Rounding Out Three months of Lotus Sutra Study

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A virtual Dharma talk by Tenshin Roshi for an online gathering of the No Abode community

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bye bye
welcome to the great assembly and
today is february sixth which is
about three months
since november seventh where we inaugurated where we commenced a three month practice period
focusing on the lotus sutra
and in a sense today we will complete that three month period and commence a new period of practice
are we also last weekend finished a
ah three week intensive
ah study of the loudest sit around it
with about almost three hundred people
somewhere most for a while to come almost every day
more than two hundred were able to come every day
and that was great
one thing i wanted to mention
as a kind of bridge between our
usual language about zen practice and the language of the lotus sutra
in in january sometimes talk about
wholeheartedly sitting
which is up exp expression for entering into samadi
wholeheartedly sitting as a practice for opening and entering into
deep silence and stillness

practice are being mindful
throughout the day
in whatever posture or in
remembering silence and stillness
receiving it
it's given to us receiving it remembering it practicing it
and transmitting it
this is a
teaching which we bring up often
an encouragement or teaching for entering samadhi
and then another aspect of zen practice is sometimes described as
meet the teacher
or go go and meet the teacher and listened to the listen to the teaching
or converse about to teaching

in the lotus sutra i kind of see a parallel to that and from the beginning the buddha
an give the teaching of scripture called the a scripture of innumerable meanings
and then the buddha comes out and then the buddha enters into a samadhi after giving the teacher the buddha enters into samadi
or you could also say after giving and receiving the teaching the buddha enters into samadhi
and then in that samadhi ah there's a great function or a great job activity
from this deep open stillness and silence
and the activity at the beginning of the of search again the buddhist sitting in this samadhi
and by the way the name of the smarty is
taken from the teaching which the buddha gave before in the teaching of innumerable meanings so the buddha's teaching innumerable meanings scripture then enters the samadi of that scripture and then in that samadhi great activity continues in size
silence and stillness
and those of you who are been studying lotus sutra can maybe remember what what the activity that occurs when the buddhist sitting in samadhi which is
a great light comes out from between the buddha's eyebrows and illuminates innumerable lands to the east
and the earth shakes in six ways and celestial fall hours fall
this is all the activity of the samadi that the buddha has entered
then the buddha comes out of the samadi
and teaches start teaching
or is available for teaching
so that cycle of you could say teaching entering samadhi teaching entering samadhi
teaching entering some odd
is it that that's a cycle of the largest search of that happens over and over again and in zen practice we sometimes describe our practice as teaching entering samadhi teaching or
being taught entering samadhi being taught entering samadi
again elaborating this
this pattern this cycle
being taught and teach him entering samadhi
teaching and being taught
entering samadi
so again it will sometimes we go to the teacher and listened as a teaching but i hear go to the teacher and converse about the teaching ask about the teaching
and in that way go and teach the teacher and be taught by the teacher
come out of samadhi
bringing not bringing but come out of samadhi or you could say from samadhi
in samadhi
but also letting go of the silence and listening
to the teaching and then after listening to the teaching converse about the teaching and conversing lot the teaching is again teaching the teaching and then enter the samadhi again
and then from that samadhi teach again for the cycle of the lotus sutra is also one of the pictures of zen practice
but again reading between the lines of zen practice and reading through that between the lines of the lotus sutra
i am saying go to the teacher and listened to the dharma but also go to the teacher and ask about the dharma and go to the teacher and converse about the dharma and then again the teacher receiving the visitor listens to the visitor
teaches the visitor so both teacher and disciple
both buddha and sentient beings are realizing
what they are by being taught and by teaching
usually people do not think when they go visit the buddha that they're teaching the buddha
when they become buddha they realized that they were teaching buddha all along
buddha knows that the sentient beings are teaching the buddha
sentient beings do not understand that the early stages or even the middle stages of the path

so i want again remind you
you have the opportunity to receive remember and practice and transmit samadhi together with teaching and being taught
together with asking and responded

at the end of the ah
two chapter were not the last two i'm the sort of the last two chapters of the central part of the largest section which are chapters twenty one and twenty two

and those chapters were on
dealing with buddha's the buddha's are the to targeters divine powers as chapter twenty one
and chapter twenty two is called entrustment

so in chapter twenty one at the beginning ah innumerable bodhisattvas who had been living in the earth in the earth
from the earth and appeared before the buddha
that happened in chapter fifteen
in chapter twenty one
those bodhisattvas come before the buddha who's sitting in a jewel stupor together with the to target are abundant treasures proper to right now the togheter
and they tell the buddha that they will after the buddha's
nirvana after the buddha's gesture of extinction they will
teach this scripture that the buddha has taught them
the buddha has been saying
that there needs to be dharma teachers who will take over the work after the buddha's departure
the departure is not a real departure is to departure to give the next generation opportunity to do their work which is teaching the duck the supreme dharma teaching them
the lotus sutra
teaching them

these bodies are to sale we will teach

and at and then it is chapter the super the divine is actually divine
powers of the buddha the buddha then
does a little demonstration of these divine powers and
from my perspective the demonstration is a little bit funny maybe in india wasn't so funny but anyway it's a little funny from for my
recent existence as a human being
ah and saw that the first aspect of the divine powers at that buddha extends her tongue
out of the mouth
and the tongue becomes very broad
and very long and stretches to
the highest heavens

it occurs to me this could be interpreted as the boot is divine powers at the buddhist
divine teaching
reaches everywhere
hi and lied
deep and broad
so but it does that and then along with this tongue
he comes a light and the light is great and it is composed of innumerable colors
as we as we have found out in the last hundred years or so there are actually
almost innumerable colors
but most human beings only see a six or seven or ten and highly skilled human beings may see two hundred but actually there's many more possible colors to be seen the buddha gives off this light the full spectrum of innumerable colors and also
so the earth shakes
at the same time
all the embodiments of this boot up the innumerable bot embodiments of the buddha who have come from all over the universe are now present with the buddha they also have these powers and they extend their tongue
broadly and
widely and
at great length and they also young and they also give off this great light
and then ah
they all simultaneously withdraw their tongue back into their mouth
one two three elect was party favors the go out and snap back the tongue goes out and all their tongues come back at the same time book and they all cough it together simultaneously innumerable buddhist cloth
and then they all simultaneously snap their finger
ah so ice i see this as a demonstration of buddha's power this is just one aspect of it

and then the book goes on to mention that
kind of like if i can
paraphrase it buddha said did you see those powers well there's more where that came from and all of these powers if if one word if i used my powers
all my all these powers which is just a little sample of
to describe
the virtues of this teaching the blessings of this teaching i would not be able to exhaust them
even with these powers we could not exhaust the blessings of this teaching
and the blessings of this teaching in brief this isn't the exhaustive description this is just a tiny little speck of the blessings of this teaching
in brief this teaching is that all the teachings of the buddha's the entire storehouse of the buddhist dharma all the divine powers of the buddha are proclaimed
are manifested and transmitted and in the lotus sutra

and then the buddha says therefore
you who you bodhisattvas who have just come and said respectfully that you will teach this dharma therefore since you said you would you should and you should
receive an embrace
read and recite
and explain
the sutra

and he said this over and over throughout the scripture
that if that the people who wish to
teach the dharma
which is what the buddha needs us to do
receive embrace protect sustain read
recite sing
copy and discuss and explain this sutra for all living beings

when we receive when we receive this teaching
people may or may not be able to see us but they might be able to see us receive it
when we embrace it they may or may not be able to see it but receiving the teaching is
teaching the teacher
embracing the teaching is teaching the teaching
his teaching
reading the teaching
his teaching
reciting the teaching is teaching
copying the teaching is teaching
and of course discussing it and explaining it is teaching
so the buddhist telling the people who said they would be teachers of this scripture he's telling them how to be teachers and when they do these things
they are teaching
the activities necessary to be a teacher are the same as the activities of teaching
again are turning this in relationship to r zen practice
if the bodhisattvas had come before the buddha and said we will teach this supreme dharma the buddha could have said
well then you should receive the practice of sitting upright
you should embrace wholeheartedly the practice of being upright
you should read the practice of being applied
you should recite and sing the practice of being upright
in silence
and with words
you should copy the practice you should i would got reproduce the practice
sitting wholeheartedly upright standing wholeheartedly upright
and you should discuss and explain the practice of sitting upright in silence and stillness

when we sit
upright silent and still we are
receiving embracing reading
listening singing
copying and this and explaining where explaining to also
the supreme dharma
just like people doing the same thing with the lotus sutra are teaching

ah one more thing i want mentioned today which are you can bring up again and again is that
i mentioned know something i would assert something i would suggest is that the lotus sutra
a fruit
of people who are devoted to the buddha's teaching
who read a who read the teachings of the buddha and read between the lines of the teachings that were that they heard and that they read they read between the lines
perhaps you can see today that i read between the lines of the lotus sutra and i discovered between the lines of the largest group sutra i discovered our traditional forms of sand practice did you see that
again i saw between the lines of what i said
that that's what i did
i invite you to read between the lines of the teachings you here
and discover the unprecedented dharma
of the lotus sutra and the so-called zen school

reading between the lines
works really well or is enabled by practicing some hottie
when you listen to the teaching
when you read the teaching
when you recite the teaching when you make copies of the teach you
in samadhi you can see things written between the lines

when you sit
in samadhi you can read between the lines of you're sitting and discover new meanings of the sitting
and then emerged from the sitting and teach what you discovered between the lines of you're sitting
between the lines of the sutra

come from samadhi and teach people the lotus sutra that you discovered in you're sitting
come from samadhi and teach people the sitting that you discovered in the lotus sutra

i was talking to
one of the members of this assembly recently
and she expressed great pain
in the lotus sutra telling saying that ah
if people ah
slander or reject the lotus sutra they will go to hell

and up i don't know what i said to her but i might have said and i would say if somebody said that to me
i hear that this is very painful for you to hear the lotus sutra say that
but now there has been said
and now that you feel this pain

what's written between the lines
and what i hear written between the lines is when the lotus sutra says anything
when it says things you think are wonderful or says things you think are harmful or such things that are disrespectful or said something that denigrates any lip living being when you run into things like that in the lotus sutra or it
in the streets of our world
in the marketplace whenever anything like that comes to your including from the wondrous dharma flower sutra i suggest questioning it

i wanna teach the lotus sutra again i i hear the bodhisattva say we will i want to teach the lotus sutra
between the lines is
and because i want to teach the lotus sutra i will question the lotus sutra i will challenge the lotus sutra i will challenge with great compassion i will compassionately challenge everything
not you know you could say especially things that you think might be harmful but i would say not especially don't skip over the good parts
don't skip over the bad parts whatever comes i hear the lotus sutra saying question it
that when you said you might not be able to find in the lotus sutra but i read that between the lines
and i i can read that again i read between the lines best when i'm living in samadhi
in ordinary life i might see a line and then another line in samadhi i see a line and then i see a huge space and then i see a line and i see a space and in that space there are revelations wondrous revelations
and those revelations often take the form of i have a question
so reading between the lines somehow you can also find lines that support your reading between the lines for example
in the lotus sutra
people see the buddha
an amazing things are happening
as the buddha and around the buddha and they ought to and they they don't understand what's going on
they doubt what's going on there perplexed
they and their in wonder to and what did they do they
well actually they don't necessarily right away ask a question
but some of the people who have read between the lines see their doubts see their questioning and ask for them and again one of the ways we teach his teach sentient beings how to questioned by questioning we show them
how to questioned by doing the questioning
so i see the lotus sutra teaching us how to ask questions
and not just for ourselves because like shiny putra does that many times in laura suit to ask questions but he sometimes understands what the boot is doing but he thinks other people don't so he asked in their behalf
whether you have the question yourself or you see that it needs to be asked for others i see the lotus sutra saying question
but don't question to be mean question to help people
and if i said don't question to be mean question me about that
so you are questioning me thank you very much you are challenging me thank you very much
and also don't question to be somebody who's trying to get thanked for questioning
question for those who are not yet able to question so that they will be able to question soon
and again that they will not they will ask question out of compassion not to get something but for the sake of the teaching and for the sake of those who
are wondering and those who are not yet able to question those who need instruction and demonstration and examples of questioning and a hopefully when your question you feel great about it and you'll feel you did a great service

so once again ah
some people read the la souter and have not yet seen between the lines that the lotus sutra is sang question the lotus sutra
don't slander it
don't denigrate it question it
challenge it

and of course i'm not the lotus sutra but
but what
but i'm just like the lotus sutra i'm no different from the lotus sutra or not to the lotus sutra getting
in between the lines of lotus sutra says rep is not differ from the lotus sutra and neither is anybody in this assembly the slightest bit different from the lotus sutra the lotus sutra is for you it is you it can't be anything other than you if it is not the lotus sutra
i read that between the lines of the lotus sutra
and i'm happy to show you right where it is in the lotus sutra
and also i this what i'm saying resonates with the bodhisattva precepts
so we have one precept light
for example the precept of not killing
and then we have another line the precept of not taking what's not given gave those are two lines of precepts
a between those two lines
something can be read between them
and what can be read between them i say i see between not killing
and not stealing between those two lines of the precepts i see some things written what have i see i see many other precepts written between them between not killing and not stealing is not lying
is not disparaging the triple treasure
is not praising self it's expensive others all the other teachers or written between the lines of every precept
all the teachings or written between each line of the teaching
and also all the teachers teachings are written in each line of teaching
there's a lot to question
and now i don't know if you're coming to this assembly in order to tell the assembly
and me sitting here at know abode
i don't know if you wish to tell me and your friends that you will in the future
teach the lotus sutra
i don't know if you're saying that you will
in the future
zen practice by practicing it

but the lotus sutra it shows people who do do that so we you could do that you could find a way to say
now and in the future
i will practice zen in order to teach it in order to transmit it for the welfare of our bags
i will study the largest suitor for the same purpose
and also i'm here to question you about that practice
and also i some of you know i sometimes ask you may i ask you a question
so before i do the
magical show up disappearing
which i'm which might be done quite soon i welcome you to
express yourself
to state your vows
to ask your questions for the welfare of this great assembly


i take it i'm an year and
i would like to share
that i don't have travel with the lotus sutra in this respect and when i hear don't disparage or you'll go to hell what i hear is the lesson is if i'm of a disparaging mind i literally will go to hell and that if i
not and i hear it as sliding me for like a personal enlightenment i am hearing slights and that knocks me out of a non dual play so to me it's still teaching
by bringing in that kind of tone that's how i hear it so it doesn't seem evil to me it seems truthful and
i have in my own experience on what
the idea of a personal enlightenment
i really feel gifted to be a part of a practice that seeks a great vehicle nightmare because i feel as though all that is in me that is unskillful and not able to have personal enlightenment which seems practically impossible it
is being cared for and so i can have some kind of a great vehicle enlightenment without being an enlightened being so it feels inclusive to me
and really am very grateful for that difference i don't think i should be long down a path of personal awakening
and in regarding to teaching for myself
i just wouldn't really be able to make a vow except i would like to pay homage in the way i see you tension rob anderson teaching is that you lead by doing and i can vow to keep practicing and getting better but what i see you do is
just being the lotus sutra being reading between the lines being allowing people to question and vibrate with other teachings and that in itself is awakening me not me awakening me but
so those are my thoughts on the lotus sutra and i will invite comment if

the great vehicle
includes all personal awakenings
so even if you feel like you're not into the personal awakening you're into a vehicle which includes them

i've seen them in people around me have experienced them and the great vehicle embraces and sustains all the people who are having personal awakenings they're all welcome to
people do in the people who don't they're all embraced by this teaching by this practice
and i hear that you're devoted to that all inclusive practice


i read
the morning justin
i wanted it to share something that am
was i was a great benefit to me during the the three weeks and hopefully might be of benefit to this the assembly
if from for much of the time i've practiced and studied zen
i felt like there was an irreconcilable difference between
what seemed like
teaching is a modern teachers and the teachings of buddha and am
the the main teaching that i struggle with was the idea of perry nirvana
and because i thought to myself nowhere bird we're learning and teaching their great vehicle and were taking vows as voting sophos to ah
i live in a world of birth and death endlessly until all beings have been enlightened and i thought to myself or
why is the the the buddha the one that you know is purported to have all these powers why is he
check it out at some point and becoming extinct and i thought to myself ah
you know just seem to be such a and and a dichotomy from what i felt like i was learning is like that the and goal to like disappear and on and the i when you first started the the teaching has talked about everything a skill and means it started
to kind of i started to kind of thing but wait is is the idea of pairing nirvana skill on means and on
i am a handrail for eight days without question and i
and it i n
i really wanted to ask it and you know i thought it was amazing somebody people were sharing him and never being able to share with the first time so i just sat with that question
and arm
and you're sitting with it felt like a good question to sit with and i and a was i felt like it was giving me energy but i really wanted to ask and i really needed that about answer became more and more important for me to have that answer
and then you refer to on the gesture of extinction a couple of times and i thought okay on i i feel like this is what i feel like this is being answer for me like like and it makes sense maybe the buddha was arm
maybe the food eyes in our he he needs to go away so everyone's talking to have just rely on him and idolize him and use him as an excuse not to do their own practice
i'm and then when you told the story of the children and the on the doctor and the medicine and that that was and an enlarged part a combination of the lotus sutra i thought wow so this is a very
common misunderstanding and unnecessary misunderstanding and a lotus sutra clearing that up for us and
realizing that
brewers not just
all the differences between what i thought was another brand of buddhism and zan or the great vehicle i'm kind of
just evaporated
and i opened my mind to the fact that know all of the teachings are turning each other
and when you're talking about reading between the lines are all reading between the lines are all interpretation and the raw fitting to the common misunderstandings of the time
and am
it has made it a
as brought me a renewed sense of joy and enthusiasm and an openness to on
being a on the air
being on the mahayana vehicle i don't feel like that are some i
the the it's it's removed impediments and a and a major way and i'm so grateful to the lotus sutra and to you and all beings and i mean there's nothing i don't feel grateful to have that without without in the way you taught
ah in a lot and over the three weeks i mean there's just so many
does every day was like another
aha moment for me and i just wanted to express my profound gratitude and and also hope that that misunderstanding that may be shared among others in the assembly is
ah is it evaporates for them as well
engraved on your justin thank you

the morning
warning angela

i'm needing fear here right now thank you forgot your needs a friend
may i mean yes please
descubre you i stand with you in the fear yes
you're welcome to may i sit with you in the fear please
and thank you
am i boring you say that i'm
the lotus sutra
and whether we recognize that or not we're immersed in it at all times
that were actualizing it
throughout our daily practices without a discrimination
and also with discrimination
when were discriminating were still embraced by the dharma flower
we can't get away from the dharma flower

and the dharma flower can get away from us
anna and our fear
can't get away from the dharma flower
in the dharma flower is not trying to get away from our fear
has just and mentioned this turning yeah
until men and am
get em isabel
in december i was listening to talk about that the turning and
ah the to fear and the flower just turning with one another turning

thank you thank you
henri k

good day
fashion rashi and right assembly
i am
one express my gratitude for an opportunity to
pupils are
teachings reactions about the lotus sutra i'm i'm especially grateful for the opportunity to participate as to the extent that i cried in the intensive i got a lot out of it because i've
i realize i have a hard time reading the lotus sutra
by listening
two others talk about it
i'm not sure that it's easier but i feel like a done it enters it enters into me more readily than it does trying to read it so i really appreciate everyone who shared
their their thoughts on the sutra i are particularly i guess my question i get to my question first which is know that i've been sanded the suit trousers sutra for difficult times which is kind of car
the appeal for me want to participate learn more about it because i feel like we're in difficult times
but i'm not altogether clear exactly how
the sutra is particularly suited to help us and times like we have now
ah so that's my question and i just want to say one more thing ah about the sutra that really struck me and that is the the character the medicine came bodhisattva
do offered up his body
this guy i guess it reminded me of some images from vietnam war protests over the monks to
self immolated themselves and protest yeah a powerful image on
it was it was brought back to me you know as when i read that and heard about the financing came for risotto and there's as just one in it
example that kind of reach neighbor that's one thing about the sutra so rich and the stories and characters and colorful names
an idea
her deeply touched by even though i still have a hard time reading
thank you
now the lotus sutra on it's a skin
buddhists over and over this sutra is difficult
this sutures hard to believe and hard to understand
so in a sense you could say the same was and practice zen practice is difficult is hard so part of the difficulty of the sutra kind of if it's a situation where we can practice dealing with difficulty
and then use what we learn in dealing with the difficulty of the sutra to deal with the difficulty of daily life
and see maybe in the way we different deal with the difficulty of the sutra see maybe some some shortcomings in the way we deal with how hard the sutras and node and in confess and repent the on skillful way
as we respond to the difficulty like you
you can look at the difficult to you have reading
and your i'm not saying to force yourself to read i'm just saying that
the lotus sutra is a chance for you to look at your difficulty with reading
not so much so you can read that so you can learn to deal with your difficulty with reading if you read something that's easy to read that's okay but you don't have the opportunity of dealing with difficulty in reading
so here's a text where if you can if you can read it
and and they take care of and be compassionate to your difficulties in reading it you will develop you'll be practicing and teaching the lotus sutra by teaching people how to deal difficulty cause you're dealing with difficulty while you're reading
and the would also says that it's difficult the sutures difficult now and it's gonna be even more difficult after i leave so i'm telling you beforehand and if you can keep studying this sutra in the times to come again that will help you deal with all the other
challenges and horrors that are coming
so the lotus sutra is a kind of warm up it's almost like a high house
in which we grow our bodhisattva courage
under the difficulties in the hothouse of the lotus sutra and then as we grow up a little bit maybe we can transplant the sapling out into the open field where you get the wind and the in the rain and animals nibbling on you and so on
and this you know the same as any we don't make them difficulty just seemed to be difficult but it is difficult and learning to be compassionate with the difficulty than can be used for other difficulties like and show other people
how to deal with difficulties because you learned in your zen practice how to deal with difficulties that you voluntarily entered into like sitting a lot

thank you enrique
good morning good morning
i am
for me i am having this problem minutes is especially this morning where it seems to me that the lotus sutra presents this very ornate kind of beautiful non rational view
that with you know what in what i understand is the everyday reality that i that i think i living in is like a you know how much the non rational and the and the every day
can be reconciled or are they two separate things it's just interesting to go between them or ah
i'm not quite sure what to do with that and you know if i if i think about the surgery and a really literal way it seems am yeah very non rational and may be irrational
on and so different from the world that i think i inhabit i'm just trying to figure out how to be with
those very different views of reality
well join response to that yeah
ah the difficulty you're having dealing with the situation that you described that difficulty is ordinary daily life right
having irreconcilable views no no you're you're feeling you're feeling a difficulty right
but that's a good gets like a daily thing you have right difficultly know of that feel you're having about these irreconcilable differences that feeling is not an irreconcilable difference it's a concrete opportunity for compassion
aneurysm it sounds pretty dear life me
like a lot of people are having trouble reconciling
conspiracy theorist in shanties with other people there seems to be a difference it seems to be a real almost irreconcilable difference
and that that is a great challenge
and compassionately dealing with that difference is a daily life thing that many people are feeling now
now to move on to the difference i would say that taking care of the difficulty of this difference and the stress of this difference and the questioning about this difference and the issue of reconciling them
dealing with that difficulty compassionately i say is the past of reconciliation
i'm proposing that the reconciliation is possible by dealing with the experience of your reconcilability
or the thought that things are irreconcilable that and when that thought is painful or if or even if it's pleasure full practicing compassion with year reconcilability i'm saying is the path of reconciliation a very different views
very different mind very different worlds
as i propose
the the difficulty you're having this morning is the opportunity for practice right now
and one more time receiving this difficulty
embracing this difficulty
just like you would the lotus sutra
but even if you wouldn't do that with the suturing do that what do with your difficulties what the lotus sutra said to do with the lotus sutra
which is to receive your difficulties with air irreconcilable situations receive your difficulty with conflicting world views received that and embrace it
and protected
and read it and sing it and copy it
and converse with it
i think what comes out for me is that if i stand in one of those who use the other one seems kind of crazy you know right
yeah if you have issues from overwhelmed by that crazy on you might switch to the other side and noticed that the side you had before which you thought was right step that will seem crazy to you the right right
so that's good to know but are you notice i didn't mention figuring out you also mentioned trying to figure out yes so trying to figure out is not the same as receiving embracing
trying to figure out how to reconcile the irreconcilable is not the path it's another thing to be compassionate towards
if you're if we're compassionate towards our attempt to reconcile irreconcilable there will be reconciliation
not by the figuring out how to reconcile but by being compassionate by having conversations with the impulse to reconcile
trying to reconcile is one of the irreconcilable positions
this person wants to reconcile this person does not want to reconcile i do not want to reconcile with you i want to record a auction
you don't have to get rid of wanting to reconcile
you just need to treat it like the lotus sutra teaches you how to deal with the lotus sutra how to deal with everything
receive embrace
become intimate with it
which means converse with it
together with everybody
mrs the path of making peace
among your irreconcilable worldview
i do not see
a world where there will not be
why should i do not see a reality i see world some world's had no differences in the world's have lots of differences some world see the possibility of reconciling
but there is already reconciliation in the lot of suitors teaching between the lines the lotus sutra thing you already contain all irreconcilable world's they're already in your mind every moment that's was seen between the lines of the largest
do i great somebody's of the past
it is that another way of saying there's there's nowhere to stand or there's nowhere to abide
when you fully embrace something you'll find that it leads to abide in embracing
it's like if you're in a whole hearted conversation not stuck in your position you're not abiding in your view you haven't you
abiding in it the conversation is free of the people who had these different be used
let's help thank you

morning read the morning tracy
am i want to thank you like many others half for the intensive i confess to having had
grave reservations that that an online intensive
could be any good or would be much good and am it was awesome in is awesome and so thank you for
being brave enough to try the form and candidates the community for and being so hearted you know i have to say mostly i i practice with you i like being with you and what you say and have to say something blue open for me in those three weeks at the wisdom of this
immediate of the great assembly as you call us it was well my apologies to the great assembly for all these years for wishing you didn't talk a rabbit talk more
i'm the only to set up on
one of the things that particular has jumped out at me from the lotus sutra is this concept of skillful means i don't know i just had never occurred to me as a thing and i now accuse you of using skillful means all his years and i am a i'm intrigued by that i'm just intrigued by that because i
think i was that when you said something that was true or at least to the best to your ability and now i accuse you of being skillful and what use in talking to me and all of us in ways we could get it and here and that's i don't know why that to it can open some enough for me
so what i would like to offer now is a lotus sutra parable can i see something just briefly yes you said something about the current the encouraged to try this intensive
i think it did take some courage i agree so good boy
you went ahead and did it but another i'd want to tell everybody that the thought of came to my mind a number of times during the intensive
fools rush in where wise people fear to tread
i'm also foolish enough to try that
a wise person probably wouldn't have gotten herself into such a situation but being a fool i leapt into
the situation okay now i'm ready for your parable thank you
okay so you announced the lotus sutra as the topic i had never read it i'd never read anything really i in i am practitioner or not a student that's how i've related to mess up so i never i never picked it up never seen it i get the balkans like how you gotta be kidding
the rules of flowers and i mean it was so the opposite of anything that i associate with them that it was out of my faith in you in the whole thing that i could persist but it really didn't make much sense to me at all and then i saw how seriously the
the great community was engaging with it and then nicer and then when linda ruth quoted am and suzuki roshi which which she said something like have fancied is and he said yeah not fancy enough that stopped me in my tracks a like wait there is something here i'm miss
okay so that's my general approach so on we go and i don't know what week it was maybe the last week when we learned about david data
an i don't know if this is what it says or not but this is when i heard so here is david data who really who tried to kill the buddha who you know was just terrible
being and what the buddhists response was was a whole chapter of thanking david data
and then i think we'd also heard right around then is that everyone's gonna be a buddha and that it's
really and then this is like i wasn't trying to think that it's it this is like wednesday and we're going to end on friday and i'm sitting there and sad and i'm thinking i just happened to remember that i hadn't never forgiven my husband for leaving me for another woman with two children
thirty two years ago
and i'm just sitting there and it comes into my mind but not going i forgot to forgive him but that i never did and i never would consider it because what he did was unforgivable
and so i'm sitting there
linking one of the buddha could forgive deva gotta i should probably do it as you just forget up thirty two years later so i sit there and am i realize i couldn't i didn't know how to i don't know how to because what he did was unforgivable
so i'm sitting there and thinking the i know but i the only two more days to the intensive
and i really i was putting some pressure of but i realize i actually did not know how to do i didn't know how to couldn't do it so i decided to write a letter and email and in the email it was saying and what you did was unforgivable but i'll be met nana miss enough to forgive you if you apologize i don't think he ever apologized
i sent the email to a friends say i'm going to a sentiment of send this is in one wanted to give me any feedback and our feedback was yeah this is carol
yeah kara
she said she said the email was terrible
and i was so proud of myself i that guy finally broken at and then i saw she was right as i was like if you do this if you do this if you do this and so now announced thursday i'm thinking i don't know i will feel really disappointing to fight and this intensive not having
the forgiven
and then i don't know all of a sudden and hit this is how it ties into the lotus sutra which i say so magical and all of a sudden magically for no reason it just seemed like it's lyrical just let it go there's nothing he needs to do there's nothing he needs to say it's a hundred percent
over here

there are two years
doing that and it just it disappeared and that night there's the night am sitting zazen and i hear myself may all beings be happy may all beings you'd be free and then i hear me say something may can be happy they can be free i've never done that i've never thought it i never thought it was
possible i never wanted it couldn't even imagine wanting next mattress this
that wasn't a parable
parables are where you you have something stand for something else but this was about you
story he started not available okay that's my lotus suitors
such as door and it's n what a coincidence it's about you
congratulations thank you
thank you for sharing this with your friends
and i'm glad your friend
towards your terrible
a good friend woods trend
and i'm glad you showed it to your good friend yeah
it was smart conversation
okay well let me not and on the marvelous and romantic and let me just one little question here to you i was reading the reeves but lotus sutra stories last night at they were the night before and the part about teaching
and i read about it and it it jumped out at me like almost messianic and i was a little surprised and because one thing i've appreciated it in then his silence and not feeling like i'm supposed to talk and all it just like not proselytize
maybe that was the word and i'd never ever thought that was we were interested in a worse called to good so i read that and now you're talking about it today to you did say it's okay to teach by practicing which i'm more comfortable with then having to think i'm supposed to go out and recite the lotus sutra in the streets here but
yeah i guess they have a floating question mark on on that know
i yeah
i easily empathize with that
and am
even before i heard about the lotus sutra
even are they even before i came to zen center
i kind of us i think i kind of saw that the zen the zen practitioners were proselytizing
by not proselytizing
some people find that very attractive somebody who's sitting up on a hill in a temple still
and i took for me that was that that that converted
these people who weren't trying to get me to change but just getting me to be myself
so wiring isn't the same as proselytizing do think what would you say inspiring and project as anything i don't think i said inspire i said they converted me
well you said the proselytize get or yeah they prostitute eyes they proselytize by sitting still and quiet i like that style of proselytizing
and that's you know basically that's the zen style of proselytizing is when people come and they're all caught up in their view with with reconvert them by being quiet and listening to them
by showing them stillness
and the stillness does say we wanted to be still to it just shows it to him
and then they walked on they say she was really quite still and then in the stillness they're converted so zen is a kind of proselytizing that doesn't look like telling people that they should do this or that is showing them
what you're doing and by showing them what you're doing
they get to see who they are
yeah good and guide we don't have to do the other fat
but also the lotus sutra says
judging by just reading when you read the lotus sutra year the proselytizing nobody sees you maybe
but that converts beings a conversion the happens to you while you're reading the lotus sutra is the same as the conversion of other people
that's in the lotus between the lines
for you to take care of this sutra
is to take care of others
are you to sit quietly and still takes care of other beings for you to sit quiet the still a great light emanates throughout the university

what he sought but the bodhisattvas arts are encouraged by the lotus sutra to be teachers in the way it says you teach by reading a lot of citric but then people are encouraged zucker as she has i've often said he said the job of a zen priest is to encourage people
the practice zazen
but i don't walk into whole foods and say you people should be practicing zazen
i sit in a zendo
and that's sitting
is not just for me to sit and as to encourage other people who said even the people who don't see me sitting
when i'm walking in whole foods if i ever do walking home from once again
the people can see me sitting
and when they see the sitting in whole foods
that's emanating from me because i practice sitting they are converted
and they will start sitting there inspired the practice zazen because they see me practicing zazen in whole foods
but some people miss miss it
now if shut him said when suzuki roshi went into the grocery store in japantown some people saw his eyes in and were encouraged but most didn't
but he but he went in there and practice zazen in the in the gearshift or anyway
and then he went to the zendo in practice awesome
so he was prostituting but in this way of doing the practice
which some people will notice a choice by offering it again and again they'll say oh my gosh who was that masked woman
our and time with a long ranger is really coming into it into her own
i'm rob you asked about our house yes and
i so appreciated during one of the weeks when you said when somebody said
you said if you don't feel like reading the lotus sutra don't read it if if it wouldn't delight and and i think you to use the word delight he wouldn't be will get delighted and i i think you said something like you can just put it by your bed stand or least what i did was i could find my bed them but i'm not making myself open it and
read it if i am not wanting to or felt drawn to that that it does feel like i can bow to say i will continue to practice and i will keep the lotus sutra as near to me as delights me with an openness to on actually open it and read it and that's when i now
so i vow to practice
then right
i vowed to practice then meditation right and i meet people i've been meeting people for decades who come to me and say
i don't want to practices in anymore
i have no enthusiasm for it and i usually i don't say it in public but i say to the person of no practice zazen if you're not don't know force yourself to practice sitting don't do it if you're not doing it out of love
wait until you rediscover your your aspiration to sit like a buddha
and then succeeded
and the lotus sutra is another example don't read it because your port don't force yourself
but you hear about it and i heard about us as a word
two thousand years of sciences was wow maybe i'll give it a look and i'll give it a look i don't wanna read it cause it
but i remember
well yeah i do not force myself to practice then i do not
and i will
the sometimes i love to and i do and i don't force myself to read the lotus sutra sometimes i wanted
thank you
good morning ram thank you for teaching the morning pam
so this follows a pretty directly on what you were just sang am when you were asking us about our vows and and teaching
that i had occurred to me we are always teaching something so i vow to teach being fully and completely and wholeheartedly upright because if i'm not being that than i'm being less than upright and i'm teaching
being less than upright and if i find myself being less than upright and i vowed to be fully and completely intimate with that and in that way that's how i practice being fully and completely upright
so that is my vow
can the best of my ability
he wanted to allow and
in order to realize that vile you might be not be surprised to hear me say you need to have a conversation about the vow
he agreed
a conversation with myself about the vow with others with yourselves good but with others is kind of more important
for example with me
i'm here it is all right
most of your vow i thought were great most of it but part of it wasn't exactly a vow with more like your vow was great but you made some statements which i didn't agree with which i think it would help you for me to tell you please thank you you said something like if i'm not
blah blah ok so
i would like to add to your vow he of hours to be completely upright
the statement that if you're not then you're not upright
look at them more carefully it's you're always upright really that's who you really are your upright pam
and you vow to realize that
and i support that vow and i'm happy to hear it but i don't agree with that your sometimes not upright
i think you think you're not or it appears that you're not but then you also said if it appears you're not you practice with that confession and repentance of that appearance in that way you realize being upright right
but you're you're always upright but if you don't practice if you don't practice it if you don't vow to practice and practice it than we don't realize it
but even when you're leaning to the writer the left really are still upright but it looks like you're not so then you say it looks like i'm leaning to the left okay
i am still been into left but i'm i'm up right now that i recognize that
i support your vow and i want you to remember you that you're bound to be who you already are all the time and you're you know that you need to vow in order to realize that
you are taking them so happy to hear your vow
thank you for reminding me that i'm always afraid because it it doesn't feel like get it
being upright isn't a feeling
what your feelings are upright
if you feel good that feelings upright if you feel bad that feelings upload
well being upright is is who you are not a feeling you have feelings but who you are isn't just your feelings too so hard to be jorge
our name is to be who you are how which is the hardest things to be upright
because there are zillions are ways to not be upright
and that is called the lotus sutra
it's also called ham
meaning pan completely
get up and saw her
hello john
i'm always
question myself about not having questions
so solemn i i can't wait to hear myself saying
why am i here
what because said i'm running down a bunch of questions and as a good question none of 'em every good yeah why am i here is pretty good question you know as an aside
i have found that asking what is this or why my gear just kind of stops everything it's like of
lisa my experience i'm and i find that todd
no answer is given no answer is coming to eat it hitches this brings me back someone who and up
one of my problems as i don't ask that question enough when i'm on a roll torn down the road too fast and snared by words and thoughts
if i could do that i think that would be pretty good
i agree
ah the one thing that occurred to me on the topic i want to thank you for the for the teachings
for the lotus sutra try really enjoy it it's nice seeing all these people
however we see them virtually ah on the topic of the lotus sutra
i'm a little i'm not really troubled but i'm going to pretend i trawled because i'm i'm not troubled by the lotus sutra and so i fear that they may not be questioning
thank you for pretending
and it's kind of like i it's easy for me to just let anything that
that's kind of a message and words or doctrines or far-flung fantasies they don't disturb me
so i hope that's okay what i would a kind of seed and what i'm hearing from you but also how i see the lotus sutra currently is as a massive and encouragement
and and
i've just seen too many
too many yeah
buddhist scriptures and stuff that kind of say this too is the pinnacle arising this to is a construction to that i have the faith i think to let these things be a how to use them as encouragements and i and i hope that
okay and i'm not losing like missy now i'm using some incredible critical faculty the question
could you comment or if you understood that
oh well you said is it okay i don't want to say yes it's okay okay he said i support you to continue this way
and also you the time will come when you would be invited to put to use intensely your critical faculties
well maybe right now you're not being requested to do that in your buddhist practice
you know i i i think
for me i think my critical faculties are all to a acute i use my critical faculties i used to meme my professional life i used them myself relationships and for me it can be kind of of a pitfall so in some sense
i i i look to the i'm encouraged by the lotus sutra where i have a respite from well you're encouraged by the high here the lotus sutra encouraging you to find the upright way of using your critical faculty
so why you're using your critical faculty maybe you can remember what are you doing
so your critical faculty you don't lean into your critical faculty too much your upright with you don't give you don't necessarily stop it you attended whisk gentleness and kindness and uprightness so the lords which is telling you how to use your critical faculties not saying don't
use it is telling you how to use it
oh i will i i like hearing that and i agree with that i will just give you a little reminiscence of a yoga class but in the yoga room and probably many years ago and i will just ask you to correct me on my on my recollection but i one thing i really remember from us
particular series of classes is that there were four point of purchase or conditions that we talked about and i and i can't remember them but i have a modicum like
patients flexibility and equanimity and there was another one and did you just
and i seem to recall that in the last series you said those wherein the lotus sutra like area on bootstrap well there's two sets of further and lotus sutra okay one for is
loving kindness compassion equanimity
loving kindness compassion sympathetic joy and equanimity another for his generosity
fine speech
beneficial action and equality action which means acting with the understanding that you're in the same boat with who you're talking to
he has also like my was recollections to him and shakyamuni buddha said that devil data taught him that helped him helped him do those practices
before he tried to kill him he couldn't he taught him those practices well will i thank you oh thank you for a kind of refreshing my memory and i just want to say as far as a bow you'll need now i can come up with i actually
where's that time i would vow to
beyond on the lookout to rediscover my aspirations and to look for new aspirations know
making about to discuss to rediscover your vow
no and just the final word would be i have a good friend
i have a good friend that i am
you know confessed to and talk about my difficulty is probably too much and one thing he always says to me which i was going to tremendous kick out of his he always finishes with it's not easy being a new job

it's a big job
i read
yeah the yeah when i wanted to say a few minutes ago is just been
kenneth like go musically
intertwined with everything that's been going on and that's pretty much the way the entire intensive went for me
amazingly inspiring to me and ah
i say amazingly because i certainly didn't expect that kind of format to be at what it was so i have deep gratitude for that and i and i also wanted to say that are being upright has taken on a new dimension for me
i'm my resistance to the lotus sutra
or what i was characterizing as my resistance to the lotus sutra and i don't characterize it that way now but i realize that what i was doing was
leaning backwards
i was recoiling
like i guess the i is coming out as a kind of confession out of myself oh
that rather than a fully engage ah and i can see that now because i can see that as a possibility
i would run ah from what i felt were
so many people have brought up the
the kinds of images and so forth that are presented in in the suitor itself and now i can and icons sia and feel into are actually being fully engaged with it there's not that to be fully engaged does not mean i either agree or disagree
it is can just fully engaged in available
and and out of the yeah so it even as i'm speaking now i can feel how the my body as the by my body itself or
rises to the occasion if i if if if i if i welcome that theory it if it was yet that uprightness wants that engagement and what i've what i've been doing or what had been doing for quite awhile i think for many many years in my zen practice
is backing down and in backing down not
having the availability to the inspiration that's that's there in the full engagement
so anyway
yeah that just feels to me like a tremendous gift and wanted to thank you for that and also thank you for allowing me into the docusign room for three weeks with probably over one hundred people and and now addressing the great assembly
the the gratitude that i feel for having
you allowed me to be witness of to your sincerity to your love for the practice for your full engagement has been
yeah the gift of a lifetime to me i just so appreciate that so yeah thank you

i i read i did i i went to turn my handoff numerous times i feel sort like it's been answered back
i'm going to try and get you have just you
i'm napping successful now
let's see and retirement or think guy okay
the what's up right now cause as i said it's transformed by better
am i initially me i i did not do the retreat he intensive
i noticed yeah and i i
i'll tell you why i didn't imam a little slow in the uptake these days and in that was set at least a week into the intensive
that it really hit my consciousness
a good part is that i am fully engaged in life good that is headed curtis i'm very pleased that is good time yeah infected them
the summer of the a finishing absurd that's what the lord researchers tells you to do well this is precisely why i raised my head
because it was humorous cause when carrying asked it or shared her thing it was like there was a laughter that came up in me because

to to steady the lotus sutra to not study this fellow the lotus sutra i mean there was a there was a moment when i couldn't be part of the intensive that there was a sadness you know was like oh oh and okay oh and am
and my plate is full you know like every minute displayed is appearing in
and so i don't i wasn't there for three weeks so i don't know the lotus to i mean over the years i've heard bits and pieces but it
i guess what i was going to raise my head initially for was there's really no difference
this i mean to study the lotus sutra to not steady the lotus sutra if that's what arises great and if that doesn't would arise and something else arises great
yes you anything
so you didn't come to the intention but you understood the lotus sutra anyway
maybe without yeah definitely you definitely understood yeah so again you and bed assembly in me to study the lotus sutra the lotus sutra says to study the lotus sutra
it cannot study the lotus sutra
and to not done it a lot of surgery is really to study them
but it a lot of situations
and so you realize that so now you can read the lotus sutra all day long will you be offering m
at both the recordings of the teachings and also the taco croissants as it has been referred to
i think that the because everybody would have to approve the dog sounds right
i don't think people would want
people who did weren't there to hear their meetings i don't think so
that i think that part in has to remain mr the people who were there i think might i think the talks before that will be available
so i'm grateful for the talks and there is another one of those all that
that the joker signs in and i i asked the question is that true that they can't be shared by i don't know but that was shared in their shared and this meeting right now
alexia we've heard people report how the it was father interactions were but the actual
showing the peoples face i think some people don't want that
respect that right
nice to be with you were to be with you thank you very much with a lot to thank you for coming
i don't have the an speaker view i can see the al okay while i'll just leap in ah
you know you're okay so am first of all and just wanted to i really one express am
my appreciation for
a during the three contents if you mentioned that it was difficult for you and matt totally sure what you were talking about bed i'm
it surprised me and i and i realized that i
have a way of putting you up on a pedestal like nothing is difficult it just seems like things come so naturally to you and it's very help was helpful to me to hear that and also your comment about fools rush in
there's an intimacy and of your openness and and willingness to kind of expressed that vulnerability that i i just really appreciate that and and thank you for those kinds of comments that you've made over the years am
i wanted to just express something about i think that this came up when they were talking to enrique earlier about difficulty in how the lotus see treads about how to deal with difficulty and by bringing compassion and courage and a bright nesters differ
occult difficulties i'm one of the things that i feel like the intensive
and the lotus sutra has really helped me with has been encouraging about his is dealing with
difficulty and am
it's it was that i am i brought this up during during the an intensive as words if the inclusivity of of the great vehicle put a dharma reaching everywhere and the lotus sutra is so powerful about that message i feel like
it's nothing is excluded and something that turned something in media and thinking about my own difficulties and thinking about the in the world and am and the idea that
i think with one of the things i struggle with is like i miss individual self having till i go forth and make things happen and the idea that it's it's everywhere around me and that i i can call on compassion it's not just like i have to generate compassionate like it's all
read and and be with it and be open to it and that to me was really transformative am and of course and mean i struggled my day to day life to enact that but it was eye opening and adjusts and so happy
express at you and to be assembly and thank you so bench career teaching and for the for bringing my lotus sutra to us

helping many beings
made you

i repeat dinner with my and i would like to
many request for a whale
the a teacher you continue to grow his side in this world cutting to teach do not disappear soon
i was all ten for your question on my practice

i see a future buddha

you hear me now
can you hear me yes
i see a future buddha

please take care
oh this future buddha

would you say


am i read
bossier nine i'm sorry that i missed your talk today i hope this the way of getting the recording
but there will be wonderful but i guess the and in the reason i missed it was is in related to my vow to embody they're not as sutra is i wrote to you
if you recall and then it seems the that the the if then for me the learning curve is
the aspiration to stay in there
one vehicle
he's pretty
it's it's a charm and right to to live there
to body and and for me right now
it is especially when with am how i am proceeding them
the the way the path is did
to embody the sutra is to welcome
say yes to whatever comes my way
sort of like the river that i live by right now it's a tidal river to even river and it says never eat of it never objects to the waters of the ocean just it comes in and it let's go
so and when we started object thing that's thinking so thinking is the barrier to to the sutra
no that's another thing to welcome and thank you to the appearance of thinking
if another thing to be friendly to
right be friendly is not people earn our friends are not obstacles
yes but my my adjustment or right now i'm sort of link preceding thinking as a way of yes i need to be friendly with it and very intimate with it
right now right for example i'm in a unstructured life were looking for a house and trying to read restructure our new place here in a new life
and it requires thinking and decision-making and and negotiating with my husband so today he wanted to look but the house him i didn't dare to say no he was really excited about it and i just type of the i don't have the in and don't have in me to protect and serve
relax thank you for in kind to your husband
and to myself believe me and
so i'm so yes this is for me this is the kind of a child and the damn sort of like in my i have a mental picture of receiving
i'm not putting my expectations on and so even though i had aspiration to be here and listen to the stock and participate fully
i went with the other request
so this is something that them still a bit
i'm confessing and thank you very much i'm glad to hear what you're trying to work on yes and let me see lane
yeah so the one thing is that
what i realized through the gift of lot of sutra this during this retreat i mean it was really such an incredible three weeks that i almost felt guilty that i became
i removed from life
set and
way of just completely submerging myself in it and loving it
and i'm still pretty ferocious about it a and copying and and studying and reading it
and i'm still loving it and i sometimes i wonder if it's too much
wondering if it's too much is part of being upright
also wondering if this to little was also
but i was really grateful to the fact that
understanding that reading the sutra or or studying or copying it it is a way of teaching multiple beings are they're not immediately visible
that gave me a purpose in life because
i was missing the contact with the same winterson held the my family in houston and then now i guess i don't have to that them have that count as they can just do the practice and
and that gave me a structure because
my life became very instructive for a and and until we find a home and the sidewalk to do next and this is a very incredible gift to have this tractor
so i'm really grateful for that

oh my

low rep
no matter
i want to thank you the assembly who are wearing the retreat
because i definitely benefit of a lot from listening to every single one of them
and i also ah by listening and sitting here i realized that all we're doing here all the readings all the reciting all the writings of the sutras
as a lotus sutra or any sutra is simply to wake up to who we are which is kind of funny you know you do all these things to to to realize oh this is me so i really appreciate when you say you
because i see that i see i added the lotus sutra and that's why every time i'd meet you know you recited or i read it from here and there i just say oh this is me so it's it's kind of funny and also what i was amazed by the looters a lotus sutra was in such
how in such a profound detail tiny little piece by piece it's been able to come into words that's what it's really amazes me because ah
to bring it into language is is just ah
in mind boggling mind boggling for me because in the being in the sense of it is connected to it to me it's easier but bringing it into the language which is a different level that is like ah mind boggling to me that's why every time i listened to you
even speaking it as the oh my god this is like beyond beyond my imagination so i like to give my vow because
questioning i learned questioning in the sutras questioning yourself questioning the south he is liberation the quit the question is the liberation and that's why i always loved the questioning because every time a question
i feel being liberated and then when i listen
i'm more into another question you know it it's like it's a continuous liberation continuous it's it's the unending unending liberation and the last thing this is i would just like to express myself in this form that
it's very easy for all of us to understand when your child is happy you're happy when they're not happy you are not happy when your and your pets are happy you're happy when they're not happy you are not happy this is very simple this is there
clear and to me it's no different than enlightenment there's no different than enlightenment of wanting everybody to be enlightened is the same as everybody wants to be you want everybody to be happy so i like to just bring my thought is
into that that i don't see enlightenment for all any separate than happiness for all and happiness for for everything so
thank you i agree with you

blurb and everybody
i was going to i wasn't going to raise the hand and i'm now among the stragglers who raised my hand at the end
thumbs because i l
i have already had a chance to talk about these things
ah but i've found myself kind so i was just listening but i found myself getting upset
and is upset built
so i'm speaking now to relieve myself maybe of that upset
about the
you know i shared with many people many moments of joy in the intensive so
because i'm harping on something else doesn't mean that isn't true
but this is in the way for me and
the whales spoken about the problem is know the problem of predicting hell for those who criticize the sutra and salon and the other problems
which most people seem to have gotten past there is a piece now but i'm not at peace your response to that rib feels still to me incomplete
it does not satisfy this this deep restlessness and distressing me
today you should read between the lines and you'll see the lotus sutra is welcoming our questions that still puts it on us to get a deeper understanding of it
i will read something i wrote yesterday sorry if it takes if i'm taking too long which i hope is my last offering about what the problem isn't what i feel is incomplete in your response
so this is what i wrote in the heart sutra that we recite we say this is true north sauce and another group that i was instead this is the truth not allies
it is important to know if something is true
it doesn't all just escape into a huge network of relativity with it's important to know if something is false and to save if something is a lie
the lotus sutra statements about the incalculable periods of horrible punishment and hello worlds for disrespecting the lotus sutra are false it is that they are alive i'm saying that they cause harm we can practice with them yes just as
we can practice with the harm and suffering in the world but it doesn't mean we accept them is true it doesn't mean we should tell ourselves that we would understand the truth if we went deeper the problem is not just are incomplete or inaccurate interpretation the statements are false and harmful
and the same is true of other statements and implications like things on gender and disability so i conclude by saying that the sutra is a historical artifact that we can study in many ways we studied the spiritual depth and power and beauty with you in the great assembly
we can also look at at historically it's not just a seamless fabric of beauty and wisdom but an uneven historical artifact revealing its conditioning in time and space there are historical and cultural and political reasons that it would say such things about punishments for critics of the sutra in that devil cheese
or ideas about inferiority of women or the karmic nature of disability they're all enmeshed in cultural assumptions which we're familiar with and are trying to liberate ourselves from
i do believe in hell states and had created them and experienced them cruelty and violence create hell states greed hate and delusion create hell states the sutra says nothing about that it says you will be consigned to hell if you criticize or lack faith in the sutra or it to tear ids and i can't bear that
and i can't
what would it be free of that for sweeter doesn't say you do seven simply doesn't say that what doesn't say the sutra doesn't say that would create health status cruelty and violence or greed hate and delusion it says that if you criticize or lack faith in the sutra or those who believe in it use
are going to be consigned to hell i find that unbearable and false
scuse me for speaking so long but i'm
i hear the suit to say what you just said it doesn't say
you you said it doesn't say that greed hate and delusion cause
we didn't hear the procedure say no i didn't hear it say cruelty and violence cause hell states i want to hear that clever i don't hear that
cause health states does your know yes
so cruelty and violence create health streets i am speaking for the lotus sutra right now
then mr lotus sutra why would you say that i would live in a house state if i criticize or questions not you don't or if i criticized the adherence of the lotus sutra why would you say that
hmm would you ask me know why would you say that cruelty and violence have terrible consequences as new has me why would you say that okay
why would you say that because i think it would be helpful to tell people that violence is bad in itself cruelties bad in itself and it has consequences in addition to its current misfortune it's bad now and it will
have many kinds of bad consequences and i might say that some time to some people but my experiences that when people are being violent i usually don't say that to them
what i do when i see people who have the environment what i aspire to do is meet them intimately with nonviolence
violent they're usually not ready for me to mention to them that what they're doing as harmful as my experience
but if i can get close to them while they're being violent i sometimes had the opportunity to this armed violence and the have them wake up to that what they're doing is terrible
but then later maybe i might mention you by the way also there's gonna be consequences of this
but i don't usually tell people right away because that are they're usually frightened and if i tell him that put their doings gonna cause terrible consequences the user's flair is it up so i try to meet them with this wonderful thing called nonviolence
which sometimes works quite quickly to disarm the situation then when they're com
i might mention
do you want to ask me any questions and they made say yes i said do you want to talk about troop possible consequences of what we just saw and then i'd say yeah and so what do you think they might be and they can tell me the consequences
you think i've been violent just now
do i think so yeah
why does the sutra say that people who criticize the sutra or it's devotees will go to hell i don't know but i'm not telling you that the sutra does say that the cause of hell i think that i think i could rephrase it as those who are violent
the lotus sutra
those who are cruel to the lotus sutra
those were cruel to any beating
including the lotus sutra
and if i practice the lotus sutra and people are cruel to me if i'm cruel back to them then there will be terrible consequences of me being cruel back to them
i feel i'm being kind to the lotus sutra when i say that is dating something that is not truth
that statement can be an act of kindness
that statement can be in a gift because you want to be kind to the lotus sutra
that's what i would want that's what i want to
that's what i want is be kind of little sidra by it
by holding up your view your truth i watched that that's one of the kinds of way i would like you to be kind to the the being called the lotus sutra
right i feel like saying excuse me for talking so long
i receive you're saying thank you
and i'm i thank you for soon
and i will continue to welcome you
making your offerings

you rub
i wanted to express my gratitude for the
unlimited opportunities to practice
including by not having participated in the intensive
also by having participated in today's
gallery of the sanyo
indeed gratitude for all thank you


hi rab
this is an artist as a mammoth cell phone that's why i'm not sure if i'm just seeing use an al right now so a high-grade assembly thank you so much for this the three weeks may i either my hand ha i am an owl
it's some i my hand was raised and then it wasn't as everybody was kind of
saying the things that i was thinking of and i wanted to thank you for that on
what was also going on with me during those three weeks which i wanted to suggest open to the assembly about was that time
have a back in two thousand and eighteen i got a of a senior flu shot and came down with polymyalgia rheumatica which is very very painful and last for a number years
couldn't i couldn't sit down more than ten minutes walk for ten minutes lay down it was going i sat for six months and i'm toward the end of it i've gotten off to some medicine thank god and but during the time i was having to lay down on the floor and so i was hearing every by
body and i kept wondering on about how can i make about to the lotus sutra which i in my heart a different way and there i i make a vow and i thought dealing with the uncertainty which is kind of what we've been talking about for three
two weeks that's how i saw it
i thought it gave me a encouraged me that i could do this because even though to slow him down and wherever i had to do they take a break and then get back up sometimes just get passed out that how to do it longer it it was uncertain and i but i also give wanna remain faces
plus around what was happening to them very much there and i was really loving what everybody was saying because it was a mirrored me and then this lovely so am i wanted to thank you and the ascent great assembly for that and
course my questions probably when it was up and down with also have a there was uncertainty but i thought that's what we're doing it so i started to i get this covert shot or not or you know i'm i'm afraid you know so so you know it's uncertainty and i am looking at it more like i just
gotta see how it goes when it gets up to that time whether it's time for me to do that are not see how i'm doing that
my fluff levels that are a lot better from this thing i know this is the tsar i've never that other people got it from that shot to which is very strange but anyhow i don't want to go on with that point is that i've never had one and really add a communication for years because i couldn't be and then i really could
didn't do it so i'm grateful to be back and i'm i'm grateful for knowing that i can make a vow and do it in a way that card is there but maybe sometimes on their facially their to thank you so much for every but everything
he works
i run

okay here i am i also only see an hour but i've been seeing ram
but right now i don't see ram i see euro oh now i see you
let's see
i guess i feel like in i vow to do whatever i came from off
hell that's my wow
my vow to
and i think i have limitations
probably and how i learn or away you know where ethnic mrs and cell phone again thank the universe decides
now what am i capable of
i don't think i decide that

i vowed to do what i'm capable of
and i welcome your questions

the emperor got him
hi ram
i i just see the out to but that's fine i haven't seen you
oh elsa want to thank you
and think the gray assembly
i'm i'm having a time right now i'm feeling disconnected and ah
from people that i love due to various reasons i'm some that they passed away
i've almost forgotten my question
and i guess i went to show my face because i deeply appreciate you guys buddhas and ancestors i'm having trouble connecting to all the bit as and ancestors such as i wanted to connect to guys and assuming and to say i really appreciate
our discussions and are sharing and i did have a question and it's top of totally if i wonder what the question was
so what i'm a vow for me as to be present with what's arising try to me try to welcome everything i'm at the moment well it ain't is painful and i tried to have compassion for that pain sometimes it doesn't feel that i'm authentically have
yeah that compassion and but now some i'm saying that i'm thinking i'm getting caught in the filling instead of just having that compassion
does that make sense yes

any other thought about it or a volcano
you're okay with a great opportunity and que
this is almost done
meet you
asian region
sorry get may i respond to lynn die
then the i don't know the a in the notice such other chinese version the i read i think some place it talk about a toy causal link i don't remember which shattered by acting reminiscing it recently so i i i just want true
missing that in no daughters so try to messing up other trail causal leaf
in chapter seven after the buddha sits for ten aeons on the verge of enlightenment when he started teaching he first teaches the four noble truths
he teaches the twelve legs of causation which as you know
oh feeling reading clinging to the bathroom
that buddha does teach them
listen to
and make you are
i i requested you all don't go away before i do okay okay you go away the same time as me


iran and great assembly
i guess i'm kind of struggling towards the end hearing everybody speak and express their gratitude on
i am also a awareness of impermanence
i just wanna say that ah
this opportunity when you started talking about the lotus sutra all these weeks ago i pulled out my own connection to the lotus sutra that a long time ago and now i think through this process my face
he has been strengthen and i particularly want a thing you and everyone
having the chance to grow in faith to the point where i do want to share the lotus sutra the message of the lotus sutra the message of buddhism with other people
and a particularly it feels like a miracle the and i'm able to talk with my son about it
and he's actually asking questions i'm starting in arms i'm starting a from the very beginning
and just telling him about the four noble truths and own it's amazing to hinder his responses rub you have an understanding of the background of this so on
i it's my wish to make you very happy
deeply happy in your heart and anyone else who can pick up on this message and i wish you deep happiness in your heart and the thank you

seem to have disappeared

hi again i just wanted to respond to the previous one of the previous as it is
who spoke about the the anguish that the negative statements threatening in this situation that we're threatening the reader rejected the two our
granted it whatever when i read that and maybe it will be held fire but with for me that the reading of the sutra this time was almost it was a convergence of religion that was raised with it was to sanity and at some point eight
i divorced it because of such statements there were so many statements like that in the bible and i really objected to that i didn't like that at all so i kinda ran away from from that i didn't like it either an agreement that my little brain started to
be very critical about it and that's it i divorce it from for quite a good while until ice last exam at some point where i returned and i started to study that religion as well but cannot embrace the do the tools of sand
though is that it was reading this and what i was doing with that was a seen that it creates a double bind like hey and emotional conflict
i was like wow this is just skillful means that's how i perceived it that skillful means puts me in a place where i've been from which most human beings want to run away we don't like conflicting messages
and we do not like to stay in that comfort of the anguish so i read that and i made with that and it was really liberating it was truly am
and then
this engagement from words and recognizing that that's an average ill for me that by putting us into into those mental conflict and emotional conflict
at some point one realizes that there's something more than words and the conflict isn't is created by words by those words that's all it is so it was almost it was really were found letting go and founding finding something beyond
so that's and i call a double bind so that was the gift of lotus sutra to realize that
christianity and buddhism or leading to the same place
exactly the same place and i was really happy about it
inside i knew it for many oh my life i phone it cannot be that one religion can hasn't can have monopoly on the truth and others don't have god plays favorites so i'm so happy
coming to that place of convergence yes i'm at home now

hi rob
it is extraordinary seeing you and you know i'm very low tech but i'm one of the few people here the realizes
in amongst all of us your image the owl is the main center but you are amongst us in the gallery view and i just actually loved that metaphor that you are amongst us but not everyone found you there but i did so that's exciting and i wanna say it real
minds me of the world series this experience right now i don't like baseball i don't care about it but i get excited by other people's excitement and i often jump in at the world series of you know it's the world series let's watch it now
and i feel that way here i wasn't with you throughout but i experience with you whether i get the first five minutes the last five minutes the song that were departing on every single time whatever you're offering i get it
and that's that's what you've offered for me i come from a family of if it's possible that question too much i come from a family that questions too much so what you have offered for me actually his permission to not question not obedience necessarily but judge
just like be yourself and whether or not you think you're funny i think you're hilarious
and i i need funny
and love it the otherwise i'm not gonna read the book i'm just not gonna read the book so i just can't tell you that every time i've passed you by walking by you smiling singing hearing you you and body something that so unbelievable because i have rejected every really
legion every you know controlled thinking view and the the the freedom the freedom that you offer even your so learned and it's very specific can i spent if i remember correctly you need a weekend at mount madonna on the lotus sutra
and it was
it was tense the intense i got half of it you had diagrams we had pictures up of the modern but there's but even if i don't understand what you're talking about rab i understand what you're talking about
and i just want to thank you for making it makes sense at every level that we're entering into this thank you so much oh wow
wise owl that you are

okay here i am and is he the owl
but i don't see ram
he's a monk's plus okay
i'm know let's see ram i felt we didn't finish our interaction so since ah
no i wish i could see you devoured how won't see are you okay i see that
yeah there you are okay so i i just damn i thought you were starting to say something when i asked if you have any questions and them
ah the switch oh i just wanted to complete the gym asked him
happy interaction
you're right i i was gonna say something
but it didn't come across very well did it
well it i started it
say something and then it switched to somebody else know
anyway we're here now together okay
the practicing together right now and i hear your vowed to continue
thank you
ladies and gentlemen or gentle people
we have set a modern record
two hours and fifty minutes and graduation she attended
nickerson records at a meeting
and i'm glad i can still laugh i hope you can do
may we continue to sincerely be devoted to each other to be kind to each other the generous with each other patient with each other
and keep conversing okay
ne our ten an equally extend to every being and place with the true merida buddha's way
beings are numberless mom
a bell
afflictions are in his mouth
i've ah to cut through dharma gates are boundless ah about to enter them buddha way is unsurpassable i vow to be comment
thank you rob make a little buddy thank you need to make your website
are a to everyone extraordinary yeah
exploring their i'm making read
hi everyone
by high
was a i cannot i a solid a weapon
thank you thank you web