Rinzai 150

Venerable ones, do not misunderstand robes. They never move, but they seem to move because man wears them. There is the robe of purity, the robe of the unborn, the robe of enlightenment and the robe of Nirvana, the patriarchal robe and the robe of the Buddha. Venerable ones, these are only sounds, names and conceptions that change like robes. They arise from the abdomen, are stuttered out between the teeth, and become meaningful. You should know that they are nothing but illusionary phantoms.


When we see and hear things, we should be able to see and hear what moves and changes them beyond their forms and sounds. Although there are a lot of graceful and plausible words such as purity, the unborn, enlightenment, Nirvana, patriarch and the Buddha, these are all illusions, which can be compared to your clothes that you change depending on the weather and the situation in which you are placed. In the same way that whatever elegant clothes you may wear, they are not you but the body in them is you, illusions are not the true-Self but the one that controls the illusions is. All words, phrases and eccentric behaviours that can seem to make no sense whatsoever are merely illusions produced by masters as expedients to keep people from clinging to logical words that sound plausible.

©Boo Ahm

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

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

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