« The big conversation between Bodhidharma and Emperor Wu | Main | A brief history of Zen »

October 20, 2013

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The notion of faith as not knowing seems to be embodied in the following scripture:

"O good man! Such matters of dispute are the things that belong to the world of the Buddha. They are not what sravakas and pratyekabuddhas can fathom. If a person can indeed gain a doubting mind, such a person can crush out innumerable defilements, as great in size as Mount Sumeru. When a man gains an immovable mind, this is what we call clinging."

Mahaparinirvana sutra (Mahayana version)
Chapter 41

Last night there was a dream where Thich Nhat Hanh manifested and told me there is One buddhism. That's all he said.

Now, clearly at one level I can recognize this as a simple trick of the brain in sleep, a little slight of hand by the subconscious to put my daytime, waking religious contemplation (dhyana), into a neat package of mental visualization and recognition. Thay didn't actually _say_ anything. But the nothing that said nothing has abundant meaning. How can this be, but through faith?

At another level, I find myself wondering who is the dreamer and what is, ultimately this dream? Or any dream? And this goes far beyond whether there is a dream or not a dream, whether there is a Thay or not a Thay, whether there really is One buddhism (which I had not consciously thought of before, but now that I do, I think, ok, why not?), whether there is spiritual meaning in dreams or not, whether there is spiritual meaning at all or not, and into the realm of pure faith. The meaning is the faith, and the faith the meaning.

Faith that there is a dream, faith that there is a Thay, faith that there is One buddhism, and faith that where there is not the dream, the Thay, and the Buddhism, there is still something. Even if it doesn't exist there is still something. It is neither something nor not something, but it is there.

What is it? I don't know. I keep telling myself, over and over, I don't know, I don't know, I don't know. Faith is like that. It is neither knowing nor not knowing. But it is something. It opens the door to being in harmony, because it allows us to see what we believe in may or may not be, but we at least have the power to believe. If there is the power to believe, there is the power to transcend what is and what is not, and belief, intention, thought, dreams, all are different manifestations of the Buddha principle.

That it is. I wish I had more of it. Or to at least recognize more continously that each of us have all of it in the universe, flowing abundantly, unrestrained, in perfect freedom and syntony with everything, somewhere under the ice floes of doubt that block us from really being free from the things we know. Free to just be faith. Free to just be. Free.

My Master told me;

"You are a slave to birth and death, held down by mighty chains you have forged during an incalculable span of deep desires and bad habits.

Now, you might dream of freedom. You might think of freedom, and you might even speak of freedom, but not until you apply the awesome light of Mahayana upon them, dissolving them completely, will you experience true freedom in the luminous Mind of all bodhisattvas and Buddhas. Until that happens, make no mistake; You are a slave to birth and death!"

The comments to this entry are closed.

My Photo