Chapter 1: The Lion’s Roar
All beings are from the very beginning buddhas.
It is like water and ice:
Apart from water, no ice,
Outside living beings, no buddhas.
Not knowing it is near, they seek it afar.
What a pity!
It is like one in the water who cries out for thirst;
It is like the child of a rich house
Who has strayed away among the poor.
The cause of our circling through the six worlds
Is that we are on the dark paths of ignorance.
Dark path upon dark path treading,
When shall we escape from birth-and-death?
The Zen meditation of the Mahayana
Is beyond all our praise.
Giving and morality and the other perfections,
Taking of the Name, repentance, discipline,
And the many other right actions,
All come back to the practice of meditation.
By the merit of a single sitting
He destroys innumerable accumulated sins.
How should there be wrong paths for him?
My beloved ones, I love you. Love is my message - let it be your message too. Love is my color and my climate. To me, love is the only religion, all else is just rubbish, all else is nothing but mind churning dreams. Love is the only substantial thing in life: all else is illusion. Let love grow in you and God will be growing on its own accord. If you miss love you will miss God and all.
There is no way to God without love. God can be forgotten - if love is remembered God will happen as a consequence. It happens as a consequence, it is the fragrance of love and nothing else. In fact there is no God but only godliness, there is no person like God anywhere. Drop all childish attitudes; don’t go on searching for a father. Divineness is, God is not; when I say divineness is I mean whatsoever is, is full of God. The green of the trees, and the red and the golden: all is divine. This crow crying, and a bird on the wing, and a child giggling, and a dog barking: all is divine. Nothing else exists.
The moment you ask, “Where is God?” you have raised a wrong question because God cannot be indicated anywhere. He is not in a particular direction, he is not a particular thing, he is not a particular being. God is universality. Ask where God is not, then you have asked the right question but for that right question you will have to prepare the soil of your heart. That’s what I mean by love - preparing the soil of your heart. If you are full of love, the world is full of God - they go parallel, they are part of one symphony.
God is the echo from the universe. When you are in love the echo is there; when you are not in love how can there be an echo? It is only you who are reflected again and again in millions of ways, it is you who are thrown back to yourself again and again. If you are in love, God is. If you are not in love, then what to say about God? Even you are not.
I was thinking what I should give you today - because this is my birthday, I was incarnated into this body on this day. This is the day I first saw the green of the trees and the blue of the skies. This was the day I opened my eyes for the first time and saw God all around. Of course the word God didn’t exist at that moment, but what I saw was God. I was thinking what I should give to you today, then I remembered a saying of Buddha: Sabba danam dhamma danana jnati - the gift of truth excels all other gifts. And my truth is love.