Chapter 4: The Inner Innocence
As soon as I get up on the seat to speak, I am already involved in the dusts. If I go on and freeze my eyes, it would just show a flaw. The special transmission in a single statement is taking in a thief who ransacks your house. Not losing the fundamental source is like a fox fond of its den. Therefore true thusness, ordinary and holy, is all dream talk; buddhas and sentient beings are expressions of assumptions.
When you get here turn the light around to shine back, let go your hands and accept it - even then you still will not have escaped being like a cold cicada clinging to a dead tree, not turning his head when his crying ends.
Dokai raised his staff and concluded:
If you can get it here, it is all something set up by the buddhas. Even if you can spring up in the East and disappear in the West, open out or shut away freely, you still haven’t even dreamed of seeing what was before the buddhas.
You should know that there is one man who doesn’t get anything from others, does not accept any teaching or command, and does not fall within the scope of grade or rank. If you know this man, your life’s study is completed.
Here Dokai paused and suddenly called out to the assembly, saying, “If you freeze your eyes any more, don’t bother to see me.”
Anando, the original man is the constant concern of Zen. In your innermost being no dust has gathered from outside, no thought is capable of reaching there. It is as pure and clean as ever. It never becomes old, it never becomes stale; its freshness is its nature.
But it is deep down hidden inside you. Many layers have been put upon it: layers of knowledge, layers of respectability, layers of morality; all kinds of honor, all kinds of belief systems. It has become a very thick wall, although it is only of words. And a courageous and intelligent man can cut the whole wall in the single blow of a sword. Otherwise it takes lives and lives, taking away one layer, then another layer. And while you are taking away layers, new layers are gathering. You have to clean your mirror every day; otherwise in twenty-four hours new dust will have gathered.
So enlightenment has to be in a single blow; otherwise it will take an infinity of time. You cannot go slow, you cannot postpone it. You have to take the leap this very moment, because the next is never certain. Roads turn, and friends who are together become enemies. That which was possible this moment may not be possible the next moment.
The whole world is a chaos and in a mess. It is not only now that it is in a chaos, it has always been in a chaos, because so many millions of unconscious human beings are creating all kinds of dreams, projections, expectations, frustrations. The whole air is heavy with the clouds of unfulfilled hopes, incomplete desires. Even failures in success: knowing that you have achieved the goal that you had determined, you are still as ignorant and empty, inside, as you were before.