theravadan and shikantaza

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theravadan and shikantaza

Postby befriend » Mon Jun 20, 2011 11:53 pm

Hi everyone,
i really enjoy doing shikantaza, the zen meditation, because i can do it during daily activities all day if i wanted to. but i dont want it to damage my progress with the brahma viharas. are these two practices ok to combine? ive heard shikantaza is a mixture of samatha and vipassana so i dont think it would be bad to practice the brahma viharas with shikantaza but i am not sure. thank you. metta, Befriend
when walking say to yourself "i am walking" when riding in a car say to yourself "i am sitting in a seat riding in a car" make sure to be concious of the statement, use your intelligence to simply comprehend it and in my experience this is the best way to be mindful in daily life.

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Re: theravadan and shikantaza

Postby Ben » Mon Jun 20, 2011 11:59 pm

Greeting befriend,

Metta Bhavana is often used in conjunction with Vipassana (Satipatthana) within the Theravada as they are complementary. I am not familiar with the zen practice of shikentaza and nor am I qualified to indicate to you whethr you can practice the two. Perhaps it is a question best put to your teacher or guide.
kind regards

“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

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Re: theravadan and shikantaza

Postby pilgrim » Tue Jun 21, 2011 6:12 am

Imho, shikantaza is a Mahayana practice that is closest to traditional Theravada mediation practices, particularly cittanupassana or watching the mind, one of the 4 objects of Satipatthana practice. I see no reason why the brahma-viharas cannot be practised separately but in conjunction with shikantaza, just as it is practised together with various meditation objects within Theravada practice.

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