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Q260. Why do you think that some Christians and Catholics deny and even detest homosexuals?

A. If they think that God is always perfect and everything is created by Him, they should accept the fact that homosexuals are created by God as well. To deny them is to deny God. If God, as they say, is perfect, He never makes a mistake. Then everything made by Him is perfect. To speak ill of homosexuals for being what they are is to find fault with what is created by God and blame Him for His error. That means that they don’t believe in God’s perfection.

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When God made homosexuals what they are, He had His intention. What they are is the exact expression of God’s intention. The reason why they deny and detest homosexuals is that they are still lacking faith in God and don’t know His intention. Finding fault with and even cursing the perfect work by the greatest artist reveals their inability to appreciate His masterpiece, which runs counter to their belief that God is perfect.

Instead of showing their own self-contradiction, they had better try to know what God created homosexuals for.

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Buddha, Buddhism, emptiness, empty, Enlightenment, master, Meditation, Practice, Religion, root, self, student, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q259. How can I grasp the core meaning of the Sutras?

A. What do you think the core teaching of the Sutras is? It is enlightenment. What all the Sutras say is nothing but how to attain enlightenment and what enlightenment is like, nothing else. If you are to grasp the core teaching of Buddha, don’t look for it in the Sutras. The Sutras are only like a map or an arrow pointing to your destination. They are not the place itself that you want to reach.

 

Don’t think of Zen meditation as being apart from the Sutras. Zen meditation is an expedient means to grasp the core teaching of the Sutras. The Sutras are maps and Zen is to move towards the destination indicated by the maps. So, the best way to grasp the core meaning of the Sutras is to experience what the Sutras say through practice.

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Student: “How can I grasp the core meaning of the Sutras?”

Master: “Discard all the Sutras.”

 

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Bible, Buddha, Buddhism, Enlightenment, final goal, God, illusion, master, Meditation, Mind, Practice, Prayer, Religion, root, self, sutras, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q257. I have been a Christian for over 20 years and believed that God is perfect. Why does He make my life so troublesome?

A. If you have true faith in God and His perfection, you should not think that your life is troublesome. Thinking that your life is problematic is contrary to the truth that God never makes any mistakes since He is perfect. When He made you what you are, He had his intention. What you are is the exact expression of his intention. The reason why you think that your life is spoiled and troublesome is that you don’t understand his intention. Instead of blaming God for making your life troublesome, you had better try to know what God intends you to be like.

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Student: “Why does God make my life so hard?”

Master: “Why don’t you ask God in person?”

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Bible, Buddha, Buddhism, emptiness, empty, Enlightenment, final goal, illusion, master, Meditation, Mind, Photography, Practice, Religion, root, self, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q254. You always advise us not to follow language, but how can we understand you unless we follow your language?

A. There is a well-known saying ‘If following words, you will fall into the hell. If not grasping the meaning of words, you will be deluded’. When I tell you not to follow my language, I don’t mean that you should ignore my language but that you should not follow the superficial meaning of it.

 

When pointing to the moon, we can use a finger, a wooden stick, a plastic stick or an iron stick. We can point to the moon even with a fork or a knife if we are asked what the moon is in the middle of eating. Regrettably, people pay all their attention only to studying and analysing the things used to point to the moon: what they are made of, how old they are, what shape they are and so on.

 

When I use a lot of different words and expressions to point to the true-self, my language is like the things above used to point to the moon. If you accept my words in the way you understand general knowledge, you are like a person who studies the stick or the spoon used to point to the moon. Then, you are said to follow or be deceived by language. If you are deceived by language like this, you will be immersed in illusions and even all Sutras and the Bible will become illusions.

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Student: “What’s the true-self?”

Master: “Don’t follow my language.”

 

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Buddha, Buddhism, emptiness, empty, Enlightenment, final goal, Koan, master, Meditation, Mind, Practice, Religion, root, student, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q252. Student: “What is Buddha?”

A. Master: “It’s in the Buddha hall.”

Student: “Isn’t it just a statue made of clay?”

Master: “Yes, it is.”

Student: “What is Buddha then?”

Master: “It’s in the Buddha hall.”

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Commentary:

It is a top secret.

Keep away all your acquaintances when looking and listening.

Look and listen by yourself.

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Buddha, Buddhism, emptiness, empty, Enlightenment, final goal, Happiness, illusion, master, Meditation, Mind, Practice, root, self, student, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q250. What is the true-self like?

A. It has neither a figure nor a root, but it is active all the time without staying anywhere. When you go, it makes your body go, when you sit down, it makes your body sit down, and whatever you do, speaking or keeping silent, it makes your body do it.

 

Although it moves in countless ways, it has no fixed rule. The harder you look for it, the farther away it is, and the harder you try to obtain it, the more you forsake it. It is with you at this moment as usual, and you can’t separate from it even for a second. The problem is that you don’t recognise it. So, it is called an open secret.

 

What is it that is making your body read this writing now? Once you realise what on earth it is and what it is like, you will have completed your practice.

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Student: “What is the true-self?”

Master: “Pardon?”

Student: “What is the true-self?”

Master: “Nothing else other than it.”

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Buddha, Buddhism, Enlightenment, final goal, illusion, Koan, master, Meditation, Mind, Practice, root, self, student, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q249. Student: “What am I when my body is not me?”

A. Master: “It is not difficult to say, but I wonder if you will believe what I say.”

Student: “Of course, I will believe what you say.”

Master: “I am your son.”

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Commentary:

Master’s answer breaks all the world into pieces.

Who is master’s mother when he is older than his father?

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Bible, Buddha, Buddhism, Enlightenment, final goal, God, illusion, master, Meditation, Mind, Practice, Prayer, Religion, root, self, student, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q248. In the Bible, Matthew 5:48 it says, “You must be perfect – just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” How could we be perfect like God?

A. In fact, we have always been and will be perfect forever, and there is nothing imperfect. ‘Perfect’ and ‘imperfect’ are all the products of our discrimination. How could there be ‘good’ and ‘bad’, or ‘beautiful’ and ‘ugly’, without discrimination? It is because of our discrimination that all things including us look imperfect.

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To be perfect just as your Father in heaven is, means to realise the truth that you are perfect and not to turn ‘imperfect you’ into ‘perfect you’. In order to realise the truth, we must cease to discriminate, or remove illusions, and see everything as it is. Matthew 5:45 says, “He makes his sun shine on bad and good people alike, and gives rain to those who do good and to those who do evil.” This is showing that God also doesn’t discriminate between good and bad.

 

Student: “How can I be perfect like Buddha?”

Master: “Don’t stain yourself with ‘perfect’.”

 

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Buddha, Buddhism, emptiness, empty, Enlightenment, final goal, Koan, master, Meditation, Mind, Photography, Religion, root, self, student, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q 246. Master: “How old are you?”

A. Student: “I’m fifty years old.”

Master: “How old is fifty years?”

Student: “I don’t know.”

Master: “How come you still don’t know your age?”

Student: “How old are you, Sir?”

Master: “Eighty years old.”

Student: “How old is eighty years?”

Master: “Eight times ten is eighty.”

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Commentary:

Don’t think that the student’s right answer is five times ten.

The curved can’t contain the straight.

 

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

Bible, Buddha, Buddhism, emptiness, empty, Enlightenment, final goal, God, illusion, Meditation, Practice, Prayer, Religion, root, self, student, sutras, true self, Truth, Uncategorized, Zen

Q245. How should I accept the part of the Bible, Matthew 10:37 that says, “Those who love their father or mother more than me are not fit to be my disciples.”?

A. Zen has a similar saying, ‘Kill Buddha and your parents if you are to see your true-self’. Even Buddha, while alive, would say to his disciples, “If you see me, kill me.” Here, killing Buddha and your parents means removing the illusions of them and not actually killing Buddha and your real parents. Logically speaking, how would it be possible to kill the historical Buddha who passed away about 2500 years ago? The reason why masters would use such a radical expression is that the illusions of Buddha and your parents are among the illusions that are the most difficult to remove.

Likewise, in order to see God, you have to remove all illusions, among which those of God and your parents die hardest. So, the above scripture can be interpreted: ‘Those who love the illusions of their parents without trying to see their true-self are not fit to be my disciples. Those who can’t remove the illusions of their parents can’t see God, the true-self.’

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Student: “When we kill our parents, we can repent of our sin of killing them before Buddha. However, where can we repent of our sin when we kill Buddha or God?”

Master: “When you come into your kingdom after a successful rebellion, there is no one who can judge you.”

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway