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

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

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

The Four Alternatives And The Five Categories
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How To Worship Buddha
The author of Vimalakirtti-nirdeca-sutra well explains our at...

Man Is Not Good-natured Nor Bad-natured But Buddha-natured
We have had already occasion to observe that Zen teaches Bud...

The Characteristics Of Do-gen The Founder Of The Japanese So To Sect
In the meantime seekers after a new truth gradually began to ...

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

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

The Mystery Of Life
Thus far we have pointed out the inevitable conflictions in l...

Zen Is Not Nihilistic
Zen judged from ancient Zen masters' aphorisms may seem, at t...

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

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

Buddha Dwelling In The Individual Mind
Enlightened Consciousness in the individual mind acquires for...

Where Then Does The Error Lie?
Where, then, does the error lie in the four possible proposit...

Life In The Concrete
Life in the concrete, which we are living, greatly differs fr...

Difficulties Are No Match For The Optimist
How can we suppose that we, the children of Buddha, are put a...

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

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

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




The Mystery Of Life








Thus far we have pointed out the inevitable conflictions in life in
order to prepare ourselves for an insight into the depth of life. We
are far from being pessimistic, for we believe that life consists in
confliction, but that confliction does not end in confliction, but in
a new form of harmony. Hope comes to conflict with fear, and is
often threatened with losing its hold on mind; then it renews its
life and takes root still deeper than before. Peace is often
disturbed with wars, but then it gains a still firmer ground than
ever. Happiness is driven out of mind by melancholy, then it is
re-enforced by favourable conditions and returns with double
strength. Spirit is dragged down by matter from its ideal heaven,
then, incited by shame, it tries a higher flight. Good is opposed by
evil, then it gathers more strength and vanquishes its foe. Truth is
clouded by falsehood, then it issues forth with its greater light.
Liberty is endangered by tyranny, then it overthrows it with a
splendid success.

Manifoldness stands out boldly against unity; difference against
agreement; particularity against generality; individuality against
society. Manifoldness, nevertheless, instead of annihilating,
enriches unity; difference, instead of destroying agreement, gives it
variety; particularities, instead of putting an end to generality,
increase its content; individuals, instead of breaking the harmony of
society, strengthen the power of it.

Thus 'Universal Life does not swallow up manifoldness nor extinguish
differences, but it is the only means of bringing to its full
development the detailed content of reality; in particular, it does
not abolish the great oppositions of life and world, but takes them
up into itself and brings them into fruitful relations with each
other.' Therefore 'our life is a mysterious blending of freedom and
necessity, power and limitation, caprice and law; yet these opposites
are constantly seeking and finding a mutual adjustment.'






Next: Nature Favours Nothing In Particular

Previous: Life Consists In Conflict



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