The Dharma age of a monk is the number of summer or discipline years since his ordination.
 i.e. a man of no fixed abode. Master Hsu Yun had come from the Yun Men monastery in South China and did not yet know where he was going to settle. The Yun Men monastery was that of Ch'an master Yun Men, founder of the Yun Men Sect, one of the five Ch'an Sects in China. The monastery was rebuilt by master Hsu Yun.
 Master Hsu Yun was then 114 years old.
 World-dharma or worldly affairs.
 Worldly cause, or asrava in Sanskrit, meaning 'leaking' cause; inside the passion-stream as contrasted with anasrava, outside the passion-stream; no drip or leak.
 Ksana = the shortest measure of time, as kalpa or aeon, is the longest. 60 ksanas equal a finger-snap, 90 a thought and 4,500 a minute.
 Direct cause, a truth, as compared with a contributory cause.
 Asankhya in Sanskrit, or innumerable aeons.
 The five desires arising from the objects of the five senses, things seen, heard, smelt, tasted and touched.
 This parable is frequently used in Buddhist Scriptures to advise us to shut the six gates of our senses so as to be detached from external surroundings.
 Dharma doors to enlightenment or methods of realizing the self-nature.
 Lit. leaves and branches in literary forms, i.e. accessories not fundamental in the experiential realization of the real. On the other hand, the Ch'an Sect aims at the direct pointing at the Buddha nature which every living being poseesses and the instantaneous realization of the mind leading to the attainment of Buddhahood.
 Founder of the Lin Chi Sect.
 Mo Shan's question means: If you think you are really enlightened and can dispense with kneeling, you should have realized your Dharmakaya which pervades everywhere and covers also the entrance to the road, for it is free from coming or going, and does not leave one place to come to another.
 The question: "What is Mo Shan?" means: "What is the state of the enlightened mind in the Mo Shan nunnery?" The questioner wanted a description of the Bodhi mind. The nun's reply refers to the small lump on the top of the Buddha's head which could not be seen by his disciples. Mo Shun meant that since the visitor was unenlightened, he could not perceive her Dharmakaya which was indescribable.
 When Kuan Ch'i asked about the owner of Mo Shan, i.e. about herself, she replied that the owner was neither male nor female for sex had nothing to do with enlightenment, and the Dharmakaya was neither male nor female. Generally, women had many more handicaps than men, and Kuan Ch'i seemed to look down upon her because of her sex and asked her why she did not change herself into a man if she was enlightened. His question showed that he was still under delusion.
 The maximum life span of each individual.
 In Ch'an parlance, our ignorance is symbolized by the thick black lacquer contained in a wooden cask, because nothing can be seen through it. Ch'an training will cause the bottom of the cask to drop off, thus emptying it of the black lacquer, i.e. our body and mind of delusion. This is the moment when we can perceive the real.
 Law of no-birth: lit. endurance leading to the personal experiencing of the law of no-birth, or immortality, i.e. the absolute which is beyond birth and death, boundless patience or endurance being required for subduing the wandering mind.
 The Methuselah of China.
 Dharmata in Sanskrit, i.e. the nature underlying all things, the Bhutatathata.
 The profound enlightenment of Mahayana, or self-enlightenment to enlighten others. The 51st and 52nd stages in the enlightenment of a Bodhisattva, or the two supreme forms of Buddha-enlightenment are respectively: (1) Samyak-sambodhi, or absolute universal enlightenment, omniscience, and (2) the profound enlightenment of Mahayana, or self-enlightenment to enlighten others. The first is the "cause" and the second is the "fruit", and a Bodhisattva becomes a Buddha when the "cause is complete and the fruit is full".
 i.e. to be under the beneficial influence of the fragrance of Buddha Dharma.
 Head of the Sangha order.
 The four varga, groups or order, i.e., Bhiksu, bhiksuni, upasaka and upasika; monks, nuns, male and female devotees.
 Foreign dust: guna, in Sanskrit, small particles; molecules, atoms, exhalations; element or matter, which is considered as defilement; an active conditioned principle in nature, minute, subtle and defiling to pure mind; impurities.
 Fruit of saintly life, i.e. Bodhi, Nirvana.
 The five stupid temptations, or panca-klesa, in Sanskrit, i.e. the five dull, unintelligent, or stupid vices or agents: desire, anger or resentment, stupidity or foolishness, arrogance and doubt.
 One who has entered the stream of holy living or who goes against the stream of transmigration; the first stage of the Arhat.
 Meaning Ajnata-Kaundinya.
 The last convert of the Buddha, "a Brahman 120 years old".
 The digit 8 in 80,000 symbolizes the eighth or store (alaya) consciousness (vijnana), the deluded aspect of the self-nature. So long as the Self-nature is under delusion, it is controlled by the discriminating mind and will never perceive the real which is beyond all numbers. The great disciples did not perceive the unconditioned cause of the attainment of Buddhahood, and saw only worldly events occurring in the former transmigrations of Subhadra. The Buddha who possessed the Sarvajna or All-wisdom, saw clearly his new disciple's cause of Arhatship, which cause being beyond all numbers is inherent in the self-nature.
 i.e. practice and theory; phenomena ever change; the underlying principle, being absolute, neither changes nor acts; it is the Bhutatathata. When we see a flag streaming in the wind, we know that, in theory, only the mind moves and not the wind or the flag. In practice, we cannot deny that the wind blows and the flag moves. We know also that in theory mind, wind and flag are but one undivided whole. Now, how can we have an experiential realization of this sameness? If we fail to experience it, we will also fail in our self-cultivation. This is the most important phase of the meditation, which can be achieved only if we put an end to our feelings and discrimination.
 In ancient China, it was believed that some fish, especially carp, could jump out of the sea to become dragons. A metaphor meaning that these meditaton will never obtain liberation.
 i.e. all causes including feelings and passions which are productive of effects and contribute to the turning wheel of births and deaths.
 The seven emotions are: pleasure, anger, sorrow, joy, love, hatred and desire. The six attractions arise from colour, form, carriage, voice or speech, softness or smoothness and features.
 Lit. on the spot.
 which leads to Buddhahood.
 i.e. the repetition of Amitibha's name as taught by the Pure Land School; this repetition also enables the repeater to disentangle his mind from all feelings and discrimination and to attain Samidhi. Cases are on record of adepts of the Pure Land School, knowing, in advance, of the time of their death. This is possible only after their attainment of samadhi which manifested itself simultaneously with prajna, or wisdom, called the wisdom of mutual response.
 Dharma nature, or Dharmata in Sanskrit, is nature underlying all things.
 Bhutatathata is the real, "as thus always", or "certainly so"; i.e. reality as contrasted with unreality or appearance, and unchanging or immutable as contrasted with form or phenomena.
 The ten evils are: killing, stealing, adultery, lying, double-tongue, coarse language, filthy talk, covetousness, anger and perverted views.
 The ten good virtues are defined as the non-committal of the ten evils.
 That which sin does, its karma, producing subsequent suffering without interruption.
 click here for the story of Crystal King.
 Or cause-ground, the stage of self-cultivation which leads to the fruit-ground, or stage of attainment of Buddhahood.
 Lit. three great asarikhya: kalpas beyond number, the theee timeless periods of a Bodhisattva's progress to Buddhahood.
 Lit. "Let it go."
 Thoughts productive of causes leading to effects.
 Her training was already very effective in disentangling her mind from the sense-organs, sense-data and perceptions, i.e. her mind was undisturbed at the time, and the noise had a tremendous effect on it. She did not hear it by means of her faculty of hearing which had ceased functioning, but through the very function of her self-nature which exposed her real "face", hence her enlightenment.
 Usually after an awakening, or satori in Japanese, one is seized with a desire to cry, jump, dance or do something abnormal, like throwing down the pan of oil. If one fails to subdue this desire, one will catch the Ch'an illness described in Han Shan's autobiography.
 Wei Shan in modern romanization. [Editor of the web edition.]
 The three periods of Buddhism are: (1) the period of the holy, correct or real doctrine of the Buddha, lasting 500 years, followed by (2) the image, or semblance period of 1,000 year. and then by (3) the period of decay and termination, lasting 3,000, some say 10,000 years, after which Maitreya Buddha is to appear and restore all things.
 In deference to him, Master Ling Yu was called Kuei Shan, after the name of the mountain.
 The map version is Fukien(Fujian) province.
 Dhuta=a monk engaged in austerities: an ascetic.
 Enlightenment is the root and other details, such as supramundane powers and wonderful works are twigs. This is why enlightened masters never talked about miracles. All this is likened to the crystal which, if clung to, will hinder the attainment of enlightenment, symbolized by the moon.
 Karma which sends the sinner to the Avici hell, the last of the eight hot hells in which punishment, pain, form, birth, death, continue without intermission.
 Dharma cakra in Sanskrit, Buddha truth which is able to crush all evil and all opposition, like Indra's wheel, and which rolls on from man to man, place to place, age to age.
 Name and form: everything has a name, e.g. sound, or has appearance, i.e. the visible; both are unreal and give rise to delusion.
 The royal diamond gem, or indestructible sword which destroys ignorance and delusion.
 Lit. on the spot.
 In the East, thin sheets of white paper were, and are still, used instead of window glass.
 Old paper is old sutras. The sentence means: If you want to search for the truth in old sutras, you will never realize it, for it can only be experienced in the training. The meaning is: If you want to "pierce" old sutras in your quest of your self-nature, you will never succeed in experiencing it.
 i.e. independent, not attached to and relying on anything.
 This disentanglement is followed by the state of Samadhi, with simultaneous functioning of Prajna, or Wisdom.
 If one clings to names and terms, one will be held in bondage by them.
 Prime meat is called "pure meat" in China.
 The butcher monk was so called because he attained enlightenement upon hearing the butcher's voice. He was undergoing intense training when he passed the butcher's shop and his mind was already still and free from all thiniking and discerning. The butcher's loud voice made a great impact on the monk's mind and was heard, not by the ear's faculty of hearing, but by the very function of the self-nature. When the function of the self-nature manifested itself, the substance or essence of the self-nature, became apparent, hence his enlightenment.
 The cirde symbolizes the completeness of the Dharmakaya.
 These three lines show the illusory mundane activities which have nothing to do with the experiencng of the truth.
 When all causes productive of effects come to an end, the phenomenal also disappears, and this is the moment when one's "great wisdom reaches the other shore", or Mahaprajnaparamita.
 When the mind is stripped of feelings and passions, it will he still; this is the moment the essence and function of the self-natured Buddha are restored to normal.
 Fundamentally, there is only the immutable bright wisdom which is unchanging.
 When the self-nature is under delusion, it is split into ego and dharma, or subject and object, hence all kinds of discrimination between East and West and North and South. Now that enlightenment is attained, where is all this division?
 The phenomenal is created only by Conditioning causes but is devoid of real nature.
 Our delusion is caused by our attachment to things heard, seen, felt and known, but if the mind is disentangled from the hearing, seeing, feeling and knowing or discerning, we will attain the Complete Enlightenment of Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva (see discourse on the second day of the second Ch'an week). The two faculties of hearing and seeing are mentioned here because they are constantly active, whereas the other four faculties are sometimes dormant. If one succeeds in disentangling the hearing from the birds' song and the seeing from the smiling flowers, the moon, symbol of enlightenment, will shine on the stream, for water is a symbol of the self-nature. This sentence means that one can attain enlightenment while in the midst of sound and sight which symbolize the illusory world.
 In a monastery, the board is Struck for calling to meals. If the mind is efficiently stripped of all feelings and passions, all the eight vijnanas or consciousnesses will be frozen and inactive. This moment is referred to, in Ch'an parlance, as "a temporary death foflowed by a resurrection", i.e. death of delusion and resurrection of self-nature. When the self-nature recovers its freedom, it will function and hear the sound of the board. As the phenomenal and noumenal are now an undivided whole, the self-natured Dharmakaya will pervade everywhere, including the bowl which reveals its presence. For this reason, the ancients said: "The exuberant green bamboos are all Dharmakaya and luxuriant yellow flowers are nothing but Prajna." This attainment is made possible only by the Prajnaparamita which all seekers of the truth should put into practice.