Here's Zichang's conversation with Huineng from the Platform Sutra (tr. McRae).deepbluehum wrote:Let's just say Chan's method of introducing is equivalent to this. I don't think so. I think such an introduction is special to Vajrayana, but it could be in theory.
[Zhichang] said, “After arriving there I received no teaching for three months. Because of the importance of the Dharma, one night I entered [Shenxiu’s] quarters alone to inquire of him, ‘What is my fundamental mind, my fundamental nature?’ Shenxiu then said, ‘Do you see space?’ I said, ‘I see.’ He said, ‘When you see space, does it have characteristics or not?’ I answered, ‘Space is without form. What characteristics could it have?’ He said, ‘Your fundamental nature is like space in that there is not a single thing at all that can be seen. This is called correct seeing. For there to be not a single thing that can be known is called true knowing. There are no blue and yellow, long and short. Just see that the fundamental source is pure, the essence of enlightenment is perfect and bright: this is called seeing the nature and achieving buddhahood. It is also called the perceptual understanding of the Tathāgata.’ Even though this student heard this explanation, I was still not certain, and I beg Your Reverence to teach me.”
The master said, “That teacher’s explanation still allows perceptual understanding to exist, which is why you were unable to comprehend. I will now reveal a verse for you:
Not seeing a single dharma but maintaining the view of nonbeing
Is much like floating clouds blocking the face of the sun.
Not knowing a single dharma but maintaining one’s knowledge of emptiness
Is just like the great void generating lightning and thunder.
When such perceptual understanding arises for the slightest instant,
How can mistaken recognition ever understand expedient means?
You should understand the error of this yourself, in a single moment of thought,
And the numinous brilliance of the self will be constantly manifest.
When Zhichang heard this verse, his mind became suddenly expansive [in enlightenment], and he related a verse:
There is no reason to activate perceptual understanding,
To be attached to characteristics and seek for bodhi.
When one’s intelligence harbors a single thought of enlightenment,
How can one transcend the delusions of the past?
The self-nature, enlightened to the essential source,
Illuminates the crazed currents [of awareness].
Without entering the room of the patriarch,
In a daze, going about with two heads.
One day Zhichang asked the master, “The Buddha preached the three vehicles, and he also spoke of the Supreme Vehicle. I don’t understand these doctrines and would like you to explain them for me.”
The master said, “When you contemplate your own fundamental mind, do not be attached to the external characteristics of dharmas. There are no four vehicles in the Dharma; it is only that peoples’ minds vary. To learn and recite is the small vehicle, to be enlightened to the Dharma and understand its meaning is the middle vehicle, and to cultivate according to the Dharma is the Great Vehicle. To penetrate all the myriad dharmas and to be equipped with all the myriad dharmas, without any defilement at all; to transcend the characteristics of the various dharmas, without anything that is attained: this is called the Supreme Vehicle. ‘Vehicle’ has the meaning of practice and cannot be argued about orally. You must cultivate yourself, not ask me about it. At all times the self-nature is itself suchlike.”
Zhichang thanked [Huineng] and served the master until the end of his years.