Monday, February 13, 2023
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The Universe is Born and Dies With You

I’m not exactly certain what the fabric I’m providing for this week’s weblog publish is. It could be notes I made for one in every of my YouTube movies. It could be notes I made to be used in my forthcoming ebook. Perhaps it’s each!

For a few years I’ve seen that numerous my favourite Buddhist academics typically say issues that quantity to “the universe is born and dies with you.” It’s a curious assertion that runs completely counter to what most of us have been taught to imagine. I at all times realized that I got here right into a universe that had already been right here for billions of years earlier than I arrived and I realized that the universe would keep it up with out me after I died. But many academics who I revered deeply stated in any other case

Slightly than remark right here on this weblog about why I feel they stated such bizarre issues, I’m going to only current you with a compilation of those unusual statements.

Take pleasure in!

•In his essay Yui Butsu Yo Butsu (Buddhas Alone Collectively With Buddhas), Dogen says, “Mountains, rivers, the earth, and human beings, are born collectively. The buddhas of the 3 times (previous, current, and future) and human beings have at all times practiced collectively.” 

Then he says, “Thus, if we have a look at the mountains, rivers, and earth whereas one human being is being born, we don’t see this human being now showing by remoted superimposition upon mountains, rivers, and earth that existed earlier than [this human being] was born.” 

•In his ebook Opening the Hand of Thought, Kosho Uchiyama says one thing much like this, however takes it even additional. He says, “Once I took my first breath, my world was born with me. Once I die, my world dies with me. In different phrases, I wasn’t born right into a world that was already right here earlier than me. I don’t reside merely as one particular person amongst thousands and thousands of people, and I don’t go away every little thing behind me to reside on after me.”

•In his ebook Every Second is the Universe, Dainin Katagiri places the identical thought like this. He says, “When beings seem, why do you occur to be the actual being that you’re now? You don’t know precisely why, however you’re a being whose life is already supported by the huge community of time and house. When a selected being arises, it isn’t only one factor that arises — all beings come up concurrently. One factor can’t come up alone as a result of all life is deeply interconnected and nothing has its personal impartial existence… If you find yourself born, the entire world is born with you. If you die, the entire world dies with you.”

•Within the ebook Discovering the True Self, Kodo Sawaki Roshi stated, “After we are born, our universe is born too. After we die, we take every little thing of our universe with us.”

•Within the ebook I Am That, the Advaita Vedanta instructor Nisargadatta Maharaj says, “All of the universe is born with the physique and dies with the physique; it has its starting and finish in consciousness, however consciousness is aware of no starting or finish.”

• Katagiri Roshi talks about how the observe of zazen makes these sorts of wierd statements present in Buddhist philosophy clear. Then he says, “Now could be essential as a result of the second that’s proper right here, proper now, is everlasting, abiding perpetually. What does everlasting imply? It signifies that, second after second, proper now seems as all beings; then once more: proper now; and once more: proper now. Proper now seems perpetually that’s why now’s everlasting… this current isn’t just the current; it’s related with the entire universe. When you see this universe, you notice that you’re a a part of a dynamic actuality that’s always altering in response to the situations of each second. Then you definately perceive why human life is essential. It is vital as a result of, in case you deal with proper now with wholeheartedness, you create good situations for the following proper now.”

• As for Uchiyama Roshi, slightly bit after he says his factor concerning the world being born and dying with him, he says, “I can’t stress sufficient how important it’s to look very, very rigorously at this common self that runs by every little thing within the universe. You reside collectively together with your world. Solely if you completely perceive this can every little thing on this planet settle because the self pervading all issues. As Buddhists… we vow to save lots of all sentient beings in order that this self can change into much more itself.” Once more, we now have one other assertion emphasizing the moral aspect of Buddhist observe — saving all beings. However, once more, we’re supplied nothing in the best way of proof that once we are born and die, the universe is born and dies with us.

Kodo Sawaki additionally stated, “What I name ‘me’ can’t maintain itself by itself. After we hand over this ‘me,’ it turns into the Self that’s the universe.” And he stated, “Your private motion is the motion of the entire universe. You alone act because the universe. That’s the that means of deep Zen observe.”

• The subsequent factor Dogen says after making his declare concerning the universe being born and dying with us, and saying we ought to analyze it’s, “We have no idea the tip or the start, however we now have been born. Neither, certainly, do we all know the boundaries of mountains, rivers, and the earth, however we see them right here; and at this place, it’s as if they’re strolling. Don’t complain that mountains, rivers, and the earth will not be comparable with beginning. Illuminate mountains, rivers, and the earth as they’ve been described, as totally the identical as our being born.” 



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