Daily Zen Library


Mud and Water - A Collection of Talks by the Zen Master Bassui

Translated by Arthur Braverman Arthur Braverman

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Mud and Water is the only comprehensive record of the dharma talks of the 14th c Zen master Bassui.  The talks, recorded by one of his disciples, were written in the colloquial Japanese of the time, since Bassui's followers included not only monks and nuns but also may lay people.

Bassui's central message was that the act of seeing one's original nature is Buddhahood itself.  His ability to connect with his disciple's questions to this traditional Zen theme and his skill at making complex Buddhist doctrines understandable to all distinguish his teachings. 

Related Journal Entries

Mud and Water

 Bassui (1327-1387) Questioner: "There is not one among the good teachers from ancient times up to the present who hasn't said that there is no Buddha existing outside of the... View Journal Entry »

Mud and Water - 2

Bassui (1327-1387) Q: "What does it mean when it is said in a sutra, 'If we perform the five practices- receiving and obeying; reading; reciting; expounding; and transcribing the sutra-we... View Journal Entry »

Mud and Water

Bassui Tokusho (1327-1387) Someone asked: "The Buddhas and patriarchs use so many methods and means in their teachings, how can there be nothing outside of 'seeing into your own nature is... View Journal Entry »

Mud and Water 1

Bassui (1327-1387) The way of Zen began without the establishment of any sect.  It is simply a religion which points to the one original mind of all Buddhas and ordinary people. ... View Journal Entry »