Nils - Happy 65th
65 Gems From the True Dharma-Eye Treaurury
1. When this principle is preached and realized, it is said that “matter is just the immaterial” and the immaterial is just matter. Matter is matter, the immaterial is the immaterial. They are hundreds of things, and myriad phenomena.
2. And though it is like this, it is only that flowers, while loved, fall; and weeds while hated, flourish.
3. Life is an instantaneous situation, and death is also an instantaneous situation.
4. Realization is the state of ambiguity itself.
5. The sun’s face appears together with the sun’s face, and the moon’s face appears together with the moon’s face.
6. When stupid people hear talk of “mind here and now is buddha,” they interpret that ordinary beings’ intellect and sense perception, which have never established the bodhi-mind, are just buddha.
7. The Dharma is rarely met.
8. This being so, we should hope that even trees and stones might preach to us, and we should request that even fields and villages might preach to us. We should question outdoor pillars, and we should investigate even fences and walls.
9. A monk asks Zen Master Chōsha [Kei]shin, “How can we make mountains, rivers, and the earth belong to ourselves?” The master says, “How can we make ourselves belong to mountains, rivers, and the earth?” This says that ourselves are naturally ourselves, and even though ourselves are mountains, rivers, and the earth, we should never be restricted by belonging.
10. Right and wrong are time; time is not right or wrong. Right and wrong are the Dharma; the Dharma is not right or wrong.
11. We put our self in order, and see [the resulting state] as the whole universe.
12. Let us pause to reflect whether or not any of the whole of existence or any of the whole universe has leaked away from the present moment of time.
13. The mountains and water of the present are the realization of the words of eternal buddhas.
14. At the present time in the great kingdom of Song, there is a group of unreliable fellows who have now formed such a crowd that they cannot be beaten by a few real [people].
15. The Buddha says, “All dharmas are ultimately liberated; they are without an abode.” Remember, although they are in the state of liberation, without any bonds, all dharmas are abiding in place.
16. The present is the reality85 as it is of the real form, the real nature, the real body, the real energy, the real causes, and the real effects of the Flower of Dharma turning.
17. This being so, the present is the “form as it is” of the state of experience, and even “alarm, doubt, and fear” are nothing other than reality as it is.
18. When we carefully consider this story of the meeting between the old woman and Tokusan, Tokusan’s lack of clarity in the past is audible [even] now.
19. A foreigner appears, a foreigner is reflected—one hundred and eight thousand of them. A Chinese person appears, a Chinese person is reflected—for a moment and for ten thousand years. The past appears, the past is reflected; the present appears, the present is reflected; a buddha appears, a buddha is reflected; a patriarch appears, a patriarch is reflected.
20. In the house of the Buddhist patriarchs, some experience it directly and some do not experience it directly, but reading sutras and requesting the benefit [of the teaching] are the common tools of everyday life.
21. This sitting in zazen is not learning Zen concentration.
22. The whole universe is utterly without objective molecules: here and now there is no second person at all.
23. The buddha-nature is always total existence, for total existence is the buddha-nature.
24. If you want to know this “buddha-nature,” remember, “causes and circumstances as real time” are just it.
25. The Fifth Patriarch says, “The buddha-nature is emptiness [ku; shunyata], so we call it being without”[mu]. This clearly expresses that “emptiness” is not nonexistence.
(Note: Dogen’s comment, “This clearly expresses that ‘emptiness’ is not nonexistence”, reads, in the original, “kū wa mu ni ara zu”, thus, “kū is not mu,” or “śūnyatā is not nonexistence.” Nishijima & Cross)
26. This emptiness is beyond the emptiness of “matter is just emptiness.” [At the same time,] “matter is just emptiness” describes neither matter being forcibly made into emptiness nor emptiness being divided up to produce matter. It may describe emptiness in which emptiness is just emptiness. “Emptiness in which emptiness is just emptiness” describes “one stone in space.”
27. To affirm [the buddha-nature] as the miscellaneous circumstances manifest before us is “to command the style of behavior that is free of hindrances.”
28. A monk asks Great Master Shinsai of Jōshū, “Does even a dog have the buddha-nature or not?”
29. We should clarify the meaning of this question.
30. At this dharma [reality] has “already arrived.” At that dharma [reality] has “already arrived.”
31. [To research] this truth of moment-by-moment utter entrustment, we must research the mind. In the mountain-still state of such research, we discern and understand that ten thousand efforts are [each] the mind being evident, and the triple world is just that which is greatly removed from the mind. This discernment and understanding, while also of the myriad real dharmas, activate the homeland of the self. They make immediate and concrete the vigorous state of the human being in question.
32. If I put it in words, “expounding the mind and expounding the nature” is the pivotal essence of the Seven Buddhas and the ancestral masters.
33. In conclusion, we should know that in the Buddha’s truth there are inevitably Buddhist sutras; we should learn in practice, as the mountains and the oceans, their universal text and their profound meaning; and we should make them our standard for pursuing the truth.
34. Because they are too stupid to understand the meaning of the Buddhist sutras for themselves, they randomly insult the Buddhist sutras and neglect to practice and learn them. We should call them flotsam in the stream of non-Buddhism.
35. We should realize in experience that every single thing is truly “something.” “Something” is not open to doubt: “it comes like this.”
36. When we have the will to venerate the ancients, the ancient sutras come to the present and manifest themselves before us.
37. In the great truth of the Buddha-Dharma, the sutras of the great thousandfold [world] are present in an atom, and countless buddhas are present in an atom. Each weed and each tree are a body-mind. Because the myriad dharmas are beyond appearance, even the undivided mind is beyond appearance. And because all dharmas are real form, every atom is real form. Thus, one undivided mind is all dharmas, and all dharmas are one undivided mind, which is the whole body.
38. Just at this moment, how is it? We might say, “it is completely beyond necessity.”
39. The mystical power and wondrous function,
Carrying water and lugging firewood.
40. We must investigate this truth thoroughly.
41. The time that is just the moment of this [realization] is now.
42. The question “What is it like at the time when a person in the state of great realization returns to delusion?” truly asks a question that deserves to be asked.
43. For example, while I see the “I” of yesterday as myself, yesterday I called [the “I” of] today a second person. We do not say that present realization was not there yesterday; neither has it begun now. We should grasp it in experience like this.
44. Nangaku says, “When you are [practicing] sitting buddha, that is just killing buddha.” This says further that when we are investigating sitting buddha, the virtue of killing buddha is present. The very moment of sitting buddha is the killing of “buddha.” If we want to explore the good features and the brightness of killing buddha, they are always present in sitting buddha. The word “to kill” is as [used by] the common person, but we should not blindly equate [its usage here] with that of the common person. Further, we should investigate the state in which sitting buddha is killing buddha, [asking:] “What forms and grades does it have?” Taking up [the fact] that, among the virtues of buddha, killing buddha is already present, we should learn in practice whether we ourselves are killing a person or not yet killing a person.
45. Those who have not illuminated each dharma, dharma by dharma, cannot be called clear eyed, and they are not the attainment of the truth; how could they be Buddhist patriarchs of the eternal past and present?
46. The present words of master and disciple we should without fail examine in detail.
47. We ourselves are tools that it possesses within this universe in ten directions.
48. How do we know that it exists? We know it is so because the body and the mind both appear in the universe, yet neither is ourself.
49. The body, already, is not “I.” Its life moves on through days and months, and we cannot stop it even for an instant.
50. Do not pass time in vain.
51. The integrated form that is “composed” of “real dharmas,” is “this body.”
52. So is there any Buddhist patriarch who is other than the hundred weeds? And how could the hundred weeds be other than “I” and “you”?
53. Without being objective things, [cedar trees] cannot be cedar trees.
54. To see and hear the brightness of the self is proof of having directly encountered buddha; it is proof of having met buddha.
55. The Buddha’s truth is such that if we intend not to practice the truth we cannot attain it, and if we intend not to learn [the truth] it becomes more and more distant.
56. This I preach as a dream in a dream.
57. Because it is the realization of experience in experience, it is “the preaching of the dream-state in the dream-state.”
58. The buddhas and the patriarchs are the expression of the truth.
59. Buddhas are the state of experience itself, and so things are the state of experience itself.
60. So life is what I am making it, and I am what life is making me.
61. What has been described like this is that life is the self, and the self is life.
62. So although the moon was there last night, tonight’s moon is not yesterday’s moon.
63. Remember that space is a thing.
64. The moment and causes-and-conditions of the present, and the lands-of-dust and space of the present, are both nothing other than the eternal mind.
65. How much less could they know that the succession of the complicated continues by means of the complicated? Few have known that the succession of the Dharma is the complicated itself.