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Friday, March 1, 2024

Source

If I talk about something, that is already Dharma Nature. How dharma goes, what it is like. Objectively speaking, that is form. More subjectively speaking, it is its nature. But what is the source of nature? No one knows [laughs]. We know it, but we cannot say anything about it. If you say something, it is not body. It is nature. Or it is an attribute of the body. So, we do not talk about what Dharma Body is. But we understand that there must be some source.

Stylized images of hands on the walls of The Caves rockshelter.
Photo by L. S. Sleven; courtesy of the Monterey County Public Library.

cuke.com/ig for links to the source of the photo. Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 68-10-00-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com, edited by PF. Go to instagram.com/cuke_archives for the Instagram version.

Thursday, February 29, 2024

Beyond Our Understanding

The Lotus Sutra especially puts emphasis on Dharma Nature instead of on the Dharma Body because the Dharma Body is inexplicable. You cannot talk about the Dharma Body because it is something beyond our world, beyond our wisdom, beyond our understanding. That is why we say the Dharma Body—body does not talk. My mouth talks, but my body doesn’t talk.

cuke.com/ig for links to the source of the photo. Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 68-10-00-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com, edited by PF. Go to instagram.com/cuke_archives for the Instagram version.

Painting by Michael Sawyer

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

A Dramatic version of Tathātā

The Lotus Sutra is the sutra which describes this kind of reality, the world of tathata [thusness, suchness]. That is why it is told on a big, cosmic scale. We say in Japanese jisso, the way everything exists in the realm of reality or the realm of tathata. In this sutra, everything presumes this world of tathata. Of course, it is described in a very dramatic way, but what it means to show is how things exist in this world, in this dharma world or world of tathata. The purpose of this sutra is to give a dramatic version of tathata.

Photo by Gene DeSmidt

cuke.com/ig for links to the source of the photo. Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 68-10-00-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com, edited by PF. Go to instagram.com/cuke_archives for the Instagram version.

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Understand Reality

We say, “Just sit” [laughs]. What does it mean, “Just sit?” When we say, “just sit,” it includes actually all the potential activity which we have. We remain in an inactive state, but we have potential. So, in this sense, our practice includes everything. But actually, when we sit, we are just sitting. And so each one of us is Dharmakaya Buddha. But we have potentiality. Or actually, within ourselves, even though we are sitting and breathing, our heart is acting, so we are also Sambhogakaya Buddha. We understand reality in this way.

cuke.com/ig for links to the source of the photo. Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 68-10-00-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com, edited by PF. Go to instagram.com/cuke_archives for the Instagram version.

Monday, February 26, 2024

Dharma Body / Dharma Nature

The Dharmakaya Buddha is called the fundamental, undeveloped Buddhakaya. In Buddhism, when we say the undeveloped, or fundamental, body, it means that it is the original source itself. But there are two interpretations for one reality. When we understand it as something which is very calm, which is not in activity, we call it the Dharma Body. But the Dharma Body does not actually remain calm and inactive—it is always active. When we understand it as activity, we call it Dharma Nature. “Dharma Nature” means something in action, and “Dharma Body” means something which is not in activity, or which is not developed. But the whole Nature exists in the Dharma Body as a potentiality. So we have two understandings of one reality: Dharmakaya [kaya = body] and dharma nature.


cuke.com/ig for links to the source of the photo. Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 68-10-00-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com, edited by PF. Go to instagram.com/cuke_archives for the Instagram version.

Sunday, February 25, 2024

Featured Cuke Archives page

John Steiner came to the San Francisco Zen Center in 1967 and participated in the first practice period at Tassajara. His involvement with peace and environmental work began before then and continues to this day as does his spiritual path. Listen to his podcasts and read about him at http://cuke.com/f.

Saturday, February 24, 2024

Nirmanakaya Buddha

The Nirmanakaya Buddha comes into this world with the vow that he will save all sentient beings. Not by karma, but by vow, he appears in this world, practices the Bodhisattva’s way, attains enlightenment as Buddha did, and saves all human beings. So, he is called an incarnated body. He changes his form in various ways, sometimes to a bodhisattva, sometimes to a buddha. He takes on various forms to help people, so in the widest sense of the word, everything is Nirmanakaya Buddha. But in the narrow sense, those who appear in this world by vow instead of by karma are called Nirmanakaya Buddhas.

Jizo Bosatsu and Kanzeon Bosatsu statues

cuke.com/ig for links to the source of the photo. Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 68-10-00-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com, edited by PF. Go to instagram.com/cuke_archives for the Instagram version.

Friday, February 23, 2024

Erik Storlie Strikes again!

Psychedelics, Meditation, Vision, the “Mystical”: Observations Over Sixty Years

Article by Erik Storlie on the McKenna Academy website

Erik's mini bio from the article: Erik Fraser Storlie, PhD, a student of the Zen Masters Shunryu Suzuki and Dainin Katagiri, helped found the Minnesota Zen Meditation Center in 1972. He taught English and Humanities for 35 years at Minneapolis Community and Technical College and, after retirement, developed and taught courses in Meditation and Mindfulness for 19 years at the Bakken Center for Spirituality and Healing at the University of Minnesota. See his memoirs Nothing on My Mind: Berkeley, LSD, Two Zen Masters (Shambhala 1996); and Go Deep and Take Plenty of Root: A Prairie-Norwegian Father, Rebellion in Minneapolis, Basement Zen (2013).

Erik Storlie cuke page

Continue Our Trip

Emotionally, we like coffee shops and big banana splits. Even though it is good, we should continue on our trip. This is the Mahayana way—on, and on, and on. Usually, people stop at a coffee shop for one or two weeks. But we cannot stay that long. If it is not the main current, it will die, eventually, and only the main current will continue. So, we don’t have time to stay at the coffee shop very long. Once in a while, when we become sleepy, we must have some coffee. That is our way. With this attitude we should continue our trip. And if we want to continue our trip, the four vows are necessary. At any rate, we should continue our trip as long as our car goes. This is our attitude and our practice.

cuke.com/ig for links to the source of the photo. Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 68-10-21 as found on shunryusuzuki.com, edited by PF. Go to instagram.com/cuke_archives for the Instagram version.

Thursday, February 22, 2024

The Point

The point is not whether this Lotus Sutra was told by the historical Buddha, or by some other person. As long as you attach to the historical Buddha too much, you cannot understand Buddhism.

From Temple of Six Banyans, China

cuke.com/ig for links to the source of the photo. Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 68-10-21 as found on shunryusuzuki.com, edited by PF. Go to instagram.com/cuke_archives for the Instagram version.