If you do not employ
the method of Sudden Illumination,
you will be like a jackal following and imitating a lion
but unable to become a lion
even after hundreds and thousands of aeons.
The Chinese Character for Dream is popular in Zen writings
because of the end on the Diamond Sutra:
Think of this fleeting world as:
A star at dawn
A bubble in a stream
A flash of lightening in a Summer cloud
A flickering lamp
A phantom and
ShenXiu, was under great pressure to produce a gatha that would qualify him as the next patriarch. He eventually decided to write a poem anonymously on the wall in the middle of the night, which stated:
The body is a Bodhi tree,
the mind a standing mirror bright.
At all times polish it diligently,
and let no dust alight.
Huineng immediately knew this verse lacked true insight. He went to the wall, and asked a district officer there to write a poem of his own for him. The officer was surprised, “How extraordinary! You are illiterate, and you want to compose a poem?” Whereupon Huineng said, “If you seek supreme enlightenment, do not slight anyone. The lowest class may have great insights, and the highest class may commit foolish acts.” In veneration, the officer wrote Huineng’s gatha on the wall for him, next to Shenxiu’s, which stated:
Bodhi is no tree,
nor is the mind a standing mirror bright.
Since all is originally empty,
where does the dust alight?