Entering and Embodying Truth 

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Yes, Don, Don, before we begin, could I remind people that class begins at 7.15, not 7.30. It kind of falls over. I guess that's okay. Let's see what this class is about. Entering and Embodying the Truth, a course in Zen meditation.


And underneath there I said, I made this kind of bold statement that the source of truth and justice is unconstructed silence and stillness. So, the proposal is something like entering the truth, and another way to say it is enter the source of truth, so there may be a way to enter the source of truth, and then having


entered the source, embody it, or let it be embodied, and then once it's embodied, enact it. And then I also added in the word justice, and part of the reason I added that is because I would like to work with you and others to kind of justify or integrate the issue of justice with the Buddha-Dharma practice, because I feel it's kind of an underdeveloped


dimension of our understanding and our practice of Buddha-Dharma in relationship with justice. People often ask, how does this practice relate to justice? So, if you maybe pair justice and injustice, and then pair truth and untruth, somehow I think it's easier for students of Buddha-Dharma to deal with the issue of untruth


as a way to realize truth, but it's not so clear how you deal with injustice in practice in order to realize justice. In other words, a lot of Dharma practitioners, practitioners of the Buddhist teaching, do not see how Buddhist practice is addressing injustice. They don't get it. But they do feel a need for it to be addressed as part of the process of realizing justice. So I feel a request to address injustice and realize justice, or to see if maybe the Buddhist tradition doesn't really deal with it. It's not something it can deal with. It's


not quipped somehow to deal with it. But it's also possible that maybe there is something in the Buddhist tradition that can help us, that can complement the things we're doing now to address injustice, to realize justice. Now, I could start talking about what justice is, and then go back to what the unconstructedness and stillness is, and then go back to see how it applies to justice. But I think since some of you are not so familiar with even the talk about unconstructedness in stillness,


and all of us have some work in entering it and realizing it, I think it would be good to start there and then look at how that could relate to issues of injustice and justice. Okay? And I also want to say this, that I request that you, I want that you, and I request that you help me find out if the teachings of the tradition called Buddha Dharma, if those teachings and those practices can address injustice and realize justice. I want you to help me see if that's possible. And if you do, then maybe you'll be convinced that


it is, rather than me trying to convince you that it's possible. Why don't you help realize if it is? I kind of feel like asking you, are you interested in realizing justice? Are you? Okay, so a lot of people practice meditation with the basic foundation of being aware of their present bodily and mental experience.


Being aware of the body, the body posture. Being aware of sounds and smells and tastes and tangibles. The body is basically tangible. The body is basically the sense of tangible things. It's basically a touch organ, is what we mean by the body, usually. It's the ability to experience tangibles, or it's the sense of tangibles. So being aware of our posture, and often people are aware of their breathing, are mindful of their breathing, that they


intend when they're meditating to be aware of their posture and breathing. And this kind of awareness of posture and breathing, I have a story that beings practice this kind of mindfulness, basic mindfulness of posture and breathing before the advent of the teacher, Shakyamuni Buddha, that Indians were practicing this kind of meditation to some extent before the appearance of the Buddha. So, you could also be aware of your posture. You don't have


to be aware of your breathing necessarily, but if you're aware of your posture, most people, if they're aware of their posture, will notice eventually that their posture is breathing. So most people will discover breath if they are mindful of their posture. And most people will then, by most people I should say, people, persons, persons have the ability, especially human persons have the ability to be mindful of their posture and breathing, and to become aware of their posture and breathing, and in that process become aware of their feelings and be mindful of their feelings, to become aware of their


mental states and be mindful of them, to become aware of the objects of their consciousness, all the different kinds of mental objects that we can have, to be aware of them and I would say we all have that capability and it can be developed. So, one could say that to study the way of the Buddha is to study your experience, to study how you're feeling, how you're standing, how you're breathing, how you're thinking.


And also to study how other people are standing, how other people are breathing, through conversation or some psychic powers to understand how other people are thinking. So, again, to learn the Buddha way is somehow to learn about these kinds of experiences. And to be aware of these kinds of experiences wholeheartedly. Is to forget these experiences, or to let them go, to let them fall away, to not hold on to them,


to give them up. And in giving up all these experiences which one has wholeheartedly given mindful attention to, moment by moment, in the fullness of this mindfulness and in the forgetting of the objects of the mindfulness, I would say, I'll say, everything then enlightens one or realizes one or makes one real. And in that, one has entered and embodied the truth and from there


one can live a life of truth. And I would also say, one has entered, one has left the world of injustice, one has left the world of falseness and entered the realm of truth, justice, and the American way. So, what I just said to you can be rephrased as, to learn the Buddha way is to learn yourself. And to learn yourself is to forget yourself.


And to forget yourself is to be enlightened by all things. And to be enlightened by all things is for your body and mind, for your body and mind, and the body and mind of others to drop away. That's another way to say it. And another way to say it is, to model yourself on the Buddha way is to model yourself on yourself. And to model yourself on yourself is to forget yourself. And to forget yourself is to be enlightened by everything. And to be enlightened by everything is for body and mind of self and others to drop away.


So, for example, if I am sitting and breathing, then if I want to model the Buddha way, I model myself on me sitting and breathing. I completely join, I exercise myself being me breathing and sitting. And when I learn to do that completely, I forget, for example, me sitting and breathing. Then I open to the Buddha way. Then I enter the unconstructed, unmoving source of our life. It was mine first. For a while there I was working with my life, with my posture and my breathing and my thinking.


I was modeling myself on myself. But when I completely did that I forgot myself and then I plunged into the unconstructed, the unimagined, the unthought of life that we have together where we are all dropping away constantly and living in harmony and where there is a source from which justice can come. But in one sense justice doesn't really exist in the usual way. I guess it does. Justice doesn't exist in a social way in this realm of unconstructedness. There's kind of a justice, but it's not really social.


And I say that, but again I put it out there for discussion really. Maybe we'll find out that it is social in an unconstructed way. Yeah. There was a Zen teacher who I had a lot of contact with and at a certain phase of his life a lot of his students were becoming exposed to the word mindfulness. When I first came to Zen Center the word mindfulness was not used too much. But anyway, at a certain point people started to become exposed to the word


and I think also started to hear the teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh, who wrote that book, Miracle of Mindfulness, back a ways and taught mindfulness a lot. Mindfulness of body and breath. And they asked this Zen teacher about mindfulness and he kind of got a little angry or irritated with them asking them about mindfulness all the time. And he said something about mindfulness like, mindfulness, mindfulness, give me a breakfulness. And then he said, it's just wholeheartedness. Wholeheartedness is a word that you more often see in Zen. You don't hear the word mindfulness much in Zen. Especially the Sanskrit or Pali word for it, but wholehearted you do, or single-minded.


They're single-hearted, you know. That's more the Zen way of saying mindfulness. And I think part of the reason that Zen uses a different word is that Zen wanted to establish its own ground in China and saying that it was offering something a little different from the people who are offering traditional Buddhist mindfulness. I think that's part of the history. That it went for the language, maybe a somewhat more poetic language for the same process. Or a poetic language which isn't so specific in prose about what we're doing, but has the intensity of the prose description of meditation taken to its limit, to its most intense form, where you can say wholeheartedness instead of mindfulness. We cannot be mindful of the unconstructedness stillness.


We can be mindful of the word, the word's unconstructedness, but we can't actually be mindful of unconstructedness itself. Unconstructedness is not something we can recognize. It's not an object of our recognition. It's the realm in which we basically live. So we cannot recognize it or be mindful of it. But by being mindful of what we can be mindful of, wholeheartedly, we somehow open to and become, we open to and plunge into, but also we open to and become saturated by the actuality in which we live. By being wholeheartedly mindful of what we can be mindful of,


in that wholeheartedness, we drop our defenses to the source of truth, where we already are living, but because of being half-hearted, because of being half-hearted or less than half-heartedly paying attention to ourselves, because of being half-hearted or less modeling ourself on ourself, we have the other half of our heart to hold away the truth, which we do. Some of us have like 95% of our heart holding away the truth. Some of us have less than 95% holding away the truth. But actually, even a little bit of holding away is sufficient to block it, is sufficient to completely give up trying to get a hold of it.


It's still skating on a little bit of thin ice. I haven't really dropped completely into this source of truth and justice. So again, I think I'm going to postpone talking about what justice is in the Western, in our society, how we talk about it and so on, and how does that relate to this, and just tonight open up to you a little bit about what justice is. Discussing what I've said so far about how to enter the source and embody the source. See if you have any feedback on that basic meditation.


Yes, Fran? It's always seemed to me in this description, and I've heard it other times also, that the process sounds very feminine, in that it's an opening and being receptive, that you can't really go after it and get it, but you have to just be open and receptive and I'm just wondering if that comes up, that aspect of being feminine, and the feminine quality in the teachings. You know, I think that that may be one way of, one kind of explanation about why people have a hard time seeing, when they hear descriptions of, particularly the deeper dimensions of meditation, at that time they ask questions about being active.


When they hear about this opening to the reality, where we're already living, and letting it just moisten and drench us, in that way of talking about practice and realization, then people say, well, what do you do? Or, what about if such and such happens, then what do you do? So, as I've often mentioned in some venues, one of the images for Zen meditation, is the Chinese image of a trigram. If you know in I Ching they have hexagrams. Anybody not familiar with I Ching, having hexagrams? So hexagrams are made of two trigrams. So a trigram is three lines,


and they can be solid lines or broken lines. So a broken line is feminine, has a hole in the middle, and a solid line is masculine. The feminine is receptive, the masculine is active. So the trigram, particularly for this lineage of meditation, is a trigram which has a broken line in the middle, at the center, and two solid lines on the outside. So the receptive is at the center, and the masculine surrounds it. So the center is receptive, but it's ensconced in activity. The activity being the form of sitting?


The form of sitting, and then the engagement with the form, that could be seen as the masculine side of it, or the masculine activity. But also, if you started with the receptivity, and were in the center, the source there, then the forms could be ways to express the receptivity. So you can use the forms as something to be mindful of, and engage, and as you engage the forms wholeheartedly, you kind of fall into the receptive center, and open to what surrounds and penetrates. And then once you've entered, and you've let that take over your body and mind, then you can express that ungraspable realm in terms of the forms.


So it goes round and round. Yes? Would that expression be what we would call skillful means? Would that itself be the gloss of common justice? We can go that way and say that the active lines are skill and means, and by wholeheartedly participating in those activities, which we can grasp, we fall into a realm of truth which isn't skillful means. There's not really any means anymore, except maybe to allow yourself to stay there, would be a skillful mean, that would be a form, to use time to cook yourself in that ungraspable center. And then from there, the realized body and mind


would come out and use skillful means again. So you use them to enter, and then you'd use them to make offerings to others to show them how to enter. So when you were making offerings to others, you showed them how to enter, is that an expression of justice, a social expression of justice? Yes, that could be it, yes. Or that justice would be one dimension, a very important dimension in society for the skillful expression of this ungraspable source. Now I'm getting into talking about justice a little bit here. In terms of virtues or values, good things in societies,


human or otherwise, I don't think justice just applies to human society. I think that what we mean by justice could apply to society of non-humans too, non-human beings. Because I think justice means that there's a sense of fairness and harmony between the different beings in the society. And without that, the society has trouble being calm and peaceful. And if it has trouble being calm and peaceful, then other values, which are in some ways even more wonderful than justice in a way, are hindered. And by other values, I mean values like compassion, and charity, and benevolence,


and total devotion, etc. These sublime qualities that our society can have are hindered if there's not justice. So in some sense, justice is kind of really fundamental to a peaceful society. So you could have a just society where nobody was at war anymore, but they didn't love each other very much, but still quite just. People have that need met. And then based on that, you could have these other even more wonderful dimensions of social life. I don't know, the thought came to mind of people get married, and they have some kind of contract that looks kind of just between them, and they follow that contract.


And they feel like they're treating each other justly. But that doesn't mean that they have compassion and friendliness and all that other stuff with each other. But without the justness, some people do feel compassionate towards each other, but they have a hard time, it keeps getting challenged and derailed because of injustice in their relationships. Does that make sense? And so that's why I want to talk about justice, because it's such a basic need, and people are so upset when it's not established in our society. So when they say, when they say, what about justice, the emotional tone is different than when they say, what about compassion? They kind of scream, what about justice? But they don't usually scream, what about compassion? Compassion is extremely important, but they don't get so upset about it


when it's not fully present. But a lack of justice is really hard to live with. So it's kind of gutsy, because it goes with injustice. Whereas lack of compassion, even in compassionate relationships, there's some lack of compassion, right? There could be more. But injustice is so harsh, that I want to talk about it. Okay. Yes, Jerry. Congratulations, Jerry, on completing your head studentship. I was thinking, in terms of, injustice arises when we have an idea that we're separate. When people have an idea, they're separate from the jury. And so there's a division,


so it's self and other. It can only be injustice when there's kind of a difference. If we reach that place of non-separation, when we reach that place of stillness, and the separation goes away, then we're not separate from other anymore. In that place, it's hard to, in that place when we don't discriminate, when we aren't discriminating between self and other, then we don't judge or put somebody at a different level. Yeah, right. And in a sense, it's hard in the realm of where there's no discrimination, it's hard even to find justice. Because nothing's an issue. But when we move from that unconstructed space


into the realm of thinking and constructing, if we've realized that unconstructed, and let it, like I say, sort of soak into us, then our constructing models just constructing, the constructions in which justice appears in social relationships. But I'd like to ask if you have more questions about how to enter the source and embody the source, that side of the story. I just want to mention something I mentioned a while ago, and John Sheehy made a diagram of it. I mentioned that the Buddha, in Mahayana Buddhism, the Buddha has kind of like two simultaneous realms of practice,


or being. One is that the Buddha lives in his unconstructed stillness. The Buddha is like completely free of mental construction, and free of the worlds which are mentally constructed. The worlds of suffering are worlds of mental construction, even though they're also physical, they're mentally constructed. So the Buddha is completely free of that. He's completely free of the constructing of worlds and the suffering of constructed worlds. But the Buddha is also completely involved, limitlessly. We're completely involved in the constructed worlds too, but there's some limit to the way we're involved in the constructed worlds, worlds where there's mental construction


and movement. We're completely involved there, but not limitlessly involved there. Buddha is completely, limitlessly involved in the realm of construction in order to help beings become free of construction. In other words, to teach beings how to enter the source of justice, and so on. Justice, compassion, and so on. So Buddha is doing both simultaneously. So the diagram John made was to make the two realms overlap, and in the overlapping area represents that the Buddhas don't actually dwell in either of these realms. They don't dwell in complete freedom, and they don't dwell in complete involvement to helping people. They don't dwell in either one. That's why they're simultaneously in both.


Yes, Linda? And then Stephen? I was interested by what you said about limitlessly involved. Yeah. Can you say a little more about that? Involved with... What? I'm not sure if I understand. Well, what did you understand? I felt that the Buddha's way of being involved in the constructive world would be a non-limited way. Yes. That's what I said. Non-limited is like limitless. Completely abundant and generous, and without being limited by the form. Right. But dwelling with it. Yeah. And particularly it's dwelling with all the different kinds of beings.


Limitlessly involved with all the different varieties of being, and all the different varieties of suffering. That's why Bodhisattva's vow and practice opening up to all the different varieties of suffering so that they can be limitlessly involved in helping beings. No beings... I see. Because we participate in it from our own form. Right. Rochelle? Would you give me some water, please? Stephen? For Buddha, is there a difference between the two realms? It seems to me, I see, that the Buddha is, he sees the realms really as one. We separate ourselves until we experience the truth of the unconstructed realm. And at that juncture, they are the same.


That's one thought I have. The second thought is, I don't know how you have justice in the constructed world. It just seems to me that it's almost... that they don't... Justice is a thought or a process or a mindset versus true justice in the unconstructed world is just what it is. Thank you. Yeah. I basically agree with you, but I'm kind of concentrating now on the practice of entering the source kind of practice. You're entering the unconstructed world. I guess my question would be, how do you, entering it, your glimpses,


how do you stay there? How do you... I mean, because our life is a constructed world. So, you have glimpses of the unconstructed world. If I come back, you know, I sit or whatever, I have more glimpses, but 99.9% of my world is the constructed world. It seems to be the real one. So, how do I allow this tilt to go the other way? I felt that you were hesitant to use the word stay, and I would say good, because we don't really want to stay there because the Buddha is modeling not staying there. It's just entering It's not dwelling there. It's entering the realm and not dwelling.


So, another way to say it is, what about entering it more often? Because I don't enter it very often, I'd like to know how to enter it more often. So, the Buddha is teaching us to enter it more often, but also, and the other side is not so difficult, also enter the world, the constructed world of suffering, and enter that too. Usually we don't have to enter that more often, but just keep entering that. So, when we're training to become Buddha, we're training at becoming the self. So, the way you keep entering is by training to be yourself. In the constructed world, which you've entered,


and now there's a self, you train by modeling yourself on that self. That's how you enter the unconstructed, the selfless. You enter the selfless by settling into completely, by giving yourself completely to the self. You enter the selflessness. And you don't stay in the selflessness, and you really don't stay in the realm of created self. You don't stay there either, but people think they do in that world. So, the practice is then to learn to repeatedly, repeatedly, and finally, continuously, every time there's a self, completely give yourself to the self.


And when you give yourself to the self, you enter the unconstructed, selfless realm. You enter at that very moment, [...] all those moments where you model yourself on yourself, you enter the realm of selflessness. And the more you do it, the more you're convinced that the selflessness is realized by wholeheartedly giving yourself to the self. And also you become more convinced that when you don't give yourself wholeheartedly, that hinders your realization of the selfless. And also you notice that the more you become convinced


that the selfless has been realized, the more you notice how you're up for limitless engagement with the world of suffering. You notice that. You understand that. You realize it. John, and then Charlie. When you say, I'm trying to remember how you put it, but when you say the self comes up, you enter into the self, are you talking about the self in the sense of delusion? Well, you could say separate self? You could say both. You could say there's a self like a John self and a Reb self. Even without calling them separate, still John's John and John's not Reb, and so on. And John's nodding his head one way and Reb's moving his hands another way. So that's kind of our self.


And the trees outside are being a different way than we are. So without getting into the heavy-duty delusion, the deep, deep delusion that we're separate from each other, you could just start with being your body breathing and your feelings. Just be that self. So like an experiential self? Yeah. But you could also get in, if it arose, and it often does, that you think you're separate from other beings and have some life separate from them, then that's part of what's going on. That's part of your experience is that you feel separate. Now that's a complete delusion. There's no reality to it whatsoever. But we do sometimes have that kind of delusion. That's self in the sense of independent self.


That's the big, bad problem. But it's ensconced in other things we have to pay attention to too. You can't just wait for that one and pay attention to that one because a lot of other stuff there needs to be paid attention to. That makes the kind of self that we do have, like the self of a person and the self of a mountain, that kind of self we should also settle into. And that brings with it if there is any sense of independence and separateness, you know, substantial separateness, that's there too. And that would be also part of which we would give ourselves to. That would be part of what we would wholeheartedly be. That would be part of what we would wholeheartedly be mindful of. And in the fullness of your mindfulness that you're separate from somebody, somebody, that drops away. And you fall into the non-separation


which you've always been living in. Does that make sense now? Yes, it does. I kind of have another question if I may. Is it okay, Charlie? He's patiently waiting. He's patiently waiting. Thank you. You were talking about entry and I was kind of wondering about entry in the context of awakening and cultivation. Because I've been hearing about those kinds of terms. So, is there a way to relate kind of entry to awakening and cultivation? Well, what comes to mind now is that when the cultivation is wholehearted, in other words, you're not holding yourself back any, then the wholeheartedness is selfless. So then, at that moment, the cultivation and the realization are the same thing. Because the realization is selflessness.


The understanding is selflessness. What's understood is selflessness and what's made real, what's realized in the world is selflessness. But the fullness of our cultivation of being ourselves is selflessness. And when we... Most people are a little bit themselves, or quite a bit themselves, or some people are just a tiny bit themselves. Those are the people usually who are suffering the most. They can just barely stand to be here at all. It's just like, I want to get away from here. I don't want to be me. I want to be something else. Please. It's kind of a vicious cycle. The less you're willing to be yourself, the more you suffer, and the more you suffer, the less you want to be yourself. So somebody's got to


come and help you. Like little kids, little babies, are often in a situation where they're just like, God, they just can't be themselves at all. So then somebody comes to them and says, you know, I'm here, and I'll help you be yourself at least a little bit. You know, come on. And then the baby gives it a try. And sometimes they get quite a ways into it, almost 100% sometimes, and then they have a little insight. But basically, I'm just saying that in terms of what John was saying, cultivation, or practice, and realization, that when you give yourself completely to the practice of being yourself at that moment, you realize the selflessness of yourself. In other words, you realize dropping away. You realize dropping away the body and mind which are separate from other bodies and minds. You plunge into the unconstructed


relationship with all beings. The relationship with all beings without any constructions about it. Usually, we're like, right now, we have relationships with each other, but we have constructions about it. So, it's a somewhat restricted version of our relationships going on in this constructed realm. But if you give yourself completely to that, you open to this realization. So then, they're the same. Before the practice is selfless, which is the same as before the practice is 100 percent, then the practice and the realizations are a little bit different. Because the realization is completely 100 percent, selfless, and the practice is kind of like not completely giving yourself to the self. So then it's kind of selfish, kind of holding a little bit back.


So then the practice and realization aren't realized as the same. Okay? Charlie? So I'm a little hung up on the word entering. Because it's entering without staying, and then entering again. I think I said you can either say opening or entering. So, I also said if you give yourself completely to being you, then there's no, nothing left over to hold anything away. So, in that openness, you enter where you are. Because it's like entering where you already are is the kind of entry. You're already in this reality, but if you're not completely giving yourself to your life, that part that's


held back, the ungiven part, holds your neighborhood away a little bit. So, opening completely and entering are kind of the same thing. Does that make sense? Opening feels more like I can see that easier, but I'm really curious about entering because that still doesn't make sense to me. I don't see entering. I look, I enter, then I'm in. And then, I guess what I don't see is the exiting. Is there exiting going on? The... Actually, there is exiting too. The exiting is when you go into the constructed realm. The constructed realm is like an exit from the unconstructed in a way. It's an illusion, but we do live in a kind of constructed world which seems to be that we've exited the unconstructed. But Buddhas are willing to do that because they want to be involved with all those who are


having a hard time working with the constructed world of suffering. They want to teach them how to be themselves so completely that they give up themselves and let this, let all these beings help them, which they are doing already, but now say, OK, help me. All right, help me. So, the entering is also letting everybody enter you. So we have some idea of ourself which maybe somebody isn't included in. Oh yeah, that guy. Dick Cheney. So when you're completely yourself, Dick Cheney enters you. Which means that you're open to the realm where you're not separate from him, which means you enter the realm


of not being separate from him. That's part of the reason why we hold back. We're not sure who we want to come into our life. So this is training. Buddha's life is actually limitlessly involved in the constructed world, which means there's nobody who's not allowed into Buddha's life, which is totally pretty amazing, right, that we would open to such a thing, but that is the proposal, is to open to that unlimited engagement, unlimited helping people. What's your name again? Darlene. Are there any unconstructed realms? All memories


of all beings are in the unconstructed realm, assisting each other. It's just that there's no construction about the memory. So there's no judgment about the memory. Well, there's all the judgments about memories too, but there's no construction, there's no way to construct, and there is no construction about how all the different judgments relate to each other. So nothing's excluded, but there's no story about anything. And so there's an opening to the relationship between all beings with all their constructions and all their judgments, that they're actually all working together. Of course we're all working together all the time, and there's a realm where we give up our stories about how that's going,


and we give up our discriminations about that. But there's still all the discriminations. So again, Stephen said, well, how do you keep entering that? The way you enter it is by wholeheartedly discriminating, for example, or wholeheartedly judging. If there's any judgment going on, you do that wholeheartedly. You give yourself completely to that, and then you're open to this realm. The realm which doesn't exclude anything, so then you don't exclude anything. That would mean that you would treat all the different discriminations that come up, you treat them all the same. This kind of discrimination, then that kind of discrimination, and this kind of discrimination, and that kind of discrimination, this is good, this is not so good, this is really bad. Those are different discriminations. They're included


in Buddha's life. But Buddha treats each one the same, by completely entering each one wholeheartedly. There's no difference, which means there's no tensing up around some of them, and relaxing around others. You're relaxing with all of them, which is saying everything can enlighten you, which is saying you forget yourself. So you've got a memory, but you're so wholeheartedly living with your memory that your memory drops away, so your memory doesn't hinder seeing that somebody else is giving you life. Like, I remember this person's not so friendly to me, and that person is. You can still do that, but you treat them both the same, and then you forget


that one's your friend and one's the enemy. But first of all, you give yourself completely to the thought, this one's my friend and this one's my enemy. That's how you enter where you already are, or that's how you open to where you already are. And where you already are is that the people you think are your friends and the people you think are your enemies are both your friends. The ones who you think are your friends are helping you in a different way than the people you think are your enemies. The ones who you think are your friends are helping you by seeing if you're going to fall for that one, you know, and attach to them. And the ones you think are your enemies are helping you by seeing if you're going to fall for that and not say thank you, and not realize


that they're actually helping you get over your pattern of relationship with the people you think are your enemies. Yes? When you see yourself grasping... When you see yourself grasping... or rejecting... Yes, grasping or rejecting, yes. Yes, very powerfully it feels like madness. When you see yourself involved in madness? Madness. Madness, yeah. Or magnets. Magnets. Magnetic. Magnetic involvement. Yes. Yeah? So, try to remember the teaching. And the teaching is? What is the teaching? Do not act on the impulse. Do not act on the impulse.


Do not act on the impulse. Yes. Do not act... He said, do not act on the impulse. And what is the impulse? He's my enemy, so I'm going to treat him like an enemy. He's my friend, so I'm going to treat him like a friend. Okay, so it's not acting on the impulse to treat them differently. Yes. Yeah. Don't act on the impulse to treat them differently. Or? Treat them the same way. Yeah. Which isn't an impulse. It's not an impulse to treat them the same way. It's a practice of the teaching. I guess for a Buddha it's an impulse. Yeah, so you're... So you have these different things that you feel magnetized towards, and you treat them the same. And the way you treat them is


you open to both of them, you give yourself completely to both of them. Or you give both of them to themselves based on you giving yourself to yourself, who's got this relationship with them. So you're wholehearted with everything. And you don't yield to the impulse to be wholehearted with some people and other people not be wholehearted with. I'm going to give my whole self to this person, and I'm going to give half the self to this person, and a fourth of the self to this person. This is the usual way. And so, talking about learning this way of completely modeling yourself on yourself, which is, I now have an enemy, so I'm completely the person that has an enemy, and I forget that person has an enemy. Like that. Could you tell me


your name again? Raynaud. Raynaud. Well, you just said you raised a question in my mind, which is, what about those particular relationships which we do designate as being special in our lives? Your partner, your spouse, your children. I mean, those are particular relationships that sort of rise to the top in importance. You do give yourself more wholeheartedly to those people, but you're talking about sort of, you know, I'm wondering how that's different. Well, let's stay with those people for a second here, shall we? Those people who you say you more wholeheartedly give yourself to? Okay. All right. I have no problem that you give yourself more wholeheartedly to them. I do not have a problem with that. Matter of fact, I would suggest you give yourself more wholeheartedly to them than you already do. I'm not going to talk about those people who you don't give yourself wholeheartedly to right now. I just say, if you know somebody that you're just about ready


to completely give yourself to, I would say, this is a good place to be. Now let's make that 100%. So if you've got some people that for some reason or other you're willing to give yourself wholeheartedly to, I say, great. Now let's completely do that. And if you can completely do that, then you'll be able to do it with somebody else. We don't have to worry about the fact that you can't get to some people yet. That's Buddha. Buddha can do that with everybody. But if you can do it with yourself, sometimes, with some of yourselves, like, okay, this self I'm willing to give myself to completely, I say, great. Let's do it at this moment. And if with somebody else, yes. So, and that's part of the reason why we have classes and intensive meditation retreats and communities of people


who are meditating so that we can dare with somebody to give ourselves completely. And if you can do it with one person, you have a taste of entering into this. And then you can feel ashamed that you don't do it with other people. You know, oh, yeah, that was good, but I don't, but I don't want to do it with Dick Cheney because, because, you know, he, he, he wanted to have, he wanted to torture these people and he's, he's really, really doing bad stuff, you know? Yeah? Right? That seems, that's what it's, that's what we think. So if your relationship with some people is wholehearted, that's the beginning. If with some people it's getting close to wholehearted, let's go all the way. When you're grasping,


you're not wholehearted. But if you're, if you're grasping and you wholeheartedly give yourself to the grasping, then the grasping will drop away. So you can practice wholeheartedness towards grasping or towards rejecting or whatever. But when you're still grasping, you haven't got to wholeheartedness yet. You haven't completely given yourself to your human grasping. But when you completely give yourself to it, that grasping drops away. And then, then you're happy. Yes? Could it be a medicine to be wholehearted to what? Yes, it is. Are you saying being wholehearted towards the grasping is that medicine? Which is medicine, the wholeheartedness


or the grasping? Which are you referring to? Yes, that is medicine. And also the, what do you call it? The grasping is medicine too. Because the grasping is coming and giving you a chance to eat it completely. To take that medicine of that poison of grasping, which is really causing a lot of problems, to receive that as medicine. Like, I usually can't do this wholeheartedly. Yes? Grasping to me sometimes is like water. When I continue to keep on looking, I notice that it's like water. And I want to continue to look, even though it might be painful, and try to help in some way. But when I see you and hear you talk,


and oftentimes I recognize that I want to meet another person's needs and I'll really listen to them. And I think, oh, what are my needs? And then I'm like, hmm, what are the needs here? And how do the needs sort of go together in a way that we can get both people's needs met? And when I hear you talk about justice, and I thought about the bodhisattva, and when you take the precepts and how you make and marry all beings, and to me, that Buddhism can have a very beneficial impact on helping bring justice to our world in a very social way by by recognizing Okay. All right. Yeah, great. Tracy? Did you have your hand raised?


I sure did. Did somebody back there have their hand raised? Nobody over there? In that Tracy neighborhood? Okay. Did you? No. That counts now, but not then. Hadass? Yes. Yes. Yes. Well, one of the main ways that you do it is if you can give yourself to your problems, you know, to your hadassness, you know,


and all that comes with that, okay, then if you just go over near the baby and just be close to the baby, the baby will pick that up from you and snap out of it, you know, for a little while. They'll sort of come back, they'll sort of feel like, okay, all right. They come back to themselves a little bit because they feel your, you know, your togetherness in your suffering, in your life. So, you know, that's what kids do. They're with their mom or their caregiver who's learned how to cope to some extent enough to be there with the baby, hopefully, and the baby feels good about that, but then the baby wants to, like, go away for a little while and see if they can be themselves without touching this, this serene body, or this relatively serene body, which isn't quite as lively in certain ways as they are. So then they go trooping off


with this tremendous energy and creativity, and then they lose it, and then they just can't stand it anymore. They barely can function. They're lucky if they can get back near this other person which they've left in order to learn how to express themselves and be themselves wholeheartedly, but they don't know how to do it. They know how to express themselves, but they become fragmented quite quickly, and it's intolerable for them. So then they kind of lose it, but then either they crawl back or cry out for help, and usually all they have to do is just touch the other body for a little while. So, one of the things we talked about last spring from the Lotus Sutra is the bodhisattva sphere of action. And the bodhisattva sphere of action is basically to give yourself to yourself. When it comes to yourself, you don't do anything,


you just be yourself. And then when you meet beings, you don't do anything, you just be yourself with them. And from that way of being with them, your action comes forth. But fundamentally, you're just close to everybody, or close to whoever you're meeting or whatever you're meeting, but you're not doing anything. That kind of body helps the baby. That's what the baby needs to do. And somehow, the magic of childhood is all you have to do is just touch the body for a little while and they snap back into their body for the next adventure. But it's the same with adults. This bodhisattva sphere of action is a physical way of being with your body, of being with it completely and not doing anything about it or judging it at all. And that's the body which you give to people. Your action is to help others do that


and they pick that up from you and they enter their own body then, or return to their body, or open to their own body. Does that make sense? Now, Michel, did you want to bring something up? You were just... just kidding? No. Go ahead, if you want to. I was just trying... I was trying to translate another word. What I have to do is to enter the constructed world, to go out of the constructed world. You have to give yourself to the constructed self. No. You have to give yourself to your story about yourself. So the practice is to find who to give it to. You don't have to find it right away. First of all, just give yourself, just give yourself, or just give the self,


whatever self appears, you don't have to find out about it. Just a shred of it is enough. You've got a shred, give the shred to the shred. If you've got like a man, give the man to a man. If you've got a husband, give the husband to a husband. If you've got a Zen student who's got a headache, give the headache Zen student to the... Whatever you've got available, whatever comes, give that to that, which is the same as giving yourself to that. But to give, there has to be somebody to give. No, it's wrong. That's a big wrong one. That was the big wrong one. Bad, bad, bad. Wrong, wrong, wrong. However, I said that because I want you to really be the bad Zen student who said that. I want you to know that that was really wrong. And I want you to completely be Michelle the wrong guy who said there has to be somebody


who's giving it. Definitely not. When Michelle gives Michelle to Michelle, there doesn't have to be Michelle who gave Michelle to Michelle. There's just Michelle being Michelle. That's it. There's not somebody who did that. But please bring your super wrong ideas out in the open so we can give them to themselves. No matter how bad they are, if you give them to themselves, they drop away. Okay? That was a good example. Thank you. Do you want to bring something up, Elizabeth? I do. Okay, go ahead. I know it's late. I'm about to go into a situation on Friday morning which has me... It's litigation. And it's so painful. And it has me feeling like the child you're describing


that's just falling apart needs to touch in. And the good news is that now the situation is just going to be me and the other party without lawyers with a mediator. And that just transpired yesterday. So what I liked, my lawyer was actually a big emotional support for me. So now I'm going into a situation without her. I'm also being asked to come in with a constructive statement. And I have maybe spent 10 hours Can your lawyer sit next to you and say nothing? I know, but could she be there if she didn't do anything? Yeah, that's right. That's right. Yeah. How can you be that for yourself?


How can you be the bodhisattva who's not doing anything for the child in you who needs to touch that bodhisattva? How can you be the bodhisattva who's just being herself and not doing anything about the situation? Who's not doing anything about this person you're meeting or the mediator? That's the one you want. You want to touch that one. And then there's a child who's getting kind of, what do you call it, stressed out. She needs to keep touching that bodhisattva. You've got to keep touching that. Otherwise, for a while this child can run around and play, but eventually she gets very fatigued and discombobulated. So don't go way too long without touching that. That place of being there without doing anything. Being there without doing anything. That body.


You need that body. We all need that body. And it's available. It's your body not doing anything. Just completely being your body. You got it. But... Got it? Let it be without trying to get anything from it. Because it's not trying to get anything. That bodhisattva body. Next week, we can open up a little bit about justice and what that might be and how that might be related to this kind of body practice. Okay? Okay? Well, the attendance is very good tonight. I hope it's this good next week. Thank you. Thank you for bringing this.


Thank you.