There are shaven pates who eat their fill and then sit down to do sitting meditation. They arrest the flow (of the heart) and do not let it act. They dislike noise and seek quietude. These are the practices of other ways.
This part is advice for the people who are attached to sitting in a quiet place whilst regarding it as Zen practice, with the mistaken belief that to stop thinking is enlightenment.
‘They arrest the flow (of the heart) and do not let it act’ implies trying to stop thinking in order to cease to making illusions or to remove illusions. Thinking of this as right practice leads us to dislike noise and into being attached to quietude. You should know that the Buddhist way of ceasing to make, or to remove illusions is not to stop thinking but to realise that all illusions are empty, or that all illusions are the function of the true-Self. ‘These are the practices of other ways’ means that to arrest the flow (of the heart) and not to let it act is not the practice of Buddhism.
Student: “How can I get a lotus amidst flames?”
Master: “Flames are no other than the lotus.”
All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway
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