So we have to do zazen. It’s the most important thing in the life of a human being.
In this troubled world of ours, there are plenty of opportunities for thoughts and deeds of compassion; but there seem to be all too few for sharing in others’ joy. Hence it is necessary for us to create new opportunities for unselfish joy, by the active practice of loving-kindness (metta) and compassion (karuna), in deeds, words, and meditative thought…
Selfishness is a terrible burden for the entire world. You can see that all the problems, all the conflict, all the crises, are the result of selfishness. Many people come to Asia to get away from the constant sense of crisis that they meet with in the West. But they can’t escape it by coming to Asia. The same problems are here as well!
There are about forty thousand Chinese characters in the total Chinese language. Nobody, of course, can possibly know them all, but they exist. Of course, the Bodhisattvas in China know them all; and the Devil knows them all too! He’s been around, and he’s got these forty thousand off — or he thinks he has!
Listening is much less connected with organising or pushing things round in our minds, and in fact listening and the listened-to are much more linked than actor and acted-upon. Listening also tends to be more emotionally neutral.
The modern world seems driven to extinguish silence, as if it were a threat…
Our purpose for living is to become No-mind/No-self, and a person who has become No-mind/No-self is called a Buddha. Each action we make is completely Empty, it is Nothingness, and if we express this using words, this is the ‘Buddha-dharma’. It is not possible for the ego to intervene in the Dharma…
Mindfulness in words — trying to make an internal commentary of what one is doing — is just a kind of illusion.
“Yes, the compassion ration certainly went up and up, didn’t it?” agreed the priest. “My own teacher used to say that Compassion is catching.”