Living Moment to Moment
Osho on Enlightened Zen Master Yoka Daishi
The Chinese Master Yoka Daishi (665-713) was said to have been in a state of perfect repose while walking, standing, sitting, and lying down. According to legend, he visited the great Zen Patriarch Hui-neng and attained complete realization in one night; and so he was called “master of the enlightenment attained in one night.
A famous quote by Daishi is “One Nature, perfect and pervading, circulates in all natures. One Reality, all comprehensive, contains within itself all realities.
The one moon is reflected wherever there is a sheet of water,
And all the moons in all the waters are embraced within the one moon;
The embodied Truth of all the Buddhas enters into my own being,
And my own being is found in union with theirs.”
The most famous work of his is ‘the song’ which was translated by R.H. Blyth in english as ‘The song of awakening’.
Osho, on Daishi, says, “When Yoka became enlightened he burst forth singing just like a tree in spring bursts forth, blooms, and thousands of flowers are there, and great fragrance. This is a song. Remember, it has not been addressed to any audience — that is the beauty of it. If somebody has heard it that is another thing, but Yoka has not addressed it; he was simply singing it out of the sheer joy that had happened in him. In fact, to say that he was singing it is not right; it was singing itself in him. Just as we say ‘It is raining’, like that it was singing. And that is true of all the people who have become enlightened; the audience, if it is there, is secondary. It is not primarily an address, it does not take into account the people who are hearing it — they are irrelevant. Maybe they trigger it, but there is no compromise.”
OSHO, IS IT NOT NECESSARY TO DESIRE, TO LONG AND TO SEEK TRUTH AND AVOID THE UNTRUE, TO SEEK TRUTH AND RENOUNCE THE FALSE?
THERE IS NO WAY TO SEEK TRUTH because truth is not far away. Truth is not “there” somewhere so that you have to go to it, so that you have to reach to it; truth is not to be sought because truth is the very being of the seeker.
How can you seek the seeker? How can you know the knower? That is impossible. You cannot encounter yourself. You are the truth. Hence all seeking is futile, but one learns only through seeking. One learns this tremendously important fact, that all seeking is useless, only through seeking; there is no other way to learn it. You seek and you fail, you seek again and you fail; slowly slowly it becomes clear to you that seeking itself is the cause of missing it. Then seeking drops of its own accord. And when there is no longing, no desire, when you are utterly silent, when the very mind of the achiever has disappeared, you are surprised that what you have been seeking all along has always been with you.
IT IS NOT NECESSARY TO LOOK FOR TRUTH OR AVOID ILLUSION.
Why? — because to look for it is to begin in a wrong direction and to avoid illusion is foolish because illusion means that which is not. How can you avoid that which is not and how can you seek that which is? That which is is, and that which is not IS NOT
Yoka also says:
WE KNOW THAT BOTH ARE COMPRISED IN EMPTINESS, THAT THEY HAVE NO FORM AND BOUNDS. NON-FORM IS NEITHER EMPTY NOR NON-EMPTY. IT IS THE TRUE REALITY OF BUDDHA.
One has simply to become utterly empty. And when I say “utterly empty” I mean one has not to be just empty. “utterly empty” means empty of everything and also empty of emptiness. Otherwise the mind is so cunning it can now cling to a new idea of emptiness.
OUR SPIRIT IS LIKE A CLEAR MIRROR THUS IT REFLECTS THE UNIVERSE HARMONIOUSLY OUR SPIRIT AND THE UNIVERSE ARE ONE.
Once you are utterly empty you are a mirror. You are not only aware of your inner truth, you become aware of the truth of the whole existence. And they are not two; they are two aspects of the same phenomenon, two sides of the same coin — the outer and the inner…
Listen to these tremendously significant words of Yoka. Yoka is one of the great Zen Masters. He says: ALL MANNER OF TROUBLES ARISE IF WE ABANDON EXISTENCE TO OBTAIN EMPTINESS; THAT TOO IS SICKNESS. IT IS LIKE THROWING ONESELF INTO THE FIRE TO ESCAPE DROWNING.
Don’t abandon existence. Don’t abandon the ordinary existence in any effort for some illusory truth, for some illusory longing for God. Leave that for the fools. The intelligent person simply lives moment to moment with no desire to seek anything, with no expectation of finding anything. He simply lives moment to moment, joyously. His life is very ordinary; he has no desire to be extraordinary. He has no desire to be a Buddha, hence he is a Buddha. He has no desire to be extraordinary, hence he is extraordinary. Because every ordinary person has the desire to be extraordinary; only extraordinary people don’t have that desire.
IF WE TRY TO GRASP TRUTH OR IF WE WISH TO ESCAPE ERROR AND ILLUSION, WE PRACTICE DISCRIMINATION, AN ARTIFICIAL AND ERRONEOUS ATTITUDE.
Once you say, “This is truth and that is untruth,” you have started discriminating — and to discriminate is the disease of the mind. That is the function of the mind: to discriminate. “This is right, that is wrong. This is true, that is false. This is worldly, that is spiritual. This is materialist, that is religious.” Once you start discriminating there is no end to it and you are in the grip of the mind.
Drop discriminating and you are out of the grip of the mind. To be out of the grip of the mind is to be free, is to know what freedom is.
MOST MEN FORGET SPIRIT TREASURE, THEY HAVE TO RECOURSE TO DUALIST THINKING AND ABANDON THE TRUE NATURE OF SPIRIT. TO PASS THE BARRIER OF ZEN BY MEANS OF ZAZEN, WE SHOULD FINISH WITH REASON, KNOWLEDGE, ILLUSION. THEN WE SHALL ATTAIN TO SUPREME WISDOM AND ENTER INTO THE PALACE OF NIRVANA.
NIRVANA IS not somewhere else; it is your inner space. Just get out of the clutches of the mind. Your mind is like an octopus: if somehow you get free of one of the legs of the octopus, there are other legs. There are gross legs and there are subtle legs, and by the time you start getting free of the other legs you are getting entangled into other legs. It goes on and on in circles. The man who escapes from the world, what is he saying. In the East for thousands of years people have been renouncing the world because they say it is illusion. If you truly understand that it is illusion, then what is there to renounce? These fools even come to me and they ask, “What kind of Sannyas are you teaching people? Sannyas means renunciation. They should leave the world, but they live in the world. Not only do they live in the world, they live more deeply and totally in the world than other worldly people! What kind of Sannyas is this?” They think I am teaching a wrong kind of Sannyas.
I am teaching the ultimate Sannyas, not a wrong kind but for the first time the right kind. The wrong kind has prevailed for a long time, for centuries. See the stupidity of the whole thing: you call something illusory and then you escape from it. If it is illusory there is no need to escape. It should be so simple!
If it is real then why escape? If it is real then how can you escape? Nobody renounces their dreams. Or do you renounce them every morning when you wake up — “I renounce all my dreams. I renounce all the treasures that I had in my dreams. I renounce the kingdom of my dreams”? You couldn’t renounce them, otherwise people would laugh at you — you have gone mad! Dreams are dreams.
And these so-called spiritual people have been telling the world that the world is a dream — renounce it. What nerve — to call it a dream and in the same breath to say, “Renounce it”! Either it is not a dream or it is a dream — make sure what it is. And either way you cannot renounce it. If it is a dream there is no point in renouncing; if it is a reality, how can you renounce reality? — because reality is synonymous with God. Hence I teach: Rejoice!
There is no need to renounce anything — there is nothing to be renounced. Rejoice, and rejoice more totally! Rejoice in a multi-dimensional way. Dance, sing, be blissful. Let laughter be your life, let love be your lfie. That is the only true way to know what is.
This is an excerpt from the transcript of a public discourse by Osho in Buddha Hall, Shree Rajneesh Ashram, Pune.
Discourse name: Walking in Zen, Sitting in Zen
Chapter title: Don’t Abandon Existence
8 May 1980 am in Buddha Hall
Osho has also spoken on other Zen Masters and Mystics Mahakashyap, Bodhidharma, Hyakujo, Ma Tzu, Nansen, Dogen, Isan, Joshu, Kyozan, Basho, Bokuju, Sekito, Yakusan, Bankei, Sosan, Yoka, Nan-in and many more in His discourses. Some of these can be referred to in the following books/discourses:
- Bodhidharma: The Greatest Zen Master
- Ancient Music in the Pines
- Ah, This!
- A Bird on the Wing
- Dang Dang Doko Dang
- Dogen, the Zen Master: A Search and a Fulfillment
- Hsin Hsin Ming: The Book of Nothing
- God is Dead, Now Zen is the Only Living Truth
- Isan: No Footprints in the Blue Sky
- Joshu: The Lion’s Roar
- Kyozan: A True Man of Zen
- The Language of Existence
- Ma Tzu: The Empty Mirror
- Nansen: The Point of Departure
- Hyakujo: The Everest of Zen, with Basho’s Haikus
- No Mind: The Flowers of Eternity
- No Water, No Moon
- Yakusan: Straight to the Point of Enlightenment
- Zen: Zest, Zip, Zap and Zing