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

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

Universal Life Is Universal Spirit
These considerations naturally lead us to see that Universal ...

Bodhidharma And The Emperor Wu
No sooner had Bodhidharma landed at Kwang Cheu in Southern Ch...

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

The Irrationality Of The Belief Of Immortality
Occidental minds believe in a mysterious entity under the nam...

A Sutra Equal In Size To The Whole World
The holy writ that Zen masters admire is not one of parchment...

All The Worlds In Ten Directions Are Buddha's Holy Land
We are to resume this problem in the following chapter. Suff...

Life And Change
A peculiar phase of life is change which appears in the form ...

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

The Progress And Hope Of Life
How many myriads of years have passed since the germs of life...

How To Worship Buddha
The author of Vimalakirtti-nirdeca-sutra well explains our at...

Zen And Idealism
Next Zen makes use of Idealism as explained by the Dharmalaks...

Idealistic Scepticism Concerning Religion And Morality
Similarly, it is the case with religion and morality. If we ...

Each Smile A Hymn Each Kindly Word A Prayer
The glorious sun of Buddha-nature shines in the zenith of Enl...

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

Bodhidharma And His Successor The Second Patriarch
China was not, however, an uncultivated[FN#29] land for the s...

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

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

Nature Favours Nothing In Particular
There is another point of view of life, which gave the presen...




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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