Shih-tou Hsi-chien (700-790) was a very well known Chinese Ch'an master. As a young monk, he was one of the disciples of the Sixth Patriarch Hui-neng. After Hui-neng passed away, Shih-tou continued his pilgrimage...
He paid a vist...
THE GATELESS GATE - Chapter 39. A Mistake in Speaking
三十九 雲門話墮 | hide chinese .
show chinese | 雲門、因僧問、光明寂照遍河沙。
A monk said to Unmon, "The brilliance of the Buddha silently illuminates the whole universe. . ." 一句未絶、門遽曰、豈不是張拙秀才語。
But before the could finish the verse, Unmon said, "Aren't those the words of Chõetsu the Genius?" 僧云、是。
"Yes, they are," answered the monk. 門云、話墮也。
"You have slipped up in your speaking," Unmon said. 後來、死心拈云、且道、那裏是者僧話墮處。
Afterward, Shishin Zenji brought up the matter and said, "Tell me, at what point did the monk err in his speaking?"
Mumon's Comment 無門曰、
If you clearly understand this and realize how exacting Unmon was in his method, and what made the monk err in his speaking, you are qualified to be a teacher of heaven and earth. 若也未明、自救不了。
If you are not yet clear about it, you are far from saving yourself.
A line cast in the rapids,
The greedy will be caught.
Before you start to open your mouth,
Your life is already lost!