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The Five Ranks Of Merit
Thus far we have stated how to train our body and mind accord...

The Application Of The Law Of Causation To Morals
Although it may be needless to state here the law of causatio...

Flight Of The Sixth Patriarch
On the following morning the news of what had happened during...

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

Idealistic Scepticism Concerning Religion And Morality
Similarly, it is the case with religion and morality. If we ...

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

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

Wang Yang Ming (o-yo-mei) And A Thief
One evening when Wang was giving a lecture to a number of stu...

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

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

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

Poetical Intuition And Zen
Since Universal Life or Spirit permeates the universe, the po...

Zen And Idealism
Next Zen makes use of Idealism as explained by the Dharmalaks...

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

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

Bodhidharma And The Emperor Wu
No sooner had Bodhidharma landed at Kwang Cheu in Southern Ch...

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

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

Nature And Her Lesson
Nature offers us nectar and ambrosia every day, and everywher...

Epicureanism And Life
There are a good many people always buoyant in spirit and mir...




Great Men And Nature








All great men, whether they be poets or scientists or religious men
or philosophers, are not mere readers of books, but the perusers of
Nature. Men of erudition are often lexicons in flesh and blood, but
men of genius read between the lines in the pages of life. Kant, a
man of no great erudition, could accomplish in the theory of
knowledge what Copernicus did in astronomy. Newton found the law of
gravitation not in a written page, but in a falling apple.
Unlettered Jesus realized truth beyond the comprehension of many
learned doctors. Charles Darwin, whose theory changed the whole
current of the world's thought, was not a great reader of books, but
a careful observer of facts. Shakespeare, the greatest of poets, was
the greatest reader of Nature and life. He could hear the music even
of heavenly bodies, and said:

There's not the smallest orb which thou beholdest,
But in his motion like an angel sings.

Chwang Tsz (So-shi), the greatest of Chinese philosophers, says:
Thou knowest the music of men, but not the music of the earth. Thou
knowest the music of the earth, but not the music of the
heaven.[FN#132] Goethe, perceiving a profound meaning in Nature,
says: Flowers are the beautiful hieroglyphics of Nature with which
she indicates how much she loves us.


[FN#132] Chwang Tsz, vol. i., p. 10.


Son-toku[FN#133] (Ninomiya), a great economist, who, overcoming all
difficulties and hardships by which he was beset from his childhood,
educated himself, says: The earth and the heaven utter no word, but
they ceaselessly repeat the holy book unwritten.

[FN#133] One of the greatest self-made men in Japan, who lived
1787-1856.






Next: The Absolute And Reality Are But An Abstraction

Previous: A Sutra Equal In Size To The Whole World



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