VIEW THE MOBILE VERSION of Informational Site Network Informational
   Home - Samurai - Code of Honor - Courage - Samuri Religion - History of Buddism


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

Real Self
If there be no individual soul either in mind or body, where ...

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

The Parable Of The Monk And The Stupid Woman
The confused or unenlightened may be compared with a monk and...

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Nature Is The Mother Of All Things
Furthermore, man has come into existence out of Nature. He i...

The Next Step In The Mental Training
In the next place we have to strive to be the master of our b...

Zen After The Restoration
After the Restoration of the Mei-ji (1867) the popularity of ...

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

The Great Person And Small Person

For these reasons Zen proposes to call man Buddha-natured or
Good-natured in a sense transcendental to the duality of good and
bad. It conveys no sense to call some individuals good in case there
is no bad individual. For the sake of convenience, however, Zen
calls man good, as is exemplified by Shakya Muni, who was wont to
address his hearers as 'good men and women,' and by the Sixth
Patriarch in China, who called everybody 'a good and wise one.' This
does not imply in the least that all human beings are virtuous,
sinless, and saintly-nay, the world is full of vices and crimes. It
is an undeniable fact that life is the warfare of good against evil,
and many a valiant hero has fallen in the foremost ranks. It is
curious, however, to notice that the champions on the both sides are
fighting for the same cause. There can be no single individual in
the world who is fighting against his own cause or interest, and the
only possible difference between one party and the other consists in
the extent of interests which they fight for. So-called bad persons,
who are properly designated as 'small persons' by Chinese and
Japanese scholars, express their Buddha-nature to a small extent
mostly within their own doors, while so-called good persons, or
'great persons' as the Oriental scholars call them, actualize their
Buddha-nature to a large extent in the whole sphere of a country, or
of the whole earth.

Enlightened Consciousness, or Buddha-nature, as we have seen in the
previous chapter, is the mind of mind and the consciousness of
consciousness, Universal Spirit awakened in individual minds, which
realizes the universal brotherhood of all beings and the unity of
individual lives. It is the real self, the guiding principle, the
Original Physiognomy[FN#169] (nature), as it is called by Zen, of
man. This real self lies dormant under the threshold of
consciousness in the minds of the confused; consequently, each of
them is inclined to regard petty individual as his self, and to exert
himself to further the interests of the individual self even at the
cost of those of the others. He is 'the smallest person' in the
world, for his self is reduced to the smallest extent possible. Some
of the less confused identify their selves with their families, and
feel happy or unhappy in proportion as their families are happy or
unhappy, for the sake of which they sacrifice the interests of other
families. On the other hand, some of the more enlightened unite
their selves through love and compassion with their whole tribe or
countrymen, and consider the rise or fall of the tribe or of the
country as their own, and willingly sacrifice their own lives, if
need be, for the cause of the tribe or the country. When they are
fully enlightened, they can realize the unity of all sentient lives,
and be ever merciful and helpful towards all creatures. They are
'the greatest persons' on earth, because their selves are enlarged to
the greatest extent possible.

[FN#169] The expression first occurs in Ho-bo-dan-kyo of the Sixth
Patriarch, and is frequently used by later Zenists.

Next: The Theory Of Buddha-nature Adequately Explains The Ethical States Of Man

Previous: The Bad Are The Good In The Egg

Add to Add to Reddit Add to Digg Add to Add to Google Add to Twitter Add to Stumble Upon
Add to Informational Site Network

Viewed 2948