Samurai Let Go Of Your Idle Thoughts
[FN#263] A famous Zenist, Mu-go-koku-shi, is said to ha...
Buddha-nature Is The Common Source Of Morals
Furthermore, Buddha-nature or real self, being the seat of lo...
The Honest Poverty Of The Zen Monk And The Samurai
Secondly, the so-called honest poverty is a characteristic of...
Zen And The Regent Generals Of The Ho-jo Period
No wonder, then, that the representatives of the Samurai clas...
The Fourth Patriarch And The Emperor Tai Tsung (tai-so)
The Third[FN#40] Patriarch was succeeded by Tao Sin (Do-shin)...
The Betterment Of Life
Again, people nowadays seem to feel keenly the wound of the
The World Is In The Making
Our assertion is far from assuming that life is now complete,...
The Great Person And Small Person
For these reasons Zen proposes to call man Buddha-natured or
Calmness Of Mind
The Yogi breathing above mentioned is fit rather for physical...
Flight Of The Sixth Patriarch
On the following morning the news of what had happened during...
The Social State Of Japan When Zen Was Established By Ei-sai And Do-gen
Now we have to observe the condition of the country when Zen ...
All The Worlds In Ten Directions Are Buddha's Holy Land
We are to resume this problem in the following chapter. Suff...
Zen Is Not Nihilistic
Zen judged from ancient Zen masters' aphorisms may seem, at t...
Zen And Idealism
Next Zen makes use of Idealism as explained by the Dharmalaks...
Wang Yang Ming (o-yo-mei) And A Thief
One evening when Wang was giving a lecture to a number of stu...
An Illusion Concerning Appearance And Reality
To get Enlightened we must next dispel an illusion respecting...
Nature Favours Nothing In Particular
There is another point of view of life, which gave the presen...
The Third Step In The Mental Training
To be the lord of mind is more essential to Enlightenment, wh...
Zen Under The Toku-gana Shogunate
Peace was at last restored by Iye-yasu, the founder of the To...
Introduction Of Zen Into China By Bodhidharma
An epoch-making event took place in the Buddhist history of C...
There Is No Mortal Who Is Purely Moral
By nature man should be either good or bad; or he should be good as
well as bad; or he should be neither good nor bad. There can be no
alternative possible besides these four propositions, none of which
can be accepted as true. Then there must be some misconception in
the terms of which they consist. It would seem to some that the
error can be avoided by limiting the sense of the term 'man,' saying
some persons are good-natured, some persons are bad-natured, some
persons are good-natured and bad-natured as well, and some persons
are neither good-natured nor bad-natured. There is no contradiction
in these modified propositions, but still they fail to explain the
ethical state of man. Supposing them all to be true, let us assume
that there are the four classes of people: (1) Those who are purely
moral and have no immoral disposition; (2) those who are half moral
and half immoral; (3) those who are neither moral nor immoral; (4)
those who are purely immoral and have no moral disposition. Orthodox
Christians, believing in the sinlessness of Jesus, would say he
belongs to the first class, while Mohammedans and Buddhists, who
deify the founder of their respective faith, would in such case
regard their founder as the purely moral personage. But are your
beliefs, we should ask, based on historical fact? Can you say that
such traditional and self-contradictory records as the four gospels
are history in the strict sense of the term? Can you assert that
those traditions which deify Mohammed and Shakya are the statements
of bare facts? Is not Jesus an abstraction and an ideal, entirely
different from a concrete carpenter's son, who fed on the same kind
of food, sheltered himself in the same kind of building, suffered
from the same kind of pain, was fired by the same kind of anger,
stung by the same kind of lust as our own? Can you say the person
who fought many a sanguinary battle, who got through many cunning
negotiations with enemies and friends, who personally experienced the
troubles of polygamy, was a person sinless and divine? We might
allow that these ancient sages are superhuman and divine, then our
classification has no business with them, because they do not
properly belong to mankind. Now, then, who can point out any sinless
person in the present world? Is it not a fact that the more virtuous
one grows the more sinful he feels himself? If there be any mortal,
in the past, the present, and the future, who declares himself to be
pure and sinless, his very declaration proves that he is not highly
moral. Therefore the existence of the first class of people is open
Next: There Is No Mortal Who Is Non-moral Or Purely Immoral
Previous: Man Is Neither Good-natured Nor Bad-natured According To Su Shih