Saturday, March 28, 2009

10 not 11!

Tomorrow at 10 am (NOT 11!) I'll be at Traditional Chinese Cultural Center, Potomac Community Center Social Hall 11315 Falls Rd., Potomac, MD 20854 (I said 11 before)

Oh, and by the way, the talk at Monmouth University was incredibly lovely, with delicious manicotti (sp?) had by all. Ronni is a goddess! (That's who arranged the thing, masterfully). I talked to counseling program grad students while wearing a button that said "Not your fucking therapist," which was given to me by Violet Blue of the San Francisco Chronicle.

Good times.

Now I lay me down to sleep and prepare for my ten am (not 11) tomorrow.

35 comments:

Joshua B. said...

Any one going to Brads talk outta NOVA?

Anonymous said...

Can't even wear a button without cursing?

Anonymous said...

use them when you're sad
use them when you're mad
use them when you're happy
use them on your dad

bad words

they come in all shapes
they come in all sizes
from the tough
to the weak
they're not words you want to speak

bad words

they come in all shapes
they come in all sizes
from the rich
to the poor
they're not words you want to use anymore

bad words

- The Circle Jerks

Anonymous said...

As Brad tours the world, we should be mindful that new fans and curious tourists will visit this place. So, regulars, let's make them welcome with a cheery "Hi" and a friendly word of encouragement -

SIT THE FUCK DOWN AND SHUT THE FUCK UP!!!

Mysterion said...

As if this is new.

Faceless annoy-n-mouse seemingly appears to be somewhat bipolar.

Anonymous said...

Zen is not therapy!

awesome fuckin' button

Nameless person of no rank said...

Mysterious -

What IS it with you and anonymity, you pompous prick? Can't work out who's who and what's what? Who to dismiss and who to respect? When we meet, we'll all introduce ourselves formally and sit down for cha. Until then, get off your high horse. This is a blog on the internet, some of us are just having fun.

Mysterion said...

Anonymous Nameless person of no rank said...
"This is a blog on the internet, some of us are just having fun."

Unfortunately, in this blog some other nameless faceless cowards are persistent in their unrelenting desire to trash Brad - which has nothing to do with fun. To restate, I am no great fan of Brad but for those who wish only to trash him, they could start a blog, write your own book (and get it published), or find a somewhat less psychotic avenue in which to express their venomous envy.

I have my own blog(s) and web pages... On the greater one, I inform visitors about the complex subjects of Buddhisms. On the lesser one, I trash eastern mystics (but over there, not here).

I average in total a little under 43,000 hits per year (which is about 35,000 too many). Brad, in his commercial ventures, has about 8x as many hits (which is at least 350,000 too few).

Nameless person/No rank said...

Charles (who/whatever you may be),

"Unfortunately, in this blog some other nameless faceless cowards are persistent in their unrelenting desire to trash Brad"

I've read just about every word of this blog for a few years, and, yes, there is the occassional snarky comment about Brad. Not nearly enough to justify your relentless defensive campaign. Hell, you even saw Brad-hating in the repeated attempts of another recent Dogen Sangha "anon" to establish just the opposite.

Yeah, I've seen your blogs. Don't know that I'd call what you supply 'information'. But it's a free web.

Peace.

Anonymous said...

Brad is free to close these comments at any time - why he chooses not to is beyond me, since he has publicly 'trashed' the people who comment here on more than one occasion.

I really don't know what to make of Brad, sometimes he comes across as sincere or even profound in his insights, but the more I practice and study the more I glance the childishness and enormous ego that lie just beneath. I used to think that Brad was exactly what Zen needed in the west - someone to make it relevant to the kids in the 21st Century, like Suzuki and Katagiri did in the 20th. Now I think that Brad is more likely to be responsible for damaging Zen in America by creating a legion of 'do what I want, say what I want, fuck 2500 years of tradition' Buddhists. And he thinks Genpo is a disgrace.
I believe that Brad thinks he is too cool for Zen, that he looks down on the rest of the tradition and on the people that practice it.

But what do I know, I'm posting anonymously, which means my opinion doesn't count for shit. Never mind.

Nameless person/No rank said...

Anon @ 4.21 pm -

Of course you're perfectly entitled to your views about Brad, but please don't confuse the opinions of those, like Mysterion, who might appear to speak for him, with what Brad himself writes, says and thinks.

FWIW, I'm pretty sure that Brad doesn't want to "fuck 2500 years of tradition". He does clearly think that Genpo is a disgrace. He's entitled to that opinion. 2500 years of Buddhist tradition will back him up on that.

No name/No rank said...

To clarify -

I don't mean that 2500 years of Buddhists would agree that Genpo is a disgrace, but that Buddhist tradition, being full of dissent and debate, confirms Brad's right to think so.

Also (as you opinion does count, anon @ 4.21pm), could you refer us to what specifically Brad has said or done that's got you thinking "he looks down on the rest of the tradition and the people who practice it." I don't think he does. He, along with his teacher, Nishijima Roshi, merely questions the relevance/importance of much "traditional" (if by which you mean ceremonial) practice.

As for rejecting tradition per se, Dogen Sangha bases it's teaching and practice on the writings of a 13th century monk and his lineage. I'd call that a tradition.

No name/No rank said...

To further clarify -

To the best of my recollection, Brad has only "trashed" commenters on this blog when what he's written has been misconstrued, misunderstood and mis-represented, leading to a frenzy of insults. In which case, his reaction was understandable.

Jack D Ripper said...

"I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration , Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion, and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids... "
-Base Commander Ripper

Not_Brad said...

ROFLMAO!!!

No Rank, you sound like Brad hisself! But we know you're not cause he don't even read these comments, right? Pathetic.

Rich said...

I was thinking the same thing, NoRank is Brad. There's something weird about that. I need a vacation.

No name/No rank said...

See, Chas - Folks think I might be Brad! Me! The guy that called you, Brad's defender and confidant, a pompous prick!

Sorry guys. I am one and many things and people. But I am not Brad Warner.

Just call me The Voice of Reason ;-)

Sid Sycophant said...

Brad is so f*cking awesome!
Brad is the greatest Zenmeister ever!
Brad is soooo humble!
But most of all Brad is sooooooooo
GROOVY!!!

I'm Not Brad Either said...

Genpo probably thinks he has been misconstrued, misunderstood and mis-represented, leading to a frenzy of insults (from Brad) too.

Joshua B. said...

I'm not a Buddhist. But I think this Genpo cat is a snake oil salesman. Any one that proclaims that you can have a wakening before the end of your lunch break is:
A) Not respecting 2500 years of beautiful tradition.
B) Is a horrible huckster that is shamelessly taking advantage of folks looking for a quick fix.
It’s no different then the plethora of self help books out there. They all claim to work. If that was the case, why the hell is there so many of them??
It would seem to me that the Genpo cat is just feeding into this western or perhaps modern mentality of more/faster. It’s another form of materialism. It sucks. Back in the day, cats like Genpo would have been run outta town on a rail. Dude is selling hair tonic that aint nothing but elephant piss. No, I am not Brad either. :-)
I am a follower of the teachings of Master Caquelon Fondue Roshi

Joe Crux said...

Blogger Joshua B. said...
"... I think this Genpo cat is a snake oil salesman."

Nah, it's Evelyn Wood speed satori program.

I did the Dale Roshi version myself.

Joshua B. said...

Seven minute Dharma for the infomercial set. Would that make Genpo the Vince Offer of awakening? Sham-wow. No doubt.

Mr. Reee said...

Anyone selling 'awakening' is hoping to find someone willing to stay asleep so they won't question the (non)result.

And I'm not Brad either.

Joshua B. said...

This is turning into an Abbot and Costello routine...
Will the real Brad Warner please stand up...

grow some legs said...

I wonder if Brads criticism of Genpo and Ken Wilber, two very highly acclaimed zennists, was out of self-interest i.e to sell books and make money.

Hes starting to look like a really good example of a bad zen master.

Next he will be saying that its ok to be a pedophile.

Ray Guillette said...

How do you prepare?

Joshua B. said...

"Next he will be saying that it’s ok to be a pedophile."

Wait! When did Rick Warren start posting on here???

No name/No rank said...

See, Chas - not all the Brad-doubters and trashers are faceless anony -mouse cowards.

I'm Not Brad Either said...

" Genpo probably thinks he has been misconstrued, misunderstood and mis-represented, leading to a frenzy of insults (from Brad) too. "

That's a very good point, imho.
Fwiw, I've watched the Genpo Big Mind stuff on Youtube, and I thought it was very good/interesting/useful, even - until the last couple of stages, when it all got a bit vague and new-age for me, and I reverted to being a doubter. While G is saying his 'method' is only a 'glimpse' of enlightenment, it sounds ok.

The dispute arises out of the definition of enlightenment (Ha!). Is it an 'insight'? An experience? Is that what we practice for? I know G doesn't say that's where it stops, but...I've had the odd insight and experience, but that's not what I practice for. Presenting such things as the goal, even as the goal of a day course, suggests that we're all in it to 'get' enlightenment.
Therein lies the origin of Brad's discontent, I reckon. It's a fundamentally different approach to the whole shmeer.

BUT G's certainly not the only Buddhist who offers 'enlightenment/big mind/satori - some lasting higher state or higher experience - as the goal. Many folks think that's what Buddhism's all about. I don't. Dogen didn't (and, as we know, directed some harsh insults at those who did), Nishijima Roshi doesn't and Brad doesn't. The Soto school generally(whatever..!) doesn't. So the conflict is nothing to do with Brad's book sales, imo.

Charging LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS of dollars for a chance to spend an excusive weekend with Zen Master Genpo Roshi - now that is very questionable indeed.

Harry said...

"BUT G's certainly not the only Buddhist who offers 'enlightenment/big mind/satori - some lasting higher state or higher experience - as the goal. Many folks think that's what Buddhism's all about. I don't. Dogen didn't (and, as we know, directed some harsh insults at those who did), Nishijima Roshi doesn't and Brad doesn't. The Soto school generally(whatever..!) doesn't. So the conflict is nothing to do with Brad's book sales, imo."

Being a Buddhist Dogen was all for enlightenment, he never questioned that the Buddha was enlightened due to his own efforts. He taught that practice and enlightenment were the same - in the same breath he said that they were different: while practice is enlightenment and enlightenment is practice, still practice is practice and enlightenment is enlightenment.

Check out Shobogenzo Maka Hannya Haramitsu.

Regards,

Harry.

No rank/No name said...

That's very true, Harry.

I was trying to make a simple (Ha!) distinction between actively pursuing enlightenment (whatever that could be) as a goal and....not actively pursuing...But thanks for the clarification.

It's a tricky business.

No name.No rank said...

I meant -

"Actively" (whatever that could be)

"Pusuing" (whatever that could be)

"Enlightenment" (whatever that could be)

Mr. Reee said...

The very instant you think you've gotten enlightenment, you haven't. A devilish trap indeed.

As I understand it, enlightenment is something expressed as a whole, without words or thought, and it could be expressed in something as simple as peeling an apple or catching a ball. Or just sitting and watching thoughts float by.

Hard to imagine how you could package up and sell that experience; harder still to understand why people want something they already have.

No name/No rank said...

...and maybe there's a distinction to be made between enlightenment as an "experience", and enlightenment as acting, fully, in the moment...or something.

Words, eh? Thoughts, eh? Tut.

Harry said...

Hi all,

Master Dogen didn't present enlightenment as reliant on some thought/no though dualism, nor as a matter of understanding as we might generally consider it. He certainly considered there to be thinking which was 'right', enlightened thinking we might say. 'Thinking' as Dogen presents it is not just 'thinking' as we might generally understand it and so he identified three activities: thinking, non-thinking (allowing thoughts to just come and go) and the result of non-thinking which is not thinking (no extra thought being made). All have their place, or non-place, or not-place.

He compiled a very big book with many subtle and not-immdeiately-obvious attempts to explain that it is not just this, not just that; not just what we think, not just what we don't think, not just what we non-think... buddha-nature as 'being without' is not the being of some shaky philosiophical 'nothingness', 'emptiness' or whatever, nor is it merely the adherence to a theory of enlightenment. Dogen points to the act of dropping such things off as Buddha-nature and he points to the implications of practicing this; how it realigns and revaluates our thinking.

Regards,

Harry.

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