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Buddhism

The Application Of The Law Of Causation To Morals
Although it may be needless to state here the law of causatio...

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

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

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...

The Great Person And Small Person
For these reasons Zen proposes to call man Buddha-natured or ...

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

Zen In The Dark Age
The latter half of the Ashikaga period was the age of arms an...

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

The Method Of Instruction Adopted By Zen Masters
Thus far we have described the doctrine of Zen inculcated by ...

Life Change And Hope
The doctrine of Transcience never drives us to the pessimisti...

Bodhidharma's Disciples And The Transmission Of The Law
For details, see Chwen Tang Luh and Den Ka Roku, by Kei Z...

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

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

Man Is Neither Good-natured Nor Bad-natured According To Su Shi
(So-shoku). The difficulty may be avoided by a theory given ...

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

The Eternal Life As Taught By Professor Munsterberg
Some philosophical pessimists undervalue life simply because ...

The Introduction Of The So-to School Of Zen
This school was started by Tsing-Yuen (Sei-gen), an emine...

Scripture Is No More Than Waste Paper
Zen is not based on any particular sutra, either of Mahaya...

The Resemblance Of The Zen Monk To The Samurai
Let us point out in brief the similarities between Zen and Ja...

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




Life Change And Hope








The doctrine of Transcience never drives us to the pessimistic view
of life. On the contrary, it gives us an inexhaustible source of
pleasure and hope. Let us ask you: Are you satisfied with the
present state of things? Do you not sympathize with poverty-stricken
millions living side by side with millionaires saturated with wealth?
Do you not shed tears over those hunger-bitten children who cower in
the dark lanes of a great city? Do you not wish to put down the
stupendous oppressor--Might-is-right? Do you not want to do away
with the so-called armoured peace among nations? Do you not need to
mitigate the struggle for existence more sanguine than the war of
weapons?

Life changes and is changeable; consequently, has its future. Hope
is therefore possible. Individual development, social betterment,
international peace, reformation of mankind in general, can be hoped.
Our ideal, however unpractical it may seem at the first sight, can
be realized. Moreover, the world itself, too, is changing and
changeable. It reveals new phases from time to time, and can be
moulded to subserve our purpose. We must not take life or the world
as completed and doomed as it is now. No fact verifies the belief
that the world was ever created by some other power and predestined
to be as it is now. It lives, acts, and changes. It is transforming
itself continually, just as we are changing and becoming. Thus the
doctrine of Transience supplies us with an inexhaustible source of
hope and comfort, leads us into the living universe, and introduces
us to the presence of Universal Life or Buddha.

The reader may easily understand how Zen conceives Buddha as the
living principle from the following dialogues: "Is it true, sir,"
asked a monk of Teu tsz (To-shi), "that all the voices of Nature are
those of Buddha?" "Yes, certainly," replied Teu tsz. "What is,
reverend sir," asked a man of Chao Cheu (Jo-shu), "the holy temple
(of Buddha)?" "An innocent girl," replied the teacher. "Who is the
master of the temple?" asked the other again. "A baby in her womb,"
was the answer. "What is, sir," asked a monk to Yen Kwan (Yen-kan),
"the original body of Buddha Vairocana?" "Fetch me a pitcher
with water," said the teacher. The monk did as he was ordered. "Put
it back in its place," said Yen Kwan again.


Literally, All Illuminating Buddha, the highest of the
Trikayas. See Eitel, p. 192.

Zen-rin-rui-shu.






Next: Everything Is Living According To Zen

Previous: Life And Change



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