Sunday, September 23, 2007

Bushwick, Brooklyn, Sept. 2007

Yesterday was another daylong retreat at the Zen Center. My teacher mentioned the interesting intersection of our retreat with Yom Kippur and the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. In discussing the basic unity of all spiritual paths, she quoted Ch’an Master Wu-men Hui-hai, who was asked how Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism can be reconciled. (In today’s world, we might ask this question of Christianity, Judaism and Islam.)

“Employed by people of great capacity they are the same. As understood by those of limited intellect, they differ. All of them spring forth from the functioning of one’s self-nature. Whether a person remains deluded or gains illumination depends upon the person, not upon the difference or similarity of the doctrine.”


Anonymous said...

In other words, there's no resolving the differences for those who focus on that side of spirituality ... sigh ... but well said!!

It was a steamy hot Yom Kippur in DC - I believe I was steam cleaned of the past year, a very good thing!

The thing I kept thinking about all day yesterday was trust, how hard that is for me. The break fast dinner was lovely. There's something so delicious about apple slices dipped in honey at the end of a long steam bath.

Happy new year!!

Anonymous said...

Again you write of something that touches on my own experience. I am in this pre-dating dance of sorts with a co-worker who is an African Muslim-- I am an American Catholic. Anyway in the past year we have found that we can have these long theological discussions about God and rarely are there any real differences in how we approach our faith. It is facinating because I never imagined I could date anyone who wasn't Christian.

Anonymous said...

When we try to put structure to spirituality we invariably create divisions.

Anonymous said...

Funny to see Bushwick on your blog. My dad lived there in the 1930/1940s. I just got a photo of the tenement building that he lived in. The Municipal Archives has records of photos taken for tax purposes from 1939 to 1941.
Hope all is well, Steve.
Rich D. (your friend IRL)

Anonymous said...

I love this image...