Sekishitsu was a disciple of Choshi. On a visit to Sekito, the monk, Sekishitsu, became enlightened. After his enlightenment, Sekishitsu went back to his master, Choshi. Choshi had also been a disciple of Sekito.
Choshi said, “Did you reach Sekito?”
Sekishitsu replied, “Yes, I did, but was not introduced.”
Choshi said, “Who did you receive precepts from?”
Sekishitsu replied, “Not from him.”
Choshi then said, “If you were like that there, what will you be here?”
Sekishitsu said, “Not much difference.”
Choshi said, “That is too much.”
Sekishitsu said, “My tongue has no color yet.”
Choshi replied, “You noisy novice – go away!” and Sekishitsu immediately went away.
First the questions from sannyasins.
The first question:
From what I heard you say last night about reincarnation, I understand that even individuality is superficial.
Reincarnation was a consolation for me, that “my essence” or “soul” would continue. But now I understand that nothing of me will continue.
In witnessing, do we all “plug in” to the same witnessing energy? Don’t I even have my own witness?
The ultimate truth hurts very much.
Finally, everything is gone, including me and you. What remains is a pure consciousness.
It is not that you are plugged into it, you are no longer.
The dispersion is so intimate and so ultimate that first your personality has to disappear, then your individuality has to disappear, then what remains is pure existence. It makes one feel a little worried and concerned, because you don’t know the experience of not being.
Just think for a moment. Before this life you were not. Was there any trouble? Any anxiety?
After this life you will not be again. What is the fear? There will be silence and peace, in the same space where anxiety, tensions and anguishes flourished. They all will have melted just the way a dewdrop disappears into the ocean.
Hence, Zen does not teach you self-realization. Self-realization is a much lower goal. Zen teaches you the ultimate: no-self realization, or realizing that disappearing into the whole is the final peace.
Your very being is an anxiety. At whatever level you are, some anxiety will remain. You are anxiety, and if you want anxiety to disappear, you have to be ready to disappear yourself.
The second question: