Bassui: The Way is a fundamental part of everybody, Its essence is to penetrate enlightenment and to leave no trace of this attainment, If I were to explain this fundamental part, even the one word ‘awaken’ would add waves to a level surface. How much more so with sayings and teachings? One who holds onto the residue, and cannot grasp the real, cuts himself off from the source in the end.
The commentaries on the treasury of the teachings discussed during the lifetime of Shakyamuni Buddha can’t catch hold of it either, Its full function has no equal, The speed of a flint spark can’t compare with it, Lightning can’t even penetrate it, Its activity has no fixed direction; thinking it is rising in the east, it sinks in the west; thinking it is rising in the south, it sinks in the north. It makes thunder roar in clear fine weather and flames arise at the bottom of the sea,
It is the master of seeing, hearing, and perceiving and the master that raises the hands and propels the legs. From the Buddhas and patriarchs down to insects, of all things that possesses sential nature, who would not receive its favour?
What of you people? Do you know yourselves? When you doubt sufficiently, your enlightenment will be sufficient.Zen Master Bassui
What of you people? Do you know yourselves? When you doubt sufficiently, your enlightenment will be sufficient. When you have true aspiration, even if you don’t want to doubt your whole body will be filled with doubt; even if you don’t seek expedient practices, your mind will not busy itself with miscellany.
Though you don’t want to eliminate them, you will be rid of the ten thousand things. Though you don’t choose to discard them, reading sutras and commentaries and all kinds of activities will naturally be eliminated; profit and loss, good and bad, all will be obliterated.
Like one who is stricken with a severe illness and is about to die, whose mind doesn’t distinguish friends from enemies, when you travel, you will forget you are walking; when you are eating, you will be unaware of the taste; when you are sitting, you will forget you are sitting; forgetting your body, you will not lie down. If, in this way you become a part of this doubt, in a short time you will inevitably experience great enlightenment.
From Mud and Water translated by Arthur Braverman.
Other posts by Arthur Braverman.