Oh Buddhism is one of the traditions I hold strong appreciation and respect.
The thing about it is that, it should not be seen as a religion but as a way of waking up. “waking up to what?” To your true self, God (I mean THE ULTIMATE GOD).
Just like in Hinduism it is said “Tat Tvam Asi” … “Tho are That!”
That is … Thatata, the experience that gave the Buddha the tittle of Tathagata, the way Sakyamuni called himself.
Anyway, after many centuries the meaning of buddhism was lost an peopl got into the wrong idea of following precepts, but the lineage of Mahakasyapa, he whom the Buddha Sakyamuni considered an equal in realization after the popular “Flower Sermon”, passed the light directly from master to disciple until it reached one of the most holiest man that had walked the earth: Bodhidharma.
The strong savage fellow who traveled from India to China to get the light of the Dharma, because even tho the tradition was long stablished in the land they did not count with enlightened men so the monks were lost in the rutine of following the precepts without never realizing the truth.
From the teachings of Bodhidharma the strong tradition of Chan was born, which looked directy into Dhyana wich is the sanskrit term from which “Chan” is born wich later became the Japanese Zen (both with strong influence of chinese taoism), a teaching taken from China towards the land of Japan in the body and heart of Dogen Zenji who stablished the Soto school of Zen in a small monastery in the prefecture of Echizen.
Dhyana is also a way to call the experience of samadhi which ultimate form is the Nirvikalpa samadhi, with Nir meaning “No, Whitout” and “vikapla” meaning a contraction of time and space (which also means “Concept, Word”). Literally means a state in which there is not time nor space, and/or state without words. With no words, there is no thoughts, and without it there is no “Ego” which is a constant thought of “I, I, I, I, I, I, I…” with humans identify with and believe they’re the words in their head. That is what Buddhims call the “mental illness” of humanity, and Zen, which is a natural human state without thoughts, is the cure. Not something outside you.
The tradition of Zen, as did Chan, took out all the paraphernalia and left only the esencial, which Dogen himself defined with the words “Zen, is Zazen”, which the later term meaning “To Seat”.
To simply sit, no searching for wisdom or ending of ignorance, nor looking for a future in which you’ll be enlightened, not looking to be anywere more than where you’re “be-ing”.
Zen, is a direct way of waking up outside the scriptures, and its true teaching cannot be found anywhere outside you.
Here I leave a video from a guy whose teachings were and will always be relevant, and not just in buddhism but in almost any study about the eastern spiritual system, the difference with the western religions and of course, the searching for the so called “Truth”.
Alan Watts - Eastern and Western Zen - Zen Tales
here is another one:
Alan Watts - Buddhism, Religion Of No Religion - Buddhism as Dialogue
Finally here is a link to many “koans” in the Gateless gate: