As you are breathing through the entire body, notice if there are any places that perhaps seem a little dead or a little resistant to the breath, and you can emphasize those areas a bit. Along with this, it is also not uncommon to come across practitioners who hold intensely derogatory views of Western culture and its religious inspirations as well as abysmal estimations of the spiritual capacities of modern people, including, sadly, themselves. And one day she said to me out of the blue, You need to see the world; you need to see Asia. It seemed strange, for instance, that Chan Master Sheng Yen had written a whole book entitled, The Method of No Method. But I would recommend it to any and all meditators. The Ultimate Challenge of Buddhism 13 l. Engaging meditation in such a focused way, some do discover the kind of continually unfolding transformation they are looking for.
What Has Become of the Buddha's Dharma? But at a deeper level, there is the inner breath, by which we are bringing the life energy into that particular part of our body. In addition, it provides a path to fully individuated being that is available to anyone, not restricted to those who can afford long and costly psychotherapeutic work. Within Indian culture, the forest was considered the ideal place for spiritual practice because, in the forest, there are no rules and there are no presiding authorities. You let both fall away and what remains is the naked Soma, present to itself, aware of itself. If the reader notices a certain lack of finality in my presentation, I would respond that this is somewhat deliberate and, in fact, I have tried to resist the temptation to tidy my report up too much.
The forest is about something else. This is the meaning of paying attention to the breath in meditation: we cultivate the ability to pay attention and be present to this subtle manifestation of our physicality. Ray says upfront that you can't really write about spirituality, as it tempts one into the very substitution of thinking for life itself that he is writing about. In fact, particularly in the Mahayana, spirituality is not something that can in any way be separated from human life itself; in a very real sense, the spiritual journey and human existence are one and the same. Life is then less and less about thinking and more and more about simply being. Ray is a professor of Buddhist studies at Naropa University in Boulder,Colorado. And the singular soul meditating in solitude is better than any talking, because it is only in the depths of individual experience that the spiritual can be discovered and lived in a fully real way.
This leads typically to a static, unhealthy, lifelong dependence on the Tibetan lamas as the source of all wisdom, power, and authority. Imagination in the Body Work 200 38. At a certain point, the body seems to be the main thing you are working with. Discomfort in the Somatic Practice 73 15. It is a territory—I do believe—that has not been, and cannot be, colonized and domesticated by human ambition and greed, that in its true extent cannot be mapped by human logic at all. Ultimately, we are nothing other than these.
But now, more and more, they have become a litmus test to determine which forms of Buddhism are acceptable and which are not. Touching Enlightenment with the Body 3 2. Over a period of a year or two, we may feel that things are moving in a positive direction in terms of reducing our internal agitation and stress, and developing openness. Uniquely in the forest, the most radical of all human journeys can take place, one which brings us into direct contact with primordial being. While my approach shares with some depth psychology and with transpersonal psychology an interest in the unfolding of the human personality as an ultimately spiritual matter, again, its methods tend more toward the body. Having read all of Trungpa's books myself, I was interested in Ray's approach after he left Shambhala and Naropa University and formed Dharma Ocean Foundation. Some Historical Roots of Our Modern Disembodiment 35 9.
Although this is not a book about practice—most of what I talk about here needs to be learned directly and in person from a qualified teacher—I do express many of the perspectives and insights of Tibetan yoga. We feel grounded, rooted, and physically completely present; we feel fully embodied and absorbed in concrete, present reality in this way; and, when we arrive there, we find our Soma is this limitless, this infinitely inclusive, domain. Thanks also to the indigenous men and woman who have showed me the universality of human spirituality and its groundedness in the earth and the body—and most of all to my heart-friend, the extraordinarily gifted African spiritual teacher Malidoma Patrice Somé. The kind of open-ended curiosity, non-dogmatic flexibility, exploration, and creativity that particularly Trungpa Rinpoche and Tarthang Tulku envisioned when they were first teaching in America, and also their vision of the full transmission of the Tibetan dharma into the West and to Westerners, has somehow not materialized except among a few teachers and their students. This is why Trungpa Rinpoche, for example, remarked that one should be grateful to have physical ailments to deal with. Have you ever gazed into a campfire, suddenly finding yourself within it, discovering your own state of being as nothing other than the raging inferno, burning, burning, burning, fueled by all it meets? His languaging -- 'meditating with the body' rather than 'on the body' -- seemed a particularly valuable contribution and was a valuable new tweak for me.
I must thank my academic teachers, especially H. He has a richly textured understanding of the lived body as the vessel of wisdom mind, as well as the carrier of all the karmic patterns that obscure this pristine awareness. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To know the body is to meet the awakened state. We start to sense - although we cannot quite believe it - that the mountain, for example, is alive, and aware, and strongly inviting us, pulling us in its direction. The Background and Process of Discomfort 79 16.
Most meditators suffer from two kinds of physical problems. Dedication This book is dedicated to Charlotte B. The Body of the Buddha 166 lV. It was of this ever unbounded and unknown body that the great siddha Saraha spoke when he said, There is no place of pilgrimage as fabulous and as open as this body of mine, no place more worth exploring. As a practicing somatic therapists and somatic meditator over the past 20 years I cannot bless this book enough.
My body responded by relaxing. We were in the middle of a long stretch of sitting, and my mind struggled mightily against the prospect of being trapped in this pain for an indeterminate amount of time. This is nothing other than a longing to become fully and completely who we are, to experience ourselves and our lives, fully and freely, without doubt, reservation, or holding back. In this sense, this book explores what it might mean to be fully embodied and, as such, what it might mean to be an enlightened or completely realized being, for they are one and the same. The only authority is the chaos of the forest itself.
The First Stages of the Journey 239 44. You have thoroughly established that you can't use verbal language to describe what you saw. Sometimes our culture treats meditation as an exercise in transcendence, which is really just a spiritual form of 'ignoring' and leads to further disembodiment and un-groundedness. As we study the history of such transiting in the case of Buddhism, an important question inevitably arises: Is the tradition still in some kind of recognizable contact with the identity and core inspirations of what it was before transition? It isn't easy, but if you stay with it, the energy, attention, and sense of intense vitality will become greater and greater. There is something about it that is drawing us to it in the most compelling way.