SIT-A-LONG with JUNDO: Genjo Koan V

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Master Dogen observes that you, and all the other "selves" of the universe, do not exist as separate selves. Next, Master Dogen observes that you and all the other selves absolutely exist, that the universe transcends abundance or scarcity, that nothing is missing or to be taken away from the universe or anything it contains. Each is absolutely, wholly and completely, just-what-it-is. Birth is thoroughly birth, death death ... each moment of Practice is precisely each moment of Practice, and all the Wisdom and Ignorance of the world too.

In this way too, there vanishes the suffering of a "self" bumping in to all the other "selves", for each self is fully self-contained and self-sufficient.

This view, and the view of "no self" are simultaneously true.

(Tomorrow, we will look at another of Dogen's various "simultaneously true" perspctives).


As all things are buddha-dharma (Jundo: "Dharma" = "Phenomena"), there are delusion, realization, practice, birth and death, buddhas and sentient beings. As myriad things are without an abiding self, there is no delusion, no realization, no buddha, no sentient being, no birth and death. The buddha way, in essence, is leaping clear of abundance and lack; thus there are birth and death, delusion and realization, sentient beings and buddhas. Yet in attachment blossoms fall, and in aversion weeds spread. [Aitken & Tanahashi]

When all things and phenomena exist as Buddhist teachings, then there are
delusion and realization, practice and experience, life and death, buddhas and ordinary people. When millions of things and phenomena are all separate from ourselves, there are no delusion and no enlightenment, no buddhas and no ordinary people, no life and no death. Buddhism is originally transcendent over abundance and scarcity, and so [in reality] there is life and death, there is delusion and realization, there are people and buddhas. Though all this may be true, flowers fall even if we love them, and weeds grow even if we hate them, and that is all. [Nishijima]


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