Buddha, Buddhism, Enlightenment, final goal, God, Happiness, Meditation, Mind, One, Practice, Prayer, Religion, root, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q203. If I find myself affixed to a single path to truth: the path of prayer and praise, or the path of kindness and love, or the path of wisdom and meditation, or any other path of a singular mode, am I going in the wrong way?

A. No, you are not wrong at all. Feel free to choose any path that appeals to you and concentrate on seeking the root from which the path comes. Whichever path you may take, you will come to take the same way after all because they are from the same root, the truth that is not dual.

20160509_195019a_thumb

 

We should realise the fact that all other things, as well as all paths, are from the same root even though they may look different from each other. The root is the very truth. To realise what the root is should be the final goal of all religions.

 

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Buddha, Buddhism, emptiness, empty, Enlightenment, final goal, God, Happiness, illusion, Meditation, Mind, moment, present, Religion, root, self, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q194. I feel that I don’t have a goal to pursue anymore. What I already am is the final goal. I just have to keep going until what I am reveals itself. And it will reveal itself in everything else too. Is this correct?

A. If you can feel that way, your practice can be said to have reached a stable stage. You are doing really well. As you said, what you are is the final goal, nothing else and nowhere else. The problem is that you don’t know what you are. You should know that it is not hidden but already revealing itself even at this moment.

SRH_9107a_thumb

 

The moment you realise, or see that ‘what you are’ is revealing itself, you become oneness with the whole universe without any exception. Then, you are your own Lord throughout heaven and earth because there is nothing that is not you in the universe. I do hope that you will realise it soon.

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Bible, Buddha, Buddhism, emptiness, empty, Enlightenment, final goal, God, illusion, Meditation, Mind, Practice, Prayer, Religion, root, self, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q179. You say that the Sutras are not different from the Bible. Could you interpret ‘Jesus’s walking on the water’ from the Bible in your view?

A. Water represents our illusions. ‘Walking on the water’ symbolises ‘living free from the trap of illusions’, that is, Jesus didn’t sink in illusions, which means he was not fooled by them. The scenario that they were fishing in the water is symbolising our life that we are leading in illusions. The fact that Peter started walking on the water to Jesus means that he had a strong faith in Jesus and believed the water to be an illusion, even though he didn’t realise the truth himself. The scene, where noticing the strong wind, Peter was afraid and started to sink down in the water means that he didn’t realise the wind was also an illusion because he was not enlightened.

SRH_1825a_thumb

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Bible, Buddha, Buddhism, Enlightenment, God, Happiness, love, Meditation, Mind, Practice, Prayer, Religion, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q178. Isn’t Zen meditation against Christianity? Do I have to cease being Christian in order to practice Zen meditation?

A. I never ask people to change their religions or cease keeping their religions, but encourage them to be better adherents of their religions than before. I tell people to realise what the object of their faith is, whether God or Buddha in order that they may be better followers of their religions.

SRH_0325a_thumb

 

Saying that you believe in Buddha or God without knowing what or who they are, is affronting them, not paying homage to them. Let’s suppose there is a person who always says that he loves you. He doesn’t know you, and never tries to find out where you are and what you are like. However, he always wants you to help him. Does his love for you make sense? That is blind faith and idol worship. There is an old saying, ‘Seeing is believing’. Only when you can see them can you have true faith in God or Buddha and be a genuine believer in your religion.

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

 

Bible, Buddha, Buddhism, Enlightenment, final goal, God, Happiness, meditaion, Mind, mindful, mindfulness, Practice, Prayer, Religion, root, Uncategorized, Zen

Q154. How do you think Zen meditation can help Christians to overcome original sin?

A. According to the Bible, man can’t have eternal happiness or find salvation because of the original sin he committed in the beginning of time. The sin was eating the fruit of the tree of life, and as a result, our mind became discriminating, which prevents us from seeing God. The Bible says that we can be forgiven for the sin and find salvation only by believing in God.

To find salvation means to return to the original state prior to eating the fruit. And to believe in God means to see God, just as the old saying goes, ‘Seeing is believing’. Seeing God is possible by removing the discriminating mind.

DSC_1435a_thumb

The Sutras say that whatever good things we may do, we can’t enjoy eternal happiness without life and death, even though we can enjoy temporary happiness, unless we realise the true-self by removing the discriminating mind.

The core teachings of Christianity and Buddhism are the same in that we can enjoy eternal happiness by eliminating the discriminating mind. Zen meditation is a practice to remove the discriminating mind.

So, to help Christians to remove their discriminating mind is to help them to overcome original sin.

Bible, Buddha, Buddhism, God, Meditation, Practice, Prayer, Religion, Zen

Q136. What do you think of praying to God or Buddha?

A. We can see a lot of people not only pray to them but also offer plenty of money to temples or churches as a token of their faith in Buddha or God, while ignoring many suffering people who are in need. People want to make a deal with God or Buddha, just like they may bribe public officials to do something they want to be done. In brief, they take advantage of their prayer to Buddha or God as a means to satisfy and justify their greed and hypocrisy.

It is said that God or Buddha is love itself, compassion itself and justice itself and that he is so almighty that he can fulfill our prayers. Why are so many starving in the world and why do endless wars break out and disasters befall people at this time while so many clergymen, priests and monks are praying all around the world? Why does a charitable God who says, “Love your neighbour as yourself” always seem to side with rich, strong countries or people? Why have so many countries been engaged in wars throughout history in the name of religion?

SRH_0014a_thumb

I don’t think that prayer itself is bad. However, why do these things happen in spite of so much prayer by so many people around the world? It is because they don’t know whom they pray to or worship because they don’t know themselves and therefore they do not know who is praying. They also don’t know how to worship or pray because they don’t know whom they worship or pray to. Therefore, they commit brutal carnage while speaking of Jesus’s love with their mouths, and spend an untold sum of money on producing weapons while saying their prayers.

I never discourage you from praying, but encourage you to pray in the right way. In order to pray in the right way, you should know at least who prays to whom. When you don’t know this, trying to find out who prays to whom it is a true prayer.

©Boo Ahm

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Buddha, Buddhism, God, illusion, Meditation, Practice, Religion, Truth, Zen

Q133. Do heaven and hell really exist?

A. Heaven is to hell what right is to left. As there is no left without the right and no right without the left, so there is no hell without heaven and no heaven without hell. In fact there is no fixed right or left, and whether something is the right or the left depends on beholder’s view. What is the right to someone can be the left to someone else. Likewise, what is heaven to someone can be hell to someone else. What is hell today can be heaven tomorrow and the other way around.

_SRH5037a_thumb

As long as we believe that heaven is one thing and hell is another, we are tricked by illusions of heaven and hell. What we pursue is not to avoid hell and go to heaven, but to realise the fact that both of them are illusions. That is called the middle path without extremes; no good and bad nor right and wrong.

©Boo Ahm

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

God, Meditation, Practice, Zen

Q115. Should I stop going to church and praying to God in order to practice Zen meditation?

A. I never discourage anyone from doing anything. Whatever you do is up to you. I am only asking you to try to realise who or what does it when you do something. You very often don’t know what you are doing since you don’t know who is doing it. How could you get your thing done well when not knowing who is doing what?

SRH_0794a_thumb

I never ask you stop going to church or praying to God but encourage you to know what leads your body to church when you go to church and what makes your body pray when you pray to God.
Just ask yourself what is making your body do what you do, whatever you may do.
©Boo Ahm

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Bible, Enlightenment, God, illusion, Meditation, Practice, Truth, Zen

Q64. How can I stop smoking?

A. Why can’t we stop doing things as we please? Many people, for example, can’t stop smoking though they are eager to stop it and some are suffering intense agony because they can’t stop bad memories they want to forget from reviving. It is because we don’t know what, or who, allowed our body to do something in the past and wants it to stop doing it now. Saying, “I allowed myself to do it,” we don’t know who or what I am when my body is not me. Likewise, saying, “I want to stop smoking,” we don’t know who or what wants to stop smoking, since we don’t know what we are when our body is not us. How could you stop doing something when you don’t know who permits your body to do something and wants it to stop doing it?

_SRH7996_thumb - Copy
The Bible 1 John 4:4 says, “The spirit who is in you is more powerful than the spirit in those who belong to the world.” ‘The spirit who is in you’ means your true-self, the final goal, and ‘the spirit in those who belong to the world,’ implies your body, which is an illusion. Only when you know what you are when your body is not you, can you become more powerful than the spirit in those who belong to the world.

If you realise what you are, you can be as free to stop doing it as you were to start to.

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway.

Buddha, Buddhism, Enlightenment, God, Meditation, mindful, mindfulness, One, Practice, Truth, Zen

Q45. How can I be mindful?

A. Very simple. If you know what your mind is, you can be mindful all the time with no effort. Most people try to mindful only to fail because they strive to do what they don’t know. In other words, to be mindful is difficult since you don’t know what your mind is. Actually, most people don’t know how to start to be mindful when they try to be mindful because they don’t know their mind.

P1190459a_thumb - Copy

Anyway to be mindful, you must know what your mind is. How could you try to be mindful without knowing what your mind is? Try to find what your mind is and you will become mindful with no effort. What are you when your body is not you? Mind is the name of you when your body is not you, which is also referred to as true-self, true-nature, the nature, the truth, the Buddha in Buddhism and the God in Christianity. Whatever it is called, the name itself doesn’t matter. We should know what it is beyond the name.

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway.