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Zhaozhou Recites the Canon

Zhaozhou Recites the Canon

Zhaozhou was once given a donation by an elderly woman who requested that he recite the Great Canon. Zhaozhou got down from his seat on the meditation platform, walked around the platform once, and said to the woman’s messenger, “I have finished reciting the Great Canon.” The messenger told the woman about this. She said, “I asked him to recite the entire canon. How come the master recited only half of the Canon?”

Student: “Why did Zhaozhou walk around the platform once instead of reciting the Great Canon when he was asked to recite it?”
Master: “He did it perfectly.”
Student: “Then, why did the elderly woman say that he had recited only half of the Canon?”
Master: “She admired him.”

Commentary:
Reciting the copy of the Great Canon one hundred times is not as good as taking a glance at the original Great Canon.”

©Boo Ahm

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

#zen #meditation #zenfools http://ow.ly/i/DzoaX

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