Book of Serenity 30

Book of Serenity (Shoyoroku, Congrong Lu) #30
Longji and the Kalpa Fire

  • DASUI "Shenzao" Fazhen (Daizui Hôshin, 834-919, 11th gen), disciple of Guishan Daan
  • LONGJI "Xiushan" Shaoxiu (Ryusai "Shuzan" Shoshu, 893-954, 15th gen), disciple of Luohan "Dizang" Guichen
Wansong's Introduction (Sato)
Annihilating all oppositions, cutting off both heads through sitting:
In order to smash the lump of doubt, why would you need a full phrase?
The Capital Chôan is not even an inch away,
The mountain Tai weighs only three pounds.
Just tell me, relying on what command do you say something like that?
Case (Wick)
A monk asked Dasui, "In the raging of kalpa fire, chiliocosms are together destroyed. I wonder if this is destroyed or not destroyed?"
Dasui said, "Destroyed."
The monk asked, "If so, does everything go with it?"
Dasui said, "Everything goes with it."
The same monk later asked Longji, "In the raging of kalpa fire, chiliocosms are together destroyed. If wonder if this is destroyed or not destroyed?"
Longji replied, "Not destroyed."
The monk asked, "Why is it not destroyed?"
Longji replied, "Because it is the same as the chiliocosms."[1]
[1]For "the chiliocosms" (literally, "“threefold-thousand Great-Thousand Worlds” --i.e., one billion solar systems), Sato and Cleary both give "the whole universe."

Hongzhi's Verse (Wick)
Destroyed and not destroyed, everything goes with it -- chiliocosms.
The phrases didn't function as hook and chain at all,
the feet with brambles are hindered greatly.
Understood and not understood.
The crystal-clear matter -- so long-winded!
Those who know when taking up up shouldn't barter;
in my story whether to buy or sell is up to you.
And In Between Visiting Dasui and Visiting Longji . . . (Ferguson)
A monk asked Zen master Dasui, “When the aeonic fire engulfs everything, is this annihilated or not?”
Dasui said, “Annihilated.”
The monk said, “Then it is annihilated along with everything else?”
Dasui said, “It is annihilated along with everything else.”
The monk refused to accept this answer.
He later went to Touzi Datong and relayed to him his conversation with Dasui.
Touzi lit incense and bowed to the figure of the Buddha, saying, “The ancient buddha of West River has appeared.”[2]
Then Touzi said to the monk, “You should go back there quickly and atone for your mistake.”
The monk went back to see Dasui, but Dasui had already died.
The monk then went back to see Touzi, but Touzi had also passed away.
[2] The West River is an allusion to Sichuan, the area where Dasui lived.

Sturmer's Verse
Edison's last breath
kept in a glass jar
then let out
eighty years later
and the stars still shine
above New Jersey.

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