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“Each one helps . . .”

Posted: Tue Jan 08, 2019 5:32 pm
by clyde
“Each one helps . . .”

The purpose of this forum is to provide a space for its members to ask questions about Zen teachings and practices, to share our experiences and understandings with one another, and to encourage and support one another as Dharma friends.

The intended members are (These are ‘working’ definitions and are not meant in any official way.):
  • Zen students: They are studying and practicing Zen Buddhism under the guidance of a Zen teacher.
  • students of Zen: They are studying Zen Buddhism and practicing the Dharma without a Zen teacher.
  • the curious about Zen: They are not practicing Zen, but have an interest in learning about Zen’s teachings and practice.
This forum is specifically for lay-people and not for Zen monks, priests, or ordained teachers. I have the utmost respect for Zen teachers and the special relationship they form with students, but an informal and open forum is not conducive to such relationships and the presence of Zen teachers is not conducive to an informal and open discussion of students and the curious talking about “Zen”.

The forum is not a substitute for a Zen teacher and the student-teacher relationship. At best it’s a poor substitute for a sangha. But it’s an OK substitute for Dharma friends. It’s best as an addition to our practice.

I think of the forum this way:
“Don’t worry, we all help each other. The one-day person helps the one who just came in the door. The five-year person helps the one-year person. Each one helps according to his experience.”

- Thich Nhat Hanh to Norman Fischer
In this way, Zen Space and your participation is a service to the greater Zen sangha and tradition.

Re: “Each one helps . . .”

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:53 pm
by clyde
the rules

The rules are few and simple.

In Buddhist terms, Right Speech, at all times, in all places, is expected.

Right Speech can be thought of as politeness and it is, but it is also more than that.
"And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.” ... .than.html
So, it’s honest and does not create discord by divisiveness or abusiveness; nor is it idle chatter; i.e., topics are about Zen Buddhism, the Dharma or the practice, and not off-topic.

It is expected that members will self-moderate and if they see Wrong Speech or what they believe may be Wrong Speech, they Report the post and not respond on the forum.

Depending on the severity of any violation(s), a warning may or may not be given, and a member may be suspended for a length of time. This is vague because: 1) moderator actions shouldn’t be necessary; 2) I don’t want to waste time and energy defining terms and creating rules for imaginary circumstances; and 3) each violation or potential violation will present a unique set of circumstances and will be handled as deemed best.

In simple English: Play nice! I don’t want to ‘play moderator’ and I don’t want to ‘play judge’. Play nice and I can do my preferred activity - sitting :)

And because this is an ‘open forum’ there will be members who are trolls or are/become troubled. This is sad and painful. If you see this or suspect this, please Report it or send me a PM with your concerns.

Finally, please send comments, criticisms, questions and/or suggestions via PM to me. And let the forum be about Zen.