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ZEN

THE MIRACLE

Chapter 6: Cages of gold

 

Energy Enhancement             Enlightened Texts             Zen             The Miracle

 

OUR BELOVED MASTER,
SEIGEN SAID:
IF NOW YOU COMPREHEND IT, WHERE IS THAT WHICH YOU DID NOT COMPREHEND BEFORE? WHAT YOU WERE DELUDED ABOUT BEFORE IS WHAT YOU ARE NOW ENLIGHTENED ABOUT, AND WHAT YOU ARE NOW ENLIGHTENED ABOUT, IS WHAT YOU WERE DELUDED ABOUT BEFORE.
THERE ARE ONLY TWO DISEASES: ONE IS RIDING AN ASS TO SEARCH FOR THE ASS; THE OTHER IS RIDING AN ASS AND BEING UNWILLING TO DISMOUNT. YOU SAY THAT RIDING AN ASS TO SEARCH FOR THE ASS IS SILLY, AND THAT HE WHO DOES IT SHOULD BE PUNISHED. THIS IS A VERY SERIOUS DISEASE. BUT I TELL YOU, DO NOT SEARCH FOR THE ASS AT ALL. THE INTELLIGENT MAN, UNDERSTANDING MY MEANING, STOPS HIS ERROR OF SEARCHING FOR THE ASS, AND THUS THE DELUDED STATE OF HIS MIND CEASES TO EXIST.
BUT IF, HAVING FOUND THE ASS ONE IS UNWILLING TO DISMOUNT, THIS DISEASE IS MOST DIFFICULT TO CURE. I SAY TO YOU, DO NOT RIDE THE ASS AT ALL. YOU YOURSELF ARE THE ASS. MOUNTAINS, RIVERS AND PLAINS ARE ALL THE ASS. WHY DO YOU RIDE ON IT? IF YOU RIDE, YOU CANNOT CURE YOUR DISEASE. BUT IF YOU DO NOT RIDE, THE UNIVERSE IN ALL DIRECTIONS BECOMES ONE WIDE EXPANSE. WITH THESE TWO DISEASES EXPELLED, NOTHING REMAINS TO AFFECT YOUR MIND. THIS IS SPIRITUAL CULTIVATION. YOU NEED DO NOTHING MORE.

Maneesha, Seigen is raising a very important question. And he not only raises the question, he also gives the answer. That is the way of a master. To raise a question is very easy, but to give the right answer is very difficult, because the right answer is only one. Millions of questions are possible, but millions of answers are not there.
Before I read you the sutra, I would like to tell you the essence of it. Because it is old Zen language, it looks complicated, but it is not.
All that he is saying is that searching for the self is stupid. It is a disease, and almost incurable. But if by chance you find the self and become enlightened, you have jumped from one disease to another.
Your enlightenment is not a cure. Your enlightenment is now another possession. Now you will be bragging about it. It will not give you freedom but new fetters -- just more shiny, more beautiful, more up to date.
Seigen is saying that you have to be free from ignorance and you have to be free from enlightenment. This is called the lion's roar. Even enlightenment is not going to be his imprisonment. He wants the whole universe without any limits.
An enlightened person has a tiny flame. But if that tiny flame makes him feel special, greater and better than others, it has already become a fetter. This is not the great enlightenment. It is simply changing dark-colored chains for light-colored chains. The great enlightenment is to not have any chains.
So ultimately the enlightened, the awakened, the buddha, drops his buddhahood too. He becomes absolutely ordinary and simple. In his simplicity radiates the whole cosmos. In his silence is contained all the music and all the rainbows and all the flowers possible. He is himself the universe, there is no more division.
Now he cannot distinguish between the ignorant and the enlightened. To him now the whole universe is nothing but an immense enlightenment in which everything is drowned. A greater dance is not possible.
Seigen said:
IF NOW YOU COMPREHEND IT, WHERE IS THAT WHICH YOU DID NOT COMPREHEND BEFORE? WHAT YOU WERE DELUDED ABOUT BEFORE IS WHAT YOU ARE NOW ENLIGHTENED ABOUT, AND WHAT YOU ARE NOW ENLIGHTENED ABOUT, IS WHAT YOU WERE DELUDED ABOUT BEFORE.
The object of your delusion and the object of your enlightenment remain the same. It is not a great transformation as far as your subjectivity is concerned.
THERE ARE ONLY TWO DISEASES... Nobody in the whole history has brought the issue to such clarity.
THERE ARE ONLY TWO DISEASES: ONE IS RIDING AN ASS TO SEARCH FOR THE ASS; THE OTHER IS RIDING AN ASS AND BEING UNWILLING TO DISMOUNT.
One is searching for enlightenment, the other is finding it and not relaxing.
As you bragged about your so-called ignorant knowledge, now you brag about your enlightenment. But your ego remains the same. Get down from the ass! Get down from your enlightenment and mix with the simple existence that is eternal and immortal. Don't keep yourself apart.
The second disease is more difficult. The first disease you yourself wanted to drop. The second disease is difficult, because now the chains are made of gold. To drop chains of gold feels as if you are dropping your beautiful ornaments, and nobody wants to drop their ornaments. It becomes more difficult to get out of a cage made of gold because even the cage seems to be so valuable. And what is there beyond the cage? Just an empty sky as far as you can see. The cage not only makes you special, it also gives you security.
Seigen is saying:
YOU SAY THAT RIDING AN ASS TO SEARCH FOR THE ASS IS SILLY -- that is obvious -- AND THAT HE WHO DOES IT SHOULD BE PUNISHED. THIS IS A VERY SERIOUS DISEASE. BUT I TELL YOU, DO NOT SEARCH FOR THE ASS AT ALL. THE INTELLIGENT MAN, UNDERSTANDING MY MEANING, STOPS HIS ERROR OF SEARCHING FOR THE ASS, AND THUS THE DELUDED STATE OF HIS MIND CEASES TO EXIST.
This is how you can determine whether a man really knows. Even from his words you can see some glimpses. Compare it with Jesus' statement, "Seek and ye shall find." Seigen will say, "Seek and you shall never find."
The seeker has already gone away from himself; in search of himself he has left himself far behind. Jesus says, "Ask and you will be answered." Who is there to answer? It is your own mind game. One part of the mind raises the question, another part of the mind supplies the answer. Otherwise this whole universe is utterly silent.
All prayers are in vain. And they don't show your religiousness, they simply show your IQ -- your intelligence quotient. They show that you are still a child, that you still want someone else to take the responsibility. There is nobody in the sky to take the responsibility. For Jesus there is a God, but for Seigen and any Zen master there is no God to answer. You are the answer -- just don't ask! Be silent! Don't ask! And there is the answer.
Jesus says, "Knock, and the door shall be opened unto you." The very language indicates that the door is somewhere outside you -- you have to knock. But the reality is, you have to go in. There is no question of knocking. Stop all knocking on the doors outside you! Just relax into your center and you have found it. And you will be surprised that you were searching for something which has always been there inside you.
BUT IF, HAVING FOUND THE ASS ONE IS UNWILLING TO DISMOUNT, THIS DISEASE IS MOST DIFFICULT TO CURE.
Only a master can say that enlightenment is also a disease. Perhaps a better, a cleaner disease. But remember the meaning of the word disease -- it does not mean sickness, it does not mean illness, it simply means `dis-ease'. And to be at ease with the universe you cannot think yourself enlightened and others unenlightened. To be at ease with the universe you have to dismount from your enlightenment and just be simple... nobody. And the whole universe is yours.
I SAY TO YOU, DO NOT RIDE THE ASS AT ALL.
In the first place, riding the ass you are getting into difficulty. Don't seek enlightenment, because that will ultimately end up in your finding it. And it will be very difficult for you to get free of enlightenment. It will become a new disease, a new imprisonment -- so cozy and so special for the ego that who wants to just be? Dismount from it! You have been in search for so long and now you have found. Your whole search... you have invested your whole life!
But a real buddha, a man of existential knowledge will say, I SAY TO YOU, DO NOT RIDE THE ASS AT ALL!
YOU YOURSELF ARE THE ASS!
The ass is just a symbol.
MOUNTAINS, RIVERS AND PLAINS ARE ALL THE ASS. WHY DO YOU RIDE ON IT? IF YOU RIDE, YOU CANNOT CURE YOUR DISEASE. BUT IF YOU DO NOT RIDE, THE UNIVERSE IN ALL DIRECTIONS BECOMES ONE WIDE EXPANSE. WITH THESE TWO DISEASES EXPELLED, NOTHING REMAINS TO AFFECT YOUR MIND. THIS IS SPIRITUAL CULTIVATION. YOU NEED DO NOTHING MORE.
Enlightenment is the last disease, the last barrier.
There have been wise friends who used to say to me, "You are a blessed soul."
I said to these people, "Don't make distinctions." Let me remain simply a nobody, with no power, with no domination. Because every subtle desire to be special is a desire for power. You gather money to be powerful, you go into politics to be powerful, you search for enlightenment again for power. Enlightened you will be worshipped. Perhaps enlightenment is the most dangerous disease of all, because who wants to be unenlightened once he has become enlightened? -- except my people who become enlightened every day. They never tire of it; the next day again they are here.
Gurudayal Singh is laughing. Because he is my ancientmost sannyasin, he has become so many times enlightened! But the next day when he wakes up he thinks, "Enlightenment is not difficult. One can become enlightened any way, any day, any time. Just a little more enjoyment around the world -- enlightenment can wait!"
It is not something that is far away. Once you have known it, you know it is there. Then just be ordinary, simple. In that simplicity is purity and joy and a laughter like a child; and a glory and a splendor that the whole existence pours on such innocence.
A Zen haiku:
EVERY MAN HAS BENEATH HIS FEET,
GROUND ENOUGH TO DO ZAZEN ON.

You don't have to go anywhere. Wherever you are, you have enough ground under your feet and you can become enlightened. You can do the meditation, it does not have to be in a certain holy place.
But even people like Moses would not pass the test set by this haiku poet. When Moses went to meet God on Mount Sinai... In the first place the whole idea of meeting God is absolutely imagination. He must have been asleep. In a dream he must have gone up the mountain, because thousands of people have gone to the mountain before and after, and God has never been found there. Still people go on thinking that it is a holy place. It was a special concession to Moses that God met him on Mount Sinai. It is strange how he knew that he would be at that moment on Mount Sinai. He had no phone call from him, no letter, no communication of any kind. But he met God on Sinai -- that's what the Old Testament says. As a metaphor it is beautiful, but religions turn every metaphor into factuality, and then it becomes a superstition.
Moses approaches God... and what is God? A fire is burning inside a green bush and the bush is still green. Flames are coming out of the bush just like branches, flowers. With those flowers and branches and leaves the flames are coming out. This can be a beautiful metaphor, that life is nothing but fire. But as he approached the bush, somebody shouted from the bush, "Moses take off your shoes! You are on holy ground."
These kinds of metaphors have proved to be very dangerous. It is beautiful to see God as flames... certainly cool, because they are not burning the leaves, the flowers, the bush. On the contrary they are nourishing it, dancing with its branches. But, "Take off your shoes, this is holy ground," is a dangerous statement. That means other ground is not holy.
This Zen master says, EVERY MAN HAS BENEATH HIS FEET, GROUND ENOUGH TO DO ZAZEN ON. You don't have to go to Sinai or to Kaaba or to Kashi, you don't have to go anywhere. Wherever you are, you are in the holy universe. There are not certain places which are holy and certain places which are not holy. If the whole universe is divine then everything is holy.
Another haiku:
THE BAMBOO SHADOWS ARE SWEEPING THE STAIRS,
BUT NO DUST IS STIRRED:
THE MOONLIGHT PENETRATES DEEP
INTO THE BOTTOM OF THE POOL,
BUT NO TRACE IS LEFT IN THE WATER.

Saying things which cannot be said, Zen has such a unique way of indicating aesthetically that it seems unbelievable. The master is saying, THE BAMBOO SHADOWS... not the bamboos themselves, because bamboos are clumsy and they will make much noise. THE BAMBOO SHADOWS ARE SWEEPING THE STAIRS, BUT NO DUST IS STIRRED. This is our actual situation. In our innermost consciousness no dust is stirred. All our thoughts are nothing but bamboo shadows.
THE MOONLIGHT PENETRATES DEEP INTO THE BOTTOM OF THE POOL, BUT NO TRACE IS LEFT IN THE WATER.
When you become aware you are surprised... all your actions in the past, your thoughts in the past -- nothing has left any trace. Awakened, you are left completely silent as if there has been no past at all. Just like in the morning when you wake up, just for two or three minutes you remember the last part of a dream. You have been dreaming the whole night, six hours. If you are sleeping eight hours, then six hours you have been dreaming. But when you wake up you remember just the last dream, and that too only when you are half asleep and you can feel it. When you are really awake no trace remains of any dreams.
This was the reason why the mystics called the world just a dream. All your desires, all your possessions, all your thoughts, all your religions, all your anger, love and hate -- everything that makes up your world, your mind, is found to be as if it has never been there. When you wake up, you are absolutely a clean slate. Nobody has ever written anything on it.
Another Zen master:
IF YOU WISH TO KNOW THE ROAD
UP THE MOUNTAIN, YOU MUST ASK THE MAN
WHO GOES BACK AND FORTH ON IT.

A man who has become enlightened has reached to the highest peak of the mountain, and then he comes down and becomes a simple man. He knows the peak is there, it is his own being. If you want to ask, ask a man who has been to the mountain and has come down. If he is still on the mountain your question will not be answered. If he is still on the way going towards the mountain all that he can say will be mere words.
You have to find a man who has been to the ultimate peak and then came down to be amongst you. Then he is at ease, he has no tensions, he is at home. Ask such a person, perhaps he may indicate the way.

 

 

Next: Chapter 6: Cages of gold, Question 1

 


Energy Enhancement             Enlightened Texts             Zen             The Miracle

 

 

Chapters:

 

 

 

 

ENERGY

ENHANCEMENT MEDITATION

MEDITATION HEAD

 HOME PAGE

 

GAIN ENERGY APPRENTICE LEVEL1

THE ENERGY BLOCKAGE REMOVAL PROCESS

LEVEL2

THE KARMA CLEARING PROCESS APPRENTICE LEVEL3

MASTERY OF  RELATIONSHIPS TANTRA APPRENTICE LEVEL4

 

STUDENTS EXPERIENCES  2005 AND 2006

 

MORE STUDENTS EXPERIENCES

 - FIFTY FULL TESTIMONIALS

2003 COURSE

 
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