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Buddhism

The Irrationality Of The Belief Of Immortality
Occidental minds believe in a mysterious entity under the nam...

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

Do Thy Best And Leave The Rest To Providence
There is another point of view which enables us to enjoy life...

Zen And Idealism
Next Zen makes use of Idealism as explained by the Dharmalaks...

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

Idealistic Scepticism Concerning Religion And Morality
Similarly, it is the case with religion and morality. If we ...

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

The Establishment Of The Rin Zai School Of Zen In Japan
The Lin Tsi school was started by Nan Yoh, a prominent d...

Idealism Is A Potent Medicine For Self-created Mental Disease
In so far as Buddhist idealism refers to the world of sense, ...

Flight Of The Sixth Patriarch
On the following morning the news of what had happened during...

The Errors Of Philosophical Pessimists And Religious Optimists
Philosophical pessimists maintain that there are on earth ma...

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

Zen And The Regent Generals Of The Ho-jo Period
No wonder, then, that the representatives of the Samurai clas...

The Examination Of The Notion Of Self
The belief in immortality is based on the strong instinct of ...

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

The Awakening Of The Innermost Wisdom
Having set ourselves free from the misconception of Self, nex...

The Bad Are The Good In The Egg
This is not only the case with a robber or a murderer, but al...

Poetical Intuition And Zen
Since Universal Life or Spirit permeates the universe, the po...

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

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




Zen And Nirvana








The beatitude of Zen is Nirvana, not in the Hinayanistic sense of the
term, but in the sense peculiar to the faith. Nirvana literally
means extinction or annihilation; hence the extinction of life or the
annihilation of individuality. To Zen, however, it means the state
of extinction of pain and the annihilation of sin. Zen never looks
for the realization of its beatitude in a place like heaven, nor
believes in the realm of Reality transcendental of the phenomenal
universe, nor gives countenance to the superstition of Immortality,
nor does it hold the world is the best of all possible worlds, nor
conceives life simply as blessing. It is in this life, full of
shortcomings, misery, and sufferings, that Zen hopes to realize its
beatitude. It is in this world, imperfect, changing, and moving,
that Zen finds the Divine Light it worships. It is in this
phenomenal universe of limitation and relativity that Zen aims to
attain to highest Nirvana. "We speak," says the author of
Vimalakirtti-nirdeca-sutra, "of the transitoriness of body, but not
of the desire of the Nirvana or destruction of it." "Paranirvana,"
according to the author of Lankavatarasutra, "is neither death nor
destruction, but bliss, freedom, and purity." "Nirvana," says Kiai
Hwan, "means the extinction of pain or the crossing over of
the sea of life and death. It denotes the real permanent state of
spiritual attainment. It does not signify destruction or
annihilation. It denotes the belief in the great root of life and
spirit." It is Nirvana of Zen to enjoy bliss for all sufferings of
life. It is Nirvana of Zen to be serene in mind for all disturbances
of actual existence. It is Nirvana of Zen to be in the conscious
union with Universal Life or Buddha through Enlightenment.


A commentator of Saddharma-pundarika-sutra.






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Previous: The Ten Pictures Of The Cowherd



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