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The First Step In The Mental Training
Some of the old Zen masters are said to have attained to supr...

The Resemblance Of The Zen Monk To The Samurai
Let us point out in brief the similarities between Zen and Ja...

The Creative Force Of Nature And Humanity
The innate tendency of self-preservation, which manifests its...

The Development Of The Southern And Of The Northern School Of Zen
After the death of the Fifth Patriarch the venerable Shang Si...

The Breathing Exercise Of The Yogi
Breathing exercise is one of the practices of Yoga, and somew...

Zen After The Restoration
After the Restoration of the Mei-ji (1867) the popularity of ...

Zen And The Regent Generals Of The Ho-jo Period
No wonder, then, that the representatives of the Samurai clas...

Three Important Elements Of Zen
To understand how Zen developed during some four hundred year...

The Errors Of Philosophical Pessimists And Religious Optimists
Philosophical pessimists[FN#214] maintain that there are on e...

The Method Of Instruction Adopted By Zen Masters
Thus far we have described the doctrine of Zen inculcated by ...

Zen Is Iconoclastic
For the followers of Bodhidharma, however, this conception of...

Each Smile A Hymn Each Kindly Word A Prayer
The glorious sun of Buddha-nature shines in the zenith of Enl...

Bodhidharma's Disciples And The Transmission Of The Law[fn#31]
[FN#31] For details, see Chwen Tang Luh and Den Ka Roku, b...

Real Self
If there be no individual soul either in mind or body, where ...

Zen And Supernatural Power
Yoga[FN#250] claims that various supernatural powers can be a...

Zen Is Not Nihilistic
Zen judged from ancient Zen masters' aphorisms may seem, at t...

Buddha Dwelling In The Individual Mind
Enlightened Consciousness in the individual mind acquires for...

Zazen Or The Sitting In Meditation
Habit comes out of practice, and forms character by degrees, ...

Life Change And Hope
The doctrine of Transcience never drives us to the pessimisti...

Man Is Bad-natured According To Siun Tsz
The weaknesses of Mencius's theory are fully exposed by anot...




Buddha-nature Is The Common Source Of Morals








Furthermore, Buddha-nature or real self, being the seat of love and
the nucleus of sincerity, forms the warp and woof of all moral
actions. He is an obedient son who serves his parents with sincerity
and love. He is a loyal subject who serves his master with sincerity
and love. A virtuous wife is she who loves her husband with her
sincere heart. A trustworthy friend is he who keeps company with
others with sincerity and love. A man of righteousness is he who
leads a life of sincerity and love. Generous and humane is he who
sympathizes with his fellow-men with his sincere heart. Veracity,
chastity, filial piety, loyalty, righteousness, generosity, humanity,
and what not-all-this is no other than Buddha-nature applied to
various relationships of human brotherhood. This is the common
source, ever fresh and inexhaustible, of morality that fosters and
furthers the interests of all. To-ju[FN#170] expresses the similar
idea as follows:

There exists the Inexhaustible Source (of morality) within me.
It is an invaluable treasure.
It is called Bright Nature of man.
It is peerless and surpasses all jewels.
The aim of learning is to bring out this Bright Nature.
This is the best thing in the world.
Real happiness can only be secured by it.

Thus, in the first place, moral conduct, which is nothing but the
expression of Buddha-nature in action, implies the assertion of self
and the furtherance of one's interests. On this point is based the
half-truth of the Egoistic theory. Secondly, it is invariably
accompanied by a feeling of pleasure or satisfaction when it fulfils
its end. This accidental concomitance is mistaken for its essence by
superficial observers who adhere to the Hedonistic theory. Thirdly,
it conduces to the furtherance of the material and spiritual
interests of man, and it led the Utilitarians to the confusion of the
result with the cause of morality. Fourthly, it involves the control
or sacrifice of the lower and ignoble self of an individual in order
to realize his higher and nobler self. This gave rise to the
half-truth of the Ascetic theory of morality.


[FN#170] To-ju Naka-e (died A.D. 1649), the founder of the Japanese
Wang School of Confucianism, known as the Sage of Omi.






Next: The Parable Of A Drunkard

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