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

Great Men And Nature
All great men, whether they be poets or scientists or religio...

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

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

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

Zen In The Dark Age
The latter half of the Ashikaga period was the age of arms an...

The Second And The Third Patriarchs
After the death of the First Patriarch, in A.D. 528, Hwui Ko ...

The Betterment Of Life
Again, people nowadays seem to feel keenly the wound of the ...

The Fourth Patriarch And The Emperor Tai Tsung (tai-so)
The Third[FN#40] Patriarch was succeeded by Tao Sin (Do-shin)...

Our Conception Of Buddha Is Not Final
Has, then, the divine nature of Universal Spirit been complet...

The Law Of Balance
Nature governs the world with her law of balance. She puts t...

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

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

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

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

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

There Is No Mortal Who Is Purely Moral
By nature man should be either good or bad; or he should be g...

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

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

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




Nature And Her Lesson








Nature offers us nectar and ambrosia every day, and everywhere we go
the rose and lily await us. Spring visits us men, says
Gu-do,[FN#277] her mercy is great. Every blossom holds out the
image of Tathagata. What is the spiritual body of Buddha who is
immortal and divine? asked a man to Ta Lun (Dai-ryu), who instantly
replied: The flowers cover the mountain with golden brocade. The
waters tinge the rivulets with heavenly blue. Universe is the
whole body of Tathagata; observed Do-gen. The worlds in ten
directions, the earth, grass, trees, walls, fences, tiles, pebbles-in
a word, all the animated and inanimate objects partake of the
Buddha-nature. Thereby, those who partake in the benefit of the Wind
and Water that rise out of them are, all of them, helped by the
mysterious influence of Buddha, and show forth Enlightenment.[FN#278]


[FN#277] One of the distinguished Zenists in the Tokugawa period,
who died in 1661.

[FN#278] Sho-bo gen-zo.


Thus you can attain to highest bliss through your conscious union
with Buddha. Nothing can disturb your peace, when you can enjoy
peace in the midst of disturbances; nothing can cause you to suffer,
when you welcome misfortunes and hardships in order to train and
strengthen your character; nothing can tempt you to commit sin, when
you are constantly ready to listen to the sermon given by everything
around you; nothing can distress you, when you make the world the
holy temple of Buddha. This is the state of Nirvana which everyone
believing in Buddha may secure.






Next: The Beatitude Of Zen

Previous: Zen And Nirvana



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