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Then Manjusri asked Vimalakirti, “All of us have finished giving our explanations. Now you should give your explanation. What does it mean that the Bodhisattva enters the Dharma-gate of Not-Two?” Vimalakirti remained silent. ~ from Case 48
“… what is that roar of silence? …” ~ Henry Shukman
Description: Henry uses a computer software metaphor for describing practice: Zen Practice is about changing our software, running a new operating system, with the main feature that it doesn’t generate the three fires: desire, aversion, delusion. The benefit of this arduous training isn’t so much for our personal benefit; rather, when we are running this new operating system, we aren’t causing harm with the three fires, we are more able and inclined to be of service and to help.
The talk then introduces the famous lay disciple Vimalakirti, and the Vimalakirti Nidesa Sutra. This sutra relates various encounters between Vimalakirti, Manjurshri and other students of Buddha, who come to visit him while he is sick. They are all asked to give their understanding of the “Dharma-gate of Not-two.” Vimalakirti’s response is a “thundering silence,” renowned through the Mahayana tradition. We are all encouraged to sit with the question: “what is that roar of silence?”