Rinzai 142

Venerable ones, if a student has reached this, his enlightenment is so perfect that there is no crack for even air to pass through, and a spark from flint or a flash of lightning misses the mark. If you stare around, you miss it. All deliberation of heart misses the target. All movement of thought goes to a contrary end. To those who know this, it is not separate from what is before their eyes.


Once one has attained enlightenment, in one’s mind there is no crack through which even an illusion so tiny that it is as invisible as air can pass. If we have even an illusion as momentary as a spark from flint, or a flash of lightning in order to see the true-Self, we will miss it. ‘Stare around’, ‘all deliberation of heart’ and ‘all movement of thought’ imply to make an effort that is as futile as trying to squeeze the juice out of pictures of oranges. To the enlightened, the true-Self that is one with themselves is clear before their eyes all the time.

Student: “How can I not have any crack in my mind?”

Master: “Your mind is a crack.”

©Boo Ahm

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

#zen #meditation #zenmeditation #enlightened #enlightenment #zenfools #photography

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