Ta Hui

“Ta Hui means the “Great Master of Wisdom.”
Only at the last moment it seems he attained enlightenment, just before he died, but then he did not say anything except a small verse. So I have called him “The Great Teacher” — and he was certainly a great teacher. He influenced millions of people; he was a great leader in the sense that anybody who came in contact with him was immediately intellectually convinced. But he had no presence, and he had no inner silence. It seems that only at the last moment he attained the goal, he completed the journey.”
“The great Zen teacher Ta Hui comes from the same lineage as Bodhidharma. He was born four hundred years after Bodhidharma had left for the Himalayas, to disappear into the eternal ice, the eternal silence there.

I have called Ta Hui the great Zen teacher — not a master… it has to be explained to you clearly. The master is one who is enlightened. but sometimes it happens that the master may be enlightened, but is not articulate enough to give expression to what he has known. That is a totally different art.
The teacher is not enlightened, but he is very articulate. He can say things which the master, although he knows, cannot bring to words. The teacher can say them, although he does not know.”
– The Great Zen Master Ta Hui, Chapter #1

“But Ta Hui was certainly a great teacher, because he collected… he went to dozens of enlightened masters. He was so young when he was initiated into monkhood, and he gathered like a bee gathers honey from thousands of flowers. So on the one hand he is very rich; he has brought so much honey from different flowers. But on the other hand he is very poor; he has not contributed anything from his own being. But I am happy that at least in the end, at the very end of his life, he became enlightened. His small verse is certainly of great beauty:”

“Ta Hui himself became enlightened just a minute before he was dying. Death can be of immense help, it can be a blessing in disguise, because now there is no future, no tomorrow. You cannot say, “Today I am busy, tomorrow I will meditate.” You have to drop all business. Now the only significant thing to be done is to be alert and aware, get rid of all your past, and move into death — innocent, clean, clear, unburdened. Then your very death becomes the entry into the divine. Then you are not dying; you are entering into eternal life.”
– The Great Zen Master Ta Hui, Chapter #3

“The so-called teachers like Ta Hui go on saying things, and among so many things, once in a while there may be one arrow hitting the target. But my concern is to show you how humanity has been deceived by teachers. Ta Hui was honored by the emperor of China as a great Ch’an master, a great Zen master, and he has been accepted as a great Zen master since then. When the emperor honored him with the title, who is going to dispute it?”
– The Great Zen Master Ta Hui, Chapter #4

“Ta Hui is a strange fellow, but he represents all those people who try to find their self-nature by intellectual effort. The problem with these people is that they have a good intellect. They can grasp words from masters, they can repeat them; they can deceive people and they can be deceived themselves.”
– The Great Zen Master Ta Hui, Chapter #7