Mountains and Rivers quote

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lifetheory
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Joined: Wed May 30, 2018 9:02 pm

Mountains and Rivers quote

Post by lifetheory » Wed May 30, 2018 9:11 pm

Hello, dear Sangha. :namaste:

I was hoping you could help me locate a quote, which I came across about 4 years ago, but seems to have completely disappeared off the face of Google Earth, at least how I have been trying to find it these past couple of weeks...

It is very similar to this quote by Thich Nhat Hanh:

“Before practicing meditation, we see that mountains are mountains. When we start to practice, we see that mountains are no longer mountains. After practicing a while, we see that mountains are again mountains. Now the mountains are very free. Our mind is still with the mountains, but it is no longer bound to anything. The mountains in the third stage are not the same as those in the first.” (The Diamond that Cuts through Illusion: Commentaries on the Prajñaparamita Diamond Sutra, p. 67)

The quote I am looking for is, I believe, by Robert Thurman. I remember him in a video referencing this "Zen proverb" and commenting that you might think that the first-stage mountains and the third-stage mountains are the same, "but, boy they aren't!"

Please help if you recognize the quote. By the way, I found this link quite helpful, as it lists several other translations/commentaries:

https://terebess.hu/zen/qingyuan.html

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Wayfarer
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Re: Mountains and Rivers quote

Post by Wayfarer » Thu May 31, 2018 1:58 am

Greetings and welcome. I think it's a koan. It was popularised by a song by the folk-rock artist Donovan, back in the sixties, in the song First there is a Mountain (then there is no mountain, then there is.) So that way it entered popular culture. One of the scholars here will know the exact provenance of the story, but it has been re-told many times since then.
Only practice with no gaining idea ~ Suzuki Roshi

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Kim O'Hara
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Re: Mountains and Rivers quote

Post by Kim O'Hara » Thu May 31, 2018 2:09 am

lifetheory wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 9:11 pm
...

Please help if you recognize the quote. By the way, I found this link quite helpful, as it lists several other translations/commentaries:

https://terebess.hu/zen/qingyuan.html
I recognised it and when I looked at your link I saw at least three places I probably saw it, years ago.
But that leaves me puzzled about what more you want. You have the source, haven't you?
Are you looking for a particular English version?

:namaste:
Kim

lifetheory
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed May 30, 2018 9:02 pm

Re: Mountains and Rivers quote

Post by lifetheory » Thu May 31, 2018 8:23 pm

The quote I am looking for is, I believe, by Robert Thurman. I remember him in a video referencing this "Zen proverb" and commenting that you might think that the first-stage mountains and the third-stage mountains are the same, "but, boy they aren't!"

What I put in quotes just above is what I remember Robert Thurman saying word-for-word.

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