Three Step Method:     A Look Back

Now that you’ve learned the Three Steps and are familiar with the mind realms they lead us through, let’s revisit the Zen words we looked at in the beginning.

“Only don’t know.” – Master Seung San

“You will see with the same eye as the ancient Zen masters.” – Master Mumon

“Do you hear the sound of the stream outside? Enter Zen from there.” – Master Gensha

“What is the holiest truth of Buddhism? Vast and clear, no holiness.” - Bodhidharma

“Before enlightenment: chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment: chop wood, carry water.” – Traditional

“Not two.” – Master Seng Ts’an

“At first, mountains are mountains. Then mountains are not mountains, then mountains are completely mountains.” – Master Seigen

“Cut off the mind road.” – Master Mumon

“The Great Way knows no difficulties. Just avoid picking and choosing.” – Master Seng Ts’an

Has learning the Three Steps helped clarify your view of these statements of the masters? Do you see them pointing to one or more of the Three Step realms? For instance, “mountains are mountains” hints of Storyland, where instead of seeing what is actually in front of us, we’re reveling in our memory of a long ago trip through the highlands. “Mountains are not mountains” indicates the undifferentiated world of Presence, and “mountains are completely mountains” might be leading us into the fresh new realm of Discovery where that majestic range is filling our awareness 100%.

How about “not two”? This clearly points to Presence, where there are no separations of any kind. Once we see that, it’s an easy step to understanding the corollary saying: “not one, either”.

Where do we experience Bodhidharma's "Vast and clear, no holiness"?

Updated: 06/21/2014


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