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Buddhism

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

Decline Of Zen
The blooming prosperity of Zen was over towards the end of th...

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

The Beatitude Of Zen
We are far from denying, as already shown in the foregoing ch...

The Creative Force Of Nature And Humanity
The innate tendency of self-preservation, which manifests its...

Calmness Of Mind
The Yogi breathing above mentioned is fit rather for physical...

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

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

The Ten Pictures Of The Cowherd
The pictures were drawn by Kwoh Ngan (Kaku-an), a Chinese...

An Illusion Concerning Appearance And Reality
To get Enlightened we must next dispel an illusion respecting...

Wang Yang Ming O-yo-mei And A Thief
One evening when Wang was giving a lecture to a number of stu...

The Characteristics Of Do-gen The Founder Of The Japanese So To Sect
In the meantime seekers after a new truth gradually began to ...

The Ancient Buddhist Pantheon
The ancient Buddhist pantheon was full of deities or Buddhas,...

Zen After The Restoration
After the Restoration of the Mei-ji (1867) the popularity of ...

Life Consists In Conflict
Life consists in conflict. So long as man remains a social a...

Zazen Or The Sitting In Meditation
Habit comes out of practice, and forms character by degrees, ...

Life In The Concrete
Life in the concrete, which we are living, greatly differs fr...

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

Zen And Nirvana
The beatitude of Zen is Nirvana, not in the Hinayanistic sens...

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




Life In The Concrete








Life in the concrete, which we are living, greatly differs from life
in the abstract, which exists only in the class-room. It is not
eternal; it is fleeting; it is full of anxieties, pains, struggles,
brutalities, disappointments, and calamities. We love life, however,
-not only for its smoothness, but for its roughness; not only for its
pleasure, but for its pain; not only for its hope, but for its fear;
not only for its flowers, but for its frost and snow. As
Issai (Sato) has aptly put it: "Prosperity is like spring, in
which we have green leaves and flowers wherever we go; while
adversity is like winter, in which we have snow and ice. Spring, of
course, pleases us; winter, too, displeases us not." Adversity is
salt to our lives, as it keeps them from corruption, no matter how
bitter to taste it way be. It is the best stimulus to body and mind,
since it brings forth latent energy that may remain dormant but for
it. Most people hunt after pleasure, look for good luck, hunger
after success, and complain of pain, ill-luck, and failure. It does
not occur to them that 'they who make good luck a god are all unlucky
men,' as George Eliot has wisely observed. Pleasure ceases to be
pleasure when we attain to it; another sort of pleasure displays
itself to tempt us. It is a mirage, it beckons to us to lead us
astray. When an overwhelming misfortune looks us in the face, our
latent power is sure to be aroused to grapple with it. Even delicate
girls exert the power of giants at the time of emergency; even
robbers or murderers are found to be kind and generous when we are
thrown into a common disaster. Troubles and difficulties call forth
our divine force, which lies deeper than the ordinary faculties, and
which we never before dreamed we possessed.


A noted scholar (1772-1859) and author, who belonged to the
Wang School of Confucianism. See Gen-shi-roku.






Next: Difficulties Are No Match For The Optimist

Previous: The Eternal Life As Taught By Professor Munsterberg



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