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The Examination Of The Notion Of Self
The belief in immortality is based on the strong instinct of ...

Where Then Does The Error Lie?
Where, then, does the error lie in the four possible proposit...

The Ancient Buddhist Pantheon
The ancient Buddhist pantheon was full of deities or Buddhas,...

The Third Step In The Mental Training
To be the lord of mind is more essential to Enlightenment, wh...

Enlightenment Is Beyond Description And Analysis
In the foregoing chapters we have had several occasions to re...

A Sutra Equal In Size To The Whole World
The holy writ that Zen masters admire is not one of parchment...

Calmness Of Mind
The Yogi breathing above mentioned is fit rather for physical...

Do Thy Best And Leave The Rest To Providence
There is another point of view which enables us to enjoy life...

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

Where Does The Root Of The Illusion Lie?
Now let us examine where illusion lies hidden from the view o...

There Is No Mortal Who Is Non-moral Or Purely Immoral
The same is the case with the third and the fourth class of p...

Life Consists In Conflict
Life consists in conflict. So long as man remains a social a...

Decline Of Zen
The blooming prosperity of Zen was over towards the end of th...

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

The Law Of Balance In Life
It is also the case with human affairs. Social positions hig...

The Honest Poverty Of The Zen Monk And The Samurai
Secondly, the so-called honest poverty is a characteristic of...

Zen And Nirvana
The beatitude of Zen is Nirvana, not in the Hinayanistic sens...

Scripture Is No More Than Waste Paper
[FN#107] Zen is not based on any particular sutra, either of...

Enlightened Consciousness Is Not An Intellectual Insight
Enlightened Consciousness is not a bare intellectual insight,...

Man Is Good-natured According To Mencius
Oriental scholars, especially the Chinese men of letters, se...

Calmness Of Mind

The Yogi breathing above mentioned is fit rather for physical
exercise than for mental balance, and it will be beneficial if you
take that exercise before or after Meditation. Japanese masters
mostly bold it very important to push forward. The lowest part of
the abdomen during Zazen, and they are right so far as the present
writer's personal experiences go.

'If you feel your mind distracted, look at the tip of the nose; never
lose sight of it for some time, or look at your own palm, and let not
your mind go out of it, or gaze at one spot before you.' This will
greatly help you in restoring the equilibrium of your mind. Chwang
Tsz[FN#248] thought that calmness of mind is essential to sages, and
said: The stillness of the sages does not belong to them as a
consequence of their skilful ability; all things are not able to
disturb their minds; it is on this account that they are still. When
water is still, its clearness shows the beard and eyebrows (of him
who looks into it). It is a perfect level, and the greatest
artificer takes his rule from it. Such is the clearness of still
water, and how much greater is that of the human spirit? The still
mind of the sage is the mirror of heaven and earth, the glass of all

Forget all worldly concerns, expel all cares and anxieties, let go of
passions and desires, give up ideas and thoughts, set your mind at
liberty absolutely, and make it as clear as a burnished mirror. Thus
let flow your inexhaustible fountain of purity, let open your
inestimable treasure of virtue, bring forth your inner hidden nature
of goodness, disclose your innermost divine wisdom, and waken your
Enlightened Consciousness to see Universal Life within you. Zazen
enables the practiser, says Kei-zan,[FN#249] to open up his mind,
to see his own nature, to become conscious of mysteriously pure and
bright spirit, or eternal light within him.

[FN#248] Chwang Tsz, vol. v., p. 5.

[FN#249] Za-zen-yo-jin-ki.

Once become conscious of Divine Life within you, yon can see it in
your brethren, no matter how different they may be in circumstances,
in abilities, in characters, in nationalities, in language, in
religion, and in race. You can see it in animals, vegetables, and
minerals, no matter how diverse they may be in form, no matter how
wild and ferocious some may seem in nature, no matter how unfeeling
in heart some may seem, no matter how devoid of intelligence some may
appear, no matter how insignificant some may be, no matter how simple
in construction some may be, no matter how lifeless some may seem.
You can see that the whole universe is Enlightened and penetrated by
Divine Life.

Next: Zazen And The Forgetting Of Self

Previous: The Breathing Exercise Of The Yogi

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