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Chapter 13: You Cannot See with Your Ears

The cook knew only how to be silent. He had become silent and he helped other people: “Just do the work you are doing the way I have been cooking for thirty years. Whatever you choose in the monastery, do it with your totality. Here, there is no question or answer - no scholarship. Just do the act with your totality, continuously - and wait for the right time.”

The flower blossoms and the rain comes, the sun rises and the birds sing. Just like this - absolutely naturally - silence sprouts within you, brings flowers of the unknown, fills you with immense fulfillment. You know, although you cannot say a single word about it; you experience, but you have no explanation.

Life is a mystery - that is the very essence of Zen.

Daiten replied in another incident when Kantaishi, a Confucian scholar.

Again I have to say something about Confucius. He is certainly nothing but confusion. His name absolutely gives the explanation about himself. He was a great scholar, perhaps the greatest that China has produced, and the most influential man in China’s whole history.

He was a contemporary of Lao Tzu and had thousands of students. He was really a great intellect: he created the whole Chinese logic, he made all the social rules, ethos, morality. He managed the Chinese politics, and taught the kings and princes how to rule. He was a great man in every way. But his students told him many times, “A great desire arises in us. You should meet Lao Tzu.”

Lao Tzu was unknown; a very small group of drop-outs followed him. He was such a strange fellow that no straightforward man was ever going to be close to him. He had his own way, which finally merged with Bodhidharma’s.

Zen is the product of Bodhidharma and Lao Tzu: it is a crossbreed. Lao Tzu created great disciples like Chuang Tzu and Lieh Tzu, but he could not create a religion, he was against any organization; he could not create scriptures because he was against saying something which cannot be said. But still people felt: “That man has experienced something which we are missing; he is so content, with such grace, such beauty.”

The disciples of Confucius told him: “He is by chance staying nearby in a cave by the side of the river. It is a great chance for you both to meet. We would love to see what transpires.”

It was below the ego of Confucius, but because again and again he was asked, he finally said, “Okay, I am coming. I will see who this fellow is.”

But he was also afraid. Every knowledgeable person is afraid, because basically he knows that all his knowledge is borrowed. If an authentic person comes along, he will be standing absolutely naked, all his clothes will drop off. He was afraid that Lao Tzu may be a dangerous experience, so he told his disciples to wait outside the cave. First he will go alone, get acquainted with Lao Tzu and then he will come out and take all the disciples in to meet Lao Tzu.

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