Monthly Archives: December 2015

Dec. 27- Jan. 2

“The foolish reject what they see, not what they think. The wise reject what they think, not what they see.

-Huang Po


Gateless Gate Case #21: Un-mon’s Shit Stick
A monk asked Un-mon in all earnestness, “What is Buddha?”
Unmon replied, “A shit-stick.”

Dec. 20-26

“I considered, could jhana be the path to enlightenment? Then came the realization: ‘That is the path to enlightenment.’”

-The Buddha


Gateless Gate Case #1: Joshu’s Dog
A monk in all seriousness asked Master Joshu: “Has a dog Buddha-nature or not?”
Joshu retorted: “Mu!”

Dec. 13-19

“If we listen from a silent mind, as free as possible from the clamor of preconceived ideas, a possibility will be created for the truth of the teachings to pierce us—and for the meaning of life and death to become increasingly and startlingly clear.”

-Sogyal Rinpoche


Gateless Gate Case #16: Un-mon’s Seven Fold Robe
Un-mon said, “The world is vast and wide. Why do you put on your seven-fold robe at the sound of the bell?”

Dec. 6-12

“It is no exaggeration to say that the entire practice of ethics and morality boils down to the means of decreasing the delusory attachment to an individual self.”

-Yamada Koun

Gateless Gate Case #15: Tozan’s 60 Blows
Tozan went to Un-mon and Un-mon asked him where he had come from.
Tozan answered, “From Sato!”
Then Un-mon asked, “Where were you then during the Summer?”
Tozan answered, “At Hoji Temple in Konan Province.”
Un-mon further asked Tozan, “When did you leave there?”
Tozan replied, “I left on August 25.”
Un-mon told Tozan, “You deserve 60 blows, but I will forgive you today!”
The next day Tozan knelt and deeply bowed to Un-mon and said, “Yesterday you forgave me the 60 blows, but I still do not understand in what respect I was wrong.”
Then Un mon told Tozan, “You are really a good-for-nothing rice eater! No wonder you wandered around Konan and Kosei for nothing!”
At this very moment, Tozan was awakened.

Nov. 29-Dec. 5

“When you surrender the grasping at the level of the gut, it may feel like you are going to die. But you don’t die; the illusion of a separate self dies. Still it may feel like you are going to die. Only when you are willing to die for the sake of truth can that grasping truly and authentically let go.”



Book of Equanimity Case #40: Unmon’s White and Black
Unmon asked Kempô, “May I ask for your answer?”
Kempô said, “Have you ever reached this old monk or not?”
Unmon said, “If so, I must say I was too late.”
Kempô said, “Is that so? Is that so?”
Unmon said, “I thought I was Marquis White, but I find that here is Marquise Black.”