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Buddhism

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

Zen After The Downfall Of The Ho-jo Regency
Towards the end of the Ho-Jo period, and after the downfall o...

The Spiritual Attainment Of The Sixth Patriarch
Some time before his death (in 675 A.D.) the Fifth Patriarch ...

The Manliness Of The Zen Monk And Of The Samurai
Thirdly, both the Zen monk and the Samurai were distinguished...

The Sermon Of The Inanimate
The Scripture of Zen is written with facts simple and familia...

Three Important Elements Of Zen
To understand how Zen developed during some four hundred year...

The Fifth And The Sixth Patriarchs
Tao Sin transmitted the Law to Hung Jan (Ko-nin), who being e...

Buddha-nature Is The Common Source Of Morals
Furthermore, Buddha-nature or real self, being the seat of lo...

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

Buddha The Universal Life
Zen conceives Buddha as a Being, who moves, stirs, inspires, ...

Pessimistic View Of The Ancient Hindus
In addition to this, the new theory of matter has entirely ov...

Nature Favours Nothing In Particular
There is another point of view of life, which gave the presen...

Thing-in-itself Means Thing-knowerless
How, then, did philosophers come to consider reality to be un...

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

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

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

The Law Of Balance
Nature governs the world with her law of balance. She puts t...

Everything Is Living According To Zen
Everything alive has a strong innate tendency to preserve its...

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

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




The Absolute And Reality Are But An Abstraction








A grain of sand you, trample upon has a deeper significance than a
series of lectures by your verbal philosopher whom you respect. It
contains within itself the whole history of the earth; it tells you
what it has seen since the dawn of time; while your philosopher
simply plays on abstract terms and empty words. What does his
Absolute, or One, or Substance mean? What does his Reality or Truth
imply? Do they denote or connote anything? Mere name! mere
abstraction! One school of philosophy after another has been
established on logical subtleties; thousands of books have been
written on these grand names and fair mirages, which vanish the
moment that your hand of experience reaches after them.

"Duke Hwan," says Chwang Tsz, "seated above in his hall, was"
(once) reading a book, and a wheelwright, Phien, was making a wheel
below it. Laying aside his hammer and chisel, Phien went up the
steps and said: 'I venture to ask your Grace what words you are
reading?' The duke said: 'The words of sages.' 'Are these sages
alive?' Phien continued. 'They are dead,' was the reply. 'Then,'
said the other, 'what you, my Ruler, are reading is only the dregs
and sediments of those old men.' The duke said:


Chwang Tsz, vol. ii., p. 24.


'How should you, a wheelwright, have anything to say about the book
which I am reading? If you can explain yourself, very well; if you
cannot, you shall die.' The wheelwright said: 'Your servant will
look at the thing from the point of view of his own art. In making a
wheel, if I proceed gently, that is pleasant enough, but the
workmanship is not strong; if I proceed violently, that is toilsome
and the joinings do not fit. If the movements of my hand are neither
(too) gentle nor (too) violent, the idea in my mind is realized. But
I cannot tell (how to do this) by word of mouth; there is a knack in
it. I cannot teach the knack to my son, nor can my son learn it from
me. Thus it is that I am in my seventieth year, and am (still)
making wheels in my old age. But these ancients, and what it was not
possible for them to convey, are dead and gone. So then what you, my
Ruler, are reading is but their dregs and sediments." Zen has no
business with the dregs and sediments of sages of yore.






Next: The Sermon Of The Inanimate

Previous: Great Men And Nature



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