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Spiritual and philosophical quotes of Zen (Chan)

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P eople under delusion accumulate tainted merits but do not tread the Path.
They are under the impression that to accumulate merits and to tread the
Path are one and the same thing.
Though their merits for alms-giving and offerings are infinite
They do not realize that the ultimate source of sin lies in the three
poisons within their own mind.
They expect to expiate their sins by accumulating merit
Without knowing that felicities obtained in future lives have nothing to
do with the expiation of sins.
Why not get rid of the sin within our own mind,
For this is true repentance?





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 4392 | 
Sutra of Hui Neng 6 







S ince all Dharmas are immanent in our mind there is no reason why we
should not realize intuitively the real nature of Suchness. The
Bodhisattva Sila Sutra says, "Our Essence of Mind is intrinsically pure,
and if we knew our mind and realized what our nature is, all of us would
attain Buddhahood."





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 4296 | 
Sutra of Hui Neng 2 







W ithin the Essence of Mind all things are intrinsically pure, like the azure of the sky and the radiance of the sun and the moon which, when obscured by passing clouds, may appear as if their brightness had been dimmed; but as soon as the clouds are blown away, brightness reappears and all objects are fully illuminated. Learned Audience, our evil habits may be likened unto the clouds; while Sagacity and Wisdom are like the sun and the moon respectively. When we attach ourselves to outer objects, our Essence of Mind is clouded by wanton thoughts which prevent our Sagacity and Wisdom from sending forth their light.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 4271 | 
Sutra of Hui Neng 6 







O ne day the Fifth Patriarch assembled all his disciples and said to them, "Go and seek for Wisdom in your own mind and then write me a stanza about it. He who understands what the Essence of Mind is will be given the Robe and the Dharma, and I shall make him the Sixth Patriarch. Go away quickly. Delay not in writing the stanza, as deliberation is quite unnecessary and of no use. The man who has realized the Essence of Mind can speak of it at once."

Having received this instruction, the disciples withdrew, but none dared to write a stanza, as they all deferred to the head instructor Shen Hsiu... At 12 o'clock that night Shen Hsiu went secretly with a lamp to write his stanza on the wall of the south corridor, so that the Patriarch might know what spiritual insight he had attained. The stanza read,

Our body is the Bodhi tree,
And our mind a mirror bright,
Carefully we wipe them hour by hour,
And let no dust alight.

...When the Patriarch saw the stanza the next morning, he instructed that it be read and recited by all the disciples, so that they might realize the Essence of Mind. At midnight he sent for Shen Hsiu to come to the hall, and asked him if the stanza was written by him or not. "It was, Sir," replied Shen Hsiu. "I dare not be so vain as to expect to get the Patriarchate, but I wish Your Holiness would kindly tell me whether my stanza shows the least grain of wisdom." "Your stanza," replied the Patriarch, "shows that you have not yet realized the Essence of Mind. So far you have reached the 'door of enlightenment,' but you have not yet entered it. To seek for supreme enlightenment with such an understanding as yours can hardly be successful... You had better go back to think it over again for a couple of days, and submit to me another stanza."

I [Hui Neng] was pounding rice when I heard a young boy reciting the stanza written by Shen Hsiu... I asked him to lead me to the hall and show me the stanza. A petty officer who happened to be there read it out to me. When he had finished reading, I told him that I had also composed a stanza, and asked him to write it on the wall. "Don't despise a beginner," I said. "You should know that the lowest class may have the sharpest wit, while the highest may be in want of intelligence. If you slight others, you commit a very great sin." I dictated my stanza, which read,

There is no Bodhi tree,
Nor stand of a mirror bright.
Since all is void,
Where can the dust alight?

When he had written this, the crowd of disciples was overwhelmed with amazement, but the Patriarch rubbed off the stanza with his shoe, lest jealous ones should do me injury. The next night he invited me secretly to his room, and expounded the Diamond Sutra to me. When he came to the sentence, "One should use one's mind in such a way that it will be free from any attachment," I at once became thoroughly enlightened, and realized that all things in the universe are the Essence of Mind itself. "Who would have thought," I said to the Patriarch, "that the Essence of Mind is intrinsically pure!..." Thus, to the knowledge of no one, the Dharma was transmitted to me at midnight, and I became the Sixth Patriarch.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 4196 | 
Sutra of Hui Neng 1 







F or him who... knows his own mind and sees intuitively his own nature, he is a Hero, a Teacher of gods and men, a Buddha.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 4190 | 
Sutra of Hui Neng 1 







W hat sort of illness awaits us tonight, what sort of death tomorrow? While we have life, not to practice Buddha's Law, but to spend the time in sleep is the height of foolishness. Because of such foolishness Buddhism today Is in a state of decline. When it was at its zenith monks devoted themselves to the practice of sitting in meditation (zazen), but nowadays sitting is not generally insisted upon and consequently Buddhism is losing ground.' . . .

Upon another occasion his attendants said to him, 'The monks are getting overtired or falling ill, and some are thinking of leaving the monastery, all because they are required to sit too long in meditation. Shouldn't the length of the sitting period be shortened?' The master became highly indignant. 'That would be quite wrong. A monk who is not really devoted to the religious life may very well fall asleep in a half hour or an hour. But one truly devoted to it who has resolved to persevere in his religious discipline will eventually come to enjoy the practice of sitting, no matter how long it lasts.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3970 | 
From the Shobo genzo zuimonki pp. 50-2, translated by Wm. Theodore de Bary, in De Bary (ed.), Sources of Japanese Tradition, op. Cit., Pp. 253-4 







I n the pursuit of the Way [Buddhism] the prime essential is sitting (zazen). . . . By reflecting upon various 'public-cases' (koan) and dialogues of the patriarchs, one may perhaps get the sense of them but it will only result in one's being led astray from the way of the Buddha, our founder. just to pass the time in sitting straight, without any thought of acquisition, without any sense of achieving enlightenment -this is the way of the Founder. It is true that our predecessors recommended both the koan and sitting, but it was the sitting that they particularly insisted upon. There have been some who attained enlightenment through the test of the koan, but the true cause of their enlightenment was the merit and effectiveness of sitting. Truly the merit lies in the sitting.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3969 | 
From the Shobo genzo zuimonki, pp. 98-9, translated in De Bary (ed.), Sources of Japanese Tradition, op. cit., P. 253 







W hen you go out on a boat and look around, you feel as if the shore were moving. But if you fix your eyes on the rim of the boat, you become aware that the boat is moving. It is exactly the same when you try to know the objective world while still in a state of confusion in regard to your own body and mind; you are under the misapprehension that your own mind, your own nature, is something real and enduring [while the external world is transitory]. Only when you sit straight and look into yourself, does it become clear that [you yourself are changing ] the objective world has a reality apart from you.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3968 | 
From Hashida, Shobo genzo shakui, 1, 142-64, selections translated in De Bary (ed.), Sources of Japanese Tradition, Op. Cit., Pp. 251-2 







T o study the way of the Buddha is to study your own self. To study your own self is to forget yourself. To forget yourself is to have the objective world prevail in you. To have the objective world prevail in you, is to let go of your 'own' body and mind as well as the body and mind of 'others.' The enlightenment thus attained may seem to come to an end, but though it appears to have stopped this momentary enlightenment should be prolonged and prolonged.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3967 | 
From Hashida, Shobo genzo shakui, 1, 142-64, selections translated in De Bary (ed.), Sources of Japanese Tradition, Op. Cit., Pp. 251-2 







I f we hold exclusively to Emptiness, we deny the entire causal world;
All is then attributed to chance, with no ruling principle, inviting evil to prevail.
The same error occurs when one holds exclusively to the manifested, denying the Emptiness;
That would be like throwing oneself into the flames in order to avoid being drowned in the water.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3765 | 
Cheng-tao Ke “Sonf of Enlightment”, in Suzuki, 1960; pp. 89-103 







L et us be thoroughgoing, not only in inner experience, but in its interpretation,
And our lives will be perfect in meditation and in wisdom as well-not adhering one-sidedly to Emptiness (Sunyata) alone.
It is not we alone who have come to this conclusion;
All the enlightened, numerous as the sands of India, are of the same mind.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3764 | 
Cheng-tao Ke “Sonf of Enlightment”, in Suzuki, 1960; pp. 89-103 







W hen the absolute Reality is known, it is seen to be without any individual selves, and devoid of any objective forms;
All past [mental and physical] actions which lead to hell are instantly wiped away.

After the Awakening, there is only vast Emptiness; this vast universe of forms ceases to exist [outside of one's Self].

Here, one sees neither sin nor bliss, neither loss nor gain.
In the midst of the eternal Serenity, no questions arise;
The dust of ignorance which has accumulated on the unpolished mirror for ages,
Is now, and forever, cleared away in the vision of Truth.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3763 | 
Cheng-tao Ke “Sonf of Enlightment”, in Suzuki, 1960; pp. 89-103 







D o you know that leisurely sage who has gone beyond learning, and who does not exert himself in anything?
He neither endeavors to avoid idle thoughts nor seeks after the Truth;
[For he knows that] ignorance is also the Reality,
[And that] this empty, illusory, body is nothing but the absolute Reality (Dharmakaya).





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3761 | 
Cheng-tao Ke “Sonf of Enlightment”, in Suzuki, 1960; pp. 89-103 







I n the higher realm of true Being,
There is neither "other" nor "self";
When a direct identification is required,
We can only say, "not two."

In being not two, all is the same;
All that is is comprehended in it.
The wise in all the ten quarters
Enter into this same absolute Awareness.

This absolute Awareness is beyond movement and rest;
One instant is ten thousand years.
No matter how things are regarded-as being or non-being,
It is manifest everywhere before you.

... One in all,
All in One
If only this is realized,
No more worry about your not being perfect!





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3760 | 
Hsin-hsin ming “Inscription on the Self of the Self”, Suzuki, 1960, pp. 76-82 







W hen no offence is offered by them, they are as if non-existent;
When the mind is not disturbed, it is as if there is no mind.
The subject is quieted as the object ceases;
The object ceases as the subject is quieted.

The object is an object for the subject;
The subject is a subject for an object.
Know that the relativity of the two
Rests ultimately on the oneness of the Void.

In the oneness of the Void, the two are one,
And each of the two contains in itself all the ten thousand things.
When no discrimination is made between this and that,
How can a one-sided and prejudiced view arise?





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3759 | 
Hsin-hsin ming “Inscription on the Self of the Self”, Suzuki, 1960, pp. 76-82 







T he two exist because of the One,
But hold not even to this One;
When the one Consciousness -is not disturbed,
The ten thousand things offer no offence.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3758 | 
Hsin-hsin ming “Inscription on the Self of the Self”, Suzuki, 1960, pp. 76-82 







W hen we return to the root, we gain the meaning;
When we pursue the external objects, we lose the purpose.
The moment we are enlightened within,
We go beyond the voidness of a world confronting us.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3757 | 
Hsin-hsin ming “Inscription on the Self of the Self”, Suzuki, 1960, pp. 76-82 







W hen oneness is not thoroughly understood,
In two ways loss may be sustained:
The denial of the world may lead to its absolute negation,
While the denying of the
Void may result in the denying of your [true] Self.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3756 | 
Hsin-hsin ming “Inscription on the Self of the Self”, Suzuki, 1960, pp. 76-82 







W ordiness and intellection.
The more with them the further astray we go;
Away, therefore, with wordiness and intellection,
And there is no place where we cannot pass freely.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3755 | 
Hsin-hsin ming “Inscription on the Self of the Self”, Suzuki, 1960, pp. 76-82 







T he Truth is perfect like the vastness of space,
With nothing wanting, nothing superfluous;
It is indeed due to making choices
That the One Reality is lost sight of.

Pursue not the outer entanglements,
Dwell not in the inner Void;
When the mind rests serene in the oneness of 'things,
Dualism vanishes by itself.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3754 | 
Hsin-hsin ming “Inscription on the Self of the Self”, Suzuki, 1960, pp. 76-82 







N ot knowing how near the Truth is, People seek It far away, -- what a pity! They are like one who, in the midst of water, Cries imploringly for a drink of water, Or like the son of a rich man Who wanders away among the poor. ... Those who testify to the truth of the nature of the Self, Have found it by reflecting within themselves, And have gone beyond the realm of mere ideas. For them opens the gate of the oneness of cause and effect; And straight runs the path of non-duality ... Abiding with the Undivided amidst the divided, Whether going or returning, they remain forever unmoved. Holding fast to, and remembering, That which is beyond thought, In their every act, they hear the voice of the Truth. How limitless the sky of unbounded freedom! How pure the perfect moonlight of Wisdom! At that moment, what do they lack? As the eternally quiescent Truth reveals Itself to them, This very earth is the lotus-land of Purity, And this body -is the body of the Buddha.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3753 | 
in Suzuki, 1961, p. 336 







T hose who testify to the truth of the nature of the Self, Have found it by reflecting within themselves.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3752 | 
in Suzuki, 1961, p. 336 







M ONK: "Where is the Reality in appearance?"
MASTER: "Wherever there is appearance, there is Reality."
MONK: "How does It manifest Itself?"
MASTER: (The master silently lifted his saucer.)
MONK: "But where is the Reality in illusion?"
MASTER: "The origin of illusion is the Real."
MONK: "But how can Reality manifest Itself in illusion?"
MASTER: "Wherever there is illusion, there is the manifestation of Reality."
MONK: "Do you say, then, Reality can never be separated from illusion?"
MASTER: "Where can you possibly find the appearance of illusion?"





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3751 | 
in Chung-yuan, 1975; pp. 72-73 







W hile still alive, be therefore assiduous in practicing meditation. ... As your self-reflection grows deeper and deeper, the moment will surely come upon you when the spiritual flower will suddenly burst into bloom, illuminating the entire universe.

This is the moment when you can transform this vast earth into solid gold, and the great rivers into an ocean of milk. What a satisfaction this is then to your daily life! Since this is so, do not waste your time with words or phrases, or by searching for Truth in books; for the Truth is not to be found there. ... They consist of mere words, which will be of no use to you at the moment of your death.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3750 | 
in Suzuki, 1970; pp. 23-24 







T o find a buddha all you have to do is see your nature. Your nature is the buddha.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3543 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, pp. 13-15 







W hen mortals are alive, they worry about death. When they're full, they worry about hunger. Theirs is the Great Uncertainty. But sages don't consider the past. And they don't worry about the future. Nor do they cling to the present. And from moment to moment they follow the Way.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3255 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 75 







I f, as in a dream, you see a light brighter than the sun, your remaining attachments will suddenly come to an end and the nature of reality will be revealed. Such an occurrence serves as the basis for enlightenment. But this is something only you know. You can't explain it to others.

Or if, while you're walking, standing, sitting, or lying in a quiet grove, you see a light, regardless of whether it's bright or dim, don't tell others and don't focus on it. It's the light of your own nature.

Of if, while you're walking, standing, sitting, or lying in the stillness and darkness of night, everything appears as though in daylight, don't be startled. It's your own mind about to reveal itself.

Or if, while you're dreaming at night, you see the moon and stars in all their clarity, it means the workings of your mind are about to end. But don't tell others.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3254 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 33 







T o find a buddha all you have to do is see your nature. Your nature is the buddha. And the buddha is the person who's free: free of plans, free of cares. If you don't see your nature and run around all day looking somewhere else, you'll never find a buddha. The truth is, there's nothing to find. But to reach such an understanding you need a teacher and you need to struggle to make yourself understand…

If you don't find a teacher soon, you'll live this life in vain. It's true, you have the buddha-nature. But without the help of a teacher you'll never know it. Only one person in a million becomes enlightened without a teacher's help.

If, though, by the conjunction of conditions, someone understands what the Buddha meant, that person doesn't need a teacher. Such a person has a natural awareness superior to anything taught. But unless you're so blessed, study hard, and by means of instruction you'll understand.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3253 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, pp. 13-15 







T o give up yourself without regret is the greatest charity.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3252 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 49 







W hen delusions are absent, the mind is the land of buddhas. When delusions are present, the mind is hell. Mortals create delusions. And by using the mind to give birth to mind they always find themselves in hell. Bodhisattvas see through delusions. And by not using the mind to give birth to mind they always find themselves in the land of buddhas. If you don't use your mind to create mind, every state of mind is empty and every thought is still. You go from one buddha-land to another. If you use your mind to create mind, every state of mind is disturbed and every thought is in motion. You go from one hell to the next.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3251 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 61 







N ot thinking about anything is zen. Once you know this, walking, standing, sitting, or lying down, everything you do is zen. To know that the mind is empty is to see the buddha… Using the mind to look for reality is delusion. Not using the mind to look for reality is awareness. Freeing oneself from words is liberation.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3250 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 49 







T o go from mortal to buddha, you have to put an end to karma, nurture your awareness, and accept what life brings.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3249 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 35 







E verything good and bad comes from your own mind. To find something beyond the mind is impossible.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3248 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 77 







T o have a body is to suffer. Does anyone with a body know peace? Those who understand this detach themselves from all that exists and stop imagining or seeking anything. The sutras say, "To seek is to suffer. To seek nothing is bliss." When you seek nothing, you're on the Path.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3247 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, pp. 5-7 







T he essence of the Way is detachment. And the goal of those who practice is freedom from appearances.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3246 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 47 







T he buddha is your real body, your original mind.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3245 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 43 







I f you see your nature, you don't need to read sutras or invoke buddhas. Erudition and knowledge are not only useless but also cloud your awareness. Doctrines are only for pointing to the mind. Once you see your mind, why pay attention to doctrines?




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3244 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 35 







T he ultimate Truth is beyond words. Doctrines are words. They're not the Way. The Way is wordless. Words are illusions… Don't cling to appearances, and you'll break through all barriers…




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3243 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, p. 31 







T his mind, through endless kalpas without beginning, has never varied. It has never lived or died, appeared or disappeared, increased or decreased. It's not pure or impure, good or evil, past or future. It's not true or false. It's not male or female. It doesn't appear as a monk or a layman, an elder or a novice, a sage or a fool, a buddha or a mortal. It strives for no realization and suffers no karma. It has no strength or form. It's like space. You can't possess it and you can't lose it. Its movements can't be blocked by mountains, rivers, or rock walls… No karma can restrain this real body. But this mind is subtle and hard to see. It's not the same as the sensual mind. Everyone wants to see this mind, and those who move their hands and feet by its light are as many as the grains of sand along the Ganges, but when you ask them, they can't explain it. It's theirs to use. Why don't they see it?

… Only the wise know this mind, this mind called dharma-nature, this mind called liberation. Neither life nor death can restrain this mind. Nothing can. It's also called the Unstoppable Tathagata, the Incomprehensible, the Sacred Self, the Immortal, the Great Sage. Its names vary but not its essence.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3242 | 
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987. The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma. Trans. Red Pine. New York: North Point Press, 1987, pp. 21-23 







C oming and going,
life and death.
A thousand villages,
a million houses.
Don't you get it ?
Moon in the water,
blossom in the sky.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3025 | 
Stryk, W, and Ikemoto, T. Zen Poems of China. Garden City, NY. Anchor Press, 1973, p. 69. 







O ne Nature, perfect and pervading, circulates in all natures.
One Reality, all comprehensive, contains within itself all realities.
The one moon is reflected wherever there is a sheet of water,
And all the moons in all the waters are embraced within the one moon;
The embodied Truth of all the Buddhas enters into my own being,
And my own being is found in union with theirs.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3024 | 
Suzuki, D. T Manual of Zen Buddhism. New York: Grove Press, 1960, pp. 97-100 







O ur original Buddha-Nature is, in highest truth, devoid of any trace of objectivity. It is void, omnipresent, silent, pure; it is glorious and mysterious peaceful joy-and that is all. Enter deeply in it by awakening to it yourself. That which is before you is it, in all its fullness, utterly complete. There is naught besides. Even if you go through all the stages of a Bodhisattva's progress toward Buddhahood, one by one, when at last, in a single flash, you attain to full realization, you will only be realizing the Buddha-Nature that has been with you all the time; and by all the foregoing stages you will have added to it nothing at all. You will come to look upon those aeons of work and achievement as no better than unreal actions performed in a dream. That is why the Tathagata [the Buddha] said: I truly attained nothing from complete, unexcelled Enlightenment.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3023 | 
Blofeld John, trans. The Zen Teachings of Huang Po, New York: Grove Press, 1958, p131. 







C ountless as the sands of the Ganges are the merits which come from performing the six perfect duties and vast number of similar practices. But since you are fundamentally complete in every respect, you should not try to supplement that perfection by such meaningless practices. When there is occasion for them, perform them, and when the occasion has passed, remain quiescent. If you are not absolutely convinced that the Mind is the Buddha, and if you are attached to forms, practices, and meritorious deeds, your way of thinking is false and quite contrary to the Way. Your mind is the Buddha! There is no other Buddha! There is no other Mind!




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3022 | 
Blofeld John, trans. The Zen Teachings of Huang Po, New York: Grove Press, 1958, pp. 35-36 







I magine a child sleeping next to its parents and dreaming it is being beaten or is painfully sick. The parents cannot help the child no matter how much it suffers … If the child could awaken itself, it could be freed of this suffering automatically. In the same way, one who realizes that his own Mind is Buddha frees himself instantly from sufferings arising from the ceaseless change of birth and death. If a Buddha could prevent it, do you think he would allow even one sentient being to fall into hell?

What is obstructing realization? Nothing but your own half-hearted desire for truth. Think of this and exert yourself to the utmost.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3021 | 
Kapleau, Philip. The Three Pillars of Zen. Boston: Beacon Press, 1965, PP. 160-161, 164, 169. 







A ll the Buddhas and all sentient beings are nothing but the Universal Mind, beside which nothing exists. This Mind, which is without beginning, is unborn and indestructible. It is not green nor yellow, and has neither form nor appearance. It does not belong too the categories of things which exist or do not exist, nor can it be thought of in terms of new or old. It is neither long nor short, big nor small, for it transcends all limits, measures, traces, and comparisons.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3020 | 
Huang Po, Blofeld John, trans. The Zen Teachings of Huang Po, New York: Grove Press, 1958, pp. 29-30 







I f you would free yourself from the sufferings of birth and death, you must learn the direct way to become a Buddha. This way is no other than the realization of your own Mind … If you want to realize your own Mind, you must first of all look into the source from which thoughts flow. Sleeping and working, standing and sitting, profoundly ask yourself, 'What is my own Mind," with an intense yearning to resolve this question. This searching of one's own Mind leads ultimately to enlightenment.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3019 | 
Kapleau, Philip. The Three Pillars of Zen. Boston: Beacon Press, 1965, PP. 160-161, 164, 169. 







A teacher of old said, If the beginning is not right, a thousand practices will be useless.
How true these words are! Practice of the way depends on whether the guiding master is a true teacher or not.
The disciple is like wood, and the teacher resembles a craftsman. Even if the wood is good, without a skilled craftsman its extraordinary beauty is not revealed. Even if the wood is bent, placed in skilled hands its splendid merits immediately appear. By this you should know that realization is genuine or false depending on whether the teacher is true or incompetent.





Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 3018 | 
Tanahashi' Kazuaki, ed. Moon in a Dewdrop: Writings of Zen Master Dogen. San Francisco: North Point Press, 1985, pp. 34-35. 







G ood and learned friends, when I was at Priest Hung-jen's place, I understood immediately as soon as I heard him, and suddenly realized the original nature of True Thusness. For this reason I propagate this doctrine so that it will prevail among later generations and seekers of the Way will be able to achieve perfect wisdom through sudden enlightenment, each to see his own mind, and to become suddenly enlightened through his own original nature. If they are not able to enlighten themselves, they should seek good and learned friends of high standing to show them the way to see their nature.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 2314 | 
Hui-neng, in the “Plateform scripture” (liu-tsu t’an-ching), in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 26, 31 







W hy not seek in one's own mind the sudden realization of the original nature of True Thusness? The P'u-sa chieh ching says, 'We are originally pure in our self-nature. If we understand our minds and see our nature, we shall achieve Buddhahood ourselves. [And the Wei-mo-chieh (so-shua) ching says] 'Immediately we become completely clear and recover our original mind’.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 2313 | 
Hui-neng, in the “Plateform scripture” (liu-tsu t’an-ching), in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 26, 30 







W hen there is no thought, one's nature is empty of differentiated characters and is tranquil, but when there is thought, that is self-transformation.




Buddhism / Mahayana / Zen (Chan) 2312 | 
Hui-neng, in the “Plateform scripture” (liu-tsu t’an-ching), in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 26, 20 





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