Monday, September 23, 2013

Huang Po - A jewel beyond all price

Bodhidharma Sat Facing the Wall (stone carved painting)

Though others may talk of the Way of the Bhuddas as something to be reached by various pious practices and by sutra study, you must have nothing to do with such ideas. A perception, sudden as blinking, that subject and object are one, will lead to a deeply mysterious wordless understanding; and by this understanding will you awake to the truth of Zen. When you happen upon someone who has no understanding, you must claim to know nothing. He may he delighted by his discovery of some "way to Enlightenment"; yet if you allow yourselves to be persuaded by him, you will experience no delight at all, but suffer both sorrow and disappointment. What have such thoughts as his to do with the study of Zen? Even if you do obtain from him some trifling "method," it will only be a thought-constructed dharma having nothing to do with Zen. Thus, Bodhidharma sat rapt in meditation before a wall; he did not seek to lead people into having opinions. Therefore it is written: "To put out of the mind even the principle from which action springs is the true teaching of the Buddhas, while dualism belongs to the sphere of the demons." Your true nature is something never lost to you even in moments of delusion, nor is it gained at the moment of Enlightenment. It is the Nature of the Bhutatathata. In it is neither delusion nor right understanding. It fills the Void everywhere and is intrinsically of the substance of the One Mind. How, then, can your mind-created objects exist outside of the Void? The Void is fundamentally without spacial dimensions, passions, activities,delusions, or right understanding. You must clearly understand that in it there are no things, no men, no Buddhas; for this Void contains not the smallest hairsbreadth of anything that can be viewed spacially; it depends on nothing and is attached to nothing. It is all-pervading, spotless beauty;it is the self-existent and uncreated Absolute. Then how can it ever be a matter for discussion that the real Buddha has no mouth and preaches no dharma, or that real hearing requires no ears, for who could hear it? Ah,it is a jewel beyond all price! 

This  passage is from "The Zen Teachings of Huang Po," ed John Blofeld.

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