A teacher once pointed out that there is an instruction in Buddhist training about going on one straight line, about keeping to one thing, and yet at the same time: ‘You’ve got to accept things; you’ve got to be flexible.’ The example he gave was of a spinning top or gyroscope. If you have ever played with a gyroscope as a child or seen one spinning, you will know that its balance is so good that when it is revolving, it can travel down a string on the little notch at its base whilst keeping a balance on that string. It couldn’t do that unless it was spinning. But because it is revolving about its centre, it can keep a perfect balance. And if you blow the gyroscope it will bow, but come back to its balance again; it will give way to passing things, but will come back very strongly to its point of balance and settle itself. (more…)
One of the Indian stories tells how the merchants in some of the towns (when India was the richest country in the world) were very strict about business ethics. One man cut some corners. Well, they used to expel such people from the city and stone them ― not kill them ― but stone them and drive them away. So they took everything this man had, tied him to a stake outside the city, held back his wife and child, and threw stones.
There was a little boy there, the son of one of the big merchants. Not often you get the chance to throw a stone at a grown-up! He picks up a sharp stone, and he throws it. It catches the man on the face and just misses his eye. The blood pours down. (more…)
The Old Zen Master
by Trevor Leggett
ISBN 13: 978-0946672073
ISBN 10: 0946672075
Buddhist Publishing Group
Published: 1987, reprint 2010
Paperback 194 pages
£10.95 / $16.95
Stories, parables, and examples have been a favoured way of conveying spiritual insights and truths since time immemorial, and Trevor Leggett was a master at it. He had the knack of pointing out the spiritual implications of practical events which people can relate to.
You can buy The Old Zen Master from the Book Depository for around £8.30 with free worldwide delivery. See below for other online sites
Filed under: Books, Buddhism, Buddhist meditation, Ch'an / Seon / Zen, Mahayana, Trevor Leggett | Tagged: BBC Japanese World Service, Ittokusai, judo, Kodokan, Yamada Jiro, Zen Buddhism, Zen koan, Zen teachings | 2 Comments »