After a long spell of hot dry days with drought disasters, we now have a very cool, clear, quiet day – maybe rain will come soon.
When we have our original wholly wholesome state, especially when we sit, we can enjoy clear, calm, cool state.
It is quiet and not crowded on the road, because it is Sunday. But, we don’t know how the weather comes. It was hot before, but this morning was chilly.
We are always going through ups and downs, births and deaths, of our own and of our loved ones, actually everyone. All must face death.
Recently someone close to me said, “I face always anxiety every morning after waking up, as if death is approaching without much achievement.”
The Buddha said, “The east mountains are pressing upon you; the south, west, north mountains are pressing upon us. Where can you escape?”
Death is pressing upon us. So, unless we clarify births and deaths, ups and downs, we are always uneasy, never be at peace.
So, Dogen said, “To clarify birth and death is the great matter for the causes and conditions for the awakened ones.”
So, we need to clarify birth and death. Usually we are too busy to tackle with the ultimate concern and problem of birth and death.
But, unless we tackle this task and solve this problem, we are always under stress and suffering. So, we need to really clarify it and become awakened.
Tomorrow I will go to and join the Great Sky Sesshin in Minnesota, where we talk about and tackle with “Shoji (生死), Birth/Death” of Dogen.
At the beginning of it he said quoting a master, “Because the Buddha is in birth and death, there is no birth and death.” Can you understand the logic?
He was in birth and death, so naturally he wanted to solve this problem, and solved it for himself and for all. So, now anyone can find no birth and death.
Everyone faces birth and death. Everyone knows it inevitable. How can one have no birth and death?
How can we solve it? The Buddha told and all buddhas follow the solution – practice of sitting, stopping karmas, and seeing the ultimate truth and peace.
Only when we practice it, can we attain such truth and peace. We often mistake that we practice part time to peek in them sporadically.
But, when we make our practice first and see birth and death, then we gradually understand that birth and death are bubbling in a great ocean.
We can see all things reflected on the calm sea like clear mirror in our sea seal samadhi, where bubbles birth and death, bodies and brains disappear.
When we sit in samadhi, our delusions, desires, and divisiveness disappear and we penetrate through the truth of no substance of our self, the bubble.
We become one with the dharma world – becoming the dharma body, truth body, of buddhas – as white herons in the white snow – just pure.
In that great ocean bubbles appear and disappear, but do not affect the great ocean of the dharma dhatu, truth realm or root.
At the end of the Significance of Cultivation and Verification, Dogen said, “All become Shakyamuni Buddha. Who is Shakyamuni Buddha?”
We must clarify it. We must practice. Then only can we attain unconditioned peace and unsurpassed awakening, individually, socially, and ecologically.
Because of our delusions, desires, and divisiveness we have all kinds of problems. So, we must practice of sitting to solve them.
Toward the end of the Birth/Death Dogen recommended us to put our whole beings into the Buddha’s house, dharma dhatu, doing good with good hearts.
When we sit, we put our whole beings to this dharma dhatu and become one with it, and solve our problems and sufferings.
So, we must shift our life not peeking into the dharma dhatu from our births and deaths, but settle it to see our births and deaths.