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The Zen Studies Podcast

Domyo Burk

52
Followers
194
Plays
The Zen Studies Podcast

The Zen Studies Podcast

Domyo Burk

52
Followers
194
Plays
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About Us

Learn about traditional Zen and Buddhist teachings, practices, and history through episodes recorded specifically for podcast listeners. Host Domyo Burk is a Soto Zen priest and teacher.

Latest Episodes

The Emptiness of Self and Why It Matters

The emptiness of self is a Zen teaching that may seem rather abstract and philosophical, or even kind of nihilistic, depressing, or disorienting. Why does this matter? In brief, knowing the true nature of our self is what liberates us from fear and suffering.

31 min10 h ago
Comments
The Emptiness of Self and Why It Matters

Zazen as the Dharma Gate of Joyful Ease

In this episode I focus on how zazen is the dharma gate of joyful ease, because experiencing it as such is so profoundly restorative at a time when our lives tend to be stressful in many ways. I also think it’s necessary to explore the way in which zazen is the dharma gate of joyful ease because that dharma gate is subtle and can be elusive because to enter it we have to let go of all of our normal ways of operating.

30 min1 w ago
Comments
Zazen as the Dharma Gate of Joyful Ease

Understanding People's Actions Through the Six Realms Teaching

Understanding people's actions can be difficult. Sometimes we can't help but feel disbelief, judgment, or disgust toward people based on how they respond to the suffering of others. The Buddhist teaching about the Six Realms of existence can help us understand people's mind states and motivations, hopefully leading us to greater patience, less judgment, and – most importantly – insight into what might work best to get through to people and help them change.

42 min2 w ago
Comments
Understanding People's Actions Through the Six Realms Teaching

Three Ingredients for a Generous Life in a Crazy World

Bearing Witness, Taking Care, and Taking Action: A skillful balance of these ingredients helps you sustain energy, motivation, positivity, and equanimity even when so many things are falling apart, corrupt, unjust, discouraging, even frightening. It helps you maintain compassion and take responsibility as a citizen of the world without being overwhelmed and disheartened by the scale of the suffering, and helps you take joy in your precious life without denying or ignoring suffering and injustice.

32 min3 w ago
Comments
Three Ingredients for a Generous Life in a Crazy World

Loving-Kindness (Metta) Practice as an Antidote to Fear and Anxiety

When we call suffering beings to mind and extend metta - or loving-kindness - it might seem like we'd be opening up to more suffering and thereby increase our own fear and anxiety, but this is not the case. In fact, metta helps us face reality while aligned with our deeper nature. This alignment results in a sense of sufficiency and strength as we perform an act of generosity, give up our self-centered concerns, and become anchored in our boundless self.

32 minSEP 20
Comments
Loving-Kindness (Metta) Practice as an Antidote to Fear and Anxiety

Respect Even for Terrible People: What Does It Mean?

Buddhism, like other religions, teaches we should treat each and every human being with respect, regardless of their behavior or off-putting manifestation. What does this really mean? Sometimes people are hateful, manipulative, cruel, selfish, irresponsible, or downright violent and destructive. Surely, in being asked to respect such people, we’re not being asked to ignore or condone their behavior, so how does respect for them actually look? And why is it important to cultivate this unconditional respect

28 minSEP 12
Comments
Respect Even for Terrible People: What Does It Mean?

No Matter What Happens to You, You Have Choice in the Matter

Buddhism teaches that no matter what happens to us, we always have some degree of choice about how we respond, and what we do next. At those critical, precious moments when your perspective widens and you become more aware of yourself, you can act in accordance with your aspiration to relieve suffering for self and other. This is what practice is: Taking advantage of our moments of choice, which arise countless times throughout the day and night, never losing faith that each of those little choices matter.

31 minAUG 27
Comments
No Matter What Happens to You, You Have Choice in the Matter

Lotus Sutra 2: Wake Up! The Parable of the Burning House

The Parable of the Burning House is one of five main parables of the Lotus Sutra, a classic Mahayana Buddhist text. I go through the parable paragraph by paragraph, stopping to reflect on each part of the story along the way and encouraging you to imagine yourself within the story as if it were a dream. I finish up by discussing the relevance of this teaching for our everyday lives and practice.

34 minAUG 13
Comments
Lotus Sutra 2: Wake Up! The Parable of the Burning House

The Experience of Enlightenment and Why It’s for All of Us

Whether you are personally intrigued by the concept of enlightenment or not, it is absolutely central to Buddhism. However, enlightenment – to use a kind of corny phrase – is not what you think. I discuss sudden and gradual experiences of enlightenment, the changes such experiences bring about in us, and why it’s important for all of us to seek enlightenment.

34 minAUG 4
Comments
The Experience of Enlightenment and Why It’s for All of Us

Direct Experience Is Liberation: When There Are No Stories, There Is No "You"

Humans evolved to make sense of their experience by explaining with a story, or narrative. Although our stories help us communicate and navigate our lives, they also can preoccupy and burden us. Sometimes they are distressing, depressing, or exhausting to maintain. This is why the Buddha said to train ourselves such that “in the sensed, there is only the sensed, in the cognized, only the cognized.” That is, we should train ourselves to experience things without our stories.

31 minJUL 25
Comments
Direct Experience Is Liberation: When There Are No Stories, There Is No "You"

Latest Episodes

The Emptiness of Self and Why It Matters

The emptiness of self is a Zen teaching that may seem rather abstract and philosophical, or even kind of nihilistic, depressing, or disorienting. Why does this matter? In brief, knowing the true nature of our self is what liberates us from fear and suffering.

31 min10 h ago
Comments
The Emptiness of Self and Why It Matters

Zazen as the Dharma Gate of Joyful Ease

In this episode I focus on how zazen is the dharma gate of joyful ease, because experiencing it as such is so profoundly restorative at a time when our lives tend to be stressful in many ways. I also think it’s necessary to explore the way in which zazen is the dharma gate of joyful ease because that dharma gate is subtle and can be elusive because to enter it we have to let go of all of our normal ways of operating.

30 min1 w ago
Comments
Zazen as the Dharma Gate of Joyful Ease

Understanding People's Actions Through the Six Realms Teaching

Understanding people's actions can be difficult. Sometimes we can't help but feel disbelief, judgment, or disgust toward people based on how they respond to the suffering of others. The Buddhist teaching about the Six Realms of existence can help us understand people's mind states and motivations, hopefully leading us to greater patience, less judgment, and – most importantly – insight into what might work best to get through to people and help them change.

42 min2 w ago
Comments
Understanding People's Actions Through the Six Realms Teaching

Three Ingredients for a Generous Life in a Crazy World

Bearing Witness, Taking Care, and Taking Action: A skillful balance of these ingredients helps you sustain energy, motivation, positivity, and equanimity even when so many things are falling apart, corrupt, unjust, discouraging, even frightening. It helps you maintain compassion and take responsibility as a citizen of the world without being overwhelmed and disheartened by the scale of the suffering, and helps you take joy in your precious life without denying or ignoring suffering and injustice.

32 min3 w ago
Comments
Three Ingredients for a Generous Life in a Crazy World

Loving-Kindness (Metta) Practice as an Antidote to Fear and Anxiety

When we call suffering beings to mind and extend metta - or loving-kindness - it might seem like we'd be opening up to more suffering and thereby increase our own fear and anxiety, but this is not the case. In fact, metta helps us face reality while aligned with our deeper nature. This alignment results in a sense of sufficiency and strength as we perform an act of generosity, give up our self-centered concerns, and become anchored in our boundless self.

32 minSEP 20
Comments
Loving-Kindness (Metta) Practice as an Antidote to Fear and Anxiety

Respect Even for Terrible People: What Does It Mean?

Buddhism, like other religions, teaches we should treat each and every human being with respect, regardless of their behavior or off-putting manifestation. What does this really mean? Sometimes people are hateful, manipulative, cruel, selfish, irresponsible, or downright violent and destructive. Surely, in being asked to respect such people, we’re not being asked to ignore or condone their behavior, so how does respect for them actually look? And why is it important to cultivate this unconditional respect

28 minSEP 12
Comments
Respect Even for Terrible People: What Does It Mean?

No Matter What Happens to You, You Have Choice in the Matter

Buddhism teaches that no matter what happens to us, we always have some degree of choice about how we respond, and what we do next. At those critical, precious moments when your perspective widens and you become more aware of yourself, you can act in accordance with your aspiration to relieve suffering for self and other. This is what practice is: Taking advantage of our moments of choice, which arise countless times throughout the day and night, never losing faith that each of those little choices matter.

31 minAUG 27
Comments
No Matter What Happens to You, You Have Choice in the Matter

Lotus Sutra 2: Wake Up! The Parable of the Burning House

The Parable of the Burning House is one of five main parables of the Lotus Sutra, a classic Mahayana Buddhist text. I go through the parable paragraph by paragraph, stopping to reflect on each part of the story along the way and encouraging you to imagine yourself within the story as if it were a dream. I finish up by discussing the relevance of this teaching for our everyday lives and practice.

34 minAUG 13
Comments
Lotus Sutra 2: Wake Up! The Parable of the Burning House

The Experience of Enlightenment and Why It’s for All of Us

Whether you are personally intrigued by the concept of enlightenment or not, it is absolutely central to Buddhism. However, enlightenment – to use a kind of corny phrase – is not what you think. I discuss sudden and gradual experiences of enlightenment, the changes such experiences bring about in us, and why it’s important for all of us to seek enlightenment.

34 minAUG 4
Comments
The Experience of Enlightenment and Why It’s for All of Us

Direct Experience Is Liberation: When There Are No Stories, There Is No "You"

Humans evolved to make sense of their experience by explaining with a story, or narrative. Although our stories help us communicate and navigate our lives, they also can preoccupy and burden us. Sometimes they are distressing, depressing, or exhausting to maintain. This is why the Buddha said to train ourselves such that “in the sensed, there is only the sensed, in the cognized, only the cognized.” That is, we should train ourselves to experience things without our stories.

31 minJUL 25
Comments
Direct Experience Is Liberation: When There Are No Stories, There Is No "You"
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