Zen Judaism by David M. Bader download in iPad, ePub, pdf
The meditator strives to be aware of the stream of thoughts, allowing them to arise and pass away without interference. Liturgy is often used during funerals, memorials, and other special events as means to invoke the aid of supernatural powers.
The teacher may approve or disapprove of the answer and guide the student in the right direction. The interaction with a Zen teacher is central in Zen, but makes Zen practice also vulnerable to misunderstanding and exploitation. Funerals play an important role as a point of contact between the monks and the laity.
These anecdotes give a demonstration of the master's insight. There are two different ways of understanding and actually practicing Zen. Since the Zen practitioner's aim is to walk the bodhisattva path, chanting can be used as a means to connect with these beings and realize this ideal within oneself. In the Japanese language, this practice is called Sesshin. The butsudan is the altar in a monastery where offerings are made to the images of the Buddha or bodhisattvas.
Zen literature The Zen-tradition developed a rich textual tradition, based on the interpretation of the Buddhist teachings and the recorded sayings of Zen-masters. The use of koans, which are highly stylized literary texts, reflects this popularity among the higher classes. This trajectory of initial insight followed by a gradual deepening and ripening is expressed by Linji in his Three Mysterious Gates and Hakuin Ekaku's Four Ways of Knowing. Koans emphasize the non-conceptional insight that the Buddhist teachings are pointing to.
By practicing shikantaza, attainment and Buddhahood are already being expressed. While the daily routine may require monks to meditate for several hours each day, during the intensive period they devote themselves almost exclusively to the practice of sitting meditation. The same term is also used in Japanese homes for the altar where one prays to and communicates with deceased family members. Central to Zen is the practice of dhyana or meditation.
As such, reciting liturgy in Zen can be seen as a means to connect with the Bodhisattvas of the past.
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