‘Students cannot gain enlightenment simply because they retain their preconceptions. Without knowing who taught them these things, they consider the mind to be thought and perceptions, and do not believe it when they are told that the mind is plants and trees. They think of the Buddha as having marvelous distinguishing marks, with radiance shining from his body, and are shocked when they are told he is tile and pebble. Such preconceptions were not taught to them by their parents, but students come to believe them for no other reason than that they have heard about them from others over a long period of time. Therefore, when the Buddhas and the Patriarchs categorically state that the mind is plants and trees, revise your preconceptions and understand plants and trees as mind. If the Buddha is said to be tile and pebble, consider tile and pebble as the Buddha. If you change your basic preconceptions, you will be able to gain the Way.’ (Shobogenzo Zuimonki)

5 thoughts on “Dogen

  1. Deep reading Dogen’s instructions can be clear and then confusing, to me. Reading in one of my Zen books➖’Realization is in the Effort’. So, my Way seeking mind says – How to examine Buddha’ mind as plants, trees, tiles and pebbles? How to change to the before-mentioned preconceptions? And in terms of ‘enlightenment’: Seek enlightenment then let it go, or not.


  2. Reading deeply -– (Each Moment Is the Universe – DK).

    Satisfaction? This is a loaded-question with many layers, for me.

    Understanding clearer Time and that the search for satisfaction in my life is time and this is change. Understanding all my past desires and experiences have been constantly changing and this also is time; leading to further dissatisfaction.
    Understanding my misunderstanding of time has led me to understand clearer ‘real time’ and this understanding sees I’m not different or separate but lives in the domain of Time, itself.
    The satisfaction of recognizing and removing layers of gathered decorations and ornaments.
    The satisfaction knowing all things change and I get to live each moment in this change.
    The satisfaction of knowing there is no permanent satisfaction.
    The satisfaction of knowing there is only the ‘action of change’.

    Shundo thanks for your insights.
    Palms closed – bowing


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