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Everything Is Living According To Zen
Everything alive has a strong innate tendency to preserve its...

The Beatitude Of Zen
We are far from denying, as already shown in the foregoing ch...

Life And Change
A peculiar phase of life is change which appears in the form ...

The Awakening Of The Innermost Wisdom
Having set ourselves free from the misconception of Self, nex...

All The Worlds In Ten Directions Are Buddha's Holy Land
We are to resume this problem in the following chapter. Suff...

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

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

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

The Four Alternatives And The Five Categories
There are, according to Zen, the four classes of religious an...

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

The Usual Explanation Of The Canon
An eminent Chinese Buddhist scholar, well known as Ten Dai Da...

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

Sutras Used By Zen Masters
Ten Dai failed to explain away the discrepancies and contradi...

Man Is Both Good-natured And Bad-natured According To Yan Hiung
According to Yang Hiung and his followers, good is no less re...

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

Thing-in-itself Means Thing-knowerless
How, then, did philosophers come to consider reality to be un...

Origin Of Zen In India
To-day Zen as a living faith can be found in its pure form on...

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

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

The Fifth And The Sixth Patriarchs
Tao Sin transmitted the Law to Hung Jan (Ko-nin), who being e...

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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