HERMETIC - ESOTERIC - MYSTICAL PHILOSOPHIES
ZEN IN PRACTICE - PART II
What is Tao (or Truth, God,
or the Source of Being?
Ordinary mind is Tao.
Should we try to get it?
As soon as you try you miss it....
We have said in part I that Zen
functions in non-duality, The process of thought, of reasoning, of
conceptualizing takes place in the field of duality. It follows that no
thinking process will achieve Zen. Thought in itself can go a very long
way; the seeker can by reason intellectually understand the concept of
the ONE, the abstract concept of the VOID, think that mentally he
understands what awareness is... But still all these concepts even the
most abstract intellectual ones are still made in the world of reasoning
and duality...So, Zen philosophy is to discard all kind of concepts and
challenge the mind and intellect of the seeker by Zen KOANS which are
not easily cracked...
What is a Koan?
Essentially a koan is a paradox, i.e., that is
'beyond' thinking which transcends the logical or conceptual. Thus,
since it cannot be solved by reason, a koan is not a riddle. Solving a
koan requires a leap to another level of comprehension. Since the koan
eludes solution by means of discursive understanding, it makes clear to
the student the limitations of thought and eventually forces him to
transcend it in an intuitive leap, which takes him into a world beyond
logical contradictions and dualistic modes of thought.
For Zen masters, WORDS are sounds or
marks of agreed meaning in terms of ideas, thoughts or feelings. They
are symbols, when therefore, a master wishes to transmit to another some
spiritual experience, he must descend to the level of thought and
present the discovery in words that will touch the feelings of his
student. On his turn the seeker unwraps the words and their symbolic
meaning, extracting and resonating whatever he can understand from his
master's Koan... or symbolic Words...
To be continued...
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