When he was a monk, Myoshu called on Master Emyo, at Saijo, and asked, “What is an entry for the student?”
Emyo said, “Come here!”
The moment Myoshu approached him, Emyo grabbed the monk and pushed him away, saying, “There is no entry for you here!”
As Myoshu got up, the feeling of doubt suddenly arose; and day and night he couldn’t put it off.
Emyo knew secretly that Myoshu was a vessel of dharma, and subsequently drove him out of the temple on the pretext that he had broken the rules.
Myoshu felt no resentment, but unknown to anyone else, borrowed a room near the monastery and hid there. For six years he was never forgiven, and just sat facing a wall day and night. His meditation work became increasingly refined, until he got to the point of forgetting to sleep or eat.
One day as he stood beside a cowpen, he suddenly had an insight; he immediately went to the abbot’s quarters with full ceremony.
Emyo shouted at him, “Who gave you permission to come inside the temple?”
Myoshu said, “Here, an entry is wide open.”
Emyo laughed and said, “A thief has broken down my door!” and the master bowed.
Thereafter, Myoshu served as Emyo’s personal attendant, going deeper into the mystery every day.
Late in life Myoshu began to teach, and before long his fame spread far and wide, and there were never less than a thousand people surrounding his teaching seat.
One day, when he had a slight illness he beat the drum to call the community. When everyone had assembled, the master said, “My teaching is come to an end, I am making a bequest to you.” Then he raised his staff, shouted once and died standing.
Maneesha, these anecdotes belong to another dimension which the world has completely forgotten. It is totally a different language, a different understanding, a different kind of opening of the mystery of existence. In these simple anecdotes you will see the world that we have lost, and the world that we want to create again. This is the man who has reached to the ultimate peaks of consciousness at a time far away in the past, and this is the man who is needed again so that this whole stupidity of the world – its politicians, its priests – all can be dissolved and the world can again dance with joy, rejoice in love.
I am fortunate to have the right assembly; otherwise these anecdotes will not be have any meaning – because you are also searching for the same door, you are all one in this search, dissolved into a deep silence. Only this silence can understand, because out of this silence these anecdotes have arisen – this silence is their source. The clouds are the witness; the bamboos are the witness; you in your silence are the witnesses. These are your stories. So don’t think that you are reading some fiction. It is simply a hint to show you the way into your own being.
A man is utterly useless, his life has no meaning, his love is futile, if he himself is not aware who is residing in. Of course, the body is not you, nor the mind; there is something else which is witnessing both the mind and the body. To provoke that witness is the whole art of any master, and these anecdotes are about great masters.
When he was a monk, Myoshu called on Master Emyo, at Saijo,
where his monastery was,
and asked, “What is an entry for the student?”
That is a wrong question to ask a master. The master does not waste his time for any students. His life is the last; he will not be back again. His time is more precious than anybody else’s time. Because those who are blind will be born again, those who are unconscious will enter another womb – existence is very merciful, it gives you infinite chances to become a buddha. But those who become awakened…there is no need for another life, there is no need to enter into another body. They can float just like a white cloud.
Remember Basho: A cloud over the lotus….
And the silence….