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Friday, September 18, 2020

Meditation Poem (by JiaoRan)

Written in the 8th century by the poet and Buddhist monk JiaoRan, this poem has a very contemporary ring to it.  Or maybe it's just that the essence of Buddhist practice hasn't changed too much over the 1300 intervening years.  It's all about standing (or sitting) alone under heaven and earth, studying without movement ...

Ten thousand dharmas
Stream forth from no-gate
One after another until
Wisdom grows faint
Disciples weigh the choices
Open to the novitiate
But standing alone under
Heaven and earth
Is the starting place

Practice is about what exists
Things from the outset
That in stillness persist
The key is to study
Without movement and
Behold the light shining forth
On the origin of all
Ten thousand things 

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