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It is enough to ask about the matter; bow and withdraw
My notes on the second case no longer fitted on one sheet of paper. That’s not good.
Has anyone ever tried to solve a koan with his teacher by bringing some sheets of paper and start reading them out loud?
One time while waiting for such a personal encounter with the teacher I saw him walk out of the dokusan room in the middle of a long story from one of his students. He came back with a chair.
So I’ll try to be brief.
The second case of the blue Cliff Record starts with a reference to the famous opening lines of the Xinxin Ming.
“The Ultimate Path is without difficulty;
Just avoid picking and choosing.
Just don’t love or hate,
And you’ll be lucid and clear.”
Master Chao Chou teases his students with the contradiction in these lines and one student teases him back. It ends with the Master dismissing the class.
What is there to tease? What is the contradiction?
In short; Sengcan in his text says something like “don’t be dualistic about things”. The problem is that when we agree we can say; okay I will not be dualistic instead I will be lucid and clear.
But to reject dualistic thinking ìs
a dualistic way of thinking.
How do we solve that problem?
Chao Chou said: “It is enough to ask about the matter; bow and withdraw.”
That’s not a dodgy way out. He’s a Master.
He sees and he acts. No sheet of paper between that.