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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Turning

In the Shobogenzo we have the fascicle called Hokke Ten Hokke, which means "Turning the Lotus Sutra". The title of this fascicle came from the Sixth Patriarch. I think you know that. Once the Sixth Patriarch was giving Dharma to people, and a bold disciple, a very arrogant fellow, appeared in front of him. But he couldn't bow to the floor, he failed to lower his head to the floor. So the Sixth Patriarch said, "Why are you so arrogant? Why do you bow in that way?" And the monk said, "I am very sorry." "If you say so, it is alright. But if you fail to lower your head to the floor, you must have something in your mind. What do you have in your mind?" The boy said, "The Lotus Sutra. I am reading it every day, and I must have read it maybe thousands of times." "Even though you are reading the Lotus Sutra, you don't understand what it means," the Sixth Patriarch said. "What is the true meaning of the Lotus Sutra" the boy asked him. And he said, "I will explain it to you, but I cannot read it, so please read it to me." So the boy started to read it, and the Sixth Patriarch said, "If your mind is deluded, you will be turned by the Lotus Sutra. If you are enlightened, you will turn it." -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-02-00-E as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC