Sunday, August 28, 2016

Treehouse Wisdom

Zen Master Chōka Dōrin died in 824 at the age of eighty-four. He belonged to a side lineage in the Zen tradition, going back to the Fourth Patriarch Dōshin, but not through Enō (Hui-Neng). "Chōka" means bird’s nest; it is said that Chōka practiced zazen in, and lived in, a treehouse.

Someone once asked Chōka, “What is the purpose of the Buddha's teaching?”

Chōka answered, “Not to commit wrongs. To practice the many kinds of right.”

The questioner replied, “If it is so, even a child of three can express it!”

Chōka said, “A child of three can speak the truth, but an old man of eighty cannot practice it."

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