Sunday, July 7, 2013

Touch the Spirit of Zen

Zen became one of main streams of Buddhism in China in 6th century. The meditation sitting form both legs crossed is famous worldwide. But Zen in China did not invent this meditation style of sitting. It was there since Yoga in India started about 3000 years age. Chinese priest, Daruma, who started Zen, used this meditation form in 6th century. He was against King over tax issue and put in the jail. He kept himself sitting for 9 years in jail and lost both arms and legs, but he gained ultimate status of mind and opened his Buddhism, Zen.

Zen teaches that anybody can reach to ultimate status of mind if one trains himself. Kung Fu origin can be found in Zen, too. While Kun Fu is dynamic form, Zen is static. Zen style meditation started from Buddhism to save people and save oneself. Because it asks people train themselves, this was well adopted by Samurai worriers in Japan in 15th - 17th century. It is under Zen philosophy Samurai believed that his life or death could have same meaning.

Although Zen was well adopted and known by people all over the world by its powerful meditation practices, there is another part of Zen, which is not well known. It is brain training.

The most mysterious but interesting statement in Zen brain training is "Everything is Nothing and Nothing is Everything." There can be millions of interpretation on this statement. And it was designed that way. Let us think about Roman Empire, Mongolian Kingdom, The Third Reich, Japanese Pacific Empire and so forth. Historically, they were there prosperous and strong. They looked like imperishable. But, all of them are gone. Gone as if they did not exist from the very beginning. Still it does not mean all human society was gone. It is still there and benefiting at the same time keep giving huge influence to people. In this sense, this statement is quite correct when we take a look at history from time length.

Another one is "The strong is not strong because of his strength, but because of his weakness. The strong will not lose because of his weakness, but because of his strength." Here is an example. There was very strong clan in 15th century Japan, the time of medieval age. The name is "Takeda". The head of the clan, Shingen Takeda was eminent strategist. One of the early adopter of "Guns" brought into Japan for the first time. He trained his gunmen and formed gun unit. His army was called strongest in Japan that time.

After the death of Shingen Takeda, his son, Katsuyori, inherited his army. His army was supposed to be as strong as his fathers. He fought against Nobunaga Oda. Although Katsuyori was so confident that his army with gun unit can defeat Oda. But, Nobunaga Oda studied everything about his gun army unit of Takeda and imported newer guns from Europe to defeat Takeda. If Katsuyori's army were not strong in gun power, Oda would not have been aware of it, and could not study about it. This example is typical on "The strong lost due to its strength." Do not you think Takeda clan lost not because of their weakness, but because of its strength?

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