Author: Yao Xiang Shakya

To Subscribe to ZATMA

The Zen Buddhist Order of Hsu Yun, developed by the founders of the Nan Hua Zen Buddhist Society, was the first exclusively electronic ministry on the Internet. The priests of ZBOHY follow the ancient teachings of Hui Neng and Lin Chi and the modern teachings of Hsu Yun. The Sangha has no dues or fees of any kind, neither do we accept donations of any kind. Our site is maintained by volunteers all over the world in a spirit of service. Precepts are given free of charge to correspondents who have demonstrated a sincere desire to follow the Buddha’s Eight-Fold Path.

ADVANCED TEACHING: Live Without Desire

All phenomena, the Buddha once said, are rooted in desire. Everything we think, say, or do — every experience — comes from desire. Even we come from desire. We were reborn into this life because of our desire to be. Consciously or not, our desires keep redefining our sense of who we are. 

Hard to imagine living life without desire! We are filled with propaganda which keeps us in the dark. This essay is an advanced teaching on how to work with desire — it is simple, but it ain’t for the faint of heart.

We Want What We Think – And Think What We Want

MIng Zhen’s wise words are over 20 years old and show us the retrospective links to the governing entities that have run amok! The title change shows the selfie approach to just about everything – WE WANT WHAT WE THINK which apparently means restrictions on hearing teachings that offer wisdom and not just information leading us to THINK WHAT WE WANT which has very little to do with wisdom. Most of what we think are thoughts about our self.

This 1996 gem captures Ming Zhen’s take on some of the craziness that has got us to where wisdom in the name of constitutional interpretations has gotten us here.

Ulterior Defenses

People buried in their egos – victims of their own poisonous anger, lust, or ignorance – find release only when they can spew that venom onto others. It’s the only catharsis they get. We hear them on moonless nights, stalking the land, targeting anyone within spitting range.

To avoid the mess during these Nights of the Living Dead, the rest of us have to find a Refuge… and wait for sunrise. It helps to understand – if not the source of their venom – at least the display of it. Sometimes we encounter it “in kind” and sometimes “in degree.”

It is when we do take time to reflect upon moral issues that we need to consider the motivation of those who so vehemently question other people’s morality – and this includes our own outcries as well. Ming Zhen covers a lot of ground — stay with her — the last bit is worth the effort.

Indeed, Everything Comes to Awaken Us!

The current situation in the nation of separating children from their parents and the following turn around is a case in point. It was a misstep. A mistake. A failure. But the President seemed unable to admit any misstep. Any mistake. Any failure. Instead, he made it into a photo opportunity; a show of words of compassion by signing an executive order to stop a policy that he instituted. On the footsteps of the turn around of the policy he declares a dictum to the Attorney General to file legal proceedings in California to alter the longstanding 1980’s Flores settlement that protects unaccompanied minors (children) crossing the border.

No Sides! No Sides! —- FREE E-BOOK —-

a contentious time when everything seems unreliable where everything is up for grabs Ming Zhen Shakya offers us an opportunity to practice the pull for this and the push for that. She goads us, lures us, all the time getting ready to pull the rug out from under our beliefs and opinions. At the edge of thinking something is right or wrong she goes beyond and leaves us up in the air….uncomfortable, in the lap of the Zen Buddhism. FREE E- BOOK

Two Leashes: Narcissism or Humility

Imagine entering every moment, every encounter with what comes into your life with a realization of not only not striving, not knowing but with the attitude of being ready and flowing out below the radar. In this essay, Fashi Lao Yue looks at the definition of humility from a number of angles and suggests humility is a force that strikes us — nothing to be toyed with — but requires a self-exam…..

Where Suffering Cooks UP

Although Pandora’s box was really a jar, when she, who was made of clay, took off the the lid out came all the evils and troubles for the world. We do the same thing. When we open the My, Me, Mine, I, letting the ego escape from the Pot we let all our troubles out. This pot is our very own version of a Pandora’s box.

In the Bardo: Uncertainty as Refuge

Brilliant! Both the novel, Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders and this spiritual illumination of his work by Getsu San Ku Shin. “A bardo is the transitional space between death and re-birth, filled with spiritual tasks and meaning. Bardos arise within our lives, when a mind state of relative clarity disintegrates, and we are thrown, sometimes momentarily, sometimes for years…. We may enter a bardo when we lose a job, move to a new city, have a baby.  9-11 was a bardo for many of us….those times when the printer breaks down, or a major project in which we have been immersed is over. Getsu San Ku Shin helps us navigate this realm with clarity. Well-worth a read, maybe even two or three….

Next Page » « Previous Page