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

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

Hinayanism And Its Doctrine
The doctrine of Transience was the first entrance gate of Hin...

Zazen And The Forgetting Of Self
Zazen is a most effectual means of destroying selfishness, th...

The Ten Pictures Of The Cowherd
[FN#275] The pictures were drawn by Kwoh Ngan (Kaku-an), a...

The Absolute And Reality Are But An Abstraction
A grain of sand you, trample upon has a deeper significance t...

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

No Need Of The Scriptural Authority For Zen
Some Occidental scholars erroneously identify Buddhism with t...

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

Let Go Of Your Idle Thoughts
[FN#263] A famous Zenist, Mu-go-koku-shi, is said to ha...

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

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

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

The Theory Of Buddha-nature Adequately Explains The Ethical States Of Man
This theory of Buddha-nature enables us to get an insight int...

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

The Great Person And Small Person
For these reasons Zen proposes to call man Buddha-natured or ...

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

Enlightenment Implies An Insight Into The Nature Of Self
We cannot pass over, however, this weighty problem without sa...

The Bad Are The Good In The Egg
This is not only the case with a robber or a murderer, but al...

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




Introduction Of Zen Into China By Bodhidharma








An epoch-making event took place in the Buddhist history of China by
Bodhidharma's coming over from Southern India to that country in
about A.D. 520.[FN#23] It was the introduction, not of the dead
scriptures, as was repeatedly done before him, but of a living faith,
not of any theoretical doctrine, but of practical Enlightenment, not
of the relies of Buddha, but of the Spirit of Shakya Muni; so that
Bodhidharma's position as a representative of Zen was unique. He
was, however, not a missionary to be favourably received by the
public. He seems to have behaved in a way quite opposite to that in
which a modern pastor treats his flock. We imagine him to have been
a religious teacher entirely different in every point from a popular
Christian missionary of our age. The latter would smile or try to
smile at every face he happens to see and would talk sociably; while
the former would not smile at any face, but would stare at it with
the large glaring eyes that penetrated to the innermost soul. The
latter would keep himself scrupulously clean, shaving, combing,
brushing, polishing, oiling, perfuming, while the former would be
entirely indifferent to his apparel, being always clad in a faded
yellow robe. The latter would compose his sermon with a great care,
making use of rhetorical art, and speak with force and elegance;
while the former would sit as absolutely silent as the bear, and kick
one off, if one should approach him with idle questions.


[FN#23] Buddhist historians differ in opinion respecting the date of
Bodhidharma's appearance in China. Compare Chwen Fah Chan Tsung Lun
(Den bo sho ju ron) and Hwui Yuen (E-gen).






Next: Bodhidharma And The Emperor Wu

Previous: Origin Of Zen In India



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