Zen

The Gate of Chan

9781590301401As a result of unwavering diligence you arrive at the gate of Chan. Before the gate stands a gatekeeper who says, “First you must put down your weapons.” Being determined to pass through the gate, you give it no second thought, so you drop all your defenses. After that the guard says, “Next you must take off all your clothes.” You think for a moment, and then you drop all your remaining attachments. Then the guard says, “Now you have to put aside your body.” You have been working hard for a long time so you decide that enlightenment is even worth dying for, so away goes the body. Finally, the guard says, “You still have your mind; that too must go. There can be nothing left of you when you enter.” Because you are determined to succeed, you agree to this final demand. The instant that you let go of your mind, the gate disappears. There was in fact no gate to pass through and nothing to enter.

Song of Mind by Sheng Yen, pages 69–70

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