Thursday, July 17, 2008


Every couple months someone writes me to say that they tried to order Gudo Nishijima’s translation of Shobogenzo from Amazon but that the only thing they came up when they searched was a used copy for $187 or some such thing. I really don’t understand this. The original run of the books sold out ages ago. That’s what the crumb bums out there are fobbing off as “collectibles.” But new copies have been available as print on demand books for a few years. Whenever I search “Shobogenzo” on Amazon these are the first things that pop up.

I just went and did it again and the first three volumes came up right away. Here are the links:

Volume 1

Volume 2

Volume 3

Volume 4 indeed showed up only as a high priced collectible when I checked Amazon today. But that shouldn’t be the case. I’ll check into it.

In any case, info on ordering volume 4 from other sites appears here on Windbell Publications’ site. It’s also listed at Amazon UK for a reasonable price. OK?


Anonymous said...

me use internet first time, how to get book?

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

These folk have the entire set. I just got one.

liiwi said...


still reading.


Anonymous said...

axe joe mama.

Anonymous said...

I got vol 4 from, shipped from the UK even. It was
probably a bit more shipping than from the US, but was the only way I
could find it. It is often the case that odd books will have
differing availability in UK and US amazons.

Anonymous said...

this i call progress, 2 posts in a row w/ no whining (re: stupidity of us trollies) on warner sensei's part.

a few more tries by monkey z0tl and everybody can start posting anonymous.

then the real conversation can begin.

next on the agenda, the "not two, not one" concept and how alone really does it get in the experiencing of "we're all 1" trip, beyond the part where it's oh so blissfool.

Anonymous said...

It's the same deal with out of print cd's at Amazon. I have paid crazy dollaz for out of print cd's through Amazon's "marketplace", only to find 'em months later at used music/book stores for next to nothin'. Aaargghhh!!!!
But it ain't Amazon's fault. They only deal with firsthand, new and in print cd's/books etc.

Anonymous said...

You can download "The Shobogenzo" for free here:

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

I'm glad this came up. I've read thru all four once and I'm trying it again, but damn more often than not they are just words on a page and I can make little sense of what I'm reading even through I've applied the *four* ways in which Dogen supposedly writes? Is there any help on this subject without a teacher?

qbitty said...


Anonymous said...

let's finish off jinzang 1st. he asks z0tl if he's ready to learn, blows over the response to then proclaim in an enlightened, all compassionate manner:

"Z0tl, I hope some day that you find peace. And I mean that most sincerely."

no, you hippocritical bastard, you do not. did you read maddox on "no pun intended?"

people who have to "mean that most sincerely" are actually little vile fucks who hope i'll burn in hell, because omg i dared point out they are assholes cloaked in "skillful action."


next, mike_h and his chi of knowledge. if z0tl is here to "disrupt a zen blog" then you are more deluded than thinking dancing can get your ass liberated from the rounds of birth and death.

you will be dancing for a long, long time before you can troll teh z0tl.

it's 5:30AM, get your fucking asses on the cushion, mofo:z!

Blake said...

Call around to your local 1/2 Price Books first. Then your local library. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, bitches!

I have yet to read it, I must admit. Perhaps I'll pick up #1 soon.

ogden said...

anon, if you are not Suffering right Now, what is the Point of your self confusing Dualistic commentary?


Anonymous said...



that would be funny if it was funny.

Anonymous said...

there is no self to be confused, thus i have no point other than to make a point for you, again and again, until you too lose the self that "suffers"

Anonymous said...

you want non-dualistic commentary?

worthy of teh wharma?

ok then, watch below!

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

now your turn.

do it!

z8tl said...

boolshit books here's 1 teisho to help you out, because your lame sensei is utterly unable to deliver any wharma talks, IRL or here, for that matter.


why share your misery. do you want us to be miserable also?

Anonymous said...

z?tl's messiah/martyr/pied piper complex continues on. Or should I say drones on. He listens to others about as well as others listen to him.
There are a lot of places other than the comment section of a little known blog to get good quality information about Zen and Buddhism. Small pond=big fish I guess.

z8tl said...

i like brad. that's why i'm here.

does that mean i can't take his guts out when he acts all jackass?

/droning 0n

fuck your big ponds you think you swim in, bro, you can be the dalai lama showing phowa (that's transference of consciousness into a pure buddhafield) and i would pee in/on your [new] original face.

/droning 0ff


'i like brad. that's why i'm here.'

i guess that is why We all came here Originally. until we got Caught up in the Drama of our own Suffering. then our reasons changed..

Anonymous said...

you know, Brad, it's one thing to choose not to censor, and to not want to bother deleting posts. but z0tl is abusive and threatening. not okay.

JIM HAISIN said...

if you feel threatened by the words your read on a screen, is that z0tl's doing?

z8tl said...

yes, here comes another way to shut someone up.

their language is "abusive and threatening" yes very unskillful.

dear threatened reader, have you tried talking to your child lately?

have you seen the violence coming at them through the nintendo / xbox console?

do you think your concerns about "abuse and threats" in a blog because someone chooses to say something like "take your guts out" and you think that is meant literally are helping out there in the real world.

i hope you are not a parent and i also truly hope you do not interact with other than imbeciles who are in charge of policy making in this country.

you want me to clean up my act and speak to you in eloquent dharma terms henceforth?

i can do it, but why?

for you?

i sat with brad's sangha and girls say stuff like "eat my dick" to guys and so on and so forth.

you think they will listen to you?

*rolls eyes*

Anonymous said...

hey z0tl or z8tl or whatever name you prefer ... shut the fuck up. or not. whatever you prefer.

Anonymous said...

if you feel threatened and abused by w0rds and do not understand even the simple concept of "sticks and stones can break my bones, but w0rds can never hurt me [unless i let them],


not fucking zen.

zen sitting will harm you if you're so feeble minded that you think people on the internet are out "to get you!"

fucking paranoid grannies trying to speak dharma!

paranoid granny said...

Listen you little prick, If you were here right now I would stick my knitting needles so far up your ass you would have horns on your head.

Anonymous said...

we are all so cool the way we are now all using the word fuck in all its tenses. awesome.

Harry said...

I'm in an internet cafe reading this surrounded by the blurring brash of video games and MTV screens displaying women pretending to be horny.

Does this stuff really make me what I am?

Its up to us to make paranoid grannies speak the Dharma. If we don't clarify this much then its not their fault.

Regards to All and have a good weekend,


Harry said...

Oh, BTW, in my world Doctor Phil would say this:

"Yeah, sure there's freedom of speech; but you just don't go tellin' grandma that she's got a pair of them there old wrinkly boobs!"

...he wouldn't sell as many books in my world.



Anonymous said...

I love Harry.

z8tl said...

Harry for President!

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

holy granny, i underestimated you, i washed my mouth with soap after thinking your name and will enroll promptly in mike_h's bagua dancin' shaolin snake fu class to learn how to best par your needles.

sensei, please ban paranoid nanny (by IP if possible), she's threatened to put cornholes through my devilish skull.

Guido said...

You talkin' to Me?

Are YOU talkin' to ME?

Anonymous said...

Hey, little z0tl I wanna be your sensei
Sweet little z0tl I wanna be your sensei
Do you love me babe? what do you say? do you love me babe?
What can I say? because I wanna be your sensei

Hey, little z8tl I wanna be your sensei
Sweet little z8tl I wanna be your sensei
Uuu uuu uuu uuu-au
Because I wanna be your sensei

Hey, little z0tl I wanna be your sensei
Sweet little z0tl I wanna be your sensei
Because I wanna be your sensei
Do you love me babe? what do you say? do you love me babe?
What can I say? because I wanna be your sensei

Hey, little z0tl I wanna be your sensei
Sweet little z8tl I wanna be your sensei
Hey, little z0tl I wanna be your sensei

Lone Wolf said...

I wasn't able to tape the VH1 Concert. My good friend's father died (completely unexpectedly, being he took care of himself well) so I with them and their family last night.

Maybe I'll catch a rerun.

Anonymous said...

Also a very nice translation (regarded better by my teachers, but it's up to you to decide) even incomplete is:

Enlightenment Unfolds by Kaz(uaki) Tanahashi

Anonymous said...

Whatever happened to Mysterion?

z8tl said...

what's the tune to align those lyrix to, sensei, i wanna karaoke myself to sleep with that...

i tried floyd's dawgs of war, but it didn't quite flow...

at 9:05AM that was funny, but still dualistic. and why? because a w0rd is automatically dualistic (phenomenal/object/concept) from the get go and can only be used to [maybe, if you're really good&lucky] point to the non-dualistic (noumenal/subject of all objects/where no concepts can possibly apply).

ie, as soon as YOU appears, that's dualistic, because it implies separation between I-teh-doer and that which I'm doing onto, so called YOU.

There is no You, There is no Me.

So that blind fucker, Stevie Wonder, knew jackshit when he was singing Say You, Say Me, Say it Together, Family, whatevah.

Okay, may have been Lionel Ritchie dancing on the ceiling?

Ask mike_h, his the 1 against Dolly Parton's boob:z!

that being said, non-dualistic bullshit is just that. more w0rds to come across like you're some kind of being with some understanding.

do i understand? prolly not [and i only say this, so you won't have to again validate against a lower form], but more than you fershure.

and why? because i'm working on understanding not understanding and you're still mired in trying to understand period.

or i could simply say: because YOU, like "ME" does not exist, except in your (split)mind.


PS: I call Mind Ass.

z8tl said...

PPS: I am Mysterion!

Anonymous said...

More! More!

Anonymous said...

you capitalized the name AND used lame irony in the same post.

sensei, please ban. very unfunny and he hurt my feelings. badly.

now i go sulk under the rock whence i crawled from under. lookat me end my sentence in a preposition, oh my!

here's the other shitheaded position, man, they can't deal with mysterion writing too many posts, using too many links, knowing too much, why does mysterion clutter my fucking duckling weak mind, sensei, why oh why?

whaaa, teh troll, ban, ban.

it's too hard for me to actually read more than 8 w0rds mike_h is writing because i ran out of ritalin, but instead i'll just say he got all "intellectual on me" and, you know, i'm all like zen like and centered now.

please cut down the number of posts, i'm autistic and this is too much noise for me and the wharma gets diluted if it's only 1 post per mile of posts imparting it.

you never have anything to say for yourself.

it's always shut the fuck up or let me tell you what this guy brad is actually doing here, because i have 8 balls in my pants and i know for a fact, because one time, at sesshin camp, he like told me i sit vigorously.

i'm not even able to refrain from interacting with that little fuck z0tl, i want you sensei to do something about him, protect your sangha, it's under mortal attack.

please spare me from having to think for myself or god forbid do something original, other than try to tell someone to shut the fuck up in a very intelligent and ironic way.

don't bother me, i'm eating my whopper and sippin' my dulche de leche starbux, don't upset my centered being. i'm so centered, lookat me, i can fucking fold the oryoki bowls in record time and i didn't even spill the bean when i used chopstix.

i'm so fukken mindful it hurts.

that's why you like TV and video games, they actually don't talk back AT YOU, they just stroke your fucked up ego all day long.

anyway, no wonder your fucking sensei never talks back at you in here and when he has something to say in his blog, he's like fuck me scotty, beam me up, there's no life in my following, let alone intelligence [this joke is for the geezer generation who still remembers spock].

i'll bring back mysterion for you now, i go have a weekend. i hope you make a good 1 out of it too.

Anonymous said...

Wow, sure doesn't take much.

Anonymous said...

Here's a hint:

Bam bam bam bam
bam bam bam bam bam
Z8tl wants to be sedated!

51 said...

51 !!!

Area 52 said...

There's Joan of Arcadia on Sci-Fi at 8.

z8tl said...


Sensei said...

What would Gudo do?

Walker Texas Ranger said...

The Axis of Evil (z0tl, z8tl, anonymous) will be defeated and finally the War on Terror will begin anew.

Yo Granny said...


Anonymous said...

shit, joan "what if gawd was 1 of us" was sappy lame, but doctor who rocked the bad wolfin' multiverse yet again.

what a waste to be away from sci-fi channel on this here blog...

z8tl said...

58 !!!

Anonymous said...

'Whatever happened to Mysterion?"

he changed his name to paranoid granny.

paranoid granny said...

It's true. please do not refer to me any longer as mysterion.

Anonymous said...

My ride home today from work on the bus was such a sweet one.
A couple, both in wheelchairs were complaining about irregularities in the bus schedule. A beautiful young mother and her daughter got on and then later an older mother and her son.
The driver was a man with a sense of humor. He wanted the whole bus to sing 'the wheels on the bus go round and round' for the little girl and he got on the intercom to start us off.
It was a bit wacky and silly and wonderful.
When the little boy got on our driver wanted to know what he had in his bag, (a plane) and he wanted to let the boy drive the bus if he could play with the boy's plane, please? The boy: 'no,' 'no,' 'no' The driver: 'How many times do I need to ask?' The boy: 131 times. The driveri 'ok, 131 times please?' The boy, 'no.'
I need to write the bus company: he is one in a million.

Everywhere I look, my eyes fill with tears, not just on this sappy happy moment on LA's Rapid 920, but everywhere.

I've come to the decision not to read the comments here anymore. Just to post about something of the day. Reading the posts has started to feel like listening to jackhammers and calling it music. conceptual music, I guess it works...
There will always be problems with young bucks trying to take on a perceived rival. Yes, we have that still in the repertoire of behaviors. As humans we are still evolving. The 'dharma' isn't really a set of antlers to pit against another's.

So good luck to everyone here.
I'm all for non-sequiturs.

The wife of a co-worker/friend of mine is in the hospital, in great pain.

Time is fleeting. Take the long way home, Spend all your kisses. Let your dogs sniff what they want to when you walk them--

My grandmother's favorite fruit was blueberries.
She is dead now. I think I will have some tomorrow and enjoy them for her.

z8tl said...

don't let me catch your head between clappers on your way out to chronicle your moment and never again read comments!

oh you super evolved hypocrite zen master, get your ass on the cushion NOW, it's 5:30 and at the sound of the next bell, maybe, maybe you'll start getting it, but very, very slooooooooowly, soto style, not suddenly rinzai or anything.

yo granny!

z8tl said...

fucking pathetic strawmen, lookat me cryin' over grandma, she's dead now, i have no fucking clue what happens when we die, i'm scared shitless of everything and look at wheelchaired people like their sub-human.

but i'm a master, oh yeh, because i will stop reading these idiotic comments and i will blog about my sorry SELF and its daily idiocy.


Anonymous said...

fuck off and die zotl

z8tl said...

this is why rinzai goes by twice-b0rn zen and soto by once-born.

because we actually remember dying and it didn't help at all.

once you understand the fear of being unable to die greatly surpasses the one of losing your sorry SELF, then the game truly begins.

resume your fucking boring dharma talk about ultra compassionate bullshit while all you do is hold steady proud to your magnanimous "being" that's none other than your bloody ego masturbating itself into supreme being.

you all are so very beyond w0rds and your actions are always "correct" because you're so advanced in your 15 minutes a day sitting practice, but if someone gets up and actually says anything worthwhile to you, you've got nothing to say, you sit like mutes mumbling some cuss w0rds that are supposed to show understanding.

fuck off and die, you stupid fuck?

where could i possibly go and how could i possibly die?

granny said...

Golden words he will pour in your ear
But his lies can't disguise what you fear
For a golden girl knows when he's kissed her
It's the kiss of death ...
From Mister Goldfinger

Anonymous said...

attached to view? over attached to a view?
Over and over blah blah blah you losers it's 5:30 a.m. blah blah blah you strawmen blah blah you fuckers blah blah

I have seen others like this

they were on a locked ward

until their very real (to them) world includes all others, their 'reality' is a battering ram and when all you've got is a battering ram, everything else is a wall (after the quote 'when the only tool you have is a hammer, every poblem appears as a nail').

vinegar-daoist said...

The Mountain and Rivers Order at the Zen Mountain Monastary in Mt. Tremper NY has all four volumes for sale.

z8tl said...

until you're ready to attain liberation in order to free all those locked in those wards, don't fucking try to ride on the high horse.

it blows the fuck away my splitmind even how in the very same paragraph (or even sentence), you actually do EXACTLY what you deplore the other of doing.


z8tl said...

Can she excuse my wrongs with Virtue's cloak?
Shall I call her good when she proves unkind?
Are those clear fires which vanish into smoke?
Must I praise the leaves where no fruit I find?

No, no: where shadows do for bodies stand
Thou may'st be abus'd if thy sight be dim.
Cold love is like to words written on sand
Or to bubbles which on the water swim.

Wilt thou be thus abused still
Seeing that she will right thee never?
If thou canst not o'ercome her will
Thy love will be thus fruitless ever.

Was I so base, that I might not aspire
Unto those high joys which she holds from me?
As they are high, so high is my desire:
If she this deny, what can granted be?

If she will yield to that which Reason is,
It is Reason's will that Love should be just,
Dear, make me happy still by granting this,
Or cut off delays if that I die must.

Better a thousand times to die,
Than for to live thus still tormented:
Dear, but remember it was I
Who for thy sake did die contended.

z8tl said...

the lowest trees have tops, the ant her gall,
the fly her spleen, the little spark his heat;
and slender hairs cast shadows though but small,
and bees have stings although they be not great;
seas have their source, and so have shallow springs,
and love is love in beggars and in kings.
where waters smoothest run deep are the fords;
the dial stirs, yet none perceives it move;
the firmest faith is in the fewest words;
the turtles cannot sing and yet they love,
true hearts have eyes and ears, no tongues to speak;
they hear and see and sigh, and then they break.

Anonymous said...

z8tl, thank you!
this one is inspired.

z8tl said...

this 1 is sting w/ songs from teh labyrinth, that's why ;)

in darkness let me dwell,
the ground shall Sorrow be;
the roof Despair to bar
all cheerful light from me,
the walls of marble black
that moisten'd still shall weep;
my music hellish jarring sounds
to banish friendly sleep.
thus wedded to my woes
and bedded to my tomb,
o let me living die,
till death do come.

Anonymous said...

no, the songs are the least bit
your persistence pays off
there's something behind your words that comes through
i salute the energy that animates your evidence
that which inspires

Anonymous said...

that you're up at 5.30 to sit
that you take a few minutes before to check in here
and knock some heads
you're all right

z1tl said...

I yam way kewler than z0tl/z8tl.

I can tipe with my b1g dick.

None of you MOFOs is as c00l as I is.

I am the kewlest.

I am just s000 kewl.

I am de gratest.





sandy eggo said...

Yo z0tl.. If you want to access your myspace page, you can still find it here.

Anonymous said...

I is always the greatest
isn't it?

even when I is the worst
it's still leading the pack

it's just the nature of I

a ball floating on water
push it under
throw it in the air
play with it, whatever

z0/8tl pointed this out before
using different words

Anonymous said...

My cat's breath smells like cat food

Harry said...

I was reading the end of "Uji" today:

When we are acting like Dhalai Lamas then that is time/reality; when we are acting like complete dicks then that is time/reality too. Every moment of Dhalai Lama-ness and every moment of dick-ness has equal potential for us to experience and enact time/reality; we can always realize directly that things are just like this here now.



Anonymous said...



Uji has always been one of my favourite chapters/lectures from Master Dogen.

I'm not entirely sure why. I think it was one of those few chapters where I thought "This dude has a clue".

That and Genjo Koan of course.

Mike Cross's re-translation/re-interpretation Shobogenzo TNG is well worth a look. It expresses more of the talkiness and humour that I think must have been in the original.

Anonymous said...

Mike Cross has already done a translation of UJI

Sometimes I find it interesting to put the Shobogenzo TNG and Shobogenzo (Nishijima/Cross) next to each other and read them side by side.

I'm sometimes curious to see how he has translated without Gudo Nishijima holding approval/veto.

Jinzang said...

When we are acting like Dhalai Lamas then that is time/reality ...

I think you mistyped and meant to write Dahlia lama.

Jinzang said...

let's finish off jinzang 1st. he asks z0tl if he's ready to learn, blows over the response to then proclaim in an enlightened, all compassionate manner ...

Your posts here show clear signs of mania. Seeing that, I didn't think it wise or proper either to respond to them or criticize you for posting them. So I just sent my good wishes, which were sincere, even though you doubt that.

I don't know if your mania is caused by drugs, the improper practice of chi kung, or some sickness. But I do know that you will be happier if you can resolve it.

Anonymous said...

fuck off and die zotl you stupid melon

z8tl said...

jinzang, it is because judgmental folk like you who can see "clearly" that those wards are full of innocent beings locked up there because they dare voice energies that are coursing through their vehicles.

evil cloaked in good, i call it, & i will dedicate this life on this planet to shine light on it [like brad does], with the same clarity you think you shine on me.

to the poor saps who feel i'm out here to preach anything or show my infinite wisdom, i'm sorry for your pain and glad to provide the lower form for you to validate against.

z8tl said...

sandy eggo, how about revive my youtube page too, eh?-)

ordinarily, there's that sodeska story, where there's no need to defend, no need to assert, blah, but perhaps for some here it would help to understand my attachments.

there's a guy who's known me on the nets since 2oo2 and has dedicated a whole blog where some of my most wonderful madness has been saved for posterity (tho it requires lots of clicks on older link) or you can go to time machine ( and type in there and see 1% of 25oo+ blog entries i was doing between 2oo2 and 2oo5 when i finally got to the point of being able to cling to nothing (digital) anymore.

and that includes burning all my pictures, journal, blah, blah, blah, spending inordinate amounts of editing time on youtube and letting go of that shit instantly on a whim, if i wanna.

the only reason i am doing these theatrix with changing user names, obliterating blogs, etc is to try and show there's no point in trying to cling to an identity, let alone digital, since any1 with the least know-how can take it away from you.

but anyway, you prolly think i'm ashamed of my boobs in that myspace picture :)

that's fine too.

here's my website and last name, just so it's clear that trolling is not my intention here, nor do i shit in my pants because someone i tell to fuck off in here may later kick my ass IRL.

NellaLou said...

Just putting in my two bits on the dialogues running through here. Take it or leave it.

Running away from this entity we know on this blog as z8tl doesn't make z8tl cease to exist. Hiding from those things that are averse doesn't change anything. Thats called denial. Its very comfortable to simply deny what -we don't like/agree with/offends us/makes us angry/makes us think/confronts us/makes us uncomfortable. But that viewpoint isn't too realistic.

There is a time in practice when some people begin to think they get this interdependence thing. One gets all syrupy and weepy and sobs uncontrollably when their dog takes a shit because it helps the continuity of life by fertilizing the earth, oh the blessed earthworm is me and those flowers are blossoming in my brain blah blah blah. The heart sutra nearly gives multiple orgasms every time you hear it and forget about the rush every time a drop of water falls from the faucet into the bathtub as you soak there.This is simple dharma rapture. And it has an ugly side as well. And that starts to come up more and more as one pushes beyond the falseness of the dharma rapture. And its a place most people don't want to go so they stay all love and light and weepy creepy. Its what I think of as the Buddhist drug of choice. It was mine for a while too when I gave up the other kind many years ago. It's E alright but not Enlightenment.

For a couple of years at the beginning of practice I felt something like what z8tl expresses. The superficiality of EVERYTHING was incredibly frustrating. The feeling is like "How can YOU-meaning everyone else in the world-take any of this bullshit seriously?" Its all made up. Everyone is just a made up conglomeration of stuff from this fake world, this dream and is believing in it with all their might. And they are defending it and they are even willing to fight and die to maintain this facade. What you think you are is just a result of biology/culture/parenting/education/experience/worldly fake stuff. Can't you see that? What a bunch of fools.

At the same time for someone who takes the Bodhisattva viewpoint seriously there is this incredible urgency to wake them all up. To dispense this knowledge to as many as possible by any means available or necessary. To shout at them, slap them, zap them with a taser if necessary, anything to get a non-conditioned response. But most people aren't ready for that.

And in the experience of this entity known here as NellaLou when one manages to get through the initial experiences with this heaven/hell combination what is there?Just the stuff that is and the stuff that isn't and more of the same but from a slightly different and somewhat more calm viewpoint.

Brad used the term "situationally appropriate" in one post about a business meeting. That's the most difficult thing to maintain when one gets some grasp on the foolishness that many people take so seriously. It takes a lot of patience. And sometimes just gritting the teeth and suffering the fools. And sometimes the pointed stick of reality can burst that whole bubble. Situational, relative, temporary, no absolute in that ego-bound world.

This stuff cycles on and on. Not with so much intensity but nonetheless it continues. z8tl is quite right in talking about the Abhidharma as it deals with all of this stuff in pretty minute detail. It is interesting but its also complicated, metaphorical, and sometimes really boring. Sort of like Dogen to the nth degree.

There have been times reading the comments here I've felt like giving z8tl a slap and telling him to calm down there's way more to come yet. And the same with some others as well. But who the fuck am I to do that? I'm no Buddha, saint, master or teacher. Have had nearly 30 years of a Buddhist practice but still have those conditioned reactions. About the only thing that has changed is having a better ability to control the expression of those reactions. And some idea as to their origin. So maybe one needn't expect too much by way of fireworks from sitting for a long time.

@ z8tl, not that you care what I say at this point, I hope you keep on doing what you're doing. Maybe I don't know what you are experiencing but maybe I do. And there is also the possibility you don't know what I am experiencing either. Maybe no one can know what another is experiencing. Ultimately maybe there's really no one to experience anything. What's the difference? End of my blab. Take care man.

granny said...

you do have a pretty gnarley pair of man-boobs z0tl. Once you turn 40 they really start going south..

z8tl said...

i don't have the urgency to save all beings, because i understand there are none (other than my ass) to save, ie reintegrate.

if there's buddhanature underlying my ass, it's the pratyeka kind, which the bodhisattva type says is like 2nd grade buddhahood tralala.

in other w0rds, more dick measuring, even when you get to those levels.


i wouldn't presume to label anyone's experiences, but i do know all those experiences, perceived phenomenally (within the spacetime constraints) are pretty much out the window makyo ground.

nuttin to do with feelin' freed up whatsoever.

do i feel freed up? i'm not sure what i feel anymore, to be perfectly clear. it's hard for me to imagine situations that would freak me out, perhaps paraplegia would bring a tear to my left eye, but not for me, for those who might have to wipe my ass afterwards...

i'm way past the multiorgasmic bullshit and the terror of being lost in eternal emptiness.

why the fuck can't i get over the disappointment part (ie, having expectation others will get it), puzzles me to no end.

i think it's more like, shit man, if these guys are so caught up in santa claus material, what hope is there really for this rock?

ah, well, i made it all up, i'll take it all with me when i go, as i say, i've no bodhisattva delusions holding me back another round.

orion/m42 next via x1-cygnus reintegration of 4-dimensional consciousness within the 0tl dimension. 1st, 2nd, 3rd graders, i implore you, step away from the vehicle before talkin' to me again.

NellaLou said...

z8tl said:
"why the fuck can't i get over the disappointment part (ie, having expectation others will get it), puzzles me to no end."

NellaLou says:

bravoshark said...

finding "Shobogenzo" was pretty easy, I was surprized. There are many new sites offering free downloads. I haven't searched for a copy by that author, but I got one that I am now reading for free. This is one of the biggest requirements for me at this point, quick and easy access.

Anonymous said...

the only reason i am doing these theatrix with changing user names, obliterating blogs, etc is to try and show there's no point in trying to cling to an identity...

In doing so you are clinging to an identity. In doing all these trollish postings you are clinging to an identity. If you were not you could just happily be a lurker. Many people have created and killed blogs. It's no big. I've been doing it since 2004 and lots of people used to read what I wrote and miss it now its gone.


Have had nearly 30 years of a Buddhist practice but still have those conditioned reactions. About the only thing that has changed is having a better ability to control the expression of those reactions.
Is that not enough? Would you rather be an unfeeling zenbot? Is it not better to be able to fully experience an emotion/reaction and then to choose to act or not on it?

Go check out WALL-E. It's a wonderful film - a new classic. If you didn't have conditioned responses to it the film would be far less enjoyable and not make its point.

why the fuck can't i get over the disappointment part (ie, having expectation others will get it), puzzles me to no end.

It's the identity-clinging thing again. "I am the supreme enlightened being whose greatness will be recognised and so I through my greatness will......"

You still want to believe that life has meaning, that you are important, that the world gives a shit about you. But that isn't what Buddha taught.

You and I are insignificant worthless pieces of crap - just like 6 billion other people on this planet amongst many billions of starts that also have planets.

You want to be feel important and powerful because you know you are not.
You are still clinging to that dream.

1NT - life sux.

2-4NT. Suck it up and deal.

That's the big secret you are missing out on. The real badass dudes on this planet look perfectly ordinary and lead anonymous lives. They don't give a shit what other people think and they don't give a shit what they think.

Brad can set up this Troll paradise because he doesn't give a shit.

I can choose to have a conversation with you, insult you or ignore you because it's all the same to me. I've been dancing with trolls for many years now. It's a hobby like many others I have.

Today it's a nice sunny day. I'm flooded with work but I think I'm gonna take the day off go for a drive in my sportscar and have a nice walk a lunch and a beer.

All totally fucking meaningless - which is why I can enjoy it. When life has no meaning you can enjoy all of it. With nothing being special everything becomes special and wonderful.

Many wannabe Buddhists only remain so by denying their inner trollness.

Alphonzen said...

Does anyone here live in South East london?

If so please read flier below. Also, any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

To just be is our most natural and happiest state.

Often we think that to acquire or accumulate something results in happiness. However the happiness or
pleasure that we feel is so fleeting that we strive for more.

What we don't realize however is that it is not the accumulation that brings us happiness
but rather the shedding of all that is unnatural to us.

What is unnatural to us?

Compulsive thinking is mankinds biggest threat. Whilst a useful tool, thought is not reality and just
mental noise. Some people mistake this mental noise for who they are and become mad.
By an act of monstrous reductionism, we have mistaken the noise for our true self and missed out on
99% of reality. Of course, thinking has its place. Everything man made that exists around you was once
a thought in someones mind. Thats the beauty of thought. There is nothing wrong with thought, however,
reality cannot possibly be put into thought since reality has infinite depth.
To see thought for what it trully is, is true liberation and the end of suffering.

What can i do to realise the reality of thought?

There are innumerable methods to still the mind and to realize reality-as-it-is. Some traditions promote
breathing exercises, others involve concentration on some mystical mantra. My method is alot simpler. Its called
Shikantaza which translates as "just sitting" It involves sitting upright on a cushion called a zafu
and simply letting the mind quieten by itself. For thinking has a involuntary aspect as well as a
voluntary one- which simply prolongs thought.

Simply put, if you Want to live to the fullest; Sit down and shut up.

Just be aware however, that if you decide to take up shikantaza your personality and outlook will change.
You will start appreciating life as if every moment is sacred.

This entire universe is an interconnected community. Lets realise this by sitting together at my house.

If you are interested please call me on my mobile: 07910 35 35 84

NellaLou said...

You said:
Is that not enough? Would you rather be an unfeeling zenbot? Is it not better to be able to fully experience an emotion/reaction and then to choose to act or not on it?

In response to what I said:
Have had nearly 30 years of a Buddhist practice but still have those conditioned reactions. About the only thing that has changed is having a better ability to control the expression of those reactions. And some idea as to their origin. So maybe one needn't expect too much by way of fireworks from sitting for a long time.

I don't believe anything in that statement is a complaint about my current state of being. It is merely an expression of the situation at the present point in time.I expressed no desire to be other than that nor to relinquish all emotion or feeling.Please don't pour your suppositions or amateur psychology on me.

qbitty said...

ok, mike_h, how about you drop the i'm an insignificant other and dissolve within teh z?tl context along with HEARING (not the sound of) the 4th bell.

Michael Bardan said...

oh, you're perfectly ordinary in your sports vehicle?

i drive a g35 and am pondering the new nissan gt-r.

thx for pointing at my big dig, i told you 15 posts ago it'll come down to measuring suffering, hours of sitting, achievements within the dream.

mikey, sit your ass on that cushion and stop learning zen from guys stomping around in godzilla suits.

michael bardan said...

ok fixed the fucking troll account for a good while to cum now.

kung fu panda kicks the living shit out of wallE and i saw them both because i'm that kind of loser, still attached to pink panther cartoon:z!

mikey, your lurkiness is bordering on awesomystical.

z8tl's mom said...


you have man boobs you suck

you have a tiny dick you suck

go shine a light up your ass

100 said...


sandy eggo said...

he's stoned
Here's a self portrait of zen master z8tl at home, obviously still high from chain smoking marboro lights all night.

michael bardan said...

the owl said: wei wu wei wu wu

i'll chalk all this up to the wu wu part.

yep, that wuz z0tl okay, circa 2oo4 methinks.

small dick, check, big boobs, check, stoned (twice in my life on chronic at 36 as an experiment while zazennin', you know, kinda like when ole ram dass gave the lsd to his guru, i gave it to my sorry self to see what not).

wow, i've been so exposed, it's like next brad will be featured in a national enquirer article...

Anonymous said...


You wrote "Have had nearly 30 years of a Buddhist practice but still have those conditioned reactions"

The words "but still" often suggest that one wishes it were otherwise. The words often contain within them the expectation that it should not be so.

If I have misread it in your case then that is my error. That's all.

michael bardan said...

mikey_h, b4 you waste your breath on more ASSumptions on how miserable nella and i (both clearly stating we do not profess to be teachers), i beg you, read over your last post again.

do you not see how you are the one coming across in that very post EXACTLY the way you describe my being (as a projection of your self?-)

dude, in my 1st post to you, i said i wanted to practice tai-chi with you, because you sound like you know wtf you say re: martial arts.

dude, in this post i'm here to tell you, you are more laughable than your sit down and shut up teacher.

michael bardan said...

mom, sorry shit i didn't see it was from you, seeing as i refer to Mind as my ass, absofuckinlutely best ever advice self-evidently so:

i go shine teh Light up my Ass & holy shit THESE are the shadows IT makes.

secret [troll] agenda: i want a hook into hollywood and brad was seen with some rich gay producers the other kalpa, so like fuck man, better nose brown around his holy ass just in case...

Anonymous said...

ven. michael barden/z0tl/z8tl/anon/whatever:

Yep, just a perfectly ordinary small-dicked guy in a sports car.

Next week I'll be a perfectly ordinary small-dicked guy in a diesl car.

Is Asshole/wannbe Troll the only thing you can be or can you play nice as well?

As for learning zen from Brad. Hmmmm. I actually come here to learn how to play guitar.

how would you like me to be?


Sometimes people like what I write and sometimes not. Sometimes people like how I behave and sometimes not. Either way it always seems to be my fault.

People this week in blogland generally seem to think that I've been a bit of an asshole. They might be right. Other weeks I seem to be a nice guy and people seem to like it.

From time to time people tell me that I should be this way or that I should be that way. Often the way they want me to be is not the way I am at that moment in time. If I try and stop myself being an asshole it doesn't go well. If I try and stop myself being a nice guy it doesn't go well.

I've generally found that it's better not to try and stop either one and not to care too much either way. Sometimes that means I have to clean up the mess afterwards if I'm either too nice or too much of an asshole.

Over the next two days I'm cleaning up a mess because I have been too nice to my customers. If I was more of an asshole I could ship out the stuff that I made as it stands instead of binning it and starting again.

As someone pointed out earlier (ISTR harry) we can all be nice guys and assholes. Some people just want to be nice guys. Some people just want to be assholes. In doing so they deny half of themselves because nice-guy/asshole are opposites.

If people only ever want me to be a nice guy or only ever want me to be an asshole then really what they are saying is "don't be yourself, don't be natural".

In fact I'd rather just be myself. It that means that sometimes I appear to be an asshole and at other times I appear to be a nice guy then so be it.

I've tried to fit in with other people's expectatations and that doesn't go well. I've tried to fit in with my own expectations - and that doesn't go well. When I drop expectations then it seemes to go a lot better.

I'm sure Buddha said something about this once upon a time.

Anonymous said...

i beg you, read over your last post again.

do you not see how you are the one coming across in that very post EXACTLY the way you describe my being (as a projection of your self?-)

We have crossed-posts. Yes I do see that.

dude, in my 1st post to you, i said i wanted to practice tai-chi with you, because you sound like you know wtf you say re: martial arts.

I missed that comment. When you start being silly with me I don't tend to read the detail.

I'm not in the same country as you so that's not going to happen.

dude, in this post i'm here to tell you, you are more laughable than your sit down and shut up teacher.


I'm fine with that.

Sometimes I learn things from Brad and sometimes not. I don't really have a teacher. I go find them when I need them.

This week I seem to be learning from you. Gasssho.

Anonymous said...

blog yoga! good work!

Lauren said...

Any advice for achieving stone dead-cold non thinking during zazen? I've been doing a mini-sesshin this weekend to see if I can possibly make it through Shizuoka in September.

Not that I have a stopwatch going, but it seems like I can only not-think for a few seconds, then (hell, what's the right sound effect?) whuuuuuup up pops a thought, or even worse a dream (damn! dozing off again during zazen! Must be perfectly unattached and in the dammit).

I get this feeling I've got this huge store house of thoughts that needs to drain over the next few years before it becomes in-the-now empty.

Or maybe it's cross-talking neurons that need gentle guidance through hours and hours of nothing to start producing nothing for me.

Oh well, Guatama took 6 years to get it. Should be discouraged after a few months.

Nonetheless - non-rant clues would be appreciated.

NellaLou said...

As long as there is biochemical activity in the brain there will be thinking. Only the dead or comatose (?)stop thinking completely and I'm not even sure about the latter one. One can just let the thoughts sort of drain out to pick up on your metaphor but the dopamine and serotonin etc just keep on percolating up there.
And not thinking completely would reduce one to a zombie. I like this quote:

If we regard meditation as just getting into a fog so that you do not see, you do not feel, something is terribly wrong. In that case meditation would reduce one to a zombie. The enlightened man would have to be rescued. Someone would have to feed him and take him to the bathroom. We would have to have an enlightenment ward.
-Chogyam Trungpa in Glimpses of Abhidharma

I would add not thinking to that list.

Anonymous said...

good morning!
it's another day in samsara/nirvana!

if you're suffering and you know it, clap your hands!

if you don't know if you're suffering, clap your hands!

if you know you're not suffering, clap your hands!

Those in the front rows, just rattle your jewelry!
(after John Lennon's (well one of the Fab Four said it) statement to royals and such attending the command performance for her majesty QE.

Find a way to keep time to this cosmic music we all make together.

Captain Kangaroo said...

Oh that's Royal!

I sing that song with the kids at a local shelter. Please, may I extend your idea with a full verse?

If you're suffering and you don't know it, clap your hands (clap clap)
If you're suffering and you don't know it, clap your hands (clap clap)
If you're suffering and you don't know it, then your blog will surely show it
If you're suffering and you don't know it, clap your hands. (clap clap)

Alphonzen said...

Lauren, its not about getting rid of thought, but rather seeing it for what it really is.

Sometimes in deep zazen there are long periods of no thought- but don't take these periods as being better or worse than others.

It simply is.

michael bardan said...

mikey, if you see it and you swear you're not identified w/ the asshole that's being it at the time, then who am i to have a pro'lem with you?

i do have a pro'lem if you dump the cement load on my head because you can't get passed my "foul" language.

that's like never ever listen to a 2pac song, because he's all gangstarap and "he deserved what he got."

anyway, lauren, don't take advice from me, i've only done ONE 4-days retreat [however it was tougher than the shit brad runs in japan and how i know that is simply base on web schedule and 1 day sitting w/ him in santa monica]...

thoughts are like kids in the courtyard. let them play, be aware so they don't run amock, but BE on the cushion, sitted.

again and again, 6 senses, your thinking (product of your brain) just like smelling is a product of your nose (and please don't get technical and tell me smell sensing is in the brain, because then i will tell you there's 3 fucking areas in the brain let's say and why for fukkssakes do you choose to trust the one that developed the latest, ie cerebral cortex over some such other shit, like corpus collossum, sorry if my anatomy isn't up to snuff).

listen, when you have thoughts, you have to GENTLY revert to your method.

your method needs to be something OTHER THAN THINKING.

now if you shikantaza your ass, there's not much instruction coming along with that, perhaps: STRAIGHTEN YOUR SPINE.

okay then. you think, back to straightening your spine.

you think, don't beat yourself over thinking, let it think, but back to straighten your spine.

get fucking internal with it, ie use your felt senses, go like journey to the center of the spine.

feel your ming-men (L4/L5 wherever the fuck that is), twist your disks slightly, rock if you have to.

the point is, DARE TO LET GO OF YOUR THOUGHTS, and practice your method.

because shikantaza has only the instruction to BE THERE (and straighten your spine), it is a VERY ADVANCED PRACTICE.

if you don't have a teacher, you'll waste a whole fucking lotta time unable to leave your head.

i do not practice shikantaza, i practice susokkan. there we have the breath to play with.

it may seem way stupid and boring, but think it through this way, if you're paraplegic and can't straighten your spine, i still have my breath to work with.

in the order of needs of this animal here, you've got what, air, water, food, shelter, blah...

if you don't breathe, you're dead.

practice your last breath.

practice dying while living.

and how?

by extending (relaxing out the breath beyond where you feel it's impossible) outbreath with your awareness (focus) in the hara/tan'tien.

that is the susokkan instruction.

why do we do hara? because that drawing of the man inscribed in the circle, whoever the fuck drew that, davinci/golden ratio, tralala.

mathematix was the key to setting my race free type of thing, if you remember the tribe...

enough for 1o1 sitting and not worrying about thinking.

Lauren said...

nellalou, alphonzen, and zootle thanks for the advice... (don't worry, zootle, I didn't actually take yours, per your recommendation. Its still there).

michael bardan said...

i don't regret wasting my susokkan breath [and i didn't give you advice, only options to consider], but can you please elaborate what you mean by ". It's still there)."?

Harry said...

"As someone pointed out earlier (ISTR harry) we can all be nice guys and assholes. Some people just want to be nice guys. Some people just want to be assholes. In doing so they deny half of themselves because nice-guy/asshole are opposites."

The Buddhas taught/teach that we should not intentionally do what we know to be wrong no matter how naturally it seems to come to us.



Harry said...

This is what I was looking for:

Not to commit wrongs,
To practice the many kinds of right,
Naturally purifies the mind;
This is the teaching of the buddhas.



michael bardan said...

wrong is in the mind of the done upon. since there is no doer and no done upon, but the doing is real, wtf jibberish you spew here?

there is no one out there to commit wrongs, you foo!

also, it doesn't matter how righteous i feel (or actually am in the eyes of some other dharma "holder/judge" about doing you right! if you feel wronged, it's wrong and there go my bad karma points kaching kaching spiraling up.

but MY/ME does not exist if I don't pay attention to it.

do you understand?

Harry said...

Oh, I understand what you are saying, but it's nonsense.

Now, shut up before you reflect negatively on your teacher further (assuming he or she does not talk the same nonsense as well).



Lauren said...


"It's still there" was just a little light-hearted humor. You very kindly offered that I should not 'take' your advice (rather consider it as options) and I was simply saying that I had not 'taken' it. It was still there on the page.


michael bardan said...


Thx for clarifying, my ASSumptions would have jumped me to concluding you are saying your spine is still, in which case I woulda, you know, do my "angry buddhist" thing.

As it is, good luck in shizuoka, i'm confident you'll pull thru.


You ASSuming bastard, I have no affiliation with any zen center / lineage whatsoever.

I happen to sit with a bunch on a more regular basis, but that's like saying Brad's my teacher because I once, at Hill Center bandcamp, stole his oryoki bowls.

In other news, come back to me when you understand. I'll kick the shit out of you again, you poor devil.

Harry said...

Yes, your 'teacher' is an idiot then (and I should know: I'm a baaad self-taught musician!).

From one idiot to another: The sometimes OK thing about Zen and other Buddhist tradition, and the odd really good teacher that we can encounter via them, is that they've made the exact same mistakes that you are convincing yourself of.

In the 'good old days' there would have been someone there to give you a not-too-playful slap in the head or sharp kick in the enlightened orbs to highlight the real nature of the implications of right and wrong conduct. As it is we just have to put up with your indulgent waffle (unless you'd like to give yourself a good kick in the balls courtesy of us?).

Good luck. Pseudo black rap-talk & Nihilism is baaaad religion... in this case anyway.



Alphonzen said...

I've realised that zen isn't for everybody. It wasn't for Mike Cross and it isn't for Michael Barden or whatever.

Some people just aren't ready for the truth just yet. Their egos will always try to manipulate practice for their petty goals.

Anonymous said...


"The Buddhas taught/teach that we should not intentionally do what we know to be wrong no matter how naturally it seems to come to us."

I think I'd agree with that. But that's a little different from what many people want to do which is to deny that they are capable of doing wrong.

Anonymous said...


I've realised that zen isn't for everybody. It wasn't for Mike Cross and it isn't for Michael Barden or whatever.

I wouldn't be so quick to judge and write off others.

Some people take longer than others to do the work. Some people have more to deal with than others.

Maybe you were lucky and haven't had much in your mind that was tough to deal with when it was unearthed. Maybe you have stuff still to deal with that has not yet been faced.

Some people are lucky with Zen - they don't have much to deal with. Maybe you have been lucky and have led a relatively normal life with relatively normal problems.

Not everyone is so lucky. I have not been so lucky.

A lot of practice for me has been in sitting with the wildness of my own mind and all that was buried in there. Sitting with it and not getting overwhelmed with it, or running away from it or denying it.

Mike Cross is not always the easiest of people to be around but I'd be loathe to write him off as a Zen failure.

I feel that his new version of the Shobogenzo is showing greater clarity than the previous version. I feel that his revised version now for me makes more sense than what went before and more closely matches my own experiences and other texts.

Mike Cross may [appear to] dislike me intensely at times and we are hardly the best of friends but he does still seem willing to listen to the truth from time to time. Sometimes I have put postings onto his blog and he has not published or acknowledged them but sometimes I get the feeling that he may have read them and taken them to heart.

Michael B has shown that he has the capability for empathy and compassion - at least sometimes.

If you are confident in the strength of your own practice then it might be worth you trying a little experiment. 'Become' Mike Cross or Michael B. Get yourself into a state of mind where you could write as they sometimes write. It's just emphathy.


Alphonzen said...

mike h- maybe you are right.

Sometimes I compare my experience of zen with the experience of others and decide whether they are correct or incorrect in their practice. This is quite wrong.

But, I still believe that the approach to zen is extremely important. You must be willing to give up ideas. Otherwise how can you enjoy walking, shitting, typing on the keyboard or the feeling of drinking cool water properly.

The more idealistic you are it seems, the less likely you are able to enjoy these little treasures of life.

Anonymous said...

But, I still believe that the approach to zen is extremely important. You must be willing to give up ideas.

Truish. But it is a process.
Lots of people come into Zen with lots of ideas. Ideas are shed over time.

I think that perehaps most important of all is a willingness to 'find' the 'truth'. A willingness to accept that everything you think you know and believe might not be accurate or might even be just plain wrong.

A will to truth is more important than anything else.

Most people I've met within Buddhism and Zen seem to be full of ideas; seem quite determined to defend them and seem quite determined to adopt new ones that are approved of in some way.

This is quite different from the few who I've met who seem to have had some strong direcct experience and don't seem all that fussed about defending ideas and beliefs.

A willingness to face uncomfortable but recognisably accurate information covers over a multitude of other failings.

But I'm not really interested in discussing right and wrong approaches to zen. I found one approach, other people find other approaches. Some horses need a whip......