Teisho: Case 68, Book of Equanimity: “Kassan Brandishes the Sword”

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“… It is all makyô, or deceptive phenomena. The dust is swept away, and we see “Buddha,” and the dust reveals itself to be none other than Buddha all along ...”

Buddha

 

Description: In exploring the koan, “Kassan Brandishes the Sword,” Case 68 from the Book of Equanimity, Henry begins by giving us a taste of the teaching of Master Kassan, who points to the fact that the “Way” cannot be taught because it is precisely who we are—it is you, yourself. In Case 68, a monk asks, “What if one sweeps away the dust and sees Buddha?” To sweep away the dust is to drop all concepts. There is no more understanding or knowing or conceptualizing; there is only the true fact of reality unfolding every moment. Yet on another level, everything we believe to be reality is swept away. It is all makyô, or deceptive phenomena. The dust is swept away, and we see “Buddha,” and the dust reveals itself to be none other than Buddha all along. To see Buddha is to awaken from the dream of consensus reality. As Yogananda explained, we can see that this world is all a movie. What then? Sekisô says,“He has no country. Where can one meet him?” In other words, “Buddha” has no place, no home country. Kassan says, “You must brandish your sword,” a reference to “killing Buddha” or getting rid of the idea of awakening, so that we do not get stuck in it. It can also refer to getting to work and being useful. Fishermen fish to feed people. “All bodhisattvas have their zone of assistance.” Each of us has a unique function in the creation of this life, this movie.

Post & Featured image: Buddha by sciencefreakCCO Public Domain.


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