Secrets on Cultivating the Mind

Chinul (13th century)

An important basic text by one of the greates masters of Korean Buddhism.

The triple world is blazing in defilement as if it were a house on fire. How can you bear to tarry here and complacently undergo such long suffering? If you wish to avoid wandering in samsara there is no better way than to seek Buddhahood. If you want to become a Buddha, understand that Buddha is the mind. How can you search for the mind in the far distance? It is not outside the body. The physical body is a phantom, for it is subject to birth and death; the true mind is like space, for it neither ends nor changes. Therefore it is said, “These hundred bones will crumble and return to fire and wind.”

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Originally published in Buswell Jr., Robert E., The Korean Approach to Zen: The Collected Works of Chinul. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1983. Republished here with thanks.