The Teachings of Dark Zen
Buddha-NatureStudents of the Way. Many of you seem perplexed about the idea
of Buddha-nature. I know that a number of you come from other Zen
centers which teach the doctrine of Dogen Zenji who believes that
"all beings are Buddha-nature"...
Critique of Modern Zen
Does modern Zen resemble the Zen (C. Ch'an) of old China? It would
seem that it doesn't. While many modern day practitoners, who frequent
American Zen centers believe, to the contrary, that it does there
is no historic evidence that this is the case...
The Method of Dark Zen
MeditationDark Zen Meditation (hereafter, DZM) is a method designed to
enter into communion with the superessential light of the Buddha...
Dark Zen Meditation Part 1Q: What is the meditation of being mindfulness of in-and-out
A: From the perspective of Dark Zen it means that fundamentally
we are unrelated to in-and-out breathing....
Dark Zen Meditation Part 2
Q: How do we begin to practice Dark Zen Meditation [DZM]?
A: First, the proper mental attitude is necessary. You cannot
just sit down on a cushion, cross your legs, and hold your back
erect. That is not enough. It just becomes performative, you might
say. One becomes a Zen actor, in other words....
Heart Sutra with Commentary
The Bodhisattva, Noble Avalokite"svara, practicing the profound
Perfection of Wisdom, looked down. He beheld the Five Aggregates
as being empty of absolute nature....
Q&A on Karma and Rebirth
Q: What are your views on rebirth?
A: Well, it is undeniable that the Buddha, under the Bodhi-tree
during the first night-watch, came to recollect his previous births...
A Dialogue Between Master and Disciple
Bodhidharma: Today you have seen Mind which is not part
of this world.
Hui-k'o: But is this all? To be sure, I see Mind's incorporeal
nature. I see that it is not here nor there. I see that it is measureless.
But it seems that there is much more to learn....
Mystical Zen Buddhism
The goal of Zen Buddhism is directed towards achieving mystical
union with Buddha Mind because Buddha Mind is the basis of all existence.
In so doing, the Zennist comes to see for himself that all things
are born from this Mind; that in fact, all things are subjoined
to Buddha Mind, having their true commencement and end in it...
Old Zen and Zazen
The history of Zen can be said to have begun in the Chinese port
city of Canton some time around 480 A.D. with the arrival of a mysterious
Indian Buddhist teacher, named Bodhidharma....
Students of the Way
I cannot teach you the true meaning of Zen if you are more concerned
with day to day matters rather than understanding the truth. Please
don't bother me with questions such as where to put your shoes or
hang your coats...
The Transcendence Q &AQ: What do you mean by transcendence?
A: Can you see "that" which asks this question? Can you hear
it? Can the nose smell it or can the tongue taste it? Can you become
conscious of it? In truth, you cannot. And because you can't, something
mysterious transcends the sphere of the six senses...
The Satori Q and A
Question: What is meant by "satori" (C. Wu)? I realize
that it usually means "enlightenment", but I am still having a difficult
problem with its definition.
Answer: Usually the tentative definition of satori is stated
to be the direct experience of realizing the nature of Mind, this
being the same as our Buddha-nature...
The Bodhicitta Q and A
Q: What is meant by Bodhicitta?
A: From the standpoint of Buddhist mysticism, it is a special
kind of illumination in which the adept is awakened to Mind's great
The Koan Q&A
Q: What is the basic purpose of koans?
A: Mainly to put a stop to representational thinking...
The Zenmar Interview
In the electronic sangha of America Online the voice of Zenmar
is distinctive and his knowledge is honored. It is unusual for him
to visit a Buddhist chatroom, but when he does attention turns to
him as an arbiter of theory and practice...
A Transmission Outside Religion
Q: What does this statement mean? "A special transmission
outside the scriptures..."
A: Right off the bat, let me say that "scriptures" is the
wrong word. It should read "outside religion"...
Hui-K'o and Student
Student: Is it good to study the Sutras? As a master of
the Lankavatara School, would you tell me if it is beneficial?
Hui-k'o: Not if one is addicted to a literary understanding
of Sutras. Unfortunately, today, many students have failed to come
to a real understanding of their predecessor's words. They cling
to the letter and forget the insight. In my own transmission from
Master Bodhidharma, the Lankavatara Sutra is meant as an aid for
transcending words and the mental pictures they create. In that
way, Sutras are not an obstruction...