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Buddhism

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

Let Go Of Your Idle Thoughts
A famous Zenist, Mu-go-koku-shi, is said to have replied ...

The Development Of The Southern And Of The Northern School Of Zen
After the death of the Fifth Patriarch the venerable Shang Si...

Epicureanism And Life
There are a good many people always buoyant in spirit and mir...

No Need Of The Scriptural Authority For Zen
Some Occidental scholars erroneously identify Buddhism with t...

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

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

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

Zen Is Iconoclastic
For the followers of Bodhidharma, however, this conception of...

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

The Courage And The Composure Of Mind Of The Zen Monk And Of The Samurai
Fourthly, our Samurai encountered death, as is well known, wi...

Zen And Supernatural Power
Yoga claims that various supernatural powers can be acquired ...

The First Step In The Mental Training
Some of the old Zen masters are said to have attained to supr...

Our Conception Of Buddha Is Not Final
Has, then, the divine nature of Universal Spirit been complet...

Enlightened Consciousness Is Not An Intellectual Insight
Enlightened Consciousness is not a bare intellectual insight,...

Zazen And The Forgetting Of Self
Zazen is a most effectual means of destroying selfishness, th...

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

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

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

Hinayanism And Its Doctrine
The doctrine of Transience was the first entrance gate of Hin...




Life And Change








A peculiar phase of life is change which appears in the form of
growth and decay. Nobody can deny the transitoriness of life. One
of our friends humorously observed: "Everything in the world may be
doubtful to you, but it can never be doubted that you will die."
Life is like a burning lamp. Every minute its flame dies out and is
renewed. Life is like a running stream. Every moment it pushes
onward. If there be anything constant in this world of change, it
should be change itself. Is it not just one step from rosy childhood
to snowy age? Is it not just one moment from the nuptial song to the
funeral-dirge? Who can live the same moment twice?
In comparison with an organism, inorganic matter appears to be
constant and changeless; but, in fact, it is equally subjected to
ceaseless alteration. Every morning, looking into the mirror, you
will find your visage reflected in it just as it was on the preceding
day; so also every morning, looking at the sun and the earth, you
will find them reflected in your retina just as they were on the
previous morning; but the sun and the earth are no less changeless
than you. Why do the sun and the earth seem changeless and constant
to you? Only because you yourself undergo change more quickly than
they. When you look at the clouds sweeping across the face of the
moon, they seem to be at rest, and the moon in rapid motion; but, in
fact, the clouds, as well as the moon, incessantly move on.

Science might maintain the quantitative constancy of matter, but the
so-called matter is mere abstraction. To say matter is changeless is
as much as to say 2 is always 2, changeless and constant, because the
arithmetical number is not more abstract than the physiological
matter. The moon appears standing still when you look at her only a
few moments. In like manner she seems to be free from change when
you look at her in your short span of life. Astronomers,
nevertheless, can tell you how she saw her better days, and is now in
her wrinkles and white hair.






Next: Pessimistic View Of The Ancient Hindus

Previous: Buddha The Universal Life



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