Search This Blog


Buddhism in the News


Monday, March 16, 2009

Bring Me Your Mind.

Hui-k'o, who would be the Second Patriarch of Ch'an, stood in the snow outside the cave. To show Bodhidharma his sincerity to learn the Dharma, Hui-k'o cut off his arm and said, "Your disciple's mind has no peace as yet. Master, please, put it to rest."

Bodhidharma said, "Bring me your mind, and I will put it to rest." Hui-k'o said, "I have searched for my mind, but I cannot find it." Bodhidharma said, "I have completely put it to rest for you."

~Peace to all beings~

Stumble Upon Toolbar


The Humāinist said...

Perhaps it is my own ignorance, but I do not understand the point of this. What is the lesson here? Perhaps it is a koan that is meant to defy understanding? It would seem to me that cutting off one's own arm to prove one's sincerity about... anything... is proof enough that their mind is indubitably at rest.

mikethepikey said...

I am a bit confused about this one as well. It is not the clearest.

Carla said...

The point is that the mind or the 'self' is an illusion. There is no self, but only the 5 aggregates of self or skandhas: form, consciousness, sensory feelings, acts of volition and conceptualisation. The 'I' that we all treasure is not real. Eckhart Tolle calls it the 'ego'. Read 'The Power of Now' or 'A New Earth' for an interesting and lucid take on the concept of no-self.

They call him James Ure said...

Carla, that is basically how I see it too. Another way I see it is that no matter how hard we think--our mind will never be able to show us the essence of anything.

The mind is no ally in our liberation. It spins us around and is colored by all sorts of perceptions causing us quite a lot of suffering and frustration.

Seen in Hui-k'o cutting off his arm in frustration that his body/mind wasn't able to give him the answers that it usually can provide of the dualistic world.

It was only until he forgot/let go of his conditioned mind that he realized the deep essence of all things, which in my view is oneness and emptiness of inherent existence. But I'm not an ordained teacher.

L.B. said...

Nice thought-prod, James.

mikethepikey said...

Thanks for your comment. i was in a book shop today in phuket and saw 'A New Earth' and was going to pick i up but it was out of my current price range. Another time.

Anyone have good links to Padcasts or really good dharma talks?


DQ's Windmill said...

One of my favorite koans! Hello from a fellow Zen practitioner, and blogger, in L.A. ~Donna

mikethepikey said...

Just finished Eckhart Tolle's 'A New Earth' and what a breathtakingly lucid journey he takes one on. Fantastic stuff!!

Does anyone have any other recommendations?


Anonymous said...

bodhi dharma is from Tamilnadu India but only after a movie. We know that a Tamilian made a big history in BUDDHISM.

ShareThis Option