Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Currently Reading: Hardcore Zen: Punk Rock, Monster Movies and the Truth About Reality by Brad Warner

Hardcore Zen is not your typical "Zen" book. Brad Warner, the young punk who grew up to be a Zen master, spares no one — just like Reality itself. This bold new approach to the Why of Zen Buddhism is as strongly grounded in the tradition of Zen as it is utterly revolutionary: Warner's voice is hilarious, and he calls on the wisdom of everyone from punk and pop culture icons to the Buddha himself to make sure his points come through loud and clear. The subtitle says it all: there has never been a book like this one.

Favorite Quotes:

"Religions, the supposed institutional repositories of humanity's understanding of the deeper mysteries of the universe, have never offered anything more to me than sophisticated methods of avoiding the truth, of building elaborate fantasies in place of reality".

"The last thing Buddha told his followers before he died was this: "Question Authority"."

"Suffering occurs when your ideas about how things ought to be don't match how they really are".

"........Even if you get what you want it's still suffering because it won't last".

"Nothing can possibly live up to the ideals and fantasies you’ve created. So we suffer because things are not the way we think they ought to be. Rather than face what really is, we prefer to retreat and compare what we’re living through with the way we think it oughta be. Suffering comes from the comparison between the two".

 "Things can never be other than they are. This moment can never be other than it is".

"We have a world in our minds that we call “perfect” and a world in front of us (and within us) that can’t possibly match that image. The problem is the way we let our desires stand in the way of our enjoyment of what we already have".

"The past and the future—even the present—are just inventions by the conscious mind for dealing with reality in an organized way".

"True right and wrong don’t necessarily overlap completely with society’s definitions of right and wrong—and different societies don’t even agree on those definitions in the first place!

"It’s not that a “good person” has only moral thoughts. It’s that they act only upon the moral thoughts and not the immoral ones................Your desires are not what you really are. Not even close. Your thoughts aren’t the real you either. They’re just electrical energy bouncing around in your brain".

"Experiencing anger is like sitting in the bathtub frantically thrashing around and throwing handfuls of water into the air while simultaneously wondering why the hell your head and face keep getting wet. You’re in a stupor so deep you cannot even see that you’re the one causing the problem".

"The universe desires to perceive itself and to think about itself and you are born out of this desire".

"There’s no room for souls or for reincarnation because in order to have a soul, you need to have a past and in order to be reincarnated you need to have a future".


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