Indra's Net, fractal image
BASSUI WAS THE MOST encouraging of Zen teachers. Instead of browbeating his students into realization, he coaxed and led them.
While you may apply great effort, the fact is…
The river of Zen is quiet, even in the waves; the water of stability is clear, even in the waves.
You have always had it, and you have it now—there is no need to cultivate the Way and sit in meditation.
…to contemplate emptiness and enter concentration, is all in the province of contrivance.
The Way does not require cultivation—just don’t pollute it.
Everything offers the Way.
Zen is buoyant and unbridled, like clouds making rain, like the moon in a stream, like an orchid in a recondite spot, like spring in living beings.
Why such force? Why such cajoling and interpretation? Why so many devices? Rather than friction—perhaps some intent to be “frictionless” [Hongzhi].
Shy away from those who teach you to be like themselves, as they were taught to be like someone else.
Pushing obscures, like trying to push a river. Zen teaching is as muted as a field of grass or river or hillock neither giving nor taking. A field of grass or river or hillock is a good Zen teacher. A field of grass or a river or a hillock does not try to make you into anything. When there is another who does not see you or hear you or simply a field of grass or a river or a hillock or a sparrow, calm and tranquil—after a time or instantly, like a field of grass or a river or a hillock or a sparrow, you finally may not see “you” or hear “you.”
You have always had it…
Sparrow is cloud floating West is path meandering East is upward-reaching branch.
Trying to push, such a terrain cannot appear.
...shedding your skin…
No mirror, no place for dust to alight,
Then, the flow of calmness, tranquility, serenity
Why such force?