Tuesday 26 February 2013

Finding the fooprints


By s r shearer

Ignorance is bliss.

Finding the footprints, in this chapter of the journey I wont to briefly explain why I feel I need to  take this journey and what  made me decide to learn about buddism. 
I have basically woken up to the fact that we are controled.
I could rant for ever about it but  who ever reads this already knows what i mean and most of us wish for a better life and to be happy, many people class happiness differently and with every right to! i think it all depends on circumstance and expirences, I have been a bricklayer since leaving school and enjoyed it most of the time. Ha. But I never made lots of money and was always  struggling to pay bills and live.. so I thought about what is the point working and living like this? You get up early, go work your guts out in all weathers, the last two winters almost killed me, my boss at the time had me defrosting ton bags of sand with a gas flame thrower just to put a mix on!!!!!!!  Time to go home me thinks! 
You get home tired, eat your tea in front of the tv and go to sleep and after you get payed you pay all the bills and are left with nothing, and you do this all your life, well really thats not what i call life, i cant get a morgage not that i want to be enslaven to one but it does prove to me that if they wont let me make a home for myself and make working hard rewarded then fine. 

I work in security now and really love it, i get to travel about and see some very interesting  things, ive been working in london for  6 months now and  had alot of time to think. 
In the begining when thailand first came to mind, i knew very little of the country to be
honest I knew it was cheap, it had some lovely islands and you could get banged up for life for looking wrong at a policeman. :-)
I thought it would be a good place to get away from the cold at winter then come back when my work gets busy again. so thats what I planned, save some money and go ride out the storm in paradise. 
Ive been learning about positive thinking and karma, buddism and meditation And the temples out there, you can  go stay with the monks and try to learn all about there ways of life, not have any luxuries or distractions, to de stress, learn patience and how to awaken the mind to be more spiritual. One other thing I cant wait for is to eat and drink fresh food and Just drink  water. Here in london if I want something quick to eat I have many food places to buy food but its not very good for you. 
So hopefully a big body and mind detox is What i need.

I recently read a quote that I liked. - You are confined only by the walls  you build yourself. 
So yes, at the moment I can take away the bricks I have built up around me, I dont have  a reason for them, Im going to step out of the box and choose another path, one with less sign posts, :-). 
Thats the rant over for now so the next chapter will be more about my life now at work running up to september.

Wednesday 13 February 2013

Seeking the Ox

1. Seeking the Ox
2. Finding the Footprints
3. First Glimpse of the Ox
4. Catching the Ox
5. Taming the Ox
6. Riding the Ox Home
7. Self Alone, Ox Forgotten
8. Both Self and Ox Forgotten
9. Reaching the Source
10. Returning to the Marketplace

The Ox is a metaphor for the enlightened mind. To catch it, we have to discipline our wild, undisciplined monkey mind. The practice of Zen disciplines that monkey mind. We first look for the enlightened mind because we suffer from delusion and perceive it as something separate from ourselves. We then find its footprints, catch a glimpse of it, catch it, tame it, ride it home, forget ourselves, forget the ox as well, break through the Zen barrier, and return to the marketplace as teachers, refraining from entry into Nirvana so that we can benefit all sentient beings.
Looking for the Ox, finding its footprints, catching a glimpse of it, capturing it, taming it, riding it home, forgetting the desire to become awakened and forgetting the self lead to the Source, to Buddhahood. In the Mahayana tradition, the awakened one then returns to the marketplace, living among the unenlightened and explaining the Buddhadharma (the teachings of the Buddha).

The traditional explanation of the first step, Seeking the Ox, is that a seeker goes through a stage of gathering information, reading about meditation, and eventually trying it. However, the scholars say one has not really sought the Ox until one reaches the stage of frustration or disappointment. When we persevere in the face of hardship, only then are we truly Seeking the Ox.
Thus a person who reads a lot about Zen, tries a few sittings and declares: “That’s not for me,” has not sought the Ox.
In modern times, seeking the Ox for most people takes the form of reading books and visiting Buddhist sites on the web. In ancient times, it meant traveling from monastery to monastery, listening to lectures, looking for a teacher.
Most people today never take that first step. They spend their lives in school, working, raising children, taking vacations, going to the church they grew up in, if any, and getting into hobbies such as spectator sports, dancing, and so on.
If you are one of the few who have been collecting information about Buddhism, you have at least begun to Seek the Ox. A truly unruly mind never looks for the enlightened mind. However, until you practice and persevere through the early discouraging days and weeks and months of pain and disapppointment, you haven’t yet begun the search.
So im going to blog my expiriences on this journey from here to.............