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Dongshan’s “Dharma Bodies”

Dongshan’s “Dharma Bodies”

Dongshan Liangjie was once asked by a monastic, “Among the three buddha bodies, which one expounds the dharma?” Dongshan said, “I am always intimate with this.” Later a monastic asked Caoshan, “Dongshan said, ‘I am always intimate with this.’ What does it mean?” Caoshan said, “If you need a head, chop my head off and take it with you.” Also, a monastic asked Xuefeng about this. Xuefeng suddenly hit the monastic with his staff and said, “I have also been to Dongshan.”
Student: ” What did Dongshan mean by saying, ‘I am always intimate with this’?”
Master: “He showed which one expounded the dharma.”

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Student: “Why did Caoshan say, ‘If you need a head, chop my head off and take it with you’?”
Master: “He repeated Dongshan’s answer.”
Student: “Why did Xuefeng suddenly hit the monastic with his staff and say, ‘I have also been to Dongshan’?”
Master: “He showed what Dongshan is.”

Commentary:
Whatever clothing you may wear, you are you.
Whatever cup you may use, the water from the same well tastes the same.

©Boo Ahm
All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway http://ow.ly/i/ABvTp

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