Buddhism Great Men And Nature
All great men, whether they be poets or scientists or religio...
Zazen And The Forgetting Of Self
Zazen is a most effectual means of destroying selfishness, th...
Life And Change
Transformation and change are the essential features of life;...
All The Worlds In Ten Directions Are Buddha's Holy Land
We are to resume this problem in the following chapter. Suff...
The Usual Explanation Of The Canon
An eminent Chinese Buddhist scholar, well known as Ten Dai Da...
Change As Seen By Zen
Zen, like Hinayanism, does not deny the doctrine of Transienc...
There Is No Mortal Who Is Non-moral Or Purely Immoral
The same is the case with the third and the fourth class of p...
Life And Change
A peculiar phase of life is change which appears in the form ...
Poetical Intuition And Zen
Since Universal Life or Spirit permeates the universe, the po...
Decline Of Zen
The blooming prosperity of Zen was over towards the end of th...
The Fifth And The Sixth Patriarchs
Tao Sin transmitted the Law to Hung Jan (Ko-nin), who being e...
Zen Is Iconoclastic
For the followers of Bodhidharma, however, this conception of...
The Next Step In The Mental Training
In the next place we have to strive to be the master of our b...
Bodhidharma And His Successor The Second Patriarch
China was not, however, an uncultivated land for the seed of
The Five Ranks Of Merit
Thus far we have stated how to train our body and mind accord...
Zen In The Dark Age
The latter half of the Ashikaga period was the age of arms an...
Wang Yang Ming O-yo-mei And A Thief
One evening when Wang was giving a lecture to a number of stu...
The Parable Of A Drunkard
Now the question arises, If all human beings are endowed with...
The World Is In The Making
Our assertion is far from assuming that life is now complete,...
The Method Of Instruction Adopted By Zen Masters
Thus far we have described the doctrine of Zen inculcated by ...
Buddha Is Unnamable
Give a definite name to Deity, He would be no more than what the name
implies. The Deity under the name of Brahman necessarily differs
from the Being under the appellation of Jehovah, just as the Hindu
differs from the Jew. In like manner the Being designated by God
necessarily differs from One named Amitabha or from Him entitled
Allah. To give a name to the Deity is to give Him tradition,
nationality, limitation, and fixity, and it never brings us nearer to
Him. Zen's object of worship cannot be named and determined as God,
or Brahman, or Amitabha, or Creator, or Nature, or Reality, or
Substance, or the like. Neither Chinese nor Japanese masters of Zen
tried to give a definite name to their object of adoration. They now
called Him That One, now This One, now Mind, now Buddha, now
Tathagata, now Certain Thing, now the True, now Dharma-nature, now
Buddha-nature, and so forth. Tung Shan (To-zan) on a certain
occasion declared it to be "A Certain Thing that pillars heaven above
and supports the earth below; dark as lacquer and undefinable;
manifesting itself through its activities, yet not wholly comprisable
within them." So-kei expressed it in the same wise: "There
exists a Certain Thing, bright as a mirror, spiritual as a mind, not
subjected to growth nor to decay." Huen Sha (Gen-sha) comparing it
with a gem says: "There exists a bright gem illuminating through the
worlds in ten directions by its light."
Tung Shan Luh (To-zan-roku, 'Sayings and Doings of Ta-zan')
is one of the best Zen books.
So-kei, a Korean Zenist, whose work entitled Zen-ke-ki-kwan
is worthy of our note as a representation of Korean Zen.
This certain thing or being is too sublime to be named after a
traditional or a national deity, too spiritual to be symbolized by
human art, too full of life to be formulated in terms of mechanical
science, too free to be rationalized by intellectual philosophy, too
universal to be perceived by bodily senses; but everybody can feel
its irresistible power, see its invisible presence, and touch its
heart and soul within himself. "This mysterious Mind," says Kwei
Fung (Kei-ho), "is higher than the highest, deeper than the deepest,
limitless in all directions. There is no centre in it. No
distinction of east and west, and above and below. Is it empty?
Yes, but not empty like space. Has it a form? Yes, but has no form
dependent on another for its existence. Is it intelligent? Yes, but
not intelligent like your mind. Is it non-intelligent? Yes, but not
non-intelligent like trees and stone. Is it conscious? Yes, but not
conscious like you when waking. Is it bright? Yes, but not bright
like the sun or the moon." To the question, "What and who is
Buddha?" Yuen Wu (En-go) replied: "Hold your tongue: the mouth is
the gate of evils!" while Pao Fuh (Ho-fuku) answered to the same
question: "No skill of art can picture Him." Thus Buddha is
unnamable, indescribable, and indefinable, but we provisionally call
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