The 12 divisions of the Mahayana canon are: (1) sutra, the Buddha's sermons; (2)geya, metrical pieces; (3)gatha, poems or chants; (4) nidana, sutras written by request or in answer to a query, because certain precepts were violated and because of certain events; (5) itivrttaka, narratives; (6) jataka, stories of former lives of Buddha; (7) adbhuta-dharma, miracles; (8) avadana, parables, metaphors, stories, illustrations; (9) upadesa, discourses and discussions by question and answer; (10) udana, impromptu, or unsolicited addresses; (11) vaipulya, expanded sutras; (12) vyakarana, prophecies.
 Hsing Szu inherited the Dharma from the Sixth Patriarch and was called the Seventh Ancestor because his two Dharma-descendants Tung Shan and Ts'ao Shan founded the Ts'ao Tung sect, which was one of the five Ch'an sects in China.
 Of the method of gradual enlightenment which took many aeons to enable an adherent to attain the Buddha-stage.
 The four Noble Truths are: Misery; the accumulation of misery, caused by passions; the extinction of passions, being possible; and the doctrine of the Path leading to extinction of passions.
 A Ch'an term which means an unwanted thing which hinders self-realization.
 Usually One hour. The longer sticks take an hour and a half to burn.
 Life-root. A root, or basis for life, or reincarnation, the nexus of Hinayana between two life-periods, accepted by Mahayana as nominal but not real. The Chinese idiom "to sit on and to crack" is equivalent to the Western term 'to break up'.
 Wu Wei. Asamskrta in Sanscrit, anything not subject to cause, condition or dependence; out of time, eternal, inactive, supramundane.
 Samskrta. Yu Wei in Chinese, active, creative, productive, functioning. causative, phenomenal, the process resulting from the laws of karma.
 Ordinary mind = undiscriminating mind.
 Without discrimination, the acts of wearing clothes and eating and all our activities are nothing but the functions of the self-nature; and One reality is all reality. On the other hand if the mind discriminates when one wears one's robe or takes one's meal, everything around one will be the phenomenal.
 Ta Mei. In deference to him, the master was called after the name of the mountain where he stayed.
 The mountains are immutable and symbolize the unchanging self-nature, whereas their colours (blue and yellow) change and symbolize appearance, i.e. the phenomenal. Ta Mei's reply meant that his self-nature was the same and beyond time.
 If your mind wanders outside, it will follow the stream of birth and death.
 When the mind is free from passions, it is like a withered log which is indifferent to its surroundings and does not "grow" any more in spite of the spring, the season of the year in which trees begin to grow after lying dormant all winter. A mind free from delusion remains unchanged and indifferent to all changes in its surrounding and to those who hunt after it.
 Because his disciples clung to his saying: "Mind is Buddha," Ma Tsu said to them: "It is neither mind nor Buddha" so that they ceased to cling, which was the cause of their delusion.
 Ta Mei means "Big Plum". Ma Tsu confirmed that master Ta Mei was ripe, i.e. enlightened.
 Quotation from Yung Chia's "Song of Enlightenment". Avici is the last and deepest of the eight hot hells, where sinners suffer, die, and are instantly reborn to suffering, without interruption. Ksana is the shortest measure of time, as kalpa is the longest.
 The instant one perceives only stillness and experiences liveliness; it is called in Ch'an parlance "reaching the top of a hundred-foot pole." All masters advised their disciples not to abide in this state which was not real. Master Han Shan composed "The Song of the Board-bearer" to warn his followers against "silent immersion in stagnant water." This state is called "life" and is the fourth of the four signs (laksana) mentioned in the Diamond Sutra. (See Part 3.)
 Karmadana: the duty-distributor, second in command of a monastery.
 After a meditation, the monks used to march quickly in single file to relax their legs, preceded by the Karmadana and followed by the abbot.
 Realm of the five skandhas: the present world as the state of the five aggregates. The best place in which to hold the hua t'ou is between the pit of the stomach and the navel. A meditator may have all kinds of visions before his attainment of enlightenment, and these visions belong to the realm of the five skandhas, i.e. are creations of his mind. His master would instruct him to remain indifferent, to neither "accept" nor "reject" these visions which will disappear before the meditator makes further progress in the right direction.
 To go straight home. A Ch'an idiom meaning the return to the self-nature, i.e. realization of the real. "Home" is our self-natured Buddha.
 Baggage: our body, mind and all the seeming which we hold dear.
 That which has no birth and death, i.e. the eternal self-nature.
 Vinaya-pitaka. One of the three divisions of the canon or Tripitaka. It emphasizes the discipline. The other two divisions are: sutras (sermons) and sastras (treatises).
 The two forms of Karma resulting from one's past are: (1) the resultant person, symbolized by a hair, and (2) the dependent condition or environment, e.g. country, family, possessions, etc., symbolized by the ocean. These two forms being illusory only, they penetrate each other without changing the self-nature, or the nature-ocean (see note 28) which is beyond time and space.
 Nature-ocean. The ocean of the Bhutatathata, the all-containing, immaterial nature of the Dharmakaya.
 The appearance of a Buddha is as rare as the hitting of a needle's point with a fine mustard-seed thrown from a devaloka. Even an accurate hit does not move the immutable needle's point.
 Saiksa, need of study; asaiksa, no longer learning, beyond study, the state of arhatship, the fourth of the sravaka stages; the preceding three stages requiring study. When the arhat is free from all illusion, he has nothing more to study.
 Dignity in walking, standing, sitting and lying.
 A Commentary on the Diamond Sutra by Tao Yin of the Ch'ing Lung monastery.
 Tien hsin, pastry, snack; refreshment to keep up one's spirits.
 Lung T'an was an enlightened master. The sentence: "You have really arrived at the Dragon Pond" means: "You have really attained the state of Lung T'an or enlightenment for the real is invisible and does not appear before the eyes of the unenlightened." Teh Shan did not understand its meaning and remained speechless. This was the second time he remained speechless, the first being when the old woman asked him about the past, present and future mind. He was still unenlightened but became later an eminent Ch'an master after his awakening.
 Lung T'an was an eminent master and knew the moment was ripe to enlighten Teh Shan. The latter perceived the master's self-nature through its function which blew out the torch. At the same time, Teh Shan perceived also that which "saw" the torch blown out, i.e. his own nature.
 Old monks all over the country: a Chinese idiom referring to eminent Ch'an masters who were intransigent and exacting when teaching and guiding their disciples. Readers may learn about these masters by studying their sayings which seem ambiguous but are full of deep meaning.
 A fellow who was awe-inspiring like the two hells where there are hills of swords or sword-leaf trees and blood baths as punishments for sinners. Lung T'an foretold the severity with which Teh Shan would receive, teach and train his disciples. Those wishing to familarize themselves with these awe-inspiring things should read Dr. W. Y. Evans-Wentz's The Tibetan Book of the Dead (Oxford University Press).
 Ch'an masters frequently used their staffs to strike their disciples to provoke their awakening. The stroke of the staff here referred to Teh Shan's enlightenment after "seeing" the torch blown out by his master. Teh Shan did not turn his head, because he was really enlightened and did not have any more doubt about his self-nature.
 Will be an outstanding Ch'an master.
 This walk from east to west and then from west to east meant the "coming" and "going" which were non-existent in the Dharmadhatu wherein the Dharmakaya remained immutable and unchanging. Teh Shan's question: "Anything? Anything?" and the reply: "Nothing, Nothing," served to emphasize the nothingness in space.
 Nisidana, a cloth for sitting on.
 Upadhyaya, a general term for a monk.
 The duster used by the ancients consisted of long horse hairs attached to the end of its handle. It was used to reveal the function of the self-nature.
 The shout was to reveal that which uttered it, i.e the self-nature.
 Teh Shan took out and raised his nisidana, calling: "Venerable Upadhyaya" to show the function of that which took out and raised the nisidana and called Kuei Shan. When the latter was about to take the duster to test the visitor's enlightenment, Teh Shan shouted just to indicate the presence of the substance of that which called on the host. Teh Shan left the hall and went away to show the return of function to the substance. Thus Teh Shan's enlightenment was complete, because both function and substance, or Prajna and Samidhi were on a level. Therefore, he did not require any further instruction and any test of his attainment would be superfluous. For this reason, Kuei Shan praised the visitor, saying: "That man will later go to some solitary peak... will scold Buddhas and Patriarchs."
 Teh Shan would "scold" unreal Buddhas and "curse" unreal Patriarchs who existed only in the impure minds of deluded disciples, for the latter's conditioned and discriminating minds could create only impure Buddhas and impure Patriarchs. Teh Shan's teaching was based only on the absolute Prajna which had no room for worldly feelings and discernings, the causes of birth and death.
 Lin Chi was the founder of the Lin Chi Sect, one of the five Ch'an Sects of China.
 Yun Men and Fa Yen were respective founders of the Yun Men and Fa Yen Sects, two of the five Ch'an Sects in China.
 If while sitting in meditation one only takes delight in false visions or in the wrong interpretation of sutras and sayings, one will never attain the real.
 The strongest or sharpest precious sword.
 i.e. false visions of demons and Buddhas in one's meditation.
 Beginners usually see the voidness and brightness as soon as all thoughts are discarded. Although these visions indicate some progress in the training, they should not be taken as achievements. The meditator should remain indifferent to them as they are only the creation of the deluded mind and should hold firm the hua t'ou.
 Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch.
 World of desire, world of form and formless world.
 The five desires arising from the objects of the five senses, things seen, heard, smelt, tasted and touched.
 The three poisons are: concupiscence or wrong desire, hatred or resentment, and stupidity.
 i.e. neutral, neither good nor bad, things that are innocent or cannot be classified under moral categories.
 i.e. when the sixth consciousness is independent of the first five.
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 Chang and Li are the Chinese equivalents of Smith and Brown. [Editor of the web edition: Two popular family names.]
 In his meditation, the master had already discarded all thoughts and upon hearing the song, he instantly perceived that which heard the song, i.e. the self-nature. This is called Avalokitesvara's complete enlightenment by means of hearing, or the successful turning inward of the faculty of hearing to hear the self-nature.--Cf. Surangama Sutra.
 Bean-curd is made of soy-bean and is very cheap, so that only poor people make it for sale. For this reason, they are never satisfied with their lot and always want to do something more profitable.
 The mind which is bent on the right way, which seeks enlightenment.
 Agantu-klesa in Sanskrit, the foreign atom, or intruding element, which enters the mind and causes distress and delusion. The mind will be pure only after the evil element has heen removed.
 Water is the symbol of self-nature and mud of ignorance caused by passions.
 A state of empty stillness in which all thoughts have ceased to arise and Prajna is not yet attained.
 In contrast with a Bodhisattva who seeks self-enlightenment to enlighten the multitude.
 A statesman of the Sung dynasty, through whom Yueh Fei, a good commander, was executed; he is universally execrated for this and his name is now synonymous with traitor.
 Hsia Men, Amoy, a town on the south coast of Fukien province.
 To lead the spirit of the deceased to the Pure Land.
 Water is the symbol of self-nature and the moon of enlightenment.
 Lit. cost of the dumplings.
 Nidina or cause of pollution, which connects illusion with the karmic miseries of reincarnation.
 Good karma which leads to enlightenment.
 Accumulation of merits leading to realization of the truth.
 Smrti in Sanskrit.
 Quotation from a hymn chanted by the Sixth Patriarch-(Cf. Altar Sutra, Chapter II).
 Joy on seeing others rescued from suffering.
 Rising above these emotions, or giving up all things, e.g. distinctions of friend and foe, love and hatred, etc.
 The Six Paramitas are: dana (charity), sila (discipline), ksanti (patience or endurance), virya (zeal and progress), dhyana (meditation) and prajna (wisdom).
 Lotus treasury: Lotus store, or Lotus world, the Pure Land of all Buddhas in their Sambhogakaya, or Reward bodies.
 In plain English the question means: Who is the man who has no more attachments to things, or the phenomenal?
 In Shih T'ou's move, P'ang Yun perceived that which stretched out the hand to close his mouth and became awakened to the self-nature which was invisible and manifested itself by means of its function.
 After enlightenment one attends to one's daily task as usual, the only difference being that the mind no longer discriminates and harmonizes with its surroundings.
 Mind is now free from all conceptions of duality.
 The blue mountain symbolizes that which is immutable and free from dust, or impurities. A misprint occurs in the printed text, so I have followed the ancient version of the story of Upasaka P'ang Yun.
 Carrying water and fetching wood are the functions of that which possesses supernatural powers and accomplishes wonderful works; in other words, the self-nature which is immaterial and invisible, can be perceived only by means of its functions which are no longer discriminative.
 He did not join the Sangha order.
 The one who has no more attachment to worldly things is the enlightened self-nature which is beyond description. Ma Tsu gave this reply, because when one attains enlightenment, his body or substance pervades everywhere and contains everything, including the West River which is likened to a speck of dust inside the immense universe; he knows everything and does not require any description of himself.--A misprint in the text has been corrected.
 The Patriarchs' doctrine was very profound and was as difficult to teach as the unpacking and distributing of sesame seeds on the top of a tree, an impossible thing for an unenlightened man.
 In order to wipe out the conception of difficulty, the wife said the doctrine was easy to expound for even the dewdrops on blades of grass were used by eminent masters to give the direct indication of that which saw these dewdrops. This was only easy for enlightened people.
 If it is said that the doctrine is difficult to understand, no one will try to learn it. If it is said that it is easy to understand, people will take it as easy and never attain the truth. So the daughter took the middle way by saying that it was neither difficult nor easy. Her idea was that one who is free from discrimination and who eats when hungry and sleeps when tired, is precisely the one meant by eminent masters. Therefore, the doctrine is not difficult for an enlightened man and not easy for an unenlightened man, thus wiping out the two extremes which have no room in the absolute.
 This sentence is omitted in the Chinese text and is added here to be in accord with Master Hsu Yun's lecture.
 All Ch'an masters had compassion for unenlightened people and never missed a chance to enlighten them. Yo Shan sent ten Ch'an monks to accompany the eminent visitor to the front of the monastery so that they could learn something from him. Out of pity, the Upasaka said: "Good snow! The flakes do not fall elsewhere!", to probe the ability of the monks and to press them hard so that they could realize their self-minds for the attainment of Buddhahood. However, the monks seemed ignorant and did not realize that since the mind created the snow, the snow could not fall outside the mind. If they could only perceive that which slapped the unenlightened monk in the face, they would realize their self-nature. A serious monk would, under the circumstances, devote all his attention to inquiring into the unreasonable conduct of the visitor and would at least make some progress in his training.
 i.e. free from external impurities.
 The daughter seemed at first to criticize her father and then repeated the same sentence to confirm what he had said. Similar questions and answers are found frequently in Ch'an texts where Ch'an masters wanted to probe their disciples' abilities by first criticizing what they said. Any hesitation on the part of the disciples would disclose that they only repeated others' sayings without comprehending them. This was like a trap set to catch unenlightened disciples who claimed that they had realized the truth. When a disciple was really enlightened, he would remain undisturbed and would ask back the question. When the master was satisfied that the disciple's understanding was genuine, he would simply repeat the same sentence to give more emphasis to what the disciple had said.
 i.e. eclipse of the sun.
 Existence and non-existence are two extremes which should be wiped out before one can attain the absolute reality.
 i.e. to be reborn in the human world. The realm of human beings is difficult of attainment; it is one of suffering and is the most suitable for self-cultivation, for human beings have more chance to study the Dharma in order to get rid of their miseries. The other five worlds of existence either enjoy too much happiness (devas and asuras) or endure too much suffering (animals, hungry ghosts and hells), thus having no chance to learn the Dharma.
 The Sutra of Contemplation of Mind says: "Like a handless man who cannot acquire anything in spite of his arrival at the precious mountain, one who is deprived of the 'hand' of Faith, will not acquire anything even if he finds the Triple Gem."
 The nine Patriarchs of the T'ien T'ai sect are: (1) Nagarjuna, (2) Hui Wen of the Pei Ch'i dynasty, (3) Hui Ssu of Nan Yo, (4) Chih Che, or Chih I, (5) Kuan Ting of Chang An, (6) Fa Hua, (7) T'ien Kung, (8) Tso Ch'i and (9) Chan Jan of Ching Ch'i. The 10th, Tao Sui was considered a patriarch in Japan, because he was the teacher of (the Japanese) Dengyo Daishi who brought the Tendai system to that country in the ninth century. The T'ien T'ai (or Tendai in Japanese) Sect bases its tenets on the Lotus, Mahaparinirvina and Mahaprajnaparamita Sutras. It maintains the identity of the Absolute and the world of phenomena, and attempts to unlock the secrets of all phenomena by means of meditation.
 The 12th and 14th Patriarchs of the Ch'an sect respectively. Readers will notice that these two Patriarchs and many other Ch'an masters were not sectarian and extolled also the Pure Land School which was also a Dharma door expounded by the Buddha.
 Hui Yuan was an eminent master of the Pure Land Sect.
 Chen Yen Tsung, also called "True Word" Sect, or Shingon in Japanese. The founding of this Sect is attributed to Vairocana, through Bodhisattva Vajrasattva, then through Nigarjuna to Vajramati and to Amoghavajra.
 The Dharmalaksana Sect is called Fa Hsiang in Chinese and Hosso in Japanese. This school was established in China on the return of Hsuan Tsang, consequent on his translation of the Yogacarya works. Its aim is to understand the principle underlying the nature and characteristics of all things.
 Maleficent beings.
 The immortals practice Taoism and sit in meditation with crossed legs. Their aim is to achieve immortality by putting an end to all passions, but they still cling to the view of the reality of ego and things. They live in caves or on the tops of mountains and possess the art of becoming invisible. A Chinese bhiksu who is a friend of mine, went to North China when he was still young. Hearing of an immortal there, he tried to locate him. After several unsuccessful attempts, he succeeded finally in meeting him. Kneeling upon his knees, my friend implored the immortal to give him instruction. The latter, however, refused saying that the visitor was not of his line, i.e. Taoism. When the young man got up and raised his head, the immortal had disappeared and only a small sheet of paper was seen on the table with the word "Good-bye" on it.
 According to the ancients, the six viscera are: heart, lungs, liver, kidney, stomach and gall-bladder.
 Pubic region, two and a half inches below the navel, on which concentration is fixed in Taoist meditation.
 The digit 8 in 80,000 symbolizes the 8th Consciousness (Vijnana) which is an aspect of the self-nature under delusion. The sentence means that Lu Tung Pin was still unenlightened in spite of his long life.
 The grain of corn is created by the mind and reveals the mind which is immense and contains the whole Universe, also a creation of the mind. Being hard pressed, Lu Tung Pin instantly realized his self-mind and was awakened to the real.
 In ancient times, Taoists in China claimed to be able to "extract quicksilver by smelting cinnabar", i.e. they knew the method which enabled them to become immortals, or Rsis, in Sanskrit, whose existence was mentioned by the Buddha in the Surangama Sutra. Their meditation aimed at the production of a hot current pervading all parts of the body and successful meditators could send out their spirits to distant places. They differed from Buddhists in that they held the conception of the reality of ego and of dharmas, and could not attain complete enlightenment. They used to wander in remote places, equipped with a gourd, a guitar and a "divine" sword to protect themselves against demons. Today, adherents of the Taoist Sect are still found in great number in the Far East.
 Tzu Yang was an eminent Taoist who was well-versed in the Ch'an Dharma and his works attested his realization of the mind. Emperor Yung Cheng considered him a real Ch'an Buddhist and published his works in "The Imperial Selection of Ch'an Sayings".
 An evil karma which causes the sinner to be reborn in the Avici hell. Lit: committing the Avici-karma.