Jundo Cohen - Treeleaf Zendo

Satori in Soto Zen Buddhism – Jundo Cohen


Satori ala Soto ( a bit long for Facebook, so I link to another site )

A sample:

“Many folks use expressions like “until Kensho” “before Satori.” In fact, what is realized in Kensho is that there is no “before or after,” and only all reality pouring into this moment. While there may be a “before” and “after” the realization of that fact, in Soto doctrine, “Satori” is not the destination or crossed border of some trip, but the whole trip itself.

Different folks approach and define all this in their own way. In our Soto View, some folks (not all “Koan Introspection” folks, but some … the “Three Pillars of Zen” crowd particularly) way way way overvalue an experience of timelessly momentary “Kensho” … as the be all and end all (beyond being or ending) of “Enlightenment” … and chase after it like some gold ring on the merry go round. For Soto folks, that is like missing the point of the trip. For Soto Folks, when we realize such … every moment of the Buddha-Bus trip, the scenery out the windows (both what we encounter as beautiful and what appears ugly), the moments of good health and moments of passing illness, the highway, the seats and windows, all the other passengers on the Bus who appear to be riding with us, when we board and someday when we are let off … the whole Trip … is all the Buddha-Bus, all Enlightenment and Kensho, all the “destination” beyond “coming” or “going” or “getting there”, when realized as such (Kensho). This ride is what we make it. The bus just us and us the bus.

For Kensho is, in fact, special as special ever has been or could be … a sacred jewel, key to the path, life’s vitality realized … nothing other than special!

Yet Kensho is “nothing special” in that each and all facets of this life-world-self, bar none, are vital, sacred, a unique treasure – and every step of the path is central to the path. The “ordinary and mundane” is never ordinary. Every moment and any encounter, each breeze and blade of grass is special, sacred, a jewel in Indra’s Net. Thus, I do not mean to lower the import of Kensho in the least, but just to RAISE UP all of life, and every instant of practice, to one and the same par with Kensho, for such is the wholeness, intimacy, unity that is KENSHO’d in KENSHO.
Realizing that fact – that the most “ordinary” is sacred and whole and unbroken – is at the heart of Kensho! Failing to see Kensho as extraordinary insight into the extra-ordinariness and sacredness of both the sacred and ordinary is not to see “Kensho.”

More of the same here …

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