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THE GATELESS GATE - Chapter 28. Ryutan Blows Out the Candle
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Tokusan asked Ryutan about Zen far into the night.
At last Ryutan said, "The night is late.
Why don't you retire?"
Tokusan made his bows and lifted the blinds to withdraw, but he was met by darkness. Turning back to Ryutan, he said, "It is dark outside."
Ryutan lit a paper candle and handed it to him.
Tokusan was about to take it when Ryutan blew it out.
At this, all of a sudden, Tokusan went through a deep experience and made bows.
Ryutan said, "What sort of realization do you have?"
"From now on," said Tokusan, "I will not doubt the words of an old osho who is renowned everywhere under the sun."
The next day Ryutan ascended the rostrum and said, "I see a fellow among you. His fangs are like the sword tree. His mouth is like a blood bowl.
Strike him with a stick, and he won't turn his head to look at you.
Someday or other, he will climb the highest of the peaks and establish our Way there."
Tokusan brought his notes on the Diamond Sutra to the front of the hall, pointed to them with a torch, and said, "Even though you have exhausted the abtruse doctrines, it is like placing a hair in a vast space. Even though you have learned all the secrets of the world, it is like a drop of water dripped on the great ocean."
And he burned all his notes.
Then, making bows, he took his leave of his teacher.
Before Tokusan crossed the barrier from his native place, his mind burned and his mouth uttered bitterness. He went soutward, intending to stamp out the doctrines of special transmission outside the sutras.
When he reached the road to Reishu, he asked an old woman to let him have lunch to "refresh the mind."
"Your worship, what sort of literature do you carry in your pack?" the old woman asked.
"Commentaries on the Diamond Sutra," replied Tokusan.
The old woman said, "I hear it is said in that sutra, 'The past mind cannot be held, the present mind cannot be held, the future mind cannot be held.'
Now, I would like to ask you, what mind are you going to have refreshed?"
At this question Tokusan was dumbfounded.
However, he did not remain inert under her words but asked, "Do you know of any good teacher around here?"
The old woman said, "Five miles from here you will find Ryutan Osho."
Coming to Ryutan, Tokusan got the worst of it.
His former words were inconsistent with his later ones.
As for Ryutan, he seemed to have lost all sense of shame in his compassion toward his son.
Finding a bit of live coal in the other, enough to start a fire, he hurriedly poured on muddy water to annihilate everything at once.
A little cool reflection tells us it was all a farce.
Mumon's Verse 頌曰
End of THE GATELESS GATE - Chapter 28. Ryutan Blows Out the Candle
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Hearing the name cannot surpass seeing the face;
Seeing the face cannot surpass hearing the name.
He may have saved his nose,
But alas! he lost his eyes.
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