The best laid plans of boobs and buddhists

The Best Laid Plans of Boobs and Buddhists:

This week’s Dharma Mouth-Punch came from Genkaku with his very inspired post on…what of all things? Boobs!

Once upon a time during a sesshin or intensive Zen retreat, I accidentally brushed lightly up against the breast of an attractive woman during kinhin, or walking meditation. That one small touch worked as surely as a shiny spark plug and I returned to the meditation cushion sporting an explosive sex fantasy and a first-class hard-on. Thank goodness for the billowing cloth of meditation robes.

Wait…attractive women at a sesshin? Why did no one tell me? I’ve been practicing in my bedroom all this time and out in the sangha-world there are crazy amounts of breast-brushing and boob-touching. Damn, I’ve been doing it all wrong…

The woman I brushed up against had excited my mild-fantasy attention in the past, but that small touch in those circumstances broke the dam and flood waters consumed me. No pun intended, but … Jesus Fucking Christ! For the better part of a forty-minute period of zazen, I just did sex … mind sex, phone sex, Kama Sutra sex, giddy sex, lustful and lusty sex, sneaky sex, honest sex, sex beneath the moon, sex beneath the sun, sex with jiggly implements, loving sex … sex, sex, sex, sex, sex … it went on and on and on and on until…

Jiggly Implements…hehe.

Towards the end of the sitting, I realized I was repeating myself. I just couldn’t think of another permutation or speed or satisfaction or delight. I had run out of imaginative gas. I had run out of options. I had run out of what I imagined was endless. At first, this recognition shocked and dismayed me. Sex, after all, was an emotional, life-force biggie. It was important. It was a gimme of the first magnitude. My dismay made me try even harder to resurrect and reconstitute my fantasy life, but the harder I tried, the more it underscored my inability to come up with fresh fodder.

I could have thought of plenty more fodder to come up with. Something along the lines of wearing nothing but a rakusu and knee high boots. But I am going off topic here.

The simple honesty of this post was refreshing. Many in the Zen and Buddhist community almost want to ignore feelings or pretend that they don’t feel. Whether the emotions are angry, sexual or jealous in nature, we do feel them and what is more – We accept them. It seems so simple to allow thoughts to pass from the mind while we are sitting but the simple truth is that it is difficult. Thoughts are tenacious and clingy and thrive on conflict. Sometimes they may just need to play themselves out.

When a wave comes in towards us we can do a few things – We can let it take us to the shore and crash down on us, we swim away and avoid it or we can bob. Buddhists strive to bob. We can’t control the wave of thoughts that hit us but we can keep them from breaking us on the rocks. Learning to bob and stay bouant in an ocean of thoughts is, perhaps, one of the most important lessons we can learn in our practice.

The zafu isn’t a place where we fall away from the world, sinking into our own sphere of oblivion. We aren’t “marshmallows on pillows”. It is a place that we ride those emotions and thoughts that come to us on a daily basis in a contained environment and on our terms. I’ve found, in my experience, that many of those emotions that I want to avoid come out in waves while sitting – almost as if to rouse me into action – FIGHT, FUCK, FLEE – All very primal and all never basic. I ackowledge those emotions, wave “hi” and let them pass. Or, rather, I let myself pass through them.

So thank you for that thought provoking and blunt post, Genkaku. It was much appreciated and well-recieved.




5 thoughts on “The best laid plans of boobs and buddhists

  1. What the hell man, another Zennie that cusses and talks in an everyday manner??? I think I'm in love already. Good to see there are more every day Zen people out there.

    And good post too Jack!

  2. @ Kyle – Yup! There had to be a few more out there. I seriously suggest reading his whole post. It was a good one.

  3. Haha! This is similar to something I use to turn desire around on itself. When ever I feel that attraction to some random hottie I might happen to run into, I counter it by reminding myself of enlightenment–that if I'm aware, I can turn anything energetic process into a cause for enlightenment by reflecting quickly on my own level of attachment to forms that I consider to be attractive.

    I reflect on that, the person I'm momentarily drooling over, is no different that myself, no different than someone that does not have those characteristics that I find pleasing. They are one and the same. Its only my mental perceptions and attachments that stir those thoughts.

    To use your analogy of waves, you learn to surf the waves of impulse and use the energy to carry you to shore. 🙂

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