By Steve Hagen
Bestselling writer and popular Zen instructor Steve Hagen penetrates the main crucial and enduring questions on the center of the Buddha's teachings: How do we see the area in each one second, instead of only as what we predict, wish, or worry it truly is? How do we base our activities on truth, instead of at the longing and loathing of our hearts and minds? How do we stay lives which are clever, compassionate, and in song with truth? and the way do we separate the knowledge of Buddhism from the cultural trappings and misconceptions that experience turn out to be linked to it? Drawing on down-to-earth examples from lifestyle and tales from Buddhist lecturers previous and current, Hagen tackles those primary inquiries along with his trademark lucid, simple prose. The newcomer to Buddhism may be encouraged via this available and provocative creation, and people extra acquainted with Buddhism will welcome this a lot wanted hands-on advisor to realizing what it actually ability to be wakeful. by means of being challenged to query what we take with no consideration, we come to work out the realm because it really is. Buddhism isn't What you're thinking that deals a profound and transparent route to a lifetime of pleasure and freedom.
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Additional resources for Buddhism Is Not What You Think: Finding Freedom Beyond Beliefs (2004)
Han-shan became good friends with Shih-te, the head of the dining hall at Kuo-ch’ing. (Shih-te is often depicted holding a broom. ) Han-shan and Shih-te are often described as the two Zen fools, and they are pictured laughing and delighting in the most ordinary things—like a leaf falling from a tree. Han-shan was a free spirit. He didn’t care what people thought of him. And many thought he was a fool because he was dirty, disheveled, and poor. Yet none of this was of any concern to him. Even though Han-shan wasn’t a monk, the abbot of the monastery said that he had more wisdom than most of the monks who were training there.
They come out of a deep suspicion we have about our desire for control and the limits of our ability to control our own impulses. The various Faust stories get at this, as do Frankenstein and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Zen literature has such a story as well. In it a fellow comes upon a demon for sale at a carnival—and very cheap, too. ” he asks. “This demon will do anything for you,” the merchant tells him. “Just tell it what you want done, and it will do it. It will do your laundry, cook your meals, do your shopping.
Often in Buddhist literature we ﬁnd similar references to the realization that life is like a dream, like a fantasy. The awakened see this. In fact, they’re called awakened precisely because enlightenment is like waking from a dream. Our common, everyday reality is dreamlike, but we don’t recognize it. We don’t see that it’s a constructed reality—pure mental fabrication. If we ’re in bed dreaming and then we wake up, the vivid experience we had only moments before—the colors, the sounds, the smells, the feelings—are all still with us but fading fast.