Monday, 16 May 2016

Bankei Yotaku

                A priest from a rival sect once challenged Bankei Yotaku saying, “The founder of our sect had such powers that if an attendant held up a sheet of paper on one side of the river, he could write the name of the Buddha in the air on the other side of the river, and it would appear on the paper.  What do you think of that?”
                “Not much.  Stage magicians are capable of much more spectacular feats,” Bankei scoffed.  “But that isn’t the way of Zen.”
                “No?  What ‘feats’ are you capable of?”
                “When I’m hungry, I eat; when I’m thirsty, I drink; when tired, I sleep.”
[Bankei Yotaku – Zen Masters of Japan: 194-208]

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