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Samurai

The Courage And The Composure Of Mind Of The Zen Monk And Of The Samurai
Fourthly, our Samurai encountered death, as is well known, wi...

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

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

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

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

The Law Of Balance In Life
It is also the case with human affairs. Social positions hig...

Change As Seen By Zen
Zen, like Hinayanism, does not deny the doctrine of Transienc...

Enlightenment Is Beyond Description And Analysis
In the foregoing chapters we have had several occasions to re...

The World Is In The Making
Our assertion is far from assuming that life is now complete,...

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

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

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

The Parable Of The Robber Kih
Chwang Tsz (So-shi) remarks in a humorous way to the followi...

Zen After The Downfall Of The Ho-jo Regency
Towards the end of the Ho-Jo period,[FN#90] and after the dow...

Personalism Of B P Bowne
B. P. Bowne[FN#204] says: They (phenomena) are not phantoms o...

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

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

Man Is Neither Good-natured Nor Bad-natured According To Su Shih
The difficulty may be avoided by a theory given by Su Shih ...

Buddha The Universal Life
Zen conceives Buddha as a Being, who moves, stirs, inspires, ...

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




Retribution In The Past The Present And The Future Life








Then a question suggests itself: If there be no soul that survives

body (as shown in the preceding chapter), who will receive the

retributions of our actions in the present life? To answer this

question, we have to restate our conviction that life is one and the

same; in other words, the human beings form one life or one

self--that is to say, our ancestors in the past formed man's past

life. We ourselves now form man's present life, and our posterity

will form the future life. Beyond all doubt, all actions of man in

the past have brought their fruits on the present conditions of man,

and all actions of the present man are sure to influence the

conditions of the future man. To put it in another way, we now reap

the fruits of what we sowed in our past life (or when we lived as our

fathers), and again shall reap the fruits of what we now sow in our

future life (or when we shall live as our posterity).



There is no exception to this rigorous law of retribution, and we

take it as the will of Buddha to leave no action without being

retributed. Thus it is Buddha himself who kindles our inward fire to

save ourselves from sin and crimes. We must purge out all the stains

in our hearts, obeying Buddha's command audible in the innermost self

of ours. It is the great mercy of His that, however sinful,

superstitious, wayward, and thoughtless, we have still a light within

us which is divine in its nature. When that light shines forth, all

sorts of sin are destroyed at once. What is our sin, after all? It

is nothing but illusion or error originating in ignorance and folly.

How true it is, as an Indian Mahayanist declares, that 'all frost and

the dewdrops of sin disappear in the sunshine of wisdom!'[FN#221]

Even if we might be imprisoned in the bottomless bell, yet let once

the Light of Buddha shine upon us, it would be changed into heaven.

Therefore the author of Mahakarunika-sutra[FN#222] says: When I

climb the mountain planted with swords, they would break under my

tread. When I sail on the sea of blood, it will be dried up. When I

arrive at Hades, they will be ruined at once.





[FN#220] The retribution cannot be explained by the doctrine of the

transmigration of the soul, for it is incompatible with the

fundamental doctrine of non-soul. See Abhidharmamahavibhasa-castra,

vol. cxiv.



[FN#221] Samantabhadra-dhyana-sutra.



[FN#222] Nanjo's Catalogue, No. 117.






Next: The Eternal Life As Taught By Professor Munsterberg

Previous: The Application Of The Law Of Causation To Morals



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