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

Buddha-nature Is The Common Source Of Morals
Furthermore, Buddha-nature or real self, being the seat of lo...

Retribution In The Past The Present And The Future Life
Then a question suggests itself: If there be no soul that su...

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

The Disciples Under The Sixth Patriarch
Some time after this the Sixth Patriarch settled himself down...

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...

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

Idealistic Scepticism Concerning Objective Reality
But extreme Idealism identifies 'to be' with 'to be known,' a...

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

An Illusion Concerning Appearance And Reality
To get Enlightened we must next dispel an illusion respecting...

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

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

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

The Spiritual Attainment Of The Sixth Patriarch
Some time before his death (in 675 A.D.) the Fifth Patriarch ...

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

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

The Sermon Of The Inanimate
The Scripture of Zen is written with facts simple and familia...

The Parable Of A Drunkard
Now the question arises, If all human beings are endowed with...

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




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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