For this week, we will look at a very brief introduction to Lao Tzu and Tao Te Ching. Please look at the document below:
For Winter Quarter 2018, we will be discussing Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching. Please see the document below: wq-taoteching-agenda
This week, we will learn how to manage conflict in a healthy manner. We will examine the Buddhist notions of Ahimsa, Dhammapada, the Five Precepts and Eight Precepts.
What is Ahimsa? https://www.britannica.com/topic/ahimsa
What is Dhammapada, the Five Precepts and Eight Precepts?
We will also look at Chuang Tzu’s story on the empty boat: http://omswami.com/2015/09/the-empty-boat.html
This week, we will look inwards into our selves and understand sources of isolation. We will look at two texts: 1. The Heart Sutra and its notion on fundamental emptiness 2. Bhaddekaratta Sutta on knowing the better way to live alone
The Heart Sutra: heart sutra
Bhaddekaratta Sutta: https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.131.than.html
We will also look at one zen koan, “Manjusri outside the gate”
Manjusri outside the gate: https://tricycle.org/magazine/entering-lotus-0/
“Manjushri Enters the Gate,” the first case from the classic collection The Iron Flute. In Buddhist mythology, the bodhisattva Manjushri is the embodiment of wisdom, and a statue of him sits atop the main altar in Zen Buddhist meditation halls. In the koan, the Buddha calls to Manjushri, who is standing outside the temple gate, “Manjushri, Manjushri, why don’t you enter?” Manjushri answers, “I don’t see a thing outside the gate. Why should I enter?”
This week, we will examine why we refuse the idea of being “common” — we will look at the Diamond Sutra with a focus on non-duality.
We will look at one primary text, which I will hand out during our session.
Meanwhile, here are two commentaries on the Diamond Sutra: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/Five-things-to-know-about-diamond-sutra-worlds-oldest-dated-printed-book-180959052/
We will also look at two zen koans, “one hand clapping” and “kill the Buddha.”
One hand clapping:
Kill the Buddha:
This week, we will examine how we can remain faithful to ourselves — we will look at the Platform Sutra, especially on the subject of the body and mind.
We will look at one primary text:
We will also look at two zen koans, “washing your bowls” and “the sound of bells.”
Washing your bowl:
The sound of bells:
Zen Master Unmon said: “The world is vast and wide. Why do you put on your robes at the sound of a bell?” (from http://www.stat.wmich.edu/naranjo/zenkoans/chinapagezen.html)
This week, we will examine what it means to listen + why we have an overwhelming need to express — we will a look at the sutra on the White Lotus of the Sublime Dharma, or the Lotus Sutra, especially on the universal door and five voices. This sutra is one of the key sutras in Mahayana Buddhism, and the basis on which the Chinese and Japanese schools Tiantai, Tendai, Cheontae, and Nichiren was established.
We will look at one primary text:
A person wrote their reflection on the chapter here: https://stillwatersanghamn.wordpress.com/2014/10/22/five-kinds-of-voices/
This week, we will examine how we should face change — we will take a closer look at the Middle Way and the Upajjhatthana Sutta, or the five remembrances. This is a sermon famous for its five facts regarding the fragility of life and our true inheritance.
We will look at one primary text and one discourse:
You may find the Upajjhatthana Sutta here: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an05/an05.057.than.html — it’s a translation by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
We will also read excerpts from A Discourse on the Wheel of Dhamma by The Venerable Mahāsi Sayādaw. Please look over Part 3 which explains the Noble Eightfold Path (p. 58 – 84: or p. 58 – 64, 70 – 71, 74 – 76, 82 – 84). You can find the material here:
I will share excerpts from the Kalama Sutta and Parable of the Raft to aid our discussion as well.