Ancient Zen Wisdom
- Zengetsu, a Chinese master of the T'ang dynasty,
wrote the following advice for his pupils:
Living in the world yet not forming attachments to
the dust of the world is the way of a true Zen student.
When witnessing the good action of another encourage
yourself to follow his example. Hearing of the mistaken
action of another, advise yourself not to emulate it.
Even though alone in a dark room, be as if you were
facing a noble guest. Express your feelings, but become
no more expressive than your true nature.
Poverty is your treasure. Never exchange it for an easy life.
A person may appear a fool and yet not be one. He may
only be guarding his wisdom carefully.
Virtues are the fruit of self-discipline and do not drop
from heaven of themselves as does rain or snow.
Modesty is the foundation of all virtues. Let your neighbors
discover you before you make yourself known to them.
A noble heart never forces itself forward. Its words are
as rare gems, seldom displayed and of great value.
To a sincere student, every day is a fortunate day.
Time passes but he never lags behind. Neither glory
nor shame can move him.
Censure yourself, never another. Do not discuss right and wrong.
Some things, though right, were considered wrong for generations. Since the value of righteousness may be recognized after
centuries, there is no need to crave immediate appreciation.
Live with cause and leave results to the great law of
the universe. Pass each day in peaceful contemplation.