Astus wrote:If we want to look for an ancient source that still has a clear explanation on the subject, it is Fayan Wenyi's "Ten Guidelines for Zen Schools" (宗門十規論) that was translated by Thomas Cleary in "The Five Houses of Zen" book. It describes the requirements of a teacher and how in his time most of the Zen communities and teachers fail to uphold the correct way.
His ten points (from Cleary's translation):1. On false assumption of teacherhood without having cleared one's own mind ground
2. On factional sectarianism and failure to penetrate controversies
3. On teaching and preaching without knowing the bloodline
4. On giving answers without observing time and situation and not having the eye of the source
5. On discrepancy between principle and fact, and failure to distinguish defilement and purity
6. On subjective judgement of ancient and contemporary sayings without going through clarification
7. On memorizing slogans without being capable of subtle function meeting the needs of the time
8. On failure to master the scriptures and adducing proofs wrongly
9. On indulging in making up songs and verses without regard for meter and without having arrived at reality
10. On defending one's own shortcomings and indulging in contention
Thus, Fayan's criteria of a Zen teacher is that he should (1) be enlightened to the nature of mind, (2) don't attach to specific methods, (3) teach direct insight, (4) teach according to the situation, (5) clarify the two truths in teaching, (6) have appropriate training in the Dharma, (7) teach with insight and not just words, (8) know the scriptures, (9) don't write non-sense but clear and pleasant words, (10) don't disparage the Triple Jewels, the scriptures and the vehicles, and don't fail in upholding morality.
Nice list. Do you think that if a person meets all of the above criteria, they can then rightly be given dharma transmission and called a official "zen master"?