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 Differing views on looking back

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Henry

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PostSubject: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:52 pm

[Admin note: this thread is an offshoot of the thread titled "Hello from Jay (former Rev. Alden)" in the Introductions category and was created in order to allow the tangential discussion to continue. Although the thread shows Henry as the "author", this is only a function of the forum software since his post was the first in sequence to be split.]

Hello Jay,

I was going to say how nice it was to see you here, but then your later comments made me feel that the sooner you could meet your objectives and leave, the happier you'd be. That kinda blunted that pleasure. I guess it makes sense though, that those who hold so idealized a view of Rev. Kennett understandably have little tolerance for dissecting the results of the oil slick aspect of her being. For many of us, that aspect of her being was devastating, just as the oil slick aspect of Eko's being was toxic to yours.

The very fact that you have "zero interest" in looking through the rubble of the OBC's history, demonstrates to me that you are still very much blinded by the institutional trauma (as Kozan put it) that is the legacy of the OBC and the oil slick aspect of Rev. Kennett's being. What Bodhisattva has zero interest in anything. I'm just a slob trying to make it from day to day and I can't think of anything in this whole universe I have zero interest in. From exactly what is there nothing to learn? And to consider that you spent almost 30 years in a place that culminated in the nightmare that is Eko and you have zero interest in looking how that culmination became a culmination? Your zero interest, Jay, looks very much like fear to me. The prime directive of the uncritical devotee is to protect the object of his devotion. All else must be obliterated from the devotee's existence. Zero interest in the monastic rubble serves that end, but I don't believe it serves your interest as growing, thinking, evolving being. Zero interest in the history that allowed so many seniors, who were your friends and spiritual siblings, to not only allow Eko his sociopathic way with Shasta's lay and monastic community, but actually support him (not seeing him as he was)--don't you think you need to look at exactly what purpose that zero interest is serving you?

Eko did not spring from nowhere. The very fact that so many seniors supported him and actually castigated those who brought up the negative aspects of his personality and his abuse of power shows that their minds--the way they perceive and were taught to think; the way they learned to be uncritical, except to criticize their own powers of discernment when it came to looking clearly at those in power--were molded and prepared well before Eko came on the scene.

That your own experience of Rev. Kennett was so wonderful was your good fortune. But that does not make the karmic effects of Rev. Kennett's oil slick any less harmful. And you, as one of her most staunch supporters, should be the most interested in what those effects are so that you can honor the depth of the the 3 kayas and learn to transmit them having done your best to seperate out the oil slick. If you don't look at the oil slick with a courageous heart, you, like Eko and the silent seniors that supported him, will only perpetuate delusion and misguided harmful means of teaching that need not be perpetuated.

What Eko did you, he did to me 25 years ago. And he did it in plain sight of Rev. Kennett, with her encouragement. (Read my introductory post on the Introduction Thread under Kaizan). Eko did not hide the sociopathic aspect of his personality; it was in plain site of anyone willing to take off the blinders conveniently put on by Rev. Kennett's raising him to the abbot-to-be position. You just kept them on for less time than the present monks of the OBC because you became the target of his pathology. As I've written here before, Eko was named abbot precisely because of how authoritarian he was. Compassion and spiritual insight were not his forte. Never were. But he sure knew how to keep people in line. He gave Rev. Kennett total, blind, unthinking obedience and castigated those who did not; what did she think he'd require of others when he became abbot.

A bodhisattva has no time for fear, denial, or blinders. A mote of dust contains the entire universe. You don't have the luxury of having zero interest in anything, much less looking through the rubble that will give clues to how the beauty Rev. Kennett's teachings became perverted and twisted not only by Eko, but by the unresolved aspects of her own karma, which were what led to Eko being put in that position in the first place.
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 1:05 pm

Diana,



I'm glad you've come to the place of not being angry anymore. Don't forget, though, to help others open their eyes. Feeling love for your old spiritual siblings doesn't mean they don't need a push. I believe that what allowed so many to not see the Eko disaster coming from a mile away is very much alive and well. Even Jay, gone for three years from the OBC, has many of the tell tale signs. Don't forget to return occasionally to help that process along--if you feel like it, that is.



PS looked in EFT and found it very interesting--really. Even got one of her tapes. The hard wired need for connection vs. the belief in rugged individualism. Any relevence here?
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 2:05 pm

Yes I was very interested in your post to Jay , Henry.
I think temples can be peculiar places, and sesshins can be as troublesome as enlightening.
I think one can live in a temple and learn temple ways, one can be an expert at temple ways. A life with different clothes and words
One can learn to copy a teacher, even the way they talk, and walk, this is Gutei finger zen,
To absorb what one has learnt I think takes a bit of time. I do not know but I feel that breakthroughs or sudden insights too can be difficult to bring into ones practice, In this particular way I would define insight as new way of seeing not necessarily from the point of view of self. And difficult as one has up to this point no experience of seeing this way before.
What you describe as

Eko did not spring from nowhere. The very fact that so many seniors supported him and actually castigated those who brought up the negative aspects of his personality and his abuse of power shows that their minds--the way they perceive and were taught to think; the way they learned to be uncritical, except to criticize their own powers of discernment when it came to looking clearly at those in power--were molded and prepared well before Eko came on the scene.

Is for me the self leading the self here; there is no unity or compassion, because there is no unity or compassion.
It is very difficult sometime to see the right way, and it is very easy to confuse ourselves, unfortunately one can not escape. Time and experience, sooner or later reveal that one has actually walked in the wilderness in circles, when one thought one was nearly there
Oh what concepts


Last edited by chisanmichaelhughes on Sun Sep 25, 2011 2:20 pm; edited 2 times in total
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cmpnwtr

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PostSubject: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 2:08 pm

Henry wrote:
Hello Jay,
s.
What Bodhisattva has zero interest in anything. ... Your zero interest, Jay, looks very much like fear to me. The prime directive of the uncritical devotee is to protect the object of his devotion. All else must be obliterated from the devotee's existence. .. it was in plain site of anyone willing to take off the blinders conveniently put on by Rev. Kennett's raising him to the abbot-to-be position. . He gave Rev. Kennett total, blind, unthinking obedience and castigated those who did not; what did she think he'd require of others when he became abbot.

e.

Henry, very articulate in your analysis of the dynamics present. An image that is clear in my mind is being in a room with JK and EL. She is publicly castigating and humiliating the persons, integrity, and reputations of Daizui, Isan, and others of the "gang of the disloyal' while Eko stands at her side, smiling nodding approvingly, as she goes on. Something within me was saddened and disturbed by this, but I grew up because of this moment and understood it was time to be an adult.

By then the torch had passed and we knew who was in charge and why at SA. The only measure was personal loyalty to JK. And from that point on became the singlular criteria for spiritual maturity in the OBC. But his ascendence was clearly at the service of a most unworthy and ungrowthful agenda of his superior, who should have known better. And everything that has followed is the responsibility of senior monks, who also should have known better.

It is not a position of integrity to isolate all responsibility for the harm that has been done to Eko alone and deny the responsibility of JK and her senior disciples. All of us who have been initiated into the dharma through JK and SA have had to go through the process of separating the wheat from the chaff, to integrate the practice and its fruits, while facing the truth of the fallibility of the humanity and flawed character of the teacher. That is why unquestioning devotion and loyalty to a human teacher is such an abuse of the dharma itself and to our own spiritual nature, and an opening for great harm to occur in this or in any tradition. I hope it is a lesson that will continue to emerge on this forum and within the OBC itself.
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 4:18 pm

Reading my own post, I have to wonder if I'll ever develop any tact. It just angers me to see such willfull blindness to the harm created by objects of devotion, be they Rev. Kennett, Eido Roshi, Rajneesh, whatever. Naive people place holy people on pedestals and then blind themselves to the harm they do. 100s of millions of catholics still idolize a pope who protected pedophiles. How many continue to idolize Eido with all the women (and I imagine some husbands of these women) who've been harmed. While devotional people like this appear to be so very good (though naive), they are really quite selfish. The need to be comforted by an ideal image of a person, blinding yourself from the harm they do or have done in order maintain that comfort and security, is ultimately an act of selfishness dressed up as being "devotional" or "spiritual." It is selfish because in order to maintain our own comfort level, we have to deny, rationalize, and justify harm going on right before our very eyes. It is a form of deception that has caused untold misery and continues to do so. When I read this and my other post, I sound like a miserably harsh and uncaring person. I should probably spend more time making my ideas more palatable and acceptable to the people I want to consider what I have to say. But God I get annoyed!! I'd go to therapy school to teach me how to do that, but I've already gone. How I have any clients is a mystery.
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 4:23 pm

Lise,



Can forum software route my posts to Kozan for editing before they appear for public consumption, or do I need to take responsibility for myself?
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 4:26 pm

Sending over
2 hair shirts
1 self beating stick
Air freight express leaves 1 hour should arrive pm your time tomorrow
hang in there
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Ol'ga

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 4:40 pm

Lise,
Would you agree that Jay contravened the Forum rules 4 and 5 when he, in effect, advertised his business here?

I'm currently training at inviteCHANGE in Edmonds to become an ICF
Credentialed Life Coach. Transformational life coaching is a perfect
compliment [perhaps meant complement; o.] to my experience in spiritual counseling and contemplative
practice. Anyone who wishes to contact me may do so at
heartmindcoaching.com.


3. The forums are free of charge. Please do not use your signature
to promote a website or business. Personal blogs are acceptable.

4. Please do not promote yours or an associate's business and/or website.


Jay,
You expressed great admiration for Rev. Meian. Since it was Eko that forbade you to talk about your departure to the lay community, and he is now gone and has clearly fallen into disfavour, why did you not approach Rev. Meian to mediate your contact with the lay sangha rather than use this venue?

Further, you wrote:

Her [Jiyu Kennett's] regard for me as a whole, resourceful, capable and creative person made me fiercely loyal to her.

I am wondering if you ever felt that she put you down. If so, how did you reconcile that with your total respect for and devotion to her? If not, did you ever witness her humiliating, or treating harshly another trainee? Did you read any of the narratives on this forum, regarding such experiences?

But perhaps I am writing this in vain. Now that the forum has served its purpose, you don't play with us no more...boohooo... Sad
Ol'ga
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 5:57 pm

Olga,

Two hair shirts and overnight delivery? You are too good to me! I hope I can exchange them, if needed. If they're too small, they can get uncomfortable. As for the self beating stick, isn't that a bit excessive? Although I did help hasten the departure of a perfectly decent human being who might have been open to some ideas expressed here if Kozan had had the good sense to speak up first instead of waiting for me to charge through the china shop knowing I hadn't even taken my Risperidol.
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Howard

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 6:47 pm

Howards Plumbing, Zafu rentals and Sad inventions.

hrmitchell54@yahoo.com

No job too dirty, zafu too hard or investor turned away.

I think that although Jay had a very gentle and considerate OBCC ride, he was on his way long before hair shirt Henry graced the forum with a very clear, concise and overdue posting about what spiritual responsibility is.

How should a forum for spiritual adults respond to vulnerable travellers who may only need to use the facilities?

Shamelessly H
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glorfindel

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 7:18 pm

Henry I think he was already on his way to the door.






Another thing I should mention is:

Glorfindel's Cosmetic Surgery Parlour

"he does it with a hacksaw"

For delicate structural reformations visit my friendly website: man with blunt tools
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Isan
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 7:42 pm

Howard wrote:
Howards Plumbing, Zafu rentals and Sad inventions.

I don't know why "sad inventions" brings up the Monty Python Dead Parrot skit for me (look on Youtube).

Howard wrote:
I think that although Jay had a very gentle and considerate OBCC ride, he was on his way long before hair shirt Henry graced the forum with a very clear, concise and overdue posting about what spiritual responsibility is.

How should a forum for spiritual adults respond to vulnerable travelers who may only need to use the facilities?

It takes a certain amount of back and forth to figure out where people are coming from. When I was considering joining OBCC I first used an anonymous ID and I took a little time to look around. Seems like Jay jumped in before assessing what the discussion is like here. I don't think we should assume he didn't benefit and won't be back. Sounds like he has a lot on his plate right now and so not a good time to start an investigation of his practice and beliefs. I do find myself remembering how vulnerable I was when I first left Shasta Abbey. The monastery replaces the shell that people normally have and it takes time to rebuild it.
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Sun Sep 25, 2011 8:27 pm

Henry,
The two hair shirts etc were from Michael Chisan, not me.

Actually, I was going to urge you to NOT subject yourself to Kozan's kind re-shaping. I love Kozan, but I am very very happy that in you I have an ally in calling a spade a flicking shovel!

I think that Howard is absolutely correct saying:
I think that although Jay had a very gentle and considerate OBCC ride,
he was on his way long before hair shirt Henry graced the forum with a
very clear, concise and overdue posting about what spiritual
responsibility is.


Isan, I don't think we should assume that Jay is going through anything like the painful soul-searching you went through. After all, he rests happily in the Jiyu-cocoon all around him .... nice and cozy. You were torn where Jiyu was concerned, weren't you?
Sorry to maybe sound catty, but it appears to me that Jay doesn't wish to have much to do with the likes of us - that's why he left. That's perfectly OK by me.

But I'd get uncomfortable if Henry started pusssy-footing - it would signal to me he got lobotomized. My Universe would turn all upsside down. Please Henry, just be yourself.

These are my unedited thoughts. Have to rush.
Byezee-bye.
O.


Last edited by Ol'ga on Sun Sep 25, 2011 9:48 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : only my grammar, friends; i left all my raw passion in.)
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 12:36 am

I actually feel a bit sad by the huge vulnerability intentionally or unintentionally displayed by Jay.
Rerouting after years in an environment,that gave a sense of safety and security.

Zen I do not believe gives these aspects within its enclosed environments, not what I have personally experienced. However I have definitely seen a lot of come and join us, even advertising come and sit with us, and gain something special.
Being thrown out by ones ear is never comfortable, neither is growing up, or standing on ones own spiritually,whoops one can make mistakes ( www.zenmistakes unlimited)
I was also a little concerned about the living Buddha view. Is this a widely held view as I am out of touch
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:51 am

Olga,

Yes, the gifts are from Chisan--my mistake. It was better when I thought they were from you. My concern is that Chisan might have something up his sleeve (no pun intended).



The balance on forums, it seems (this is my first), is that you can be writing to a general audience and a specific person simultaneously. The best response to each might be different at times. Was just wondering if this was one of those times. Maybe, maybe not. I misplaced my omniscience ring. Sue me.
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:59 am

PS You might think, "Why worry; you can't change the past. What's done is done. Forget about it."

But then I got an email this morning with this joke:
"We don't serve faster-than-light neutrinos" the bartender said.
A neutrino walked into a bar.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:07 am

Well I did sneak in the box copies of my latest book


The American Kensho Bigger Better
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:24 am

I hope it's not too much bigger and too much better--If you have a kensho for more than four hours, you'll need to call your doctor.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 8:54 am

I already have sevaral times, but don,t like to talk about it
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glorfindel

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 4:16 pm

Its not how big your kensho is.

It's the way you use it.
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Stan Giko

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 5:50 pm

It`s not the way you use it.

It`s making sure you`re not one !
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Stan Giko

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:27 pm

Henry,

Henry, I`m sorry but I`ve been bothered since I read your posts to Jay and
Diana. You seem to come down so hard, that it makes me feel that you`re
putting yourself in the place of your past tormentors. I get this feeling of great
hurt and wanting to strike out. If it weighs heavy on my heart I can`t imagine
what it`s doing to you. I have read your introduction of course and it was a terrible
story to have to read and I`m pro OBC as you may know.

I can`t help wondering what it is that would finally put you at rest. Is there
such a thing or do you think that you will be posting in the same vein in 10 or
twenty years time ? Diana was implacable but in the end ran out of steam and
somehow put the whole thing down. I thought that was wonderful and I don`t
think it was good for you to chide her to keep up the pressure on her
`spiritual siblings`. Letting go is so much better.

It`s not as if the faults of RM Jiyu and the OBC, perceived and otherwise are
in any danger of slipping from view around these parts ! I`m not saying that
criticisms should not be aired. They should and this forum provides those
opportunities regularly. I just feel that once you set up an `us` against
`them` framework you end up with a closed loop. `They` will the always be
the `Big problem` that cannot have an end.

I have got an awful feeling that you might just have to forgive them somehow.
It would be wonderful if you could receive recognition of your treatment and
a heartfelt apology from them. I hope they have the heart.

I`m pretty sure Jay was never going to stick around too long. He must surely
have known of the forum and done his reading. He very clearly stated his
position and will have known that he would be putting himself in the `lions den`
and in a no win situation given his position on Jiyu/shasta as stated.

I for one don`t blame him. This forum can feel genuinely quite toxic to OBCers
and I can tell you for sure, many people will not post here. Why put yourself
under personal attack ?

It has led me to wonder whether there is an unwritten rule that this forum is
really for the OBCers with grevances as regards Shasta / OBC and the rest is
a bit of socializing and general filling. I for one would not want to be a thorn
in the side and a pain in the whatsit to the majority by being pro OBC here.
I would rather leave the forum..No hard feelings...if that were the case.

I`m not sure why I felt I needed to trouble you with this. You write much more
succinctly than I do and I hope you are not offended ( let alone angered) by
my ramblings. I`m only " a slob trying to make it from day to day" too. I
reckon I could outslob you....somethings I`m good at. Perhaps you could take
this rambling in lieu of a hair shirt ?

Best wishes to you Howard. Stan.
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Ol'ga

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 8:55 pm

Well, Stan, I rather disagree with you.

I picked up something rather unwholesome in how Jay used this forum. Yes, as I understand, the forum was initially a place for ex-obc-ers to meet. Of course, it is not an exclusive club; still, to come here, (where people 'spilled their guts' as someone aptly put it) and, in effect, say - the person who you say tormented you, was to me wonderful, and is utterly, devinely beautiful; so I just don't want to hear about your painful experience with her - is not quite right. And then to say (again I paraphrase) - I just wanted to address certain lay sangha, and publicize my new business, but otherwise I am not interested in what has kept this forum going, so bye!

Diana's sudden salto mortale is, to me, surprising. I rather don't think that this is her final word, though.

Henry strikes me as a very honest man. His speaking clearly helps me to sort out my feelings. I am deeply grateful to him for that. As I've said before, my Shasta history was buried inside me, unaddressed. It made mischief in my life, and so needed to be put to rest. This is the best I know how - talk to people who know what I am talking about.

I gather, Stan, you don't have a similar experience of hurt at the hands of Jiyu Kennett. So perhaps you don't understand what this is about. So don't preach.

Ol'ga
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Howard

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 9:26 pm

Hey Stan
In case youv'e run out of time to edit your last post's signing off , I'll take your good wishes but I think you meant it for the other H guy.


I think that the OBCC has a very wide range of opinion & experience. Some factions are more circumspect and bide their time for posting and some don't. Thorns just make people more aware of where they are stepping. Worrying about being a thorn belittles your own worth and the validity of your own understanding. I think the OBCC is a place where anyone can explore their own understanding while gaining the benefits of the experiences from long term practioners with differing views.


Stan/Glorfindel/Chisan & Henry.
So that guy who sold me my vacuum pump was a Bodhisattva?

And people say they never know what to send Shasta at Christmas.

Hey Ol'ga
Isan, I don't think we should assume that Jay is going through anything like the painful soul-searching you went through. After all, he rests happily in the Jiyu-cocoon all around him .... nice and cozy.

Nice & cozy is not how I'd describe a situation where Jay as a Jiyu devotee felt forced to shill on the public forum filled mostly with his master's detractors. Do you think he didn't actually know what forum he was entering or that he hadn't bothered to read any of the past postings here about his beloved master.
Imagine how twisted the dynamics of leaving Shasta's umbrella would be if your new chosen career and income was likely to depend on the contacts from that same organization.
You could say that a nice and cozy cocoon has a wall between a dream and the outside world but Jay's now on the outside of the cocoon and the dream he's hanging onto as a spiritual lifeline is really just a slowly unfolding nightmare.
I know we all probably see different things in postings and obviously Jay and perhaps many of the OBCC folks are not likely to agree but mostly what I seemed to be hearing from his postings was one very long scream straight from a hell realm.

Nice and cosy...
Not. ..but

God, I wish him well on his way.



Cheers All





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Lise
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Mon Sep 26, 2011 11:54 pm

I've been reading and thinking; now I'm writing. Perhaps I shouldn't be.

Ol'ga, this forum was not created just for ex-OBCers. Back when this started, November '09, I hoped that we would have respect here for diverse opinions, so that some balance could be maintained and possibly some current sangha would not be ashamed to acknowledge OBC Connect and might even post here, if not under their own name, at least under an alias perhaps. But that hasn't happened much at all, from what I can see. Those whose opinions don't match up to the majority are castigated, shouted down, told they are deluded or in a cozy cocoon. No wonder they don't post here, or if they do, they leave in a hurry.

Few of us who experienced negatives in our contact with the OBC can accept that maybe some people came through ok, at least in their own estimation. Who are we to say they didn't? What gives you, or any of us, the right to say they didn't and that they are deluded? How can you judge them and their expression of their experience? It is completely as valid as your own, in every way.

What I object to is that you have put words in Jay's mouth that he never said, for example, that he wanted to address only certain lay sangha; not true. Go back and read his posts. And, he did not say that he didn't want to hear about others' painful experience with Kennett; he said he would not dismantle her and that is his right. You do him and all of us a disservice when you misrepresent his posts and twist his words. As for his preference for not reviewing and analysing his past experience, especially on his own Introductory thread, that is completely his right. He didn't post under "Theory and Practice" or "OBC Experience"-- he posted under "Keeping in Touch", I suspect, in order to let some of us who care, know how he's doing. That's it. I didn't see any of his postings as an invitation to debate his beliefs or blast him out of his "delusion" as some people might have it. Why do you, and others, feel so strongly that you must do this? Is there not room for someone to relate his or her experience, in their own way, and have their posting be about them, and no one else?

As for the objection about violating the rules on promoting a business -- this is an area where we generally do not pounce on people so long as the mention of their business connection is a one-shot thing, low-key and not in-your-face, shameless promotion. Jay's was not. Other forum members have mentioned new articles going to press, new books, etc., and we don't have a problem with this since it's not an ongoing barrage of "but wait -- get yours now!" promotion. Some forum rules are more black and white, like swearing and defamation, whereas others benefit from flexibility. This is one of them.

Not wearing my admin hat at the moment, this is just me as a regular member -- I wish Jay had been shown more courtesy when he stepped into these forum chambers and said hello.
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:13 am

Hi Howard,
I guess we see things differently.
I didn't really pick up any conflict Jay may be feeling towards the present Shasta Abbey, rather the opposite. This is from his first post:
I care deeply for the Abbey community and continue to be on excellent
terms
with them.
[...] I endorse Rev. Master Meian's competency and leadership style, which
is visible in the open and welcoming atmosphere there.

He likewise doesn't seem to have any problem with his teacher, Jiyu Kennett. In fact, the 'oil slick' is a term he used with respect to Eko, not Jiyu. I had a clear feeling that his commitment to the Zen teachings as transmitted to him by Jiyu is not only unshaken but is a source of peace and strength for him. I did not detect any disquiet he might have towards the person that Jiyu was. His conflict was with Eko, and Eko is now disgraced and gone. I was trying to contrast this with the very painful few years after Isan left Shasta as he described them on this forum.
Naturally, I cannot possibly claim actual knowledge of what Jay really feels. I am only describing my impression based on what he disclosed and the tone he used.
Some have suggested that Jay had not realized what the forum was about when he first posted here. That would be the more charitable assumption. If he did know, however, I find it odd he did write...and what he chose to write: his fervent profession of love and devotion towards his teacher, Jiyu, as contrasted with his utter reticence with respect to his conflict with Eko and any attendant circumstances. Naturally, this was his choice, but I find it odd.
Ol'ga
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:44 am

Hi Lise,

I'll try to respond to the points you made - as responsibly as I can. I'll do so in no particular order - sorry, it's late and I still have to take out the garbage...

It is indeed true that I was interpreting what Jay wrote. I was amply clear I was doing that. I said that he was in effect saying certain things; elsewhere I said 'again, I paraphrase'.
He certainly did not decide to leave because of anything I had written on his thread. I did not post there.
Now here are his own words, which I may or may not have misunderstood. (Grant me a possible non-malicious intent, please.):

I feel that this thread has served it's purpose for me:

1.) To let the lay Sangha know that I love them and that my leaving had nothing to do with them.

2.) To come out of hiding.

3.) To present my new identity as a professional life coach which, for me, is a remarkable accomplishment given my lack of marketable skills, work history and resume.


It seems rather clear that under point 1. he can only mean 'certain lay Sangha'.
I don't know how one is meant to understand the point 3.

It is, of course, for you as an administrator to decide if a particular rule was contravened. Since Jay stated that presenting his 'new identity as a professional life coach' was one of his sole three reasons for posting, I came to a different conclusion than you have done. It is of no consequence.

Jay wrote:
However I will be honest with you, I have no interest (or desire) in
sifting through the rubble of monastic history. Zero.


Since the 'rubble of monastic history' obviously includes some trainees' experiences there which often happen to have been painful - and the writings on this forum dealt with those abundantly - I took it that Jay has no interest (or desire) sifting through them. Zero.

You yourself treated Jay's thread as an Introductory one.

Ol'ga
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 2:42 am

Hey Ol'ga

Put another way...

One could try to say that Eko was bad and Jiyu was good but Jay lived in a monastery where Eko did what he did with the compliant support of the rest of the Shasta seniors. It wasn't just Eko, it was the whole Shasta machine. Jay knows this because he experienced it first hand. This is the question he couldn't address because it would eventually reflect badly on Jiyu as well as costing him OBC job contacts. Desperatism under a cover of peace might look like a nice & cosy cocoon but it's really just a hell in a cage



Definitely not nice & cosy in my sight but I really hope that you are right and I am wrong.

cheers


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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 3:34 am

Hey hatless lise

I wish Jay had been shown more courtesy when he stepped into these forum chambers and said hello.



You made me go over all his postings again up until he said a version of "I'm just here to advertise, then I'm gone", so I think I need you to illustrate a bit further where he was shown any less courtesy than anyone else on this forum?

The postings up until then were what I'd expect at an afternoon tea with the ladys Sunday auxillary. Of course if he stood up half way through the tea and said he wasn't really that interested in their chit chat but could he leave his business cards on the tables, then a certain persons lack of courtesy would probably have occupied a part of the afternoons conversation.



I also believe that what first and foremost keeps most OBCers away from the OBCC is that many of us here subscribe to the questioning of just about everything, which amounts to heresy at the abbey. The OBCers who stay are those who look beyond the heresy label to see that the questioning is not the same as rejecting.

OBCer and OBCCers alike have all felt hostility here. We could experience it in complete isolation from each other for it is inherent in an Ego's make up. The issue for a spiritual adult is not that an experience occurs but how we relate to it.

Least that's what my Shasta learnings were.

I better run before Ol'ga (Who has been very gentle with me lately) pushes me off my preaching box.

Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 4:43 am

For me one of the problems of institutionalised religion, is if one is not careful, that is all that is taught ,and that is all one learns.
The ability to function in society is very limited,one can funtion only in a particular type of society.
The Japanese approach works well for them, limited period of time, and always come back, but function in the world and stand on your own two feet. Something will have been learnt, and maybe something deep rich and relevant glimpsed.
The key is the last part, I feel it is only when tested in society that the goodness of zazen can come out.If one really wants to sit' and practice' what one believes to be the way, then it is simple; do it.
This is a bit of waffle, as Jay seemed to walk out into a world that caught him out a bit and was/ is difficult rich names and words do not count for much. Where are you? who are you? and what are you doing? should have been answered in the dokosan room; plenty of rebuffs please,The zen teachers want you to be strong,strength is not what Eko displayed, through the eyes of egotism it may be classed as strength, but the abuse of position and power,surprisingly enough is still in the foothills of trying to catch our deceptive bull, and not even his whispy tail has yet been seen,personal ambition blind the spirit, My new name for it is Wall Street Zen. But dont worry it is not restricted to America. Nor even the aligator filled swamps of Florida
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:02 am

I may have read Jay's Intro differently than others because of prior contact with him, and a sense of the person that I remember him being, but I did not see an advert as the motivation for stopping by. If he read other threads under Keeping in Touch he would have seen that several of us remember him fondly and wanted to know how he was. Which can reasonably include how he earns a living; most of us worry about that, for former monks. As far as anyone here knows, he was responding to that outreach. As to his intended audience, I'm a lay person, I feel loosely connected to several "sanghas", and I've nothing to do with Shasta, yet I felt that his message was for me just as much as it was for anyone who still goes to Shasta Abbey.

A few thoughts on lack of courtesy -

When someone says they aren't interested in debating their beliefs, on their own Intro thread, and others keep after them and insinuate they're operating from delusion, to me, this is discourtesy. As is misstating their message in a subsequent thread, whether through carelessness or an intentional slant.

It may be worth saying that in a forum, like in real life, you actually don't have the right to force someone to debate you when they've said that is not their intent. Especially when the person has not denigrated or debunked anyone else's experience, as Jay did not. He was entitled to limit his remarks to his own experience, and had no obligation to debate with anyone, on anything.

Any person has the right to post here without having to join discussions or otherwise respond to the "community's" expectations. It's worth noting as well that a vocal few do not speak for "the community" when they make pronouncements about what others should do; they represent only themselves.


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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:12 am

Hey Howard,

Yes, I was thinking of the other `H` guy. It was after midnight and the brain
was on shutdown mode. Sorry `bout that....you`re welcome to the Good
wishes of course.
I wouldn`t say that I was actually `worried` about being a thorn in the side
on the forum. It`s more a case of thinking I`ve maybe stepped in to the wrong
bar. Everyone turns round. You just realize that you`re not one of them and
in the wrong place.....don`t quite fit in. Best drink up and go. I refer you to
Ol`ga`s post to me...." I gather, Stan, You don`t have a similar experience of
hurt at the hands of Jiyu Kennet. So perhaps you don`t understand what this
is all about. So dont preach." When you EXPECT to get this stuff whenever
you make a pro OBC posting, you just wonder is it common sense to keep on
repeating the experience. Or are you maybe missing something.

I have just read Lise`s post and see that the " forum was not just created
for ex OBCers". So, having taken on board what you said and Lise`s
clarification, I guess it`s safe to venture on. We all come here for our own
ends one way or another. I don`t think you quite realize what it`s like to be
regularly personally attacked here. Why would you ? You`re one of the safe
majority. I can tell you that I think it`s to some degree ( if small ) similar to
the bad experiences suffered in Shasta by some.

You`re right about Jay being received courteously up to a point. I guess you
had to make it the point where you felt obliged to have a bit of a go at him.

You said to him..." could you speak of what it would have taken to stay on
Eko`s good side or what did it take to be written off by him ? was Eko`s
dismissal of your worth only limited to his own opinion or was it something that
others had to share or express in order to stay on his good side ?".

Why would you ask him that ? He said he wasn`t interested in doing a
dismantling job on Jiyu and still gets on very well with the Shasta Community.
Surely your reason for leaving doesn`t need validating by him. Why goad the
guy ?

He says he`s struggling to stay afloat so you proceed to do a hatchet job on
the guy`s integrity. Reduced to Shilling from Jiyu detractors ? You really
think that he`s reduced to only that ?

" the dream he`s hanging onto as a spiritual lifeline is really just a slowly
unfolding nightmare" !! How the heck do you know that ? Isn`t that a pretty
large dollop of judgmentalism there Howard ?

"What I seemed to be hearing from his postings was one very long scream
straight from a hell realm". Did you type that with a straight face ? Do you
in the light of day think you may have exaggerated one teensy bit ?

Howard, Many of us weren`t harmed by the Jiyu/OBC experience. Just the
exact opposite in fact. It doesn`t mean we cannot see faults and Jay did not
say Jiyu was perfect. It`s obvious that he went over his experiences since
his departure. Overall and as he said, he benefited hugely as did a lot of us
OBC supporters. He left the abbey so he obviously found some fault there or
he wouldn`t have left. He just didn`t want to play the fault game on the
forum. I think it`s that simple. Really.

I don`t suppose the " no comment " answer he gave you went down too well
when you were in full swing. Maybe it`s all just a case of `the irresistible
force meets the immovable object`.

All the best, Stan.
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:38 am

Hi Lise,

Thanks for your recent inputs. I think you`ve clarified a lot on the intent of
this forum ; it`s scope and limits.

I know the rules forbid bad behaviour,swearing and suchlike and we are all
expected to behave in a civil manner. Quite right too of course.

It is much harder to keep in order the spirit behind the rules. You may not
swear at a person for example but you can get the same result by belittling
a persons views and beliefs. It can be a fine line in a heated exchange.

I think you`ve done a real service by gently reaffirming the spirit upon which
we rely to debate. Warmth and courtesy. After that, Well, Watch out. Every
man and woman for themselves !

Sincere thanks, Stan.
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:20 am

Hey Stan

You said to him..." could you speak of what it would have taken to stay on
Eko`s good side or what did it take to be written off by him ? was Eko`s
dismissal of your worth only limited to his own opinion or was it something that
others had to share or express in order to stay on his good side ?".

Why would you ask him that ? He said he wasn`t interested in doing a
dismantling job on Jiyu and still gets on very well with the Shasta Community.




Interesting take Stan. We all swim in assumptions.

I liked Jiyu and Eko demonstrated elements of compassion that were helpful to me.

I was asking Jay about the monastic life under Eko because I assumed that much of Eko's rule and effects on the Abbey were carried out by the other seniors, meaning that Eko's troubles couldn't be isolated to just one man. He could have said " No Howard, it was just Eko on his own". No comment was his right. Only because he made no initial response to my question did I ask if he had heard my question.

I also thought that since he had infered that his difficulty was with Eko and not with Jiyu that his answer would simply have reflected that. (yes, take it far enough to it's logical conclusion and Jiyu becomes entangled but my interest was how and where someone can draw a line in the sand about that.) . Refusing to question anything at all is one way but it does require some strange mental twistings to do so.

Lots of other thoughts came up from your posting (thank you) which I' d love to explore but it's last call for work so I'll catch up later.

Cheers


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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:50 am

Hi Stan,

Actually, "us" "OBC detractors" are far from a monolithic group - and much less a "safe majority". I myself have got it in the neck a few times, and probably have dished out the same.

In my post to you I was reacting to yours to Henry, where you wrote:

Henry, I`m sorry but I`ve been bothered since I read your posts to Jay
and Diana. You seem to come down so hard, that it makes me feel that
you`re putting yourself in the place of your past tormentors. I get
this feeling of great hurt and wanting to strike out. If it weighs
heavy on my heart I can`t imagine what it`s doing to you. I have read
your introduction of course and it was a terrible story to have to
read and I`m pro OBC as you may know.

I can`t help wondering what it is that would finally put you at rest. Is there such a thing
or do you think that you will be posting in the same vein in 10 or twenty
years time ?


etc.

It seemed to me, rightly or wrongly, that you sat in judgement of his handling his own experience with Jiyu@co. Maybe you didn't mean it that way, but you sounded - to me - as so superior, admonishing.

I would only like to say that many of the so called OBC detractors described their experience and feelings, here on the forum, in such a way as to render themselves vulnerable. I may have missed something, but you have not shown your face in a similar manner. Now, please don't think I claim that you must, or that not doing so disqualifies you from contributing on the forum. I don't think that way at all. But I do think that because of this, you should perhaps tread more carefully when you comment on other people's handling of their own life experiences, and even give them unsolicited advice - publicly.

I generally try to respond to what people have said, rather than what I may surmise that they think or feel. It is so easy to project our own prejudices onto others. Still, it is impossible to not at times venture into the gray area of implied messages because language is, clearly, in the service of communication of those, too. I may err interpreting those implied messages, as much as anybody else. In fact, I certainly do - it's impossible not to.

This kind of communication (forum) is so very tricky, that possibly everybody has felt hurt or at least piqued here, at one time or another.

So I would like to reach out to everybody : Sorry I hurt you, unconsciously or half-consciously, or that I was at times insensitive in giving my opinions, or even, Heaven forbid! admonitions. I am sure I have been guilty of that sometimes. Trying to be an angel with wings doesn't work for me.

But peace, honestly.
Ol'ga
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:22 pm

How lovable you spiritual types are.

Every debate turns into a meta-debate that focuses on the method of debating!

Anyway, it seemed to me that Jay was setting up a bit of a shop-front. But Lise has said that a bit of that is allowed here so there is no problem.

And good luck to him. He seems pretty nice and can probably help people.
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:36 pm

Lise wrote:
I've been reading and thinking; now I'm writing. Perhaps I shouldn't be.

Ol'ga, this forum was not created just for ex-OBCers. Back when this started, November '09, I hoped that we would have respect here for diverse opinions, so that some balance could be maintained and possibly some current sangha would not be ashamed to acknowledge OBC Connect and might even post here, if not under their own name, at least under an alias perhaps. But that hasn't happened much at all, from what I can see. Those whose opinions don't match up to the majority are castigated, shouted down, told they are deluded or in a cozy cocoon. No wonder they don't post here, or if they do, they leave in a hurry.

Lise, I appreciate both the intent and content of your post. I believe it's important to occasionally re-state the purpose of the forum when you feel it is being lost. I have always felt the forum, at its best, can facilitate healing and I believe to a degree it has. I feel this thread is as good an example as any of how difficult it is to communicate clearly in this medium. The fact that people keep coming back, taking the time to reread what they and others have written, and try again to clarify what they want to impart says something about how much those persons care about the discourse here. I participate in a number of online forums and none of them come close in this regard. There are however some limitations that cannot be overcome because they have to do with core beliefs. From what I've heard (in other words "hearsay") most current members of the OBC won't participate here because they believe our discourse is "breaking the precepts". Note that I didn't say the tone of the discourse, but the very fact of the discourse. For those who subscribe to that point of view it will not matter how considerate or respectful our tone is when we go about discussing the failings of JK, etc. Nothing will make discussion of some topics acceptable. It is also worth noting that the OBC has a forum exclusively for their members that non-members may not either participate in or view. However they come and view the discourse here as anonymous guests. Of course it is there right to do so, but I believe it suggests the disdain they feel about what is happening here. I feel no less ignored by the OBC now then I have in the past. Beyond my personal feelings I believe this is important because it is part of what defines the overarching context of OBCC.


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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 1:21 pm

Hey again Stan.

Wow, I work for 1 hour and the hit the "puter again. Somewhere another career is going down the drain.


We could go through a point by point examination of who said what and why but my heart just isn't in it right now. My main interests are about the Ego. Not specifically mine or yours because as time goes on it all seem the same but more about all of our relationships with it. Might just be a zazen cop out but it stays up there as a constant shadow where so much else comes and goes.

I think many of us hold peoples views on the OBCC up for debate as a way of examining our own.

Finding so many of our past Shasta certainties not holding up well over time is disturbing for everyone but it is part of what I treasure most about what goes on here. I don't think I have any particular interest in tearing down Shasta or it's supporters as an agenda beyond just exploring what part of my own Shasta conditioning still effects me without my knowledge.

I think that the Buddha (if you believe 2500 hundred years old stories) would tell me to examine exactly that.

I am not sure how the OBC approach of just having faith in the words of those who are senior to you or putting questionable stuff on the back burner and such views can easily meet the OBCC approach of questioning everything.

Any suggestions?
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 2:48 pm

Sorry I am having to miss loads of this but Howard when you say

I am not sure how the OBC approach of just having faith in the words of those who are senior to you or putting questionable stuff on the back burner and such views can easily meet the OBCC approach of questioning everything.

I have not got a problem with what you wrote but the bit about senior to yo

I cant work out who is the most senior..in other words is there any one in the lineage above Rev Mein or do they connect to Sojiji or any where. Bluntly are they answerable to anyone..Please dont say the cosmic Buddha, someones just made a cake for my mum and brought it round, I must grab my share and quickly, impermanence is happening fast
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 3:09 pm

Hey again to you Howard,

I`m so glad you`re not up for a point by point examination of who said what
and why. Really, I think we`ve said what we want to. I think all those points
indicate something underlying a bit deeper that wants clarifying. I don`t
know what that is for the life of me right now.

Going back to one earler point however, I recall Jay saying that it was when
he realized that Eko had `totally written him of`, that he finally called it a day.
This suggests to me that he was prepared to live with situation and work with
it going forwards but for that.

It`s for that reason that I think he would still be in Shasta now if it were not
for Eko. Following from that, I don`t think he was about to fall into some
spiritual nightmare scenario. From that its ...give the guy a break. I think he
could use one right now. He`s not even making ends meet yet.

That`s my take really. Maybe I should have taken this shorter route ?

Anyway, At this moment I`d just like to buy you a beer, sit back, and stare
out across a smoky room and think of nothing in particular. Are we cool with
that ?

Take it easy, Stan.
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 4:13 pm

Howard.

Sorry Howard. I forgot your last question....

" I am not sure of how the OBC approach of just just having faith in the words
of those who are senior to you or putting questionable stuff on the back burner
and such views can easily meet the OBCC approach of questioning everything.
....any suggestions ?".

Answer. Yes. If the OBC doesn`t run a website that tries to answer ALL
questions, Just keep OBCC running. Do all OBCCers question everything ?

Cheers, Stan.
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 5:45 pm

Ol`ga.

Hi Ol`ga,

I did see your first message to me but I thought I would lie low for a bit.
I figured that if I made a response, you would find some other point of
contention to bring up. It didn`t take you long to find something new so, here
we are again.

You extracted the first part of my letter to Henry with which to berate me. You
said I sat in judgment of his handling of his own experiences with Jiyu and Co.
..So superior, admonishing.
You took that part of my letter out of context though.

Henry had a pretty good go at Jay which I thought was unreasonable and
hurtful. my letter was addressed to this aspect of his own posting. Henry
didn`t spare himself in telling Jay how he had got it all wrong and how he
should be living his life. Maybe you didn`t notice or, is it one rule for one
but not the others ?

You then go on to clue me in how I should behave to you seniors on the
forum. I really liked that double bind thing where you say I have not rendered
myself vulnerable in my postings. BECAUSE of this, I have to tread carefully
when I comment on other peoples handling of their own life experiences and
even give them unsolicited advice. publicly. Fair enough.

Guess what Ol`ga, that`s exactly what I`ve been saying !! I have another
problem here though. I just don`t feel vulnerable. I can`t join your little
vulnerable club I`m afraid.

So, I`m sorry, I wasn`t admonishing Henry who I too hold in a lot of respect.
A fortnight ago whilst on the Eko topic, I told him I held him in near hero
status regarding his Eko/Redemption post. I went on to say that he was up to
doing Eko`s old job so please don`t say I disrespect him. I disagreed with a
posting of his. Apparently, that`s permissible .

I wasn`t hurt or piqued by your comments to me so you needn`t be sorry on
my behalf. Thank you anyway.

Peace you say ? I would definitely prefer that option to what I`ve been
getting. Truly Ol`ga, Peace to you too.
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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 7:38 pm

Hi Stan,

Sometimes we agree, other times we don't. And sometimes we are passionate about what we feel or believe.
You don't mince words either, thankfully.

I rather liked your message to Jay:

We all tend to `bare our souls` a little here on the forum. it is a
little bit disappointing if someone says they are not interested in
our community but just wants to use the facilities.


I hope I am not taking it out of context.
And I hope I am not opening another can of worms.

Ol'ga
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:31 pm

Since I appear to have started this mess, I feel obliged to comment. I have to say I’m more in the Lise camp than that of my usual unruly compatriots. While I don’t disavow what I wrote (first post on this thread) and believe it was good to write it, I do believe I could have written my views in a manner that was less harsh and alienating. I think it’s been written before, perhaps even by Howard, that writing on a forum can be a bit like driving down the freeway. When someone annoys you it is much easier to honk and get angry when we’re protected by a ton or so of steel. The internet is a bit like that sort of anonymity/protection, and being so, it’s easier to forget the humanity of those with whom we disagree.

In addition, Jay is likely in a very vulnerable place. I don’t mind him using this site a little to further his career. Like Lise, it didn’t appear to me to exactly be Jay in a clown suit with balloons. I feel that way because any way that an ex monk can be helped to get back on his feet is OK with me. That is an obstacle course not many people can understand. If I could, I would re write parts of what I wrote to be less harsh, and perhaps less hurtful to Jay (if he did experience it as hurtful). At this point, it needs to stay as it is, if only to make sense of later posts. We create the atmosphere of this site, and we all disagree what that atmosphere should be. I enjoy being provocative, and actually believe it can be extremely useful; however, in this instance, I had reservations about the degree of provoking I employed. Like others, however, my time for OBC Connect is limited. Often, after I read a post, I feel like I have to just go with what I wrote, because I just don’t have the time to make it sound just so. I need to state my view and get on with the million things I need to do for the day (and night—I work until 8pm or so). But that decision, like all decisions, has its consequences; and reading subsequent posts, I think my reservations of my original post were not without reason.

Even so, I think my annoyance and subsequent harsh tone to Jay were also not without reason. Though I’d like for this site to give some help to Jay by allowing some leeway in regard to some rules, I did find his combination of using the site to his ends along with such an utter disinterest in what occurs on this site to be an annoying mixture. This is a significant part of what I got from Jay’s posts: “I want to say that Rev. Kennett is a living Buddha, but I don’t want to hear what you have to say. Here is my business card. As soon as I hear from the people I want to hear from (which is not you guys) I’m outa here.” Though other more positive messages were mixed in there, that message was pretty clearly in there too. While this is waving a red cape in front of my Taurus nature and explains my harsh response more than Stan’s theory of unresolved OBC trauma, I still feel some rounding of the sharp edges of my post could have helped. I don’t need a third hair shirt, but these are my feelings. I like Jay, haven’t seen him for years, and my post doesn’t exactly deserve the reintroduction, howdy, how’ve you been, amicable person of the year award.

I would also like to further explain my disagreement with Stan’s assessment of the cause of the tone and vehemence of my post. It is not due to some deep buried hurt from my experience at Shasta, but more an expression of my personality. My rants are not limited to my views on the OBC and any form of religion that suppresses our innate intelligence and powers of discernment in general; rather they are wide ranging. Just last week I waxed poetic (others would have a different description) to my boss when I thought she was way out of line both in how she wanted me to deal with a client and her assessment of my time management. Everyone present was sitting with heads looking at their laps, wishing to be elsewhere, and waiting for the confrontation to be over. That weekend, many of the therapists and my boss (who’s been quite friendly to me—I think she knew I was right), went out to dinner for a celebration, and one of the therapists suggested that someone tie a string to a certain part of my anatomy so that when I go off, I can be yanked and brought back to a more reasonable plane. That suggestion received widespread acclamation.

Actually, Stan, I think I have a lot in common with Rev. Kennett’s less savory character traits. I also think that if I had become one of the chosen, I would have gone off the rails quite a bit myself. Too much power, too much adulation, too much authority over people who learned over decades to distrust their own perceptions and assessments of those in authority. Monks learned that from Rev. Kennett, and that is what allowed Eko to be [admin delete] he was. That is why the monks who are still at Shasta are “shocked” at what he’s done. They are no longer able to see the obvious. When I was at Shasta, criticism of Rev. Kennett and her methods, no matter how cruel (see my posts in Introductions>Kaizan) was verboten. Those who did so publicly were breaking the precepts, and were to be avoided like one would avoid a virus. It makes sense that Jay would enter this site protecting himself from the virus, getting his job done ASAP and be gone. I think this is one reason why his short stay has created such a stir. This happens when anyone comes to this site and replicates an established, dysfunctional OBC dynamic here on OBCConnect. The original dysfunctional OBC dynamic that was played out when OBC supporters came to this site was: Where there is hurt there is self. Learn the meaning of no self and you will not have to bring up past wrongs done by the OBC or Rev. Kennett. Those who bring up these supposed past wrongs are just spiritually immature. That dynamic played out many times with many players, always causing an uproar, and understandably so. It is why I and many are here: to point out and make clear the dysfunctional dynamics the OBC supporters not only often don’t see, but actually elevate to spiritual virtues. To make people aware of an organization doing this is, to me, neither spiritual immaturity nor breaking the precepts.

So Stan, I stand by all of what I said, though I know I could have said it less harshly and hopefully as effectively. And while I remain on this site, I will continue to repeat these ideas as circumstances warranting doing so arise. So much of what I’ve continued to hear (Jay being the latest installment) points to a way of thinking (or not thinking) that I think creates great harm. The monks of Shasta have not been challenged for decades--by anyone they can’t control, silence, or AVOID--on ways they are dysfunctional and do harm. The views expressed here, however, have been continuously shut down by the OBC for decades. This site is quite young compared to that time frame and it is important that there is a venue to express these views that cannot be controlled. If this site continues to challenge their sacred cows that many believe have caused and continue to cause harm, I believe that is good. What is also good about this site, and I hope it continues, is that we have differing opinions and can challenge each other. We allow others to come on the site and challenge us, which is why I am with Lise and Stan that we have to be aware of the environment we create for dissenters from the majority positions. I think we should challenge what we believe is wrong thinking, but not be so harsh as to make dissenters feel unwelcome. But, Stan, you have to also realize, that those who hold their views as sacred truths often feel unwelcome simply by having those views challenged (see Isan’s post). I have no interest in being wishy washy, but we can (for those who want) consider the effect as well as the meaning of our words. I imagine I’ll remain on the blunt and to the point end of that spectrum, but I can’t be at that end unthinkingly or without compassion, or I’ll go over the line, I’m sure. Actually, I’m sure I will anyway, but I am open to hearing from anyone about that. I imagine sometimes I’ll agree, sometimes not. One point I’d like to make on this subject is that the worst of what I’ve seen on OBC Connect, does not come close to what I saw Rev. Kennett or Eko or others do to squash dissenting opinions. There was humiliation, shunning, and threats involved. People were made to feel crazy for simply perceiving the obvious. The worst that is on OBC Connect is some bull headedness and insensitivity. (Personally I think Howard is worse than me on that score, but he might reject that). Also Jay wrote about how transparent Rev. Kennett was. She was not so with me. She would tell me one thing and have Rev. Eko come at me with quite the opposite (this is not conjecture). I could no longer trust her or what she said, so I left.

Lastly, regarding Diana, it was not my intention to chide her. However, if Diana feels that I did chide her, I would be happy to apologize and review how I expressed myself to prevent such misunderstandings in the future.

PS Thank you Stan for continuing to contribute. Wish there were more voices from the OBC.


Last edited by Lise on Sat Oct 01, 2011 2:05 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : forum rules violation / name-calling)
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Diana



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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:39 pm

Hey Guys,

Just wanted to say, I'm cool, don't worry about me. Ya know, a little therapy goes a long way. Personally, I've been working on my end of things really hard for several years now. I'm not as quick to reply or post as I used to be. I find it easier to control my emotions now. That old hair-trigger anger is thankfully gone. That anger for me, was a secondary emotion that was hiding some serious fear and what I percieved as threat. Trauma works that way. It's weird in that for a while there, I thought I was "using" that anger in a "constructive way" in that I was helping others and was some sort of anti-cult warrrior. Ha ha! Guess what, there will always be cults and there will always be people perfectly happy in their little cults. And there will always be abuse and people out there harming others. I guess as I prepare to really help others and go to work as a therapist, I am finding that the key action is that people have to be in a certain place and ready and wanting for change before they come see me. Everyone has their stuff and is in a certain readiness to work and it takes courage and I respect that.

The fact that we are here is good! We are working out our stuff. We can learn from this. We really should at least try and have some compassion for ourselves here. I know some of us have really been harmed or we wouldn't be so passionate about what we say here! That actually is a sure sign that we still have things to work out- the fact that things get under our skin and we blow up, or rant, or whatever.

Another thing I have come to realize is that the odds of the OBC going away are pretty slim. I have my doubts as to just how much reformation can actually happen. I really don't think it's possible for them to be a more "open" community. The rules are set. There is no way that the hierarchy can change- it's too central to the way things are run. I also don't see how many more current OBC supporters could possibly cross the line here without suffering some sort of backlash. I knew many people who would be terrified to post here. That cult magic really has a way of controlling people. I'm telling you, this is well researched stuff here and I've done the research.

I'm really thankful that the forum is here because it has helped me work through a terrifying fear. The fact that everyone has come out against Eko and he is gone has helped me to face my fears and to heal. It was a huge relief when everything started coming out. I swear, I felt like screaming at everyone the last time I was at the Abbey: "the emperor has no clothes!" I was stupified that no one was doing anything about Eko. It made me doubt myself. It made me think that maybe I was a crazy, young, naive, stupid, girl like Eko said. But I have faced my fears and I am better for it. Still think the OBC is a cult and I always will (sorry current members, that's just the way it is).

Love to you all!

And Peace!

Diana
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Ol'ga

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:15 pm

Hi,
I don't want to write much now, but would very much like to thank you, Isan, for your excellent post (of Today at 12:36 pm).
Also, Bill R., if you don't mind going there, would you tell us a bit more about the meeting when Roshi castigated Isan, Daizui (Daizui?!) and others which you mentioned in your post on this thread? When did it happen? Do you know how Daizui was then admitted back into her grace? I find your writing about this, Bill, helpful. I don't know if you, Isan, wish to revisit it.
I would like to thank you, Henry, for your thoughts.
Ol'ga
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Howard

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:30 pm

Hey Chisan

cant work out who is the most senior..in other words is there any one in the lineage above Rev Mein or do they connect to Sojiji or any where. Bluntly are they answerable to anyone..Please dont say the cosmic Buddha

I don't think anybody needs to worry about who is Rev Meians senior. One would hope that after her length of time in the saddle that she'd ask and consider the advice of the riders beside her. If there was a rider in front, whose to say they'd be any better than what history has already demonstrated. One could just as easily ask if she'd be able to instigate any changes if the majority of the other seniors didn't agree with it. I think practically speaking what you are seeing at the top at Shasta today is collegial management practises for any significant decisions.
The admonishment to take the advise of your senior (ordination date) is just a monastic control that saves a lot of superfluous ego debate with juniors when it works or becomes a method of censure and manipulation when it doesn't. A spiritual pozi scheme that can help or hinder depending on how well it's participants sublimate their ego's.

Who are any of us really answerable to, but karma.

Oh yes dear! coming! Sorry Chisan..karma calls.
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deweyboy



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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:44 pm

OK, just to remind people, Deweyboy is my cat and my name is John from San Francisco. You have seen me in and out of here for a few years. I was a member of Berkeley and went to Shasta many times. I also was a Jesuit novice for two years, living in silence along the Hudson River so I know the trauma of leaving a monastery.Jay was the only person that I would consider my Buddhist Teacher. He was enormously kind to me and up until the other day,I longed to know what happened to him.

After he went back to Shasta from Berkeley, he seemed so sad and beaten down. He told me that Eko wouldn't let him practice his art. I loved Berkeley because of Jay and was suspect of Shasta because of some of the nasty monks that I encountered there.

I'm not sure where I am going with this. I wish I could call Eko and tell him to share

some of that wealth that he has with Jay.
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Howard

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:12 am

Hey Stan

the irresistible force meets the immovable object`.

You calling me irresistible or is that just the beer talking?

Do all OBCCers question everything ?
We are all obliged at the OBCC to put those "?"at the end of every second thought.


Actually trying to categorise the OBCC membership on anything is up there with herding cats and pretty much a guarantee of putting at least one nose out of joint every time. I can get away with it by speaking repetitively enough of it that most members have granted me special simple status, think I'm joking or just sigh & move on to the next posting.

Somewhere you had indicated that you felt like a minority share holder here so I just wanted to say that I think almost everyone here has expressed some version of that same thing at different times. For me, it's been those type of uncomfortable feelings that often motivated me to face personal issues that I might not have otherwise explored. Henrys uncalled for slights are a constant practise opportunity.

One of the most interesting changes that I've noticed here is that disparately thinking members have become more accommodating to each others views over time. There is more of a realization that everyone else here is also just trying to make sense of it all. I smile when I find myself wondering what it would be like to have us all physically meet in the same living room.

Oh I can just feel the nervousness rippling through the forum as I write.

Anyway the offered brew & easy chair is appreciated.



PS to Henry. Making your font smaller doesn't make anything else look bigger.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Differing views on looking back   Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:48 am

Good post Dewey boy..I prefer John I like your sentiments

Howard Thanks for your reply It not quite the answer for me let me try a different question

I know nothing about Shasta any more Are they cut off from the Soto Zen sect?
Do they have a connection with other Buddhist groups?
Or are the stand alone?
The feeling I have is that they have ostracized them selves and been ostracized by others ?

The next question with the talk of kenshos,at Shasta, and claims and titles of kensho was there any verification from any other teacher, outside the inner circle,older and experienced teachers like Bob Aitkin? I know people who sat with Walter Nowick went and carried on with Bob, as did some people that left Shasta
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