Posted on 9 December 2016 by Buddhism Now
After ascending the dharma seat, and looking to all the four directions, Master Kusan said, ‘Today is the beginning of this three-month retreat. Within the assembly present here now — do each of you brave men intend to go through with this retreat? Those of you endowed with the Dharma Eye, speak! What is an extraordinary person (an awakened mind)?’
The assembly remained silent. After a pause the master gave a shout and said, ‘The oranges of Cheju-do and the apples of Taegu — do you know where they fall? One pill of golden cinnabar (the medicine of the immortals) swallows all the Dharma realms, and exudes many marvellous manifestations. Everyone is Vairocana. Everything is a store of flowers within which the Sambhogakaya of the Buddha dwells. Do you understand this? You must be as audacious as someone trying to grab the eyebrows of a living tiger or to snatch the whiskers of a flying dragon. Then you will know. A poem says: Continue reading
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Posted on 4 April 2015 by Buddhism Now
Translated from the Korean by Martine and Stephen Batchelor
When people first make the resolve to realize enlightenment, they fear false thought. Those people who have sat for a long time fear drowsy confusion. I say that people like these are not capable of doing the work, and don’t have a share in liberation from birth and death. Why is that? Because they don’t realize the scope and sphere of their false thinking, and what is more, they don’t know the places to which their drowsy thinking takes them.
You should understand that from beginningless kalpas past until the present, that which has ascended into the heavens is just your false thinking, that which has fallen into the hells is just your false thinking, that which has transformed into a cow or a horse is just false thinking, that which wants to cultivate the Way is just your false thinking, that which wants to put an end to birth and be liberated from death is just your false thinking, and that which wants to accomplish Buddhahood and become a Patriarch is just your false thinking. Continue reading
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Posted on 8 December 2009 by Buddhism Now
I venture to suggest to this assembly: ‘Even in a dirty place the true nature of all beings is always pure.’ It is like a lotus flower unsmeared by muddy water. In an accomplished person it does not increase and in a sentient being it does not decrease. So, have you completely awakened to it or not? The wise person, say something! Truly, what is this thing? HAK! You must observe the moon over the shadowless ground and chant the wind, then you will realise it!
The wonderful Dharma, being like a lotus flower, transcends everything.
Only when tranquil and without hindrance will you encounter
If you have not removed pride, then truly you are a fool.
When seeking the Way, if you grasp at the form, you will be ensnared in the pheasant’s net.
Filed under: Buddhism, Ch'an / Seon / Zen, Kusan Sunim, Martine Batchelor | Tagged: Chan Ch'an Korea, Koan, Kongan, Kusan Sunim, Marcelle Hanselaar, Zen | Leave a comment »
Posted on 4 December 2009 by Buddhism Now
The first time I came to Korea in 1975, the first nun I talked to was Myoljin Sunim. Two years later we spent a memorable three-month retreat together. Fifteen years after that I was directed to a small temple in the outskirts of Seoul to meet a highly respected, veteran nun meditator, and there she was again — Myoljin Sunim! We were overjoyed at meeting once more after so long.
In the Lotus Sutra it is said: ‘One has to experience difficulties and suffering in order to develop wisdom.’ From this text we can learn the right way to live.
We are all born in order to perform a certain task. There is not a blade of grass which has no name. Even people who perform negative actions have their place. If I see someone perform a negative action, I reflect that I must not do such a thing myself. The negative person, therefore, also has to be born.
Buddha giving teachings
Goodness can come out of badness, but badness does not come out of goodness. For this reason the world is impartial; it is the way of the One Vehicle. Everything can come on board this One Vehicle — animals, human beings, and everything. This is the vehicle propounded by the Lotus Sutra.
It is difficult to be a good nun, a great responsibility. We must be extremely careful of each thought and not go astray. If our thoughts go in the right direction, then realisation is easy. Continue reading
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