Thread: Korean hwadu "What is this?"

  1. #1
    Forums Member inji's Avatar
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    Korean hwadu "What is this?"

    I found Martine Batchelor's commentary on the hwadu helpful.

    http://www.koreanbuddhism.net/jokb/p...&search_value=

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    Excellent! Straight to the point. My personal hwadu/huatou (Chinese pronunciation) is, "What is dragging this corpse around?". Ever come across any books by Chan Master Sheng Yen? There's a REAL good book on the huatou/hwadu method of practice if interested:

    Shattering The Great Doubt: The Chan Practice of Huatou by Chan Master Sheng Yen - that book is a gem.

  3. #3
    For the benefit of newbies, there's also some general information about Hua Tuo/Hwadu at Wikipedia.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hua_Tou

    Do you have a Chan teacher, Mu Chak ?

    I've heard it said and I've also read on the internet, that its not possible to practice Zen or Chan correctly without one-to- one instruction from a living teacher.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aloka View Post

    Do you have a Chan teacher, Mu Chak ?

    I've heard it said and I've also read on the internet, that its not possible to practice Zen or Chan correctly without one-to- one instruction from a living teacher.
    Here's a conversation between Ananda and Buddha regarding the benefits of studying with a spiritual friend on the path from the following Wikipedia article:

    In the Pali Canon's Upaddha Sutta (SN 45.2), there is a conversation between the Buddha and his disciple Ananda in which Ananda enthusiastically declares, 'This is half of the holy life, lord: admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie.' The Buddha replies:
    'Don't say that, Ananda. Don't say that. Admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie is actually the whole of the holy life. When a monk has admirable people as friends, companions, & comrades, he can be expected to develop & pursue the noble eightfold path.'
    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaly%C4...a-mittat%C4%81

    Thanks to the Buddha, Bodhisattvas and my teachers, I have encountered Chan teachings in this present life. In 2005, I had the good fortune to meet a spiritual friend/mentor who introduced Buddhism and sitting meditation practice from the Korean Son (Chan) tradition, and that friendship continues to this day. In truth, my teacher has no name and no form

    Take good care of yourself Aloka~

    Kindest regards,
    Mu Chak

  5. #5
    Thanks for sharing your personal experience of Chan Buddhism, Mu Chak. Here's a link to the complete sutta of SN 45.2 which you mentioned previously in post #4:

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipit....002.than.html


    For the interest of anyone who is a beginner, here's some information about the role of the teacher in Zen (taken from the website of 'Empty Bowl Zendo' a centre for the Soto Zen lineage in the USA):


    teacher-student

    The core teachings of Zen lie beyond words and concepts. Historically the teachings are passed on from teacher to student, a mind to mind transmission. To fully grasp and live out the teachings of our ancestors requires an intimate teacher student relationship.

    Zen teacher Norman Fischer speaks about this in an article from Shambhala Sun magazine: “In most traditional meditation-based Buddhist practice there is a tremendous emphasis on the centrality of the teacher and the idea that insight cannot be learned from books nor is it a matter of mystical intuition. In order to be liberated from self-attachment, the student needs to let go of self-view, and this is nearly impossible to do alone, since self-deception is so natural.”

    So this is to say that a good guide is very important to move forward in our practice; someone who knows the spiritual landscape and whose own insight has been sanctioned and approved by a realized teacher.

    continued at link:

    http://www.emptybowlzendo.org/#/stud...eacher-student
    Returning to Huatou, I found this.....

    "Chan Practice of Huatou " from the writings of Master Chi Chern

    The practice of Chan as a method came to its more completed form in later years of Chan development as a tradition. Between the two methods, namely, Huatou (話頭) and Silent Illumination (默照), Huatou as the main method was more commonly used for “Forest Dwelling” practitioners in Chan hall. Usually the Huatou would be “What is Wu?” “What is your original face before your parents were born?” “All dharmas return to one, where does one return?” etc.

    Later, in the development of Chinese Buddhism, reciting the name of the Buddha in the tradition of Pure Land became popular. There are morning and evening classes in the Chan hall, chanting Amitabha Sutra, the name of Maitreya Buddha, or other ways of reciting the name of the Buddha. Therefore, there was a saying “Chan and Pure Land practicing together”. Based on different practitioners, some also use the Huatou “Who is it that is reciting the name of the Buddha?” in Chan hall.

    However, if the practice becomes merely reciting the Huatou, even if it is recited day and night, and regardless how well it is recited, the practitioner can only reach the state of concentration. It is not yet the method of Huatou.


    continued: http://masterchichern.org/2013/10/30...ice-of-huatou/


  6. #6
    I also found this on YouTube:


    A patched robe monk asked Zen Master Pohwa Sunim, "What is this?"



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  8. #8
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    The hwadu "What is this?" that Martine Batchelor discusses is from the Platform Sutra. I find it interesting that Buddhadasa translated this particular sutra which gives it greater importance for me.

    I found this recently.

    http://www.fgu.edu.tw/~buddhist/chin...per_20/010.pdf

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