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 Bodhidharma : On Lineage

 

V. Even Butcher Can Attain the Buddhahood

Student: Killing is Butchers' job; how can they attain Buddhahood?

Bodhidharma: I have told you just to see the self-nature; not about the resulting karma; although one who saw self-nature is creating karma, still, he is different from the confused ones; that is, all variety of karma would not imprison him.

From the beginningless beginning, just because ones have not seen the self-nature, they have been falling into the hell. Because of this karma, they produced and are still rolling the birth-and-death wheel; but if original nature were enlightened, karmic power would, at last, no longer be manufactured.

Without seeing the self-nature, chanting and prayer will not prevent you from cause-and-effect. Killing is, compared to this, of no great concern. If one, by seeing self-nature, totally eliminated the confused doubt, even killing live creatures would not be disruptive to him.

Twenty eight patriarchs from India before me have only transmitted mind. My coming to this country(China) is just to point out Sudden enlightenment43 which is the dharma of Mind-is-Buddha; I am not interested in practicing the precepts, excruciating training, ascetic practices, or magical ways of entering the fire or water, standing on the tip of the swords, the eating of only one meal a day, or sitting for long periods of time without lying down.

Those who practice such are all outsiders dependent upon dharma-of-doing. Your mind is those Buddhas mind, As long as you see the divine-awakening-nature in each and movement.

All the Buddhas, former and later, have taught a Dharma-of-transmitting-the-mind and no other dharma.

By seeing this mind,44 without knowing a letter, Buddhahood can be attained.

Although working hard even until physical body becomes ashes, without knowing the divine self-awakening-nature, Buddhahood46 cannot de attained.

Buddha is called either Truth-body(Dharma-body) or the awakened-mind. This mind is formless, cause-and-effectless, muscle-and-boneless; it is just like empty space; you cannot grab it.

And, above all, it is different from material-world and different from outsiders' belief.

Only Tathagata, one man, knows this mind; any other creatures or confused ones do not know completely.

This mind is not separate from four elements of the physical body; without this mind one who moves does not exist. This body does not have knowing, just like weeds and trees; or like rooftile this corpse itself does not have feeling and sensation; how can it move?

When the mind moves, saying, doing, seeing, hearing, feeling, and knowing are all movement of the mind and movement of functioning. Because this movement is moving of the mind; moving itself is functioning. Without moving and functioning, there is no mind; and, without mind, there is no movement. Yet, what is moving is not mind; what the mind is does not move; because movement itself, does not have the mind; mind, itself does not have movement.47

Movement is not separate from mind; and mind is not separate from movement, but the mind is neither separation nor what is separated; the mind, also, is neither movement nor what is moved.

This is the function of the mind and on what the mind functions; this is the movement of the mind and what the mind has moved; this is the function of the mind itself and what the mind itself has moved.

This is the movement of the mind itself and what the mind itself has moved.

The mind is neither 'movement' nor' 'function'. The origin of functioning itself is empty; for no movement can be allowed in emptiness.

Both, movement and functioning are the mind. But no movement can be allowed in the essence of the mind. This is the reason, sutra says,

It moves without moving.

All day and night it goes and comes, but it has never gone and never come; all day and night it sees, yet it has never seen; laughed, yet has never laughed; listened, yet has never listened; knows all the time, yet has no knowledge; happy, yet has never been happy; walking around, yet it has never walked around; and finally, abiding(somewhere), yet has never abided.

That is the reason sutra says,

Word-and-utterance is for all time severed,

Thought and it's abiding place are also annihilated.

Seeing, hearing, feeling, and knowing, themselves are completely serene; how possibly dan anger, pleasure, itching, and suffering be different from the original self?48

No matter how hard you look for them,49 you can find them no-where. Therefore sutra says,

Bad karmic elements will result in srffering, and good karmic elements of karma will result in happiness.

Anger results in falling into hell, happiness results in being born in heaven; however, if one sees the empty nature of anger and happiness without having attachment,50 then, he will immediately be free from karmic power.

So once more, If one has not seen the self-nature, no matter how well one teaches and speaks of the sutras and shastras, it would not be of any help.

Although it requires endlell discussion to explain all the necessities, nevertheless, I have here simply represented what is wrong and right, although details are still not adequate.

I will tell you by gatha:

The Mind, which calls the mind, 'the mind'

Has, no way to be seen;

When expanded it wraps round the whole world,

When contracted, it permits not even the tip of a needle.

I am just searching for the mind;

Never looked for the Buddha

Everything in the three different cosmos is void;

I truly understand know no thing exists.

If you are looking for Buddha,

Just search the mind;

This mind which you are calling 'the mind',

This is the Buddha which is mind itself.

Even though originally I am searching for the mind,

The mind in itself already knows it all.

If you want to search for the mind,

The nature of Buddha,

Cannot be attained outside of the mind,

As soon as a mind arises,

Sin will also arise.

Transmission Gatha to the Second Patriarch;

I came to this country

To liberate all indigent-beings by transmitting Dharma;

One flower will open five leaves,

The fruit will be ripened naturally:

43 'Mahayana's' which says Mind is Buddha.

44 'among Indigent-beings'

45 'Seeking' Buddha was used instead of 'Attainment'.

47 'Functioning is the function of the mind' was added.

48 'original' maníŠ'wooden' man

49 ......'if one searches the karmic-path......'

50 In Sols edition 'ˇĚ' is missing.

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