Dharma Transmission

Dharma Transmission

In Zen-Buddhism, Dharma transmission is a custom in which a person is established as a “successor in an unbroken lineage of teachers and disciples, a spiritual ‘bloodline’ (kechimyaku) theoretically traced back to the Buddha himself.” The...
Going for Refuge

Going for Refuge

GOING FOR REFUGE Going for refuge and taking the precepts is the cornerstone of all the Buddhist paths. It usually becomes a turning point in a person’s life. One where they work toward an ideal – this ideal being shown to us through The Buddha – a...
The Heart Sutra

The Heart Sutra

THE HEART SUTRA The Bodhisattva of Compassion, Avalokateshvara, while in deep meditative concentration, absorption and curious inquiry, looked deeply into the nature of experience, penetrated fully to the intuitve realization of the emptiness of the skandhas and after...
The Perfect Enlightenment Sutra

The Perfect Enlightenment Sutra

The Perfect Enlightenment Sutra is one of the most popular and influential sutras in Zen. It was held in the highest regards by some of the greatest Zen Master’s like Zongmi and Chinul. The sutra itself is twelve chapters and the introductory section describes...
What Am I Koan

What Am I Koan

“Do you have a Koan?” That was the first question Korean Zen Master, Venerable Hwasun Yangil Sunim asked me. I had heard about Koans before – mainly from books. I didn’t really think they were essential for Zen practice. But here I was, sitting...
Zen Pointing Out Instructions

Zen Pointing Out Instructions

A quick and expedient way of awakening… The master takes his staff and points directly to your heart saying, Listen here! This! This! A thousand times this! The seeker is what’s sought. Originally the mind is pristine, vast and expansive like a clear blue...
MU

MU

The conceptual every day mind is never happy. It always wants something to chew on. It’s a hungry ghost and no matter how much information we feed it the mind will never be satisfied. “Does a dog have buddha-nature?” “Why did Bodhidharma come to China?” “Was the...
Zen and the Sutras – A Tenuous Relationship

Zen and the Sutras – A Tenuous Relationship

Zen is… “A special transmission outside the scriptures, not founded upon words and letters. by pointing directly to one’s mind, It lets one see into one’s own true nature and thus attain buddhahood.” (1)  The above statement from Bodhidharma is an...
New Years Message 2021

New Years Message 2021

New Years Message From master e I love you. I wish I could be with you in person and hold you tight. That I could sit with you and hold your hand. That I could see you smile and hear your voice. I wish I could snap my fingers and take away all your fears and...
Outline of Practice

Outline of Practice

Bodhidharma’s Outline of Practice There are many roads for entering the Way, but essentially there are only two:  entering through the Principle and entering through practice. Entering Through the Principle ‘Entering through the Principle’ is...
He Saved Everyone Before He Was Born

He Saved Everyone Before He Was Born

From the Collected Works of Korean Buddhism, Vol. 7-1 Gongan Collections 1: Case 1 TITLE: The Greatly Enlightened, World Honored One, Śākyamuni Buddha The World Honored One, without having yet departed Tusita (heaven),had already descended into the palace and,without...
Zen & The Conundrum of Words

Zen & The Conundrum of Words

Zen is… “A special transmission outside the scriptures,not founded upon words and letters.by pointing directly to one’s mind,It lets one see into one’s own true natureand thus attain buddhahood.” The above statement from Zen Master Bodhidharma is an interesting one....
Faith Mind Inscription

Faith Mind Inscription

Verses on the Faith Mindby Chien-chih Seng-ts’anThird Zen Patriarch [d. 606 AD]Tr. by Richard B. ClarkeZen teacher at the Living Dharma Centers, Amherst, Mass. The Great Way is not difficultfor those who have no preferences.When love and hate are both...
Three Approaches to Zen

Three Approaches to Zen

The Three Divisions of Ch’an Buddhism by Zen Master Zongmi (Tsung-mi) There are various schools of Ch’an mutually conflicting with each other. The doctrines preached by these established sects are contradictory and obstructive to each other. Some of them Regard...
Mind Is Buddha

Mind Is Buddha

The master Huangbo said to [Pei] Xiu: “All the Buddhas and all sentient beings are nothing but the One Mind, beside which nothing exists.This Mind, which IS without beginning, is unborn and indestructible.It is not green nor yellow, and has neither form nor...
No-Thought Is the Central Doctrine

No-Thought Is the Central Doctrine

Zen Master Hui-Neng said, “Good friends, since the past this teaching of ours has first taken no-thought as its central doctrine.To be enlightened to the Dharma of no-thought is to arrive at the stage of buddhahood.What do we mean by no-thought?The teaching of...
Zen Farts

Zen Farts

Su Dongpo (a famous Buddhist poet) of the Song Dynasty was assigned to an official post at Guazhuo. Across the river, on its southern shore, was Jinshan (Golden Mountain) Temple where Zen Master Foyin presided. One day, Su Dongpo, feeling quite advanced in his...
The Three Essentials of Zen Practice

The Three Essentials of Zen Practice

There are three essentials of zen practice: Faith Curiosity Determination First of the Three Essentials is FaithFirst we must have faith. Faith that there’s a tremendous potential within us. We all can feel it. That’s there’s something more to us. That there’s this...