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GLaCorte: Zazen Kapleau

To: alt.zen,alt.religion,talk.religion.buddhism,talk.religion.misc,alt.magick.tyagi
From: (nagasiva)
Subject: GLaCorte: Zazen re: Kapleau
Date: 11 Jun 1996 10:06:03 -0700

[from alt.philosophy.zen: (GERALD J. LA CORTE)]

Greetings all,

I practice meditational yoga and have been inquiring into various forms 
of meditation and pre-meditational practice.  Naturally, one of my first 
stops was zazen.  I've been reading Kapleau's book _The Three Pillars of 
Zen_ and have two questions.

Let me give some background first, before I pose my questions.  There 
is something called raja-yoga, which is foundational for most of the 
various types of meditation and pre-meditational practice.  Its made of 
eight steps: yama (ethics), niyama (practices), asana (postures), 
pranayama (meditation upon the breath), pratyahara (blanking the mind), 
dharana (focus of thought), dhyana ("real" meditation), and samadhi 
(essentially advanced meditation).

Zazen appears to focus upon pranayama and pratyahara.  On the other side 
of the scale, enlightenment appears to occur all to often - Kapleau must 
be refering to dhyana or samadhi in those cases.

On the other hand, he mentions kensho and satori quite a bit.  But I'm 
uncertain as to where and how they fit in to the raja-yoga picture.  
Could you help me?

From a previous thread, I gathered that satori may be equivalent to 
dhyana.  There are eight degrees or levels of samadhi, and dhyana may be 
views as "zero-degre samadhi".  Dharana, as mentioned is focus of 
thought.  For example upon "Mu", or koan, or mantra, or mental image of a 
deity, or symbol of a deity.

Raja-yoga was codified by an Indian scholar and avatar named Pantanjali, 
who is roughly equal to or greater than Dogen, so I'm certain kensho and 
satori fit in somewhere.

Thank-you and bests,


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