it was pertaining to the heart sutra. i am reading a book titled the compass of zen. i read it in there.
for the butterfly (and us too) is it futile because no matter what you do, what mountains you climb, what goals you attain, how many cars/houses you own, in the end, death is the final answer? this is why it's futile?
Shunryu Suzuki had a thought about a water fall. we are the little drops of water that separate from the main body of water as it's going down the fall. life is the time that we, the little water droplets, are separated from the main body of water. when the droplet hits at the bottom of the river/lake it rejoins the main water body, and that is death.
or that was at least how i interpreted it. it made sense to me when i thought of it this way.
i enjoy reading up on zen. it's the only thing close to a religion that i can relate to.
if i may bother you w/1 more question? a lot of the books i have read imply dont think, just be. live in the moment. turn off your thinking mind, it gets you in trouble. because thinking preoccupies the mind and you foolishly worry about world peace, politicians, the weather, what color clothese to wear etc..etc.
thanks again Justin you're very kind for taking the time to help people like me trying to find answers.
Welcome back and thanks for the pleasant ratings (big ego). It's heart-warming knowing that one's effort is appreciated.
“for the butterfly (and us too) is it futile because no matter what you do, what mountains you climb, what goals you attain, how many cars/houses you own, in the end, death is the final answer? this is why it's futile?”
Yes. This is emptiness in the form.
“a lot of the books i have read imply dont think, just be. live in the moment. turn off your thinking mind, it gets you in trouble. because thinking preoccupies the mind and you foolishly worry about world peace, politicians, the weather, what color clothese to wear etc..etc.”
We must look at two different angles. One is for those who are serious in cultivating the mind to gain insight and liberation. The other is for those who want to live a worldly life with all the sense enjoyments (and the heartaches). The former is towards the spiritual path, while the latter is towards the mundane path. But in actual fact, most of us are in between these two groups, which means we have to strike a balance between being spiritual and at times being worldly. This calls for a certain degree of practical wisdom to stay balanced.
To stay in the present moment means to still the mind from straying. The mind is always alert and is always fully aware of the present moment. This condition of mind creates a very strong mind which holds the person in complete control of the situation. He stays calm at all times and in any condition. However it does not prevent the person to think. This person will only think wise thoughts. This is what Buddhist meditation is all about...to calm the mind, to tame the mind, to train the mind, and to direct the mind to the right path.
On the other spectrum, a person living a mundane life with all the uncertainties and challenges needs to think of his welfare and how to survive for the next day. He cannot totally turn his back away from politics, economics, and other worldly affairs. You have used the correct phrase "foolishly worry about". A lot of our thinking are "foolish" thoughts. That's why I said you have to strike a balance by using the wisdom factor to practise Buddhism as a lay person. As a lay person we need to practise skillful living. When it's time to think, we must think. When it's time not to, then we must stop. In this manner we are in full control of our thinking, of our lives.
Hope I am not too long-winded or too "preachy".