Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Yunyan Tansheng [W-G: Yun-yen T’an-sheng / J: Ungan Donsho]



                Yunyan Tansheng once told this parable:  “Three travelers noticed a man standing on a small hill looking out over the landscape.  The first traveler said, ‘Look at that man.  I suppose he’s searching the country round for an animal that has wandered from his herd.’ 
                “‘Not at all,’ the second said, ‘he’s simply watching out for a friend who’s coming to visit him.’
                “‘Nonsense,’ said the third.  ‘He’s just enjoying the refreshing breeze.’
                “The travelers argued among themselves but weren’t able to come to agreement about why the man was standing there.  When they came nearer to him, the first traveler called out to the man, ‘Are you looking for a goat or sheep which has wandered from your flock?’
                “‘I don’t have any flocks,’ the man replied.
                “‘Then are you waiting for a friend?’ the second asked.
                “‘No.  I’m not waiting for a friend.’
                “‘Ah,’ said the third.  ‘It must be as I expected that you’re just enjoying the refreshing breeze.’
                “‘Not particularly,’ the man said.
                “‘Then what are you doing?’ the three travelers demanded.
                “‘I’m just standing here.’”
[Yunyan Tansheng – Zen Masters of China : 116-18, 129]

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