Feb 23 2017

“Having entered into the principle through hearing, as the principle heard is profound and subtle, the mind is naturally completely clear and does not dwell in the realm of confusion. Even if there are hundreds and thousands of subtleties to criticize or commend the times, you must gain stability, gird your loins, and know how to make a living on your own before you can realize them.

“In essence, the noumenal ground of reality does not admit of a single particle, but the methodology of myriad practices does not abandon anything. If you penetrate directly, then the sense of the ordinary and the sacred disappears, concretely revealing the true constant, where principle and fact are not separate. This is the buddhahood of being-as-is.”

— Kuei-Shan (771-854)
Feb 22 2017
To practice Zen, you need deep roots.
People with deep roots are rare.
In the past anyone could practice Zen.
But not now.
Zen depends completely on yourself.
It’s much harder, especially now.
— Sheng-hi
Feb 21 2017

Kuei-shan was asked, “Is there any further cultivation for people who have suddenly awakened?”

He replied, “If they awaken truly, realizing the fundamental, they know instinctively when it happens. The question of cultivation or not is two-sided. Suppose beginners have conditionally attained a moment of sudden awakening to inherent truth, but there are still longstanding habit energies that cannot as yet be cleared all at once? They must be taught to clear away streams of consciousness manifesting habitual activity. That is cultivation, but there cannot be a particular doctrine to have them practice or devote themselves to.

— Kuei-Shan (771-854)
Feb 20 2017
For twenty seven years
I’ve always sought the Way.
Well, this morning we passed
Like strangers on the road.
— Kokuin (10th c)
Feb 19 2017
Mind of the Ancient Buddhas

The mind of the ancient Buddhas should not be understood as something irrelevant to your experience, as some mind which exists from the beginningless past, for it is the mind which eats rice gruel or tastes other food in your ordinary everyday life, it is the mind which is grass, the mind which is water. Within this life just as it is, is the act of sitting like a Buddha which is called “arousing the thought of enlightenment.”

The conditions for arousing the thought of enlightenment do not come from anywhere else. It is the enlightened mind which arouses the thought of enlightenment...

One honors the Buddha with a grain of sand, one honors the Buddha with the water in which rice has been soaked. One offers a handful of food to living creatures.
— Dogen (1200-1253)
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