The head monks of the two halls happened to meet. At the same time each gave a Katsu. That day, a monk asked the master, “Were guest and host clear?” The master replied, “Guest and host were clearly distinguished.”
When the monk asked if guest and host had been clear between the two head monks who had shouted a Katsu at each other at the same time, he, deluded by words ‘host and guest’, wanted to want to know who was enlightened and who was not, or who asked and who answered. However, when the master replied, “Guest and host were clearly distinguished”, he meant that forms and Emptiness were clearly distinguished. His answer indicated that he could see the situation in both ways clearly as forms and as Emptiness and that he revealed guest and host in person at the same time. When hearing or reading this, we should be able to distinguish host and guest clearly. What matters here is whether we can grasp what is beyond what meets our eyes and ears when we see and hear.
Student: “Which is guest, and which is host when one shouts a Katsu earlier than the other?”
Master: “Guest and host always arrive together.”
All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway
#zen #meditation #zenmeditation #enlightened #enlightenment #zenfools #photography