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 Rev. Bridin Rusins

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Lise
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PostSubject: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Sun Oct 13, 2013 5:25 pm

First topic message reminder :

From Shasta Abbey's news section , posted 12 October 2013:

"We are sorry to say that Rev. Bridin departed from the Abbey on October 9th, to take up to a year’s leave of absence, both for medical reasons and to clarify her spiritual purpose. She left on good terms, and we support her in this decision and hope she will return. We are grateful for her 16 years of training with us, and wish her well."

I hope her health improves -
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Mon Nov 04, 2013 3:14 pm

The road to repentence is a hard old road Pete but whilst you are trudging along
 allow me to ask you a question by changing your last line:
Would you consider your ex wife more important than Buddha, Dharma and Sangha?
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:53 pm

Michael...Michael...Michael...

Do I look like the kind of dweeb that'd let my w.o.t.t. down? (wife of the time).
Or do dweebs even come in kinds?

That picture's 10 years old even...but I still look blurred 'n bleary.

You know you care--you can't fool us.  You know it could have been better, or you wouldn't be here.  and we know it could not have been better, if it wasn't, so the only way to get to better is today, or tomorrow.

Now then how bout you psychic jiu-jitsu yourself?  I'm pretty sure you can beat yourself up! and come out a winner!

My only thought for dear Ms. X, among the myriad thoughts, was to blow her mind...one day she came to the house where we once lived, and told me something I didn't like, as I was washing my dishes...She stood on the heater, to let it blow up her skirt, a fun thing for her from the olden days, and didn't like my sourpuss.  She started yelling at me...and I finished the dishes...dumped the water, took my gloves off and started barking in reply, to every phrase she said.  It's hard to bark when you're laughing, but there's the secret to my success...argument over.  She wheeled around and left. 

Man if you guys had only learned to bark at Shasta Abbey; we wouldn't be howling at the moon now.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:55 pm

Pete, in a way it's unfortunate I'm not able to share the bulk of four years' correspondence files with you, so you could read for yourself how many people did bark, at Shasta Abbey and Throssel, and other OBC spots, before they left of their own accord, or were tossed out for the barking.

I think a site like OBC Connect would have come about eventually regardless of who said what 30 years ago or 20 or 10, and regardless of the high drama of a scandal like Mike Little.  Exposure/accountability/visibility are gifts (maybe) of the internet age and it's very hard to keep bad things quiet, when enough people see it or experience it. 

I'm interested in your comment above:   "B) Assume the dis-ease of the perpetrator drives that person into awareness of their mistakes, and they feel that sickening 100% wrongness."

Based on your knowledge of Michael Little and his situation, do you feel this assumption applies?  Is he aware of his mistakes? Does he feel he was wrong?
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:54 pm

Yes Pete I do care,I can recognize a tough spot. The unfortunate thing about any situation that hits where it hurts is our vuinerability is exposed. whether it is the wott or an ex teacher,we are in new territory,and new territory means we do not know how to handle it or what to do. In fact I believe we create new tools in order to handle it.Some times the new tools dont sit easy,sometimes we meet fire with fire,we do and say things that we are not used to saying,sometimes we act in ways we have been told not to act.fighting through murk is not easy. Not for everyone life is sometimes brutal,a true warrior can put down his sword when it is no longer needed
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:11 am

You make some lovely points, Pete, in the last post and all along the way. I would like to say, nevertheless, that it is profoundly difficult to reconcile and repair a relationship when one side of that relationship refuses to meet the other somewhere along the way. The absolute stance than the senior Zen Master cannot be questioned or criticized, (well, they can, but you will always be wrong if you do) is an impregnable fortress and you have no way of knowing how far some of these folks have gone to try to repair and reconcile quite monstrous damage. Hoping someone else will change is risky business in the closest of relationships. The unique relationship between a master and disciple, spiritual leader and student is so inherently unbalanced that abuse is one of the easiest of mistakes to make and the OBC had abuse built into its core. I would ask you to remember that you do not know everything that those on this forum experienced so it would be wiser, though not near as much fun, not to judge.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 05, 2013 6:21 am

I see Annes has clocked in again,ah is it time for round 2 of my complaints of all things nice and tasty (but gone off) I will try and bite my tongue (as opposed to some old Dorset rock cakes)
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 05, 2013 11:06 am

Carol wrote:
I learn by going where I have to go.
     - Theodore Roetke
Liked the quote. Another poet to explore. Any particular reading recommendations?


Josh wrote:
love that quote from Roetke.  was thinking how wonder-full dis-enchantment is.
"Dis-encharntment" -- exactly. It's puzzling that the word disenchantment is almost always used with a negative connotation  representing a loss rather than a re-connection with reality.For me its been important to realize that the basic process is self-enchantment -- it's always been about my hopes and what I was grasping for.

The title of the book "Trances We Live" by Stephen Wolinksky comes to mind.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:48 pm

Lise, Michael, Polly -- I bow to your greater understanding.

One thing, Lise--I don't barking as a metaphor -- I literally barked like a dog.  As I laughed...
I cannot doubt that you all did your best.  I admit, I wasn't there to help row the ship and three drums back into the current. 

Here's all I know about the Michael Little et aliter case:  "The Law of Karma is inevitable and inexorable."  As Rev. Master Jiyu said once -- from a strict Buddhist perspective, you do not have to punish a criminal (just restrain him from perpetrating further harm).  I saw a TV interview of a guy who stalked a starlet, and since she wouldn't have him, murdered her.  He said: "I claimed I loved her; but my anger at being rejected overwhelmed that. Now I can't escape seeing her face every day of my life.  What I did was completely wrong."

I myself sat down to meditate to "get enlightened!" (and it better come soon, cuz the tar and feathers crowd is closing!).  Instead of "Breakthrough in the grey room!" as William Burroughs called a flash of insight...I saw videos of myself in situations I thought were stare decisis: settled law. Ulp. If I refused to understand what I was seeing, I saw it again; again; again.  At first I saw pomposity and a touch of egomania in the me on the screen...Oh well, I said--so I'm not perfect.  That did not stop the show.  Oh well, I said--so I messed up.  That did not stop the show.  Oh no! I said--that was really stupid.  Show went on.  Oh no! I have hurt someone, stupidly (root word: unconscious)...that seemed to help...but finally I had to start contacting people to say I'm truly sorry.  What the heck happened here?  I ended up doing a 180...and if I could magic slate it...believe it, would've. 

Little Jiminy Cricket had been squeaking all along--I thought I settled that with a good foot stomp?  No...he peels off the sole of my shoe, and pops himself back to 3-D and hops right back on the shoulder of the sitting meditator who's supposed to get enlightened before the villagers with torches arrive...and starts whispering once again.  I've said too much -- as usual.  Anyone who let me up, with their sword at my throat, and their foot on my chest, like St. George with the despicable dragon, has my undying gratitude. 

If you know better be assured of this--the wrongdoer, unless completely blackhearted maybe--does not! Not at the time.  "Don't just do something; sit there!" Rev. Master Jiyu said her bumper sticker could be--a real remedy for not getting in trouble, for life!

Michael?  You do care!  That's all a person hopes to know...So--you gonna change the past?  I think Dogen said we could! "Change the past, change the present, change the future..." isn't that somewhere? 

You are so right about laying down the sword. Doesn't that change the past? Kind of like that story of the samurai meets the Zen Master...http://www.101zenstories.com/index.php?story=57

Maybe I could have found a better way to deal with Ms. X.  She might have responded , if I could have scraped myself together.  (And not made up a fake factoid like she was wearing a skirt, for dramatic effect--forgive me.  She hardly ever wore a skirt; not for me--for a job maybe.) Something better than barking like a dog.  Our daughter wanted Puppy In A Pocket for Xmas, once; I couldn't buy it--broke our hearts.  She also wanted a pet from the pound. Didn't do that either.  But? I could always use a Buddhist In A Backpack, if it were feasible.  Instead I have to live by the feeble light of my own understanding.  Either go real slow, or improve the light--somehow?
 
Jung said: "Neurosis is the refusal to suffer."  I picked the time with, and after, W.O.T.T. to suffer, rather than perpetuate suffering.  One day (five years later) I called up me sainted mother and said: "I'm done crying.  The tears have dried up."  It was just a natural development, no force.

Polly: You are so right--you can only play one side of the Ping-Pong table. If you say I'm judging, here's the gavel--I have no right to sit at the bench...just playing grownup.  Here's what I thought today, driving in to work...while I still have a job, which is ending...and as always as things end, I don't like it:  Rev. Master Jiyu said she was told "You have to bring Zen to the West, but not Japanese Zen...you have to make it your own."  Is it true of Japanese society and culture that social order is voluntarily maintained by a strict inner code of decorum, ethics, manners?  We don't have that in America.  The idea here, especially the West Coast, especially in those days of the founding of the Abbey was on the airwaves as "Get it on, bang the gong, get it on."  "Whatever, man..."  so--each person wasn't a wall forming a small room where the principal actor was kabuki-ing on...we're so laid back, we're almost passed out...yes, we are passed out...so without a continuous external push-back, a person feeling good can start to spin delusions.  If look up Delusion in the DSM (Diagnostics and Statistics Manual of Psychiatry) I think you'll find like three kinds...grandeur is one.  Once again, I've done it.  My delusions of grandeur were even worse, however, than a puffed-up person's who grows arbitrary and overweening.  My delusions weren't based on anything!  It's like calling a vivid lime green sno-cone bought at the county fair Mt. Sumeru...and to claim I'd climbed it. 

So, once again, Polly -- it's been great talking to you all.  I really should listen a whole lot more.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 05, 2013 2:00 pm

God that Jiminy Crickett line was great. Sorry about the job, that's a big fat drag. Please don't feel reprimanded, I have my own issues with grandeur and delusion. You are too much fun to lose. I was "just saying".
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 05, 2013 3:08 pm

Same from me, Pete, don't let us chase you off. We push back not to reprimand you, but to challenge/disagree/seek clarification.

To follow up a bit more on Michael Little, I asked about the assumptions you made about wrongdoers because they are directly related to your questions below -

pete x. berkeley wrote:

is there any way to reconciliation?  Reparation? 
And Polly noted that people must meet each other somewhere along the way, in order to reconcile and repair. And I'm thinking, if people aren't aware / won't admit they've done wrong, they haven't even taken a first step, have they? Do you see what we're getting at? 

Discussions about Michael Little aren't intended as punishment for him; he is not important in this, except perhaps as a cautionary tale about repression and the effects of power. People who were harmed are the ones who matter and deserve to be heard. Karmic consequences will unfold as they will, I trust that's true, and it needn't prevent us from listening to people in the meantime and possibly helping others avoid harm.

Long speech, enough from me for today.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 05, 2013 4:20 pm

Ya'all? too kind.

"God bless its pointed little head," as Grace Slick said.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 05, 2013 10:41 pm

Polly you are so right. The inability to admit mistakes is a fundamental flaw. Even Nansen could regret his actions.

I have been thinking about the problems that the OBC has had going back to the beginning. And I have come to the conclusion that even before the previous lives era when it was still the Zen Mission Society we had a tendency to to confuse discipline and repression. Japanese Zen is after all a rather disciplined affair, but true discipline can be questioned whilst repression is always right and unquestionable. It is the common problem with all forms of fundamentalism; questioning and different or dissenting views are not tolerated and are repressed. It seems to me that this leads to organisations meandering off into strange cul-de-sacs of belief and behavior which are difficult to escape from because all questioning and doubt is suppressed in the name of Truth, nor can the representatives of the truth be questioned because they are the only ones who truly understand. 

It seems to me that what started out as relatively minor flaw in our make up slowly grew over time into a major problem where the open expression of the naivety and curiosity of beginners mind, the very path of zen, could no longer be tolerated. If I'm right it is very sad. Individuals maybe able to quietly get on with their own training but the organisation as a whole would be stuck.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Wed Nov 06, 2013 3:06 am

I agree Mark, a basic flaw and 1450 steps away from being a lamp for yourself.
the difficulty come down to the introduction to meditation. One certainly needs guidance nd most of us have a huge G for gullible tattooed on our forehead,so there is a tendency to follow and believe. there has to be some introduction despite the fact that the very opening words form additional mental verbage,but if a beginner is met with you have it all sit and do nothing that might not be too helpful either.
In our case JK returned from a  stay at Soji ji! with her mission to reform the Soto sect, a tall order,and we get a christian version! the danger ares are  as you say repression, but also the confusion with discipline and being told to drop the self, so ones opinions are not right especially challenging ones, and as Josh says further up the page the contact with the cosmic buddha for advice on direction does add to confusion
"especially when your "heart" was not in sync with Kennett's view or what the "cosmic buddha" was telling her"
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Wed Nov 06, 2013 11:43 am

Holy smokes! When you put it that way it's a wonder you didn't all run off naked and screaming into the underbrush. STIR that brain! 

I don't have any problem with asking for guidance and direction, done fully it means your heart and mind are completely open and whatever benevolent source you are turning to is going to be more than willing to slip in and show the way. However that works for you. It's a subtle and miraculous thing and it never fails, unless you insert yourself into the equation. If you insert someone else, like your zen master, you have really lost the virtue of the thing.  I am thinking of the few times I have asked for guidance when I kept my own proclivities and emotions completely quiet. The answer comes immediately and...sweetly. If I were to run off and ask someone else what they thought about it I would be, it feels to me, damaging and devaluing the gift. And if I took that person's word over my heart's assurance, well, that seems really disastrous. What would be the point? Why ask the Cosmic Buddha anything if Jiyu took it upon herself to interpret it? Inquiring minds want to know.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Wed Nov 06, 2013 12:18 pm

and of course the real question is
How is zazen taught?
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Wed Nov 06, 2013 12:58 pm

Polly wrote:
Holy smokes! When you put it that way it's a wonder you didn't all run off naked and screaming into the underbrush. 
 - who said we didn't?
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Wed Nov 06, 2013 3:47 pm

Well, yeah, that's a point, Mark. Now I wish I had been there....but just for that bit.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Wed Nov 06, 2013 4:11 pm

funny  funny

I'm thankful to have few memories of the mid-seventies, when people were still running about naked as if it were the late sixties.

My nursery school was very conservative, definitely not the clothing-optional kind.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:17 pm

You know that phrase: "It goes without saying." ?  There should be a corollary: "It goes with saying.." or equivalent, meaning if you have to talk it out, there's something not settled yet.  

In churches, we repeat the liturgical cycle, repeat seasonal readings, because there's more to learn maybe?...if we have to have plainly stated, memorizable 10 Commandments, the 2 Great Commandments of Jesus (or 3, or 4--all in Matthew--depends on the translation if they use the word commandment), 5 Precepts, 10 Precepts, 3 Pure Precepts, sutras, Dharma talks, discussion...is it because we're not there yet?  There's a need to be re-minded.  To re-make our minds up.

When Thomas Aquinas had his mystical experience saying Mass, afterward he didn't take up his dictation on the Summa Theologica--as was his custom.  His secretary--His three secretaries, quill pens all sharpened, ink ready, vellum, or hand-pressed paper ready...each would get a paragraph, they hold in short-term memory and scratch down, then back to the first "Father, aren't you going to dictate on your Summa?"  Aquinas replies:
“I can write no more. All that I have written seems like straw.”

He didn't live much longer; he cracked his head on an overhanging tree branch as the monks rode out on donkeys to the monastery in the hills, away from the plague-infested cities, for the summer.  And he didn't talk about the revelations of his mystical experience that made his erudite ratiocinations seem elemental.  Despite having claimed he heard the Voice of God in a vision: "You have written well of me."

If the mystical experience wasn't ineffable--we be forced to talk and keep on talking.  If Zen training doesn't lead to the silence of the heart, then why don't we just turn on the TV?  Those who keep devaluing their Shasta experience, as if they were paid in Monopoly money?  just mingle in the world, and mingle some more...it's enough to make a person sick. 

you actually with well-developed insight, have learned patience that can make people well.  Why don't you count your treasure! It is your own!  When I wrote my Zen seminar paper on Aquinas Rev. Master gave me a "C."  I had 48 footnotes in 8 or 10 pages...all she wrote was: "He who counts another's treasure can never have his own."  You act like you don't know? Are not your hands are filled with gold, that comes from having learned to live--what did the Buddha call it--the pure life?  Take joy in what you tried to do, even if it didn't work all the way, to reach the brightness of mind you cannot buy in the world...instead of looking over one's shoulder at the shadows?

Somebody asked a General how the U.S. was going to get the military out of Iraq? "Declare victory!" he said, "and leave."
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Thu Nov 07, 2013 1:50 am

pete x. berkeley wrote:
...you actually with well-developed insight, have learned patience that can make people well.  Why don't you count your treasure! It is your own!  When I wrote my Zen seminar paper on Aquinas Rev. Master gave me a "C."  I had 48 footnotes in 8 or 10 pages...all she wrote was: "He who counts another's treasure can never have his own."  You act like you don't know? Are not your hands are filled with gold, that comes from having learned to live--what did the Buddha call it--the pure life?  Take joy in what you tried to do, even if it didn't work all the way, to reach the brightness of mind you cannot buy in the world...instead of looking over one's shoulder at the shadows?

Somebody asked a General how the U.S. was going to get the military out of Iraq? "Declare victory!" he said, "and leave."
Pete, well said.

The kicker, I think, is that we have to face our own personal-collective shadow, before we can recognize, as you so insightfully observe, that our "hands are filled with gold".

I think that both our individual and collective experience with RM Jiyu, and within the Order, is fraught with paradox: her insight and teaching was frequently wise (IMO)--its institutionalization (IMO) all too often veered into dysfunction.

I think that by recognizing the dysfunction that can result when genuine insight is institutionalized, it becomes possible to not only reclaim our own insight--but the foundational insight of the institution itself.

We can do this individually for ourselves at any time. 

But I suspect that this can only occur at a collective level when the institution or community itself is willing to engage in some form of collective recognition (if not sange as well).
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Thu Nov 07, 2013 2:58 am

Not sure I quite agree with you Kozan,.
I not sure that insight can be institutionized,I believe insight can be used to create an institution or a way or a practice
I think a lot of the issues we have talked about, come from the intitutionizing the way, and the setting up of power bases within institutions.

By contrast I bumped into a Theravadin monk yesterday,who was completely out of his normal circumstance,completely away from expectations and conformity. It kind of joined in a discussion I had this week about Mahayana and Theravada Buddhism,whether they take one away or take one to ones life. However I am happy to say that the monk,did not in any way look out of place,nor did he seem strange,nor did he try to attract attention or do anything other than what he was doing. What is so unusual about that? well nothing at all it was very nice to see. 
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Thu Nov 07, 2013 3:34 am

Ha, Michael, well said!

The point that I was trying to make (which you have articulated very well) is that whenever genuine insight is institutionalized, it tends to become a form of delusion.

At a practical level, I think that this tends to occur because genuine spiritual experience, insight, and teaching is always inherently paradoxical.

The human mind, and human institutions, have a hard time with paradox.

Human religious institutions, accordingly, invariably tend to reduce the paradox of spiritual teaching to whichever side of the paradox seems to best serve the needs of the institution itself.

The result (IMO) is institutionalized delusion.

I think that the only solution is to recognize this dynamic for what it is--on a continual daily basis!
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:50 am

Institutional delusion the madness of the masses
I'll put some in your birthday cake
And you can have a slice
Every day
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:20 pm

Kozan:  I think I understand your point, which I don't always, but can save for a rainy day...because I'm more or less parked a level below you, in Piaget's terms, in concrete operations (stories) not formal operations (abstract and generalize).  "Once upon a time" I can follow, but even though I read an abridged Summa Theologica, all I really did was keep my eyes moving over the text, looking for loose bricks, hoping to get a foot in somewhere...

So?  I remember being a little distressed seeing the stained glass windows right out of Lotus Blossom like what the heck is this?  an iChurch?  and then, to visit and see the nice and pricey stupa...in a country where, when you dig two feet down, you find big ole boulders of lava from the last explosion of the mountain across the street...which, should it happen again, will make that granite monument most irrelevant.  And it's not even what she wanted or asked for! (in the back pages of Lotus Blossom II...Course a skull on an altar in a cave at the White Cliffs of Dover might not have been any less costly.

Suffice it to say, and I really should have reached Go, collected 200 dollars and folded, long ago...here's what we wonder?
If I benefitted from my encounters with Shasta, Abbott 1 and Abbott 2, and the associate monks of various rank and order, including you when you were pulling the load in that difficult place to park a priory, the Oakland freeway overpass/inner city edge...if--where were we?

A benefits and improves understanding.  B does the same work but works longer hours, so B benefits somewhat more.  C the same, but greater commitment, longer time frame, and is leading the effort.  So? By the Commutative Law of Enlightenment:
If A < B, and B < C...A < C. 
If would be appropriate for me (A) to consider the advanced monk a Master; perhaps less so for the monk (B) in the middle range of practice, and experience.  At some point, B might = C, and B > C.
This is what Rev. Master said should happen if Zen Buddhism is to continue.

It would be appropriate for me to appreciate any little improvement along the Way...whereas, B has a wider range of experiences to weigh in the scales...So, even if there weren't any dramatic gripes, my experience does not extend all that far, which hasn't prevented me from spilling a lot of words.  A lot.  Over time, or just at the turning point of time, I can "see" how B might be turned off, or turn away. I turned away in the sense of never really getting with the program, but I still appreciate B and C -- they are positive numbers in my memory. Anyway...

I do recall sitting there and meditating in the hall, and then this mic comes on and the Abbott starts a sermon...which kind of went into she visited a Priory and smelled "the stench" of cooking food as soon as she entered the door, and the Prior at the time made one big mistake, in saying: "Lunch is almost ready.  I can't live without Mexican food."  Whoa--the mic was too hot, and Rev. M. was pouncing on that smackdown style...At that time I was so tangled up in my own psychic mishmash, I took some time to surface, and wondered what all the hubbub was about, didn't much like it, and decided to just keep on meditating and eventually the noise will die down.

Driving to work like the Last Days of Pompeii of my job...going away due to voice recognition software taking over...it dawns on me -- thirty years late -- if the Prior had said to the Abbott: "Lunch is almost ready.  I can't live without food!"  [I hope you find Mexican food acceptable?  If not, we'll see what else we have to offer...]  She's taking everything as a litmus test of Zen?  Don't express desire.  But not to express reality is a shortcoming...

you know that dumb Abbott long ago, with the sword, who cut the cat in two.  There is no "word of Zen" that isn't a word of reality:  Hey Mr. Master! This cat is blameless here...please let me find it a home if you don't want a cat in the monastery...thank you (taking the cat immediately and vamoosing). 

Anyway "wow" as I used to say, stuporous enough in the bad old days...change one word, like a railroad switch, and the freight train of disapproval goes to the siding, and we proceed elegantly along (we hope!)  If not. not.

OK: To sum it up, and then I must avaunt:  The Commutative Law of Enlightenment -- if a little bit's good and beneficial, gained through effort, those who put in a greater effort, and a greater commitment should necessarily have at least the same level of joy! I dunno...it's not accounting I guess.

In the presence of a Zen Master 'spress the truth, but not desire unless you i.d. it as desire, I guess? Like: "I hope it's OK if I like Mexican food? Actually, Rev. Master, any food will do...heck let's make stone soup!"

And finally (two finallies) I told the monk touring me around the new, improved Shasta -- since the disciple must be greater than the master, the next stupa's gonna have to be bigger yet...a taller what is that thing? like the Washington monument? the Egyptians? obelisk, obelisk, obelisk -- say it three times and it's yours...I said in a few generations, if Shasta keeps going, these things are going to be as big as rocket ships!"  Always helpful, trenchant and pithy, diplomatic too.

Second finally: Some have said Christianity crumbs got rolled into the Zen dough.  So?  What if it wasn't really "Christianity" but just: The Truth.  I ('spressing desire) did NOT like the Buddha having two birthdays a year and Jesus none.  What's the point of pretending we know nothing?  The Buddha was 600 years before Jesus...but we're 2000 years after approx.  There's no Truth to Jesus's teaching? That'd be a surprise.  I don't expect syncretism, but we don't need snootyism either.

Michael's got the birthday cakes cooking.  Just don't say you like it, man! Don't say "I can't live without it!" and by the way "I can't live with it!" is hardly any wiser...although that's what my W.O.T.T. claimed...and then she challenged me--"Why do you want to keep this marriage together?  You know you don't like me!"

"True," I replied, "I don't; not the way you treat me.  But the Beatles had a song for it -- 'I don't like you, but I love you...' and that's the way I feel."

We could totally blow Michael's mind by circulating a greeting card that says the same thing...and hope someone knows where to send it to reach him...and Peggy Kennett had a heck of a rotten early life and did her best to do better.  I think she did, and I'm gonna count my gold, again, and again and again...you can't roll in three or four doubloons, but you can throw them up in the air and watch them tumble and twinkle and fall...wheeEEEE!
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:38 pm

And now for a public service announcement, since we seem to be at a good closure point -  I've been reminded via PM of my own part in taking this thread very far off the original purpose, which was to let folks know the news of Rev. Bridin. I couldn't see a good way to split it and still preserve the offshoots, which have good/valuable stuff, so I didn't try.

At this point though, I agree we can take off-topic comments to a new thread, and allow this one to revert back in case there is news of Rev. Bridin.

This isn't meant to discourage discussion, just help it find its rightful home.
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Bridin Rusins   Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:01 pm

Hello All -  I have split some of the last posts on this thread, in order to give the offshoot discussion a better chance to continue.  Please see the new topic "Offering Correction to a Teacher" under "OBC Experiences".
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