Denkôroku, Case 38: The 38th Patriarch, Tôzan Gohon Daishi (part 3/3)

Teisho presented by Arno Hess on 25/05/2024 at the sixth day of the 2024 Pathway Zen Sesshin at Bodhi Chan Meditation Centre, Springwood, QLD, Australia.


The Thirty-eighth Patriarch, Tôzan Gohon Daishi: He came to Ungan. He asked, “Who can hear the preaching of
the non-sentient beings?” Ungan said, “The preaching of the non-sentient beings can be heard by the non-sentient
beings.” The master said, “Do you, Master, hear it or not?” Ungan said, “If I can hear the preaching, you cannot hear
my preaching.” The master said, “If that is so, Ryôkai will not hear the preaching of the master.” Ungan said, “You
will not even hear my preaching; how can you hear the preaching of the non-sentient beings?” With these words the
master came to a great enlightenment. He composed a poem and offered it to Ungan:

“How marvelous! How marvelous!
The preaching of the non-sentient beings is miraculous.
If you hear it with the ears, it would be impossible to understand it after all;
Only when you hear the voice with the eyes, you will be able to know it.”

Ungan acknowledged him.


The inexpressibly subtle consciousness has nothing to do with mental attachments;
In daily life it makes him preach vigorously.

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