Shôyôroku, Case 15: Kyôsan thrusts his hoe in the ground

Teisho presented by Arno Hess on 21/08/2022 at the Pathway Zen Zenkai at Spring Hill, QLD, Australia.


To know before it is said is known as silent discussion. To have it appear although it is not clarified is known as dark activity. To press the palms together before the main gate and perform kinhin under the eaves has a meaning. But what about doing a dance in the garden and nodding your head under the back gate?


Isan asked Kyôzan, “Where have you been?”
Kyôzan said, “In the rice field.”
Isan said, “How many people are there in the rice field?”
Kyôzan thrust his hoe into the ground and stood with his hands folded on his chest.
Isan said, “Today many people are cutting thatch on the South Mountain.”
Kyôzan took up his hoe and immediately left.


The old enlightened one’s feelings are many, as he worries about his descendants.
Now he feels shame and raises up the family gate.
This requires remembering the story of the South Mountain.
Carving it in the bones and impressing it on the skin to mutually repay the debt of gratitude.

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