Mihu was dwelling in Jingzhao. An elder asked him, "These days people see a piece of rope in the moonlight and say it's a snake. I ask you, what would you call it if you saw a Buddha? A Dharma-heir of Hangzhou Tianlong. Jinniu Chin-nui, Kingyu , n. One of Mazu's eighty-four Dharma-heirs. He appears in Blue Cliff Records case Published in It has chapters describing various Buddhist Masters and monks. Dogen quotes from it on Bodhidharma in Gyoji and in Yuibutsu Yobutsu.
Ordained by Koun Ejo. Dharma-heir of Tettsu Gikai and founder of Sojiji Monastery. Keizan extended Soto Zen widely into the Japanese lay populace. He appears in Transmission of Reality Case Kosho Chido, d. Thirtieth abbot of Eihei-ji, in he published all six essays of the Eihei Shingi together in the Shohon edition.
Koshu, ? Fifteenth abbot of Eihei-ji, he first collected and copied Tenzokyokun and Chiji Shingi. Dogen's senior student and Dharma-heir and second abbot of Eihei-ji. He edited many of Dogen's writings and transcribed talks. Author of Komyozo Zanmai. Dharma-heir of Tongan Daopi. A government official who was a student and benefactor of Guishan.
Huizhao Hui-chao, Esho is a posthumous title. A Dharma-heir of Guishan Lingyou. How many leaves fell, how many branches bloomed. Longshan Lung-shan, Ryuzan , n. A Dharma-heir of Mazu. Also known as Yinshan Hidden Mountain. Gave transmission to Deshan. Appears in Gateless Gate A Dharma-heir of Dongshan Liangjie. He is referred to in Dogen's Bendowa. A Dharma-heir of Yantou Quanho. See Dogen's Sanbyakusoku Shobogenzo Luxuan Lu-hsuan, Rikko , A lay student of Nanquan Puyuan. Although there is no record of his sayings and doings as such, many important figures such as Dongshan Liangjie encountered him.
His answer to questions about Zen was usually to turn and face the wall in zazen: an open invitation to experience the answer. The First Indian Ancestor.
He is said to have received transmission of the true Dharma Eye Treasury when he smiled at Sakyamuni's twirling of a flower before the assembly at Vulture Peak. He was known as foremost amongst the disciples in ascetic practice and is said to be waiting in a Himalayan cave to transmit Sakyamuni's kesa to the future Buddha Maitreya.
Appears in Gateless Gate 6. See Denkoroku Chapter 2. See also Dogen's Genjokoan. Maudgalyayana, 6th Century B. One of Sakyamuni's ten great disciples, foremost in the manifestation of supernatural powers. He was ino at the Veluvana Vihara, the monastery donated by King Bimbisara. See Recorded Teachings of Vimalakirti. A female monastic disciple of Yangshan Huiji. Dharma-heir of Lohan Daoxiang. A noted scholar-monk who compiled a history of the Chan transmission, he was an heir of Dongshan Xiaocong Tozan Gyoso in Japanese in the Yunmen Lineage.
See Jiangde Chuandeng-lu See Dogen's Raihai Tokuzui. Born into the privileged Kajiwara family, he began his service by becoming a page at Jufuku-ji at the age of He became a priest at the age of 18, in Hitachi Province, moving to Kanto for his studies. He founded Choraku-ji temple in Ueno as well as various other temples, and retired at the age of His most important teacher was Enni, who practiced zazen as well as the engaged study of various traditions. Mushin Daie, Dharma-heir of Ryoshin Bodai. Also called Venerable Chen, his family name.
Yosai was a Tendai monk who had travelled to China twice in search of supplementary teachings. Eisai taught Zen mixed with the exoteric and tantric Teachings kenmitsu of the Tendai House and in was appointed abbot of Kennin-ji by the emperor. His Lineage died out after only a few generations and can be said to only have continued through Dogen's Soto Lineage because Dogen was the sole heir of Eisai's major disciple Myozen Ryonen.
See Dogen's Bendowa. Myozen Ryonen, Also known as Butsuji Myozen. He journeyed to China with Dogen in and practiced for three years at Tiantong-si where he died at Liaoren Hall. Myozen died in zazen posture and it was said that his cremation manifested a five-coloured rainbow body and three brilliant pearls were found in the ashes. A memorial statue of Myozen was installed at the monastery. Nagarjuna Nagyaarjuna , 2nd-3rd Century. The Fourteenth Indian Ancestor. Nagarjuna's teaching is so universally acclaimed that virtually all later Mahayana movements claim him as an ancestor.
Nanda, 6th Century B. Half-brother of Sakyamuni; they were both sons of King Suddhodana. After Sakyamuni left home, Nanda became heir to the throne but later joined the Buddhist order and became an awakened arhat. He had seventeen heirs, amongst them Zhaozhou Congshen and Changsha Jingcen. He appears in Blue Cliff Records 28, 31, 40, 63, 64, 69, Records of Serenity 9, 10, 16, 23, 79, 90, 93 and Gateless Gate 14, 19, 27, A Dharma-heir of Huineng, the Sixth Ancestor.
Emperor Suzong had him dragged from his hermitage in when Huizhong was about 81 and had him installed as as the court Chan Master. He also served as the Teacher of Suzong's successor Daizong. He was independent of the various Northern and Southern schools of Chan that emerged and was respected by all of them. Teacher of Fengxue Yenzhao in the third generation Linji Lineage.
Dahui Ta-hui, Daie is a posthumous honorific. Two of the Five Houses of classical Chan stem from his Transmission. His Dharma-heir was Mazu Daoyi. His dialogue with Mazu on "polishing the tile" was tremendously influential for Dogen. Also known as Tiemien, "Iron Face" because of his strictness. He was a Dharma-heir of Huanglong Huinan.
The Master of Zhiyi and lecturer on the Lotus Sutra. See Dongshan yulu Dharma-heir of Shishuang Qingzhu. He is quoted by Keizan zenji in Denkoroku The term "koji" was applied to lay students who had not received monastic ordination but still practised intensively. Similiar to anagarika. A student of Mazu, Shitou and Yaoshan, among others. Pang lived in retreat at Yaoshan's monastery for sixteen years.
His whole family were practitioners and his daughter also is especially noted as an adept. Also Peixui. Prime minister and governor of several provinces, he was also a lay Zen adept who studied with many masters, including Guishan and Huangbo.
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Arranged the building of Huangbo's temple and also met Hualin's tigers. See Sanbyakusoku 9 and in Eihei Koroku Re-established Korean Son. Influenced by Zongmi and Dahui. See Tracing Back the Radiance, trans. Prajnatara Hannyatara , n. The Twenty-Seventh Indian Ancestor. Gave Transmission to Bodhidharma. He appears in Records of Serenity 3. This same koan appears in Eihei Gen zenji goroku A Dharma-heir of Panshan Baoji.
After Panshan's death he hung around Linji's community, acting as a kind of "holy fool", and most of what we know of him appears in the Linji yulu. He appears in Dogen's Sanbyakusoku case Although it no longer exists as a religious organization, Fuke Zen's following during the feudal period was quite extensive. Dharma-heir of Luopu Yuanan. See Dogen's Jippo and Sanbyakusoku Shobogenzo case See Dongshan yulu 54, 55 and Sanbyakusoku The Thirty-Fourth Ancestor.
A Dharma-heir of the Sixth Ancestor Huineng. His Dharma-heir was Shitou Xiqian. See Dogen's Shisho, Gyoji. He studied at first under Deshan along with Xuefeng. Deshan once beat him so severely he was put in the infirmary. After this, he left to study with Dongshan and became abbot of Qinshan monastery at 27 years old.
Sanghanandi Sogyanandai , d. The Seventeenth Indian Ancestor. A Dharma-heir of Dadian Baotong a successor to Shitou. He is quoted in Denkoroku 28 as saying, "If you can understand here, there is no confusion. Whether you distinguish or do not distinguish between essence and function, there is nothing wrong. What is the arrow that gives life? Shigong said, "After thirty years with a single bow and two arrows I've finally managed to shoot half a sage. Later Sanping took this up with Datian who said, "If it is the arrow which gives life, why draw it on a bowstring?
Datian said, "Thirty years from now it will still be hard for someone to bring up these words. A Dharma-brother to Dongshan Liangjie while studying with Yunyan Tansheng, he continued his training with Dongshan who often referred to him as "Uncle Mi". See Rhythm and Song and the Dongshan yulu. Sengzhao Seng-chao, Cho-ho , Sengzhao was a student of Kumarajiva and was on his staff of translators.
He wrote an introduction to Kumarajiva's Brahmajala sutra, which forms the basis of the forty-eight supporting precepts practised by monastics of the Northern Mountain Order of WWZC. The Zhaolun Chao-lun is an important early Chinese Buddhist collection of essays which presented time, sunyata, prajna, and nirvana in the context of native, Taoist-inspired terminology.
He also wrote a commentary on the Vimalakirti sutra. He is mentioned in Blue Cliff Records Or, to put it differently: they are both in motion and in rest. To use the formulation of the Middle Way: by stating that there is both motion and rest, we fall into one of the two extremes. By stating that there is neither motion nor rest, we follow the Middle Way. In the first point of view they are although apparently existing, actually non-existing.
In the second point of view they are although apparently non-existing, actually not non-existing.
He cherishes no-knowledge. He remains in this world of impermanence and activities; however he abides in the realm of non-action wu-wei. He is situated within the walls of what is expressible, and yet he lives in the open space that transcends all speech. He is silent and alone, empty and open; his form of existence cannot be covered in words.
There remains nothing further to be said about him. A noted poet and government official who was a lay disciple of Huitang Zuxin. Sariputra, 6th Century B. One of the ten great disciples of Sakyamuni. He was especially noted for wisdom. Mentioned in Gyoji. A Dharma successor of Shoushan Xingian in the fifth generation after Linji, he was known for his strickness. See Dogen's Uji. He was formerly a hunter who became a monk when he was chasing a deer and came upon Mazu in hermitage.
See also Sanping Yizhong. Not to be confused with Ciming Shishuang Quyuan. He practiced as rice steward under Guishan before studying with Daowu. Dongshan Liangjie had a monk track him down and he was appointed abbot on Mount Shishuang. His community there was noted for never laying down to sleep and was called the "Dead Tree Hall. He appears in the Sayings and Doings of Dongshan Dongshan yulu section The Thirty-Fifth Ancestor. Author of the Cantong qi T'san-t'ung-ch'i, Sandokai , trans. He was accepted as a student by Huineng in After Huineng died, we know very little about what happened next until he was ordained at Lofu-shan in , after which he went to study with Qingyuan in Zhihzhou.
He studied with Qingyuan for twelve years and then, in , Xiqian went to Nanyue where he built a hermitage for himself on top of a large flat rock east of the Nan-zi temple. Thus people called him "Shitou Hoshang," "cliff-edge monk" or, more colourfully, "Stone-head. The Jingde Chuandeng-lu says of these two, "West of the Jiangxi river the great solitary one Mazu is the master and south of the lake Hunan Cliff-edge Shihtou is the master.
Whoever has not met these two great masters is ignorant of Zen. Dharma-heir of Fengxue Yanzhao. Gave Transmission to Fenyang and Shexian Guisheng. A Dharma-heir of Huitang Zuxin. A lay student of Mazu Daoyi. An heir of the Sixth Ancestor. He is quoted in Dogen's Yuibutsu Yobustsu. A Dharma Ancestor of the Transmission that came to Hakuin. He is also known for the following: Master Songyuan addressed the assembly and said, "In order to realize the Way with perfect clarity, there is one essential point you must penetrate and not avoid: the red thread of passions that cannot be severed.
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Few really face this problem, and it is not at all easy to settle. Face it directly without hesitation, for how else can liberation come? Popularly known as Uncle Dwarf. A major character in Rhythm and Song.
The Jingde Chuandenglu says: "Amongst all of Dongshan's students Guangren had a natural power in displaying the innermost mystery. His fellow students were as impressed by him as if he could chew the iron tip of an arrow. Whenever they wanted to clarify a question about the various depths of practice they said, "Let's just go and ask Uncle Dwarf.
Disciple of Xuefeng awakened by a tenzo. Dogen refers to this story in Tenzokyokun; see Cooking Zen. The tenzo from Jiashan who was travelling from temple to temple, happened to get snowed in there and so he listened in on the lecture. Daiyuan Fu was explaining the section on the three factors of Buddha Nature and the three virtues of the Dharmakaya when, in the midst of the explanation of the subtleties of the Dharmakaya, the tenzo burst out laughing. After the lecture Daiyuan Fu asked the tenzo to his room where he said, "Look, I'm really a very simple person and so the comments I make when I lecture on the sutras are just literal explanations.
I noticed that you couldn't help laughing about what I said about the Dharmakaya. Could you be so kind as to point out where I went off? It's just that you didn't know what you were saying. Dharma-heir of Mazu Daoyi. He dwelled in hermitage throughout his life. A student of Dogen's who later received Transmission from Koun Ejo. Gave Transmission to Keizan Jokin. Third Abbot of Eihei-ji, founded Daijo-ji.
Travelled to China to study monastic architecture and forms. Appears in Transmission of Luminosity Cases 13, The Fayen-zong Hogen and Yunmen-zong Ummon originated from this line. The Fiftieth Ancestor. Gave Transmission to Eihei Dogen. Appears in Transmission of Luminosity Case See Gyoji. Studied with Shexian Guisheng. A Dharma-heir of Xuedou.
Gave Transmission to Yuantong Faxiu. Dharma-heir of Linji. Lived as a hermit. Gave Transmission to Dongkeng Yanjun. Was originally a Huayan monk before beginning Chan study. He appears in Blue Cliff Records 41, 79, 80, See Dogen's Chiji Shingi, Gyoji. The Forty-Fourth Ancestor.
Gave Transmission to Furong Daokai. Deeply immersed in Huayan studies. He appears in Records of Serenity 64 and Sanbyakusoku Shobogenzo case Vasumitra Bashumitsu , circa 1st C. The seventh Ancestor in India. Born in Gandhara, the Dharma-heir of Miccaka.
Before meeting Miccaka he was famous for wandering about town with a bowl of wine that he was always sipping from. See Denkoroku 8. See Dogen's Koku. Caodong master, Dharma-heir of Xueyuan. Composed the pointing phrases and added commentaries to the cases and capping verses compiled by Hongzhi Zhenjue. He taught at Conglin T'sung-lin, Shorin, Serenity monastery and published the volume under the name of the Congrong lu in Weiyi means "west hall". See Dogen's Shisho. Very little is known of him.
He appears in Blue Cliff Records 70, In the Wudeng Huiyan it says: Baizhang said, "I would like someone to go to Xitang and tell him something. Foulk in Buddhism in Practice, Princeton, Published in , it was not brought to Japan until Received Transmission from Yangshan. Spoke often with Manjushri. He also studied with Shitou. Dongshan was ten years old when he began to study with Wuxie. See Dongshan yulu 1 and He is quoted in Dogen's Tenborin, "When a person exhibits reality and returns to the source, space throughout the ten directions crunches up against itself.
Ryumon near Rakuyo. See Gateless Gate Case 3, Kaigenroku 9. Studied with Baizhang, received transmission from his Dharma-brother Guishan. See Dogen's Gabyo, Soshi-sairai-no-i and Gyoji. Xichan Hsi-ch'an, Saizen n. A Dharma-heir of Nanquan. He is referred to in Blue Cliff Records Case A Dharma-heir of Bajiao Huiqing.
One of the last Masters of the Guiyang school. He appears in Gateless Gate case 9. Xuanzong Hsuan-tsung, Senso , Tang emperor reigned from Mingjue Ming-chueh, Myokaku was a posthumous title. In the Yunmen Lineage. Compiled the cases and provided the capping verses which became the basis for the Blue Cliff Records.
He appears in Records of Serenity 26, A Dharma-heir of Xuefeng Yicun, they both died in the same year. Gave Transmission to Dizang Guichen. Also called Zhenjue Chen-chueh. He was close friends with Yantou Quanhuo. The Yunmen and Fayan schools developed from his Dharma-heirs. He appears in the Sayings and Doings of Dongshan Dongshan yulu 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 61, Dharma-heir of Shishuang Chuyuan.
Founder of the Yangqi, one of the two main lines of Linji Chan. All modern Japanese Rinzai Zen comes from his Lineage. Nick-named "Little Sakyamuni. He first studied the Vinaya deeply before studying with Mazu. He taught at Haichang zi in Yanguan, Hang region Zhejiang. He appears in Records of Serenity case A Dharma-heir of Deshan Xuanjin, close friend of Xuefeng. He gave transmission to Luoshan.
The story of the great shout that resounded for ten li that he gave when murdered by bandits was pivotal for Hakuin Ekaku. The community left the temple to hide in the forest. Yantou stayed alone at the temple, practising zazen. One day the leader of a bandit gang came to the temple. In a fury because there was nothing to steal, he brandished his knife and then stabbed Yantou. Yantou let out a penetrating shout and died. The sound was heard for ten miles around. One of two Dharma-heirs of Zhaozhou. Yanyang was the monk who appears in the Kaigenroku as "the monk".
A monk asked, "How is it when you have nothing? How can I throw it away? A posthumous name is Hongdao. The Thirty-Sixth Ancestor. He appears in the Sayings and Doings of Dongshan Dongshan yulu 91, , , , He appears in Records of Serenity 5 comm. The monk said, "Teacher, you usually do not allow us to read the sutras, so why are you yourself reading them?
He appears in Eihei Gen zenji goroku 3. A disciple of Dongshan Liangjie. Appears in Dongshan yulu Touzi Yiqing went to stay at his monastery following receiving Dayang's Transmission through Fushan. Linji Lineage. Quoted in Denkoroku Chapter Hongjue Hung-chueh, Kokaku was a posthumous title. The Thirty-Ninth Ancestor. He appears in the Sayings and Doings of Dongshan Dongshan yulu , 50, 85, Tuttle Co.
Kuangzhen K'uang-chen, Kyushin was a posthumous title. He appears in Blue Cliff Records 6, 8, 14, 15, 22, 27, 34, 39, 47, 50, 54, 60, 62, 77, 83, 86, 87, 88, Records of Serenity 11, 19, 24, 26, 31, 40, 61, 72, 78, 82, 92, 99 and in Gateless Gate 15, 16, 21, 39, The Thirty-Seventh Ancestor. He is sometimes considered to be the reincarnation of Shanavasa. He became a monk when he was sixteen and began his twenty years of study with Baizhang soon after.
On the advice of his younger brother Daowu Yuanzhi he then studied with and received Transmission from Yaoshan Weiyan. His Dharma-heir was Dongshan Liangjie. The breath count is performed while performing an abdominal breathing: one brings in air all the way down to the lower abdomen, and breathes out from there. For this reason, it must be done in a place where there is ample ventilation. A key to performing breathing exercises successfully is just to observe the in-coming and out-going breath.
Though these are simple instructions, they are difficult to execute because the neophyte tends to become distracted. Present concerns, worries, fears, and past memories often surface. If one wants to make progress in meditation, this is one of the first things that the practitioner must learn to overcome. We now turn to the psycho-physiological meaning of the breathing exercise. Ordinarily, we breathe sixteen to seventeen times per minute, which we do unconsciously or involuntarily.
This is because under ordinary circumstances, breathing is controlled by the autonomic nervous system. Neurophysiologically, the center where breathing is controlled is found in the hypothalamus, in the mid-brain. The autonomic nervous system is so-called because it functions independently of our will.
Zen breathing is a shift from unconscious, involuntary breathing to conscious, voluntary breathing. This means that Zen meditation is a way of regulating the unconscious-autonomic order of our being. Psychologically, counting the breath trains the unconscious mind and neurophysiologically, it trains the involuntary activity of the nerves that control the function of the various visceral organs. Here we find a reason why Zen recommends abdominal breathing. Nerves are bundled in the upper part of the abdominal cavity, and the abdominal breathing exercise stimulates this bundle.
As it does so, parasympathetic nerves still the mind. This point is significant in learning to control emotion. Ordinarily, we are told to control our emotion by exercising our will. This is, for example, what Kant recommends. This method works to a certain extent, but we expend our energy unnecessarily in exercising our will. Think of a situation where one tries to submerge a ball in water.
When the size of the ball is relatively small, this can be accomplished with little effort. But as the size of the ball becomes larger, it becomes increasingly difficult. There comes a time then when one can no longer hold them down. Consequently, one may end up exploding in various ways, ranging from personal fits to violent social crimes.
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On the other hand, if we observe a person in a peaceful state, the breathing is deep, smooth, slow, and rhythmical. Zen breathing has a way of naturally heightening the positive correlation between the activity of the autonomic nervous system and emotion. Neurophysiologically, it happens that the center where breathing is regulated and the region where emotion is generated coincide.
This means that the conscious breathing psychologically affects the pattern of how one generates emotion, and at the same time it also has a neruophysiological effect on how the autonomous activity of the unconscious is regulated. We will now move on to the third step involved in meditation. Once the bodily posture and the breathing are adjusted, the practitioner next learns to adjust the mind. This means that the practitioner consciously moves to enter a state of meditation.
In so doing, the practitioner learns to disengage him- or herself from the concerns of daily life. That is to say, one tries to stop the operation of the conscious mind. In other words, it is practically impossible to stop the mind by using the mind. Instead, Zen tries to accomplish this by the immobile bodily posture and the breathing exercise. In this connection, it will be informative to know how the practitioner experiences breathing as he or she deepens meditation. We can identify three basic stages: initially the practitioner can hear the audible sound of the in-coming and out-going breaths.
This is followed by the second stage in which he or she can feel the pathway of the in-coming and out-going breaths. In the third stage there is no more feeling of the in-coming and out-going breaths. When this occurs, the practitioner can settle into a deeper meditational state. Also, it is significant to note that as the practitioner enters a deeper state of meditation, the interval between inhalation and exhalation is prolonged, i.
These are mostly things of concern that have occupied the practitioner in the history of his or her life, or things the practitioner has consciously suppressed for various reasons. Initially, the practitioner experiences recent desires, anxieties, concerns, ideas, and images that have surfaced in his or her daily life.
A psychological reason that the practitioner experiences these various things is due in part to the fact the practitioner has lowered the level of conscious activity, by assuming the meditation posture, and doing the breathing exercise. This mechanism is the same as when one has a dream at night. When the level of consciousness is lowered, the suppressive power of ego-consciousness weakens, and consequently the autonomous activity of the unconscious begins to surface.
However, these desires, images and ideas are distractions insofar as meditation is concerned. This is because in meditation you must learn to focus your awareness on one thing. One must learn just to observe without getting involved in them. That is, one must learn to dis-identify oneself with them. In the process of deepening meditation, one can roughly identify three distinct stages: the stage of concentration, the stage of meditation, and the stage of absorption.
In the stage of concentration, the practitioner concentrates, for example on the lower abdomen, establishing a dualistic relationship between the practitioner who is concentrating and the lower abdomen that is the focus of concentration. This dualistic relationship is broken gradually as the practitioner moves into the stage of meditation. The activity of the ego-consciousness is gradually lessened, and the barriers it sets up for itself are gradually removed.
There will be no separation or distancing between an object of the mind and the activity of the mind itself. As the practitioner repeats this process over a long period of time, he or she will come to experience a state in which no-thing appears. No-mind does not mean a mindless state. Nor does it mean that there is no mind.
The Gates Of Chan Buddhism — By Venerable Jing Hui
It means that there is no conscious activity of the mind that is associated with ego-consciousness in the everyday standpoint. In other word, no-mind is a free mind that is not delimited by ideas, desires, and images. No-mind is a state of mind in which there is neither a superimposition of ideas nor a psychological projection. That is, no-mind is a practical transcendence from the everyday mind, without departing from the everydayness of the world.
Japanese Zen Buddhist Philosophy (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
Since then, various Western philosophers have attempted to capture human nature with this goal in mind by using ego-consciousness as a starting point as well as a destination in philosophy. See Yuasa , — For this reason, Zen contends that physical nature and human nature must be sought in an experiential dimension practically trans-descending, and hence transcending, the standpoint of ego-consciousness. As a result, paradoxes, contradictions, and even what appears to be utter nonsense abound in Zen literature. Therefore, we can say that Zen is an anti-philosophy in that it is not a systematization of knowledge built on the use of a discursive mode of reasoning anchored in the alleged certainty or transparency of ego-consciousness, one that follows an epistemological paradigm built on an ego-logical, either-or, dualistic mode of knowing.
This standpoint, as mentioned in the foregoing, relies on the discursive mode of reasoning to understand reality, while presupposing an ego-consciousness as the standard referential point. From this perspective for example, a distinction between the outer and inner worlds emerges, using a sensory perception as the point of reference.
One of the salient characteristics of this standpoint is that the world appears to be dualistic in nature, that is to say, it recognizes two and by implication, many things to be real. Epistemologically speaking, Zen observes that this renders opaque, or at best translucent, the experiential domains beyond the sensible world as well as ego-consciousness, both either taken naturalistically or by means of theoretical speculation. The inability to go beyond these experiential domains occurs because ego-consciousness is physiologically rooted in the body and psychologically in the unconscious.
This points to a philosophically important consequence. This logic thinks it reasonable to divide the whole into two parts when knowing or understanding reality. That is, when this logic is applied to the whole, it compels the user of this logic to choose, reasonably in the mind of the user, one part, while disregarding the other part s as irrelevant or meaningless.
It prioritizes one part at the expense of the other part s , while celebrating the exclusion. It champions one-sidedness in cognition and judgment as the supreme form of knowing and understanding reality. However, Zen thinks that this prioritization, this exclusion, violates a cardinal principle of knowing, for knowledge of anything demands an understanding of the whole. Either-or logic fails on this account. For example, if one maintains that the mind is real, one disregards the body as unreal, yielding an idealist position. On the other hand, if one thinks the body is real, it disposes of the mind in the same way, favoring materialism as true and real, which is presupposed, for example, by natural science.
Either position commits itself to reductionism. Here, questioning this practice and the consequences it entails, Zen instead speaks of mind-body oneness, an holistic perspective, as it abhors one-sidedness. Zen finds that these two things impose on the epistemological subject a structuring that is framed dualistically and either-or ego-logically, as mentioned in the foregoing.
Accordingly, this structuring unknowingly frames things to appear dualistically and either-or ego-logically to the epistemological subject, while extending the paradigm to itself for self-understanding as well as things other than itself in the same manner. Consequently, the subject stands opposed either to the outer world e.
Moreover, Zen notes that the subject cannot by definition become the object or vice versa, for they are distanced from each other either really or ideally. When one attempts to know her from the everyday standpoint, one relies on the language she speaks and her body language. Here one cannot know her in toto , let alone the destiny of her life-history, because she is shielded from an observer by the spatial-temporal density of her being.
Zen maintains that the situation created by assuming this epistemological paradigm is not ideal, or real, for that matter. An either-or logic ignores this interdependence, in part because it operates within a conceptual and linguistic space with the assumption that there is no temporal change. This assumption enables a thinker to establish the law of identity, namely that A remains the same with itself, or identical with itself. With this recommendation, Zen maintains that mind and body, I and others, I and nature ought to be experienced as one by those who remain in the everyday standpoint.
Otherwise, Zen fears that the practitioner will fall into one-sidedness, in which the knowledge claim ends up being partial, imbalanced, and even prejudiced. This is because Zen thinks the practitioner cannot achieve this negation simply by following either-or logic, or for that matter by following the intellectual process of reasoning, because both logic and reasoning intrinsically involve two things, for example, the thinker and the thought. In other words, in the eyes of Zen, these methods lack consideration for the concreteness and immediacy of lived experience.
This is in keeping with a general method of teaching in Buddhism, i. This complication is further compounded by the differences in the personality of Zen masters. To properly respond to this question, Zen thinks it important to determine whether it is posed with a practical concern or a theoretical concern in mind. The difference allows a Zen master to determine the ground out of which this question is raised, for example, to determine if the inquirer is anchored in the everyday standpoint or in a meditational standpoint.
Why does Zen insist on this? In so doing, the monk relativizes Buddha-nature qua being, while contrasting and opposing it with non-being. Buddha-nature is not something that the dog can have or not have ; Buddha-nature is not something contingent. Nor do I expect you to reply that the dog both has and does not have buddha-nature.
Nor do I expect you to reply that the dog neither has nor does not have buddha-nature. How do you respond to this? An appeal to discriminatory thinking based on the standpoint of [ego-]consciousness is of no use either. It is also unacceptable to appeal to bodily action, let alone to engage in a mere verbal exchange. Do not swallow it where something is generated. This is, no doubt, an existential challenge to Zen practitioners, and so they make an all-out effort, staking life and death, because it guarantees them an embodiment of truth and freedom.
In order to get an idea of this experience from a contemporary point-of-view, or from outside of Zen tradition, one may also consider out-of-body experiences. It points to a practical transcendence from the everyday either-or, ego-logical, dualistic standpoint. In light of the outer-inner distinction Zen interprets the non-dualistic experience to mean that the distinction has been epistemologically collapsed, as it arises in such a way to respond to the dualistic perspective from which the outer and the inner worlds appeared. Conceptually, Zen takes this holistic perspective to mean the de-substantialization and de-ontologization of any two polar concepts, such as one and many, being and non-being, universal and particular, absolute and relative, transcendence and immanence, and birth and death.
They are thrown into a holistic context of an interdependent causal series. For if thing-events designated by these terms are endowed with self-nature, they cannot enter into the series; what enters such a series is only an accidental attribute or property. According to the substantialistic or essentialistic ontology, nothing can really change. For example, criminals who want to correct their criminal behavior cannot change themselves if being a criminal is the essential characterization of their being.
This would pose an insurmountable challenge, if not impossibility, to a correction officer at a prison. This question points to an examination of the epistemic structure of how knowledge operates in Zen experience. Although it is lengthy, we quote it in full in order to provide a sense of how a Zen dialogue unfolds:. Suppose that there is a clear, transparent mirror. If it does not face a thing, no image is reflected in it.
To say that it mirrors an image means that because it faces something, it just mirrors its image. The disciple asks: If it does not face any thing, is there or is there not a reflection in the mirror? The master replies: That the mirror reflects a thing means that it always mirrors regardless of whether it is facing or not facing a thing.
The disciple asks: If there is no image and since you do not give an explanation, how can all beings and nonbeings become an issue? Now when you say that it always mirrors, how does it mirror? The master replies: When I say that the mirror always mirrors, it is because a clear, transparent mirror possesses an original nature as its essential activity of always mirroring things. The master replies: it sees no-thing. That is the true seeing.
It always sees. Yanagita, , —3. Jinne conceives of a mirror in terms of two modalities: the mirror in and of itself and the mirror as it engages an object other than itself. It is important to keep in mind that both are understood in light of their activity. What makes a mirror what it is is its activity of always mirroring, and when considered in and of itself, it possesses no specific image to mirror. There is no characteristic to it and hence no image appearing in it, i. In phenomenological terms, there is no thetic positing in this kind of seeing.
When a mirror, for example, reflects an image of a beautiful object, it does not make any discriminatory value judgment that it is beautiful. And neither does it make any discriminatory value judgment when it mirrors an ugly object. It mirrors thing-events as they are. Moreover, Zen observes that the nature of the mirror is such that it does not change due to the kind of object it mirrors.
For example, it does not increase or decrease in size in virtue of the fact that it mirrors an object. Because equality is the characteristic of this seeing, Zen speaks of the activity of this seeing as nondiscriminatory. Through this mirror analogy, Zen wants to point out what the minds of people are like in their original nature and activity.