of a 'self' that is doing the criticizing.

Reinforcing of the idea of a self is counter to the instructions of the Buddha.

Which instructions?

The Buddha pointed out that there are three primary characteristics of our shared reality...

1) Absolutely everything is constantly changing

2) Therefore there is no permanent 'self'

3) The tendency to act in ways that perpetuate a 'self' are actually the causes of suffering.

Anonymous said...

... it's really profound and goes so deep, but I don't have the mental wherewithall to unwind it right now.

mountainpop pebble said...

"Criticism reinforces the idea of an 'other' and that of a 'self' that is doing the criticizing.

Reinforcing of the idea of a self is counter to the instructions of the Buddha."


The Buddha? What's he got to do with True Buddhism anyway? Did Dogen say it? Did Nishijima? Did Brad? No? Then it's not True Buddhism.

Shakyamuni was probably not a real Buddhist. If he were, he would have just talked about sitting in the correct posture. Instead, we get all this other crap about the 4 noble truths, eight-fold path, mindfulness, compassion and enlightenment. He should have read Brad's book and just sat down and shut up.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

aaahahahahaha

Buddha also encouraged compassionate behaviour and following precepts - definitely not a real Buddhist

gniz said...

"andro said...
Aaron, I do not see a deterioration in Brad's writing unless you are comparing his blog to his books"

Andro, I'm comparing his recent blog (probably the last 1-2 years)to older blog posts and writings on his web site from maybe 2-3 years ago.

"You found out after your own short lived blog vow that it ain't easy putting yourself out there week after week."

Indeed it is not. But I dont think anyone deserves extra credit for "putting themselves out there."
Aside from the rabid fanboys, most of us realize that Brad is not just putting his writings out there to enlighten all beings. He's tryin to make a living as a writer, and unfortunately, stirring up controversy is a good way to get attention.

"You were the original nasty type of fan-boy so I'd guess you know what you are talking about but.."

I think that comment leans a bit towards taking a pot-shot at me but whatever.

"Brad allows each and every comment no matter how crazy or mean for a purpose."

Yeah but you dont know that purpose anymore then I do. It may be because he's "unmasking our repressed craziness and delusions" or it might be that it generates a lot of web site hits! Hmmm....

"Because each and everyone of us is crazy and mean as anyone who has ever sat zazen for a while knows full well. Isn't it good to know you are not alone?"

Agreed. But the fact that all of us are crazy and mean is exactly why Brad should be held to the same standard as you or I or any regular dope on the street. When he's acting like a crazy jerk, he can admit to it the way the rest of us try to do.

andro said...

No pot shot intended Aaron. I said you 'were' the original "original nasty type of fan-boy". (your own phrase) You are not that same anti-social, trouble-making blogger who used to try and stir up everyone's emotions just to relieve his own boredom anymore. Only if you were still that guy could you object.

And why should Brad admit to anything that he doesn't see the same way that you do? You have no idea what his motivation is. I have no idea what your motivations are. And without knowing what either of you are feeling when you write your comments, I would just tend to trust Brad's motives more than yours based on past actions.

gniz said...

"And without knowing what either of you are feeling when you write your comments, I would just tend to trust Brad's motives more than yours based on past actions."

Hey thats fine. Although i tend to trust folks that are upfront to admitting their foibles, rather than those who find every excuse in the book to explain them away.

Mysterion said...

Impressions do make some difference...

even if you do not speak Japanese, watch a minute if THIS impressionistic comedian.

Anonymous said...

thanks for that mysterion. a hot japanese dom with a loose wig doesn't really have to say anything. but what was she saying?

Moon Face Buddha said...

So long as we do not die to ourselves,
and so long as we identify with someone or something,
we shall never be free.
The spiritual way is not for those wrapped up in exterior life.

- Farid ud Din Attar

The dharma comes to us in many forms. I am wary of anyone who wishes to throw out the baby with the bath water, that affects a 'too cool for school' attitude to the dharma, and attempts to invalidate terms and teachings that do not fit their own personal dogmatic reality tunnel.

Blake said...

Brad's interview of Lamb of God's D. Randall Blythe.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

The dharma comes to us in many forms. I am wary of anyone who wishes to throw out the baby with the bath water, that affects a 'too cool for school' attitude to the dharma, and attempts to invalidate terms and teachings that do not fit their own personal dogmatic reality tunnel.

I agree. But I wouldn't want to throw out the Brad baby with the bathwater either. Brad is fun, accessible introduction to Zen with mass appeal. He was certainly part of my introduction to Zen and I'm grateful to him for that. Personally I'd just recommend not to get stuck there or see his opinions as the last word. Read widely and most importantly practice regularly, preferably with a good teacher.

I'm off to focus on my own delusions now.

Rich said...

Brad,

This is a partial resonse to you SG article.

“mindfulness.” Christ I hate that word. The word seems to indicate some vague state of thinking hard about what you’re doing. And I know we’re all taught that we should think about what we’re doing.


Yea, just do it and don't be attached to the coming and going of thinking, especially ideas about 'what is' from others.


I’m also sick to death of hearing hipster Buddha dudes use the word “skillful” to describe things they like and “unskillful” to describe things they don’t. It’s a total misuse of the old Buddhist idea of upaya, or “skillful means,” by which ancient Buddhist teachers are said to have taught in unorthodox ways.


I sympathize with your experience but I haven't had that problem yet.


I’m also fed up with the concept of the “dharma talk,” which has come to mean something like, “guys in funny robes using buzzwords like ‘mindfulness’ and ‘skillful’ to lull people who think of themselves as ‘spiritually minded’ to sleep.” I’m tired of watching entire audiences nod out like opium addicts while smiling knowingly whenever a favorite word or phrase floats through the haze.


I hate it when that happens.


Whatever. Anyway, after I said this stuff a whole buncha folks got really mad about it. Fine. Be as mad as you want. I, myself, am not the least bit angry about this. I was just fed up with it and continue to be fed up with it.


I'm sorry you're fed up. I'm fed up with people who get in my way when I'm going real fast.

what happened to Nishijima? are things heating up at tassajara?

decaffeinated dharma said...

Wake up:
It's not the Brad Blog from 2-3 years ago its the Brad Blog now, not only is it not the same blog, its not the same Brad and it's not the same you either. Seems like you want to be helpful and offer point by point constructive criticism.
So far so good. Making your points known, seeking clarification--these are good things.
I guess where things in your posts go wonky for me is the sense that you are in a position to interpret things Brad writes about or is trying to write about more accurately than Brad. Your tone seems derisive and belittling. It appears you justify this by stating Brad has made similar kinds of less-than-respectful comments with regard to others. I guess you feel yourself in a position to 'teach Brad a lesson.' I don't know if this is the best or most effective (some might use the term 'skillful' here, not me!) method.
I guess I could say it feels like you're trying to outBrad Brad. Forgive me if my sense of all this is all wrong. After all it is only how your words, your sequencing of words strikes me--and that is a very subjective thing...it's just that when Brad points it is to me a finger and moon thing and when you point its a finger at Brad thing.
Again, this is completely a subjective thing for me this experience of the words and what is between the lines. Maybe it's because I actually sit with his group and have had a weekly exposure to him for a little over a year now. He's not my first teacher--I've been sitting for 18 + years, was exposed to zen Buddhism 27 years ago. In other words I'm 'a fan boy' if you will, but its more from what Brad attempts to convey than the actual words he uses to convey it.
I don't see the point in debate when it comes to subjective experiences. I don't remember who said it in the comments above: take from it (Brad's blog) what is useful for you and flush the rest. I think this holds true not just for Brad's blog, but is a useful approach for everything--now there was a person telling the truth...it is wonderful when it happens.

Anonymous said...

this blog does seem to have some use at least for me personally. every time i read it it makes we want to just shut the computer off and live in the real world. way too many people talking shit here really getting nowhere.

decaf said...

the last few posts were really good. thanks. but please, please.. after this, no more finger and the moon references. I, I can't take any more.

mountaintop stubble said...

for one thing, the person claiming to be me was smack talking e-sangha. Since it's not me saying that, I wanted to clarify that. I also know that there's some crossover in readers from there, and since I'm not posting there, I'm just clarifying.

I don't want to argue with you guys, I really fail to see why you're being asses. Now I see why that imposter was smack-talking E Sangha. It really does suck like Brad says.

barrentop baldy said...

"take from it (Brad's blog) what is useful for you and flush the rest. I think this holds true not just for Brad's blog, but is a useful approach for everything--"

What? But doesn't that make zen a 'what works for you' philosophy? Brad says that it's definitely not that. Can't pick and choose. Must swallow the whole dogma whole.

Anonymous said...

if dirty harry could have gotten scorpio into an alley and busted a cap in his head just to keep him from killing again, would that have been wrong?

Mysterion said...

Taking another life is almost always wrong.

The primitive Abrahamic eye-for-eye and tooth-for-tooth cultures are as outdated as the sacrifice of doves, goats, lambs (a female, without a blemish), and bulls.

I said 'almost always' because in the rare case where no confinement is available and danger to society is high, a designated member of the group (e.g. soldier, police) might protect life and property by the immediate taking of life from another (uncontrollable) individual.

Thus, one must control ones self.

dharma barrista said...

There will be no mention of digits or lunar orbs....

mountaintop baldy:

Actually, I DO think that zen is a 'whatever works best for you' philosophy--when the who that is you is realized--

As far as picking and choosing and teachers and teaching go I think it's like roses.
You don't get no rose without everything else: fertilizer and thorns to name two but two of the everything else
When it comes to any teaching some of it is like a rose and you treat the part that is like a rose like a rose. Some of it is thorny (heh heh, I said 'thorny'*) and you treat that part the way you treat that kind of part and some of it is like fertilizer and we all know what to do with that stuff.
There are all kinds of teacher's out there these days--which I guess is a good thing--and that's where picking and choosing comes in 'cuz you want a good one--you want the best you kind find (like a good dentist or internist or hairdresser) and you look in yellow pages/Whole Person/Roshis R Us and equivalents and you rely on word of mouth but the true test is: what is your direct experience.
When there is sufficient exposure to a good enough teacher the rose roots of zen are established in the core of you: its like a fire needing constant tending and it never goes out (that's what she said!*)

When it comes to teachers Brad ain't bad. First off he is fully human and second in his teaching he's got roses, thorns and fertilizer.

No one said a teacher had to be universally good for everyone. It takes all kinds and there's no accounting for taste.

(*Sorry for the Brad-isms used here, I just couldn't help myself but many apologies to anyone who might find them offensive.).

Now did you want that in a tall or a venti to go?
Ah, a grande you say--but of course--the middle way!

I don't drink no stinkin' coffee said...

I think we've established Brad is not the only teacher

Work it out with or without him

alphonzen said...

wake up and smell the dharma must feel really good about his self.

I know I feel really really good when I criticise others- since it strengthens my ego.

Alphonzen said...

"When he's acting like a crazy jerk, he can admit to it the way the rest of us try to do."

Acting like a crazy jerk is quite different to typing things that make you think that he is a crazy jerk. The truth is as it is without words. And the truth is when you criticise others it strengthens the idea of self. That is harmful to practice, and thats why Im stopping from posting here.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Acting like a crazy jerk is quite different to typing things that make you think that he is a crazy jerk. The truth is as it is without words.

It's saddening to see how many people have fallen for the hes-a-zen-master-therefore-he-can-do-no-wrong-cos-its-his-crazy-wisdom nonsense. It's this zen master myth which has enabled a number of cases of abuse of power by zen teachers in America over the last few decades. Brad is just an ordinary guy like you and me. He has claimed in the past that he has anger problems and he claimed in his last post that he is stupid. His criticism of other people is egotistical vanity just as it is with other people.

It's my birthday said...

100 !!!

ezrapound said...

Go shorty!

It's your birthday!

We gonna party like it's your birthday!

We gonna sip Barcadi like it's your birthday!

And you know we don't give a fuck it's not your birthday!

Ezra Pound

Anonymous said...

but it is!

damn! I'm all outta coffee said...

so what DO you do when you get to a love/hate relationship to the person you are studying zen under (I kinda don't like the word 'teacher'--it makes it sound like they know something).
what do you do when you don't like the way that person is expressing themselves or the means they are using to point to the inexpressible?


Anyone thinking 'I want to be a zen teacher when I grow up' would certainly be advised to make themselves aware of the double whammy phenomena of being put on a pedestal by others and being knocked off this same pedestal by the very same folk.

Thank you Brad for this blog we love/hate to visit!

Anonymous said...

Been watching 3 stooges--I haven't laughed that hard in a long long time.
I couldn't breathe
I thought I was going to die
I always thought they were stupid when I was a kid--

What wonderful comedians (got to see a real real young Lucille Ball in one of them--she must have been in her late teens!)

Seems like they did their own 'stunts' such that there were.

Too, too silly!

andro said...

wake-up - your criticism of Brad is not without some justification. But I think that some of it could be only a subconscious criticism of yourself. (pardon that zen cliche) And it is not that everyone thinks that Brad the zen master can do no wrong, some of us realize that like every freak on this blog, he will continue to fuck up infinitum. it's what people do. he knows it, he apologizes all the time. and then he moves on. but for whatever reason, your ego seems a little puffed up lately. good for you. I'm sure you will come back down here to earth eventually. you have admitted to having confidence, trust issues in the past. life has a way of evening things out. I'm glad you are feeling good right now. and as you pointed out, your vanity is not much different than Brad's, it is just taking a different form. I don't see much point in continually pointing out a person's weaknesses as a human being to the detriment of their considerable virtues. That ain't buddhism as I understand it. I think you are just feeling your buddhist oats at present.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Damn typos

But I think that some of it could be only a subconscious criticism of yourself. (pardon that zen cliche)

Reading too much into it? Well if you want to shrink my head yes I would be critical of myself if I acted in the way Brad sometimes does. Human beings tend to be critical of behaviour that falls outside of what they personally consider acceptable.

And it is not that everyone thinks that Brad the zen master can do no wrong,

Oh I didn't say that everyone thought that

some of us realize that like every freak on this blog, he will continue to fuck up infinitum. it's what people do.

oh I know that and it's healthy

he knows it, he apologizes all the time. and then he moves on.

Well he has made a few partial apologies in the past. I'm not really convinced that he sees his interpersonal style as problematic.

but for whatever reason, your ego seems a little puffed up lately. good for you. I'm sure you will come back down here to earth eventually.

Don't concern yourself with my ego. Whether my ego is growing or shrinking isn't really the point and isn't public property. Address the points I made instead.

you have admitted to having confidence, trust issues in the past.

I have? And in public? And even if I did what does it have to do with the price of cheese?

life has a way of evening things out. I'm glad you are feeling good right now. and as you pointed out, your vanity is not much different than Brad's, it is just taking a different form.

All of this, including what you just said and what I'm writing now and what you're thinking as you read it is a sort of vanity. I'm not claiming to be an especially 'vain person', perhaps a little in some ways, not really in others. What of it?

I don't see much point in continually pointing out a person's weaknesses as a human being to the detriment of their considerable virtues. That ain't buddhism as I understand it.

Agreed. And perhaps I've got a little more personal than was appropriate, but not really any more personal than you are being about me right now and a lot less personal than Brad gets about people he doesn't like.

I'm just think it's for the best if Brad's ideas and approach is sometimes subjected to reasonable challenge. A necessary evil. I may be wrong. It just happened to be me that was doing it this time.

Anyway, I've probably said more than enough already but I'm happy to follow-up on the points I raised if anyone wants to discuss them.

andro said...

that's enough for me justin.. I think I've flogged this dead beast enough for one day. :)

Moon Face Buddha said...

Don't mistake the Bread-stick pointing at the Guacamole for the Cheese Dip.

marty_o said...

I am surprised to hear "Hardcore Zen" described as mass-appeal fun.

From my place I can throw a rock and hit a dozen yoga studios & new age shops that offer happy, mellow and 100% Dogen-free Zen. They're way more popular than the more "scholarly" sanghas. I suspect the same is true pretty much everywhere.

Also, for what it's worth: a lot of us in the punk scene really did want to challenge everything, not just some vague "authority."

That homemade Clash's "Hammersmith Palais" shirt didn't just say "I don't tolerate soft rock." It also said "I don't tolerate racism."

Anonymous said...

Instant good karma to
the first person who can identify
this Japanese horror movie!

Thanks in advance.

mountaintop rebel said...

This is my last post here. Some imposter is now pretending to be me on e sangha and stirring controversy. Really. If someone else posts under my alias, it won't be me. I'm out a here. I'll absolutely never post here again. Ever. Nada.

Anonymous said...

that last guy wasn't mountaintop rebel. mountaintop rebel vowed earlier in the week to never to post here again. so, unless mountaintop rebel cannot be trusted, this last guy was not mountaintop rebel.

Anonymous said...

those who arrive are welcomed

those who leave are not pursued

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

They might be pursued if they call someone an asswipe.

HZ Comment Logic said...

There are three kinds of people in the world: Those who are good at math, and those who aren't.

Anonymous said...

Yes! Exactly WHAT is being "retreated" from? Useless zen here groupies.

Run Away! said...

Run Away!

andro said...

wake up and smell - Isn't it satisfying to keep rubbing Brad's nose in his own shit.. It's fun too. gniz never gets tired of doing it either. Of course, gniz's motivations might not be as pure as yours obviously are. sometimes I think I smell jealousy in him.. You, on the other hand, only want to help Brad. so don't give it up, Evil Brad can still be saved.

hz comment logic said...

There are three kinds of people in the world: Those who rub peoples' noses in their shit and those who's noses are rubbed in ther shit.

mountaintop rebel said...

"that last guy wasn't mountaintop rebel. mountaintop rebel vowed earlier in the week to never to post here again. so, unless mountaintop rebel cannot be trusted, this last guy was not mountaintop rebel."

Hmm. Maybe not. But that anonymous may well be mountaintop rebel pointing out that I am not him. If so, mountaintop rebel cannot be trusted and I may be him afterall. But if I am him, this means I can't be trusted either...which means...I may not be him...which means...

Is this like a koan, dude? Too many drugs, man.

wake up and go back to sleep said...

I wish I had someone constantly reminding me of all the things I ever did or said that they didn't like or think was appropriate to their way of thinking
I've always wanted to live a life based on someone else's perceptions
Wait a minute-- that was my mother!
And it took a while, but I found a way to take what was useful and flush the rest.

Anonymous said...

Wake up:
You'll get over Brad not being 'perfect'
We all have.
It's not unique to Brad -- all students go through this with their teachers.

z0tl said...

this morning i went to sanzen.

it's all supposed to be secret in there, right?

fuck that shit. just like mindfulness and the type of buddhism practiced in america these days. i think what happens in sanzen should just be discussed everywhere, so that no one can pass any koan anymore whatsoever, unless they like kill themselves in front of the teacher.

hey, i'm not asking for replies that go koans, what are they for if not imbeciles who cannot see the wisdom of soto over rinzai.

i am sick and tired of you motherfuckers consistently arguing which branch of zen is better.

all of you sit your asses down and why? what the fuck ELSE is there to do? nothing.

so we sit and some of us choose to kid around making animal noises and trying to figure out that the mu dog is buddhanature so what the fuck you need it to have it besides being it too and then it's all in your head anyway, so NO, it's NO, not a fucking MU, it's NO moron, there is no dog to begin with, except in your question, so your question is irrelevant and so is this foreign language looking NO. now moo the fuck out and don't let the cow hit you over the head with the ox tail on your way out.

i say: bringing money into this room is sacrilege.

sensei says: what do you want of me, gets up and walks out.

i sit kinda like shit, it woulda been a nice display of host guest reversal of roles, but really, it wasn't that.

outside i was told i'm unfit to practice zen.

what kind of perverted world have i stumbled upon in this zendo?

anyway, i plan to go back for the next sesshin.



so i left the zen center, after 1.5 years of practice, 7 or so weekend sesshins

mysteriondan said...

I must have missed the posts where we argue over which zen sect is better. usually we are arguing that our views are morally superior to some other poor suffering bastard..

gniz said...

"andro said...
wake up and smell - Isn't it satisfying to keep rubbing Brad's nose in his own shit.. It's fun too. gniz never gets tired of doing it either. Of course, gniz's motivations might not be as pure as yours obviously are. sometimes I think I smell jealousy in him.. You, on the other hand, only want to help Brad. so don't give it up, Evil Brad can still be saved."

What did you wake up on the wrong side of the bed or what? Who is rubbing anyone's nose in shit besides you right now, trying to scold us for having a criticism about some stuff Brad wrote?

Everyone's entitled to their opinion and can express it how they like as long as he leaves comments open. I still dont see where the high outrage comes from, when you get a pretty even-handed posting from "Wake up and Smell the Dharma".

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

You'll get over Brad not being 'perfect'
We all have.
It's not unique to Brad -- all students go through this with their teachers.


You'll get over me not being 'perfect' too. Just respond to the points I made.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

A few of the people here really put Brad on a pedestal where he literally is above criticism. If someone criticises him it must be because their is something wrong with the critic. It's particularly ironic considering Brad's supposed anti-authoritarian stance. It's very human. It's the sort of behaviour we see emerge in cults. Personally I find it a little creepy.

Anonymous said...

This is an interesting observation. What would happen if there was no criticism? What would happen if there was no praise?

Nasrudin's Donkey said...

Mullah Nasrudin was sowing seed in his garden. His wife noticed that the further he went, the faster he sowed.

"Mullah," she called out to him, "why are you scattering the seed so fast? It would be better to sow it more slowly and carefully."

"I can't," Nasrudin called back as he rushed by. "There isn't much seed left and I want to get the job finished before it runs out."

andro said...

Someone said to Justin: You'll get over Brad not being 'perfect'. We all have. It's not unique to Brad -- all students go through this with their teachers.

To which Justin responded. You'll get over me not being 'perfect' too. Just respond to the points I made.

Well, There it is. Like I thought earlier when I remarked that your ego seemed a little puffed up lately. It isn't even about Brad now is it? You just want us to tell you how beautiful you look in your teaching hat, no? Your chastising Brad for something he wrote months ago, I thought that seemed a little odd.

gniz said...

Andro,

You really, really dont like that Justin made some valid points about Brad's writing. Man he got your goat...
But there it is. Brad dishes out the critiques in ample helpings and it only stands to reason that occasionally people will feel like writing a response or two.

It doesnt mean our egos are "puffed" or "not sufficiently puffed."

Why dont you try, for like ten seconds, to actually respond to some of Justin's points instead of making personal attacks?

K. Thanks.

PS It strikes me that you've recently changed your "name" on here to provide for some anonymity for your vitriol.

Anonymous said...

Brad,

Just read about the fires in Tassajara area. Hope you are well & safe if you're still there.

Everybody, here's a blog about the status of the Tassajara fire.

Peace, Be Safe,
Anonofriend

Jinzang said...

Why dont you try, for like ten seconds, to actually respond to some of Justin's points instead of making personal attacks?

Brad was right to criticize the misuse of dharma vocabulary, but so what? People misuse terminology all the time. It shows that they've still got more to learn, not that they're hopelessly deluded. It's best just to show the correct usage. Back to the abhidharma!

Justin makes some good points, but so what? He's criticizing trivialities. If he's just passing the time, that's fine, but Brad's teaching style is just not that important. If it appeals to you, fine, if not, also fine.

I just think a lot of energy is being spent here that could be put to better use. Maybe it comes as an Earth shattering revelation to some that an authorized Zen teacher can possibly act in a stupid and clueless way. Maybe some other people will do anything to avoid seeing this. But I can't get worked up over any of it. I've been hearing about and dealing with crazy and stubborn teachers for more than thirty years now. It's old hat and Brad's peccadillos don't interest me that much.

Anonymous said...

try again with that link:

http://sittingwithfire.blogspot.com/

blog link

trivial pursuit said...

Wake up
at some point in time it will dawn on you that this is a never ending job: calling Brad on all the mistakes and inconsistencies if not downright hypocracies he makes.
I'll wager this is the case for all human beings: indeed it is to be found in the study of your very own self.
Your would be purpose is to 'point things out'
You've done that.
In fact you've pointed things out not just for Brad, but for the world to see. I'm sure others would join me in thanking you for your tireless efforts.
But you do not seem satisfied with this. You seem to want more. You keep wanting someone to address the points you've raised...so it's not just the making of them, but the debating them you're after.
This reminds me of a Monty Python routine, "I came here for an argument." "No you didn't" "Yes I did" "No you didn't"
"This isn't an argument!" "Yes it is" "No it isn't" "Yes it is" etc.
Maybe not desiring too much is a way to consider after all...

Anonymous said...

Jinzang,

I like where you're coming from. I looked at your site, looks like you've had the opportunity to be around some great ocean liners - big ships !! Very happy for you.

Peace,
Another Salmon Swimming Upstream

andro said...

Gniz, I think that I said that Justin's criticisms of Brad was not without some justification. His points were valid but they have been made here many, many times before. I don't believe for a minute that Brad offends your delicate sensibilities. I think you like the excitement. Maybe you've latched onto Justin like some long lost brother because you think he provides you with some legitimacy. I have a certain respect for Justin. he seems like a thoughtful guy. But you aren't doing him any favors by your association.

Anonymous said...

"First they ignore you,
then they ridicule you,
then they fight you,
then you win."
-- Mahatma Gandhi

you tell me said...

teaching occurs through Brad
but it's impossible to tell what portion comes in spite of Brad or because of Brad

I suspect this is true of all teachers

Anonymous said...

z0tl:

Hang in there. Sounded like you got the zafu pulled out from under you.
Digest the experiences. Whether or not you have questions there may or may not be any explanation for what happened.
If possible, look for other groups to sit with.

When one door closes another opens...

I for one would like to know what happens for you: keep us posted!

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

trivial,

at some point in time it will dawn on you that this is a never ending job: calling Brad on all the mistakes and inconsistencies if not downright hypocracies he makes.

I've been around long enough to know that. Nevertheless, I think that constructive challenge is healthy at times. I have no intention of making a career of criticising Brad. It just so happens that I did critisise him on this occasion.

But you do not seem satisfied with this. You seem to want more. You keep wanting someone to address the points you've raised...so it's not just the making of them, but the debating them you're after.

I don't mind if they do or don't, it's just that if someone does respond they should respond to my points rather than making ad hominem remarks about me. Personally I think that if I make an argument in a public place I have some responsibility to support my points if someone wants to challenge me on them.

This reminds me of a Monty Python routine, "I came here for an argument." "No you didn't" "Yes I did" "No you didn't"
"This isn't an argument!" "Yes it is" "No it isn't" "Yes it is" etc.
Maybe not desiring too much is a way to consider after all...


Yes, at some pont it does all get a bit silly. But at the end of the day I challenged some of Brad's points and apart from the 'asswipe' joke, I've mainly just responded to counter-points and defended myself from efforts to make it about me rather than the content of what I said. This is the nature of rational debate and rational discussion can sometimes be helpful.

If you're against criticism and engaging in debate why did you open your mouth?

Monkeymajik said...

I don't see where Brad is going wrong guys. Maybe Im too stupid to see truth.

I can write an angry sounding piece of literature without being angry. Punk rock is alot like that. Its a kind of creative expression which I find quite refreshing tbh.

gniz said...
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gniz said...
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gniz said...
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Anonymous said...

I agree monkeymajik.. some people have the souls of cops and want an apology for every fart. As far as I can tell there were no sticks or stones used here.

z0tl said...

3 times i go to practice.

3 times i get beaten.

what do you want from me?

a true place of practice, not validation.

stating you don't need validation is asking for validation.

i am the practice.

so i can sit in any zendo and feel at home.

150 said...

150 !!!

(the comments on brad's article at sg are, um, quite different than these)

Jinzang said...

Brad will have some interesting stories to tell when he gets back from Tassajara.

As flames approach Big Sur monastery, monks prepare to fight

In this remote Zen enclave on Big Sur's forested backside, wildfires lurk on three sides. As flames edge closer and ash falls from a crimson sky, the Buddhist monks are readying for a final stand.

Priests and students alike at the Tassajara Zen Mountain Center have been doffing their traditional black robes, hefting picks and shovels, and forging 10-foot-wide firebreaks. Atop the roofs of the monastery's old retreat cabins and meditation hall, they've jury-rigged plastic pipe sprinkler systems.

Smoggyrob said...

Hi everyone:

I heard from Keishin that Brad and company are back in LA, safe and sound. Welcome back! You should post something saying you're not on fire.

Rob

Anonymous said...

Ordinary people have been revolving in circles
since time immemorial, being born and dying.

Because of clinging fixedly to self-images,
false ideas, and misperceptions,
the habits of illusion eventually become second nature to them.

Even if they suddenly awaken in this life
and realize that their essential nature is fundamentally empty and silent,
no different from the Buddhas,
nevertheless past habits are difficult to remove all at once.

Master Chinul (1158-1210)

Contrarymous said...

Anonymous said... "Brad's writing is more influenced by Moe than Curly. There are those who believe the reverse; their view is that of the non-Buddhist, Senika."

Typical of the ill-informed, resorting to the old Senika trick to hype false Buddhism. Brad's writing is clearly influenced more by Curly than by Moe. What are you, some kind of wiseguy? Whoop-whoop-whoop!

Anonymous said...

Z0tle

Good to know you are the practice

make it so you can sit at home and feel you're in a zendo!

Anonymous said...

Strange, you don't mention Larry at all and I think Larry is the 'Braddest' of the Three.

Larry isn't all ordering others around and he's not a 'victim of circumstance'

Curly said...

200!!!

BadBuddhist said...

I have a neighbor ( a famous comedian) He just moved into an apartment in my building. I've tried to be nice to him but to no avail. The guys nasty. His girlfriend is nastier. Still I smile and say good day. But the other day his girlfriend pulled the last straw. I ignored it and went on but I still feel like telling them to FUCK OFF! When I sit these thoughts keep coming back. Fuck off fuck off fuck off. I stop it for a few minutes and then FUck off Fuck Off. Is this something that needs to be dealt with ? How. Is all just my anger?
I'm a bad Buddhist. I'm clinging. Unskillfull. Fuck. If I told them to Fuck off I'd feel worse. It feels like I need to wipe my ass. Any suggestions? Peace.

Anonymous said...

"But would you have even been able to address the topic had I not written what I did?" ~Brad

You weren't kidding about being stupid!

Rich said...

Dear Badabudhist,

Sometimes I don't feel friendly so I'm not that friendly.

Sometimes I feel angry and I really feel that anger. You can punch a pillow to death or I prefer to exercise and play sports.

As I mature I don't deny as much.
In your world you are already famous.
Regards,
GoodaBudhist

Anonymous said...

comedians have a reputation for being rather grim in real life.. maybe they resent always having to play the fool.

Anonymous said...

Freedom: getting out of obligations

Freedom: not getting into obligations in the first place

with my very own eyes said...

Saw Brad yesterdy at the one day sesshin.

Hill Street held a service at Tassajara's request on their behalf.

Don't want folks to be worried: Brad is well.

Jinzang said...

From Ionesco's play, The Bald Soprano:

The polypoids were burning in the wood
A stone caught fire
The castle caught fire
The forest caught fire
The men caught fire
The women caught fire
The birds caught fire
The fish caught fire
The water caught fire
The sky caught fire
The ashes caught fire
The smoke caught fire
The fire caught fire
Everything caught fire
Caught fire, caught fire.

Harry said...
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Harry said...

As a certificate wielding Fully Enlightened Zen Master Brad is naturally impervious to fire, pubic lice and bad breath.

If I were him I'd be more worried about the samurai hit-men friends of that Rinzai guy he pissed off.

Glad you're not dead, Brad.

Regards,

Harry.

Anonymous said...

jaysus harry.. i'm glad i don't know what you know.

Harry said...

Ah, its only a problem for as long as I believe it.

Regards,

H.

Wake Up and Smell the Dharma! said...

Amen to that!

It's all bullshit - burn it up. Including this.

Anonymous said...

"Is this like a koan, dude? Too many drugs, man."

Hjelm is that you?

Anonymous said...

heh

z0tl said...

my friends are all ninja, so you must not be referring to me.

ps: my spare bedroom is a zendo. i am the practice, i run my own zendo (at home), yet i still have the need to go around sit with internationally acclaimed teachers.

why oh why is being an internationally acclaimed asshole not enough for me remains a mystery.

too much time and not enough mysteries. yet another stage, i'm sure, it came, it went.

already.

Anonymous said...

what is trying?
what is not?
Another Game.

Anonymous said...

What makes a King out of a slave? What makes the flag on the mast start to wave? What makes the elephant charge his tusk in the misty mist, or the dusky dusk? What makes the muskrat guard his musk? What makes the Sphinx the Seventh Wonder? What makes the dawn come up like thunder? What makes the Hottentot so hot? What puts the ape in ape-ricot? What have they got that I ain't got?

Anonymous said...

""It seems pretty obvious that you're angry. And most of your wring has this tone. Maybe not breaking down doors like the Hulk angry, but at least... peeved. You'd be more aware of your anger if you developed some Mindfulness. Isn't your approach to Buddhism helping with your anger?"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vn86ZAls6_A"

Oh, it's fun to appear angry and disparage others, I see.

Shobu said...
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Shobu said...

This is my last post here. Some imposter is now pretending to be me on e sangha and stirring controversy. Really. If someone else posts under my alias, it won't be me. I'm out a here. I'll absolutely never post here again. "

They told us you would say that...

"that last guy wasn't mountaintop rebel. mountaintop rebel vowed earlier in the week to never to post here again. so, unless mountaintop rebel cannot be trusted, this last guy was not mountaintop rebel."

Sir, they told us you would definitely say that.

-His name was Robert Paulson

Anonymous said...

Where are you going with this, Ikea boy?
Never mind, I don't want to know.

Truth be told said...

WHY doesn't BRAD tell the TRUTH?

Anonymous said...

It takes courage to face the truth.. Some people, no matter what they say, really don't want to go there.

Anonymous said...

Which there?
Truth is repetitive association.
Truth is a grouping technique.

Anonymous said...

Words.. Fact is fact, regardless of the source. Truth is truth, regardless of the source.

Anonymous said...

"Truth is repetitive association.
Truth is a grouping technique."

Those are disinformation techniques, not truth definitions.

Anonymous said...

truth definition is an oxymoron

Anonymous said...

for a materialist there is only truth. for an idealist there is no truth. for a buddhist there is zazen.

truthertoother said...

Brad said:

You told the truth up there. That's such a rare and valuable thing.

Anonymous said...

pffffffhhht.

Anonymous said...

cynic: A person whose outlook is scornfully and often habitually negative.

Anonymous said...

definition: the formal statement of the meaning or significance of a word, phrase, etc.

NellaLou said...

Number counts, dictionary quotes. I prefer the subtle mysteries of the way of the thesaurus. OM.

Thesaurus said...

191

192 said...

192 !!!

curly said...

200! nyuk, nyuk, nyuk..

Super Troup said...

194 !!!

New Jersey said...

195 !!!

Yellow Electric Devil of Spades said...

196 !!!

ACBL said...

197 !!!

Add it up ! said...

198 !!!

iPhone Wallpaper said...

199 !!!

200 said...

200 !!!

synergy !!!

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