Yamaoka Tesshu, as a young student of Zen, visited one master after another.

He called upon Dokuon of Shokoku.

Desiring to show his attainment, he said: “The mind, Buddha, and sentient beings, after all, do not exist. The true nature of phenomena is emptiness. There is no realization, no delusion, no sage, no mediocrity. There is no giving and nothing to be received.”

Dokuon, who was smoking quietly, said nothing. Suddenly he whacked Yamaoka with his bamboo pipe. This made the youth quite angry.

“If nothing exists,” inquired Dokuon, “where did this anger come from?”

Become Empty

Who has inspired by Zen Master Dokuon? Why?

We always have inner guidance who always want to live without any judgements. We get impress with others scholarly talk. With that immediately we start comparison arise in us. Either we feel superior of inferior to others. From that superiority or inferiority we respond. All this is judgement for others and for us both. Our ego is in centre. We become anxious and in a hurry to respond to others.

At the same time if we are exhibiting our knowledge then we want at least another person should nod their head.

When Zen Master Dokuon was not showing any body reaction also not only that he was in his totality was smoking.

First thing Yamaoka couldn’t see that Dokuon was total in his act. What Yamaoka is speaking Dokuon was inaction, in totality living.

Second thing he needed Dokuon’s attention which Dokuon was not giving. So he was speaking one thing but simultaneously getting angry from within. So as soon as Dokuon whacked Yamaoka with his bamboo pipe Yamaoka got angry.

From this story we need to become alert regarding our action. That our action is nothing but what we are from inside. What we have that only will reflect in our actions. Anger is not because of circumstances or others but because we are filled with anger so in our action comes from anger and hate. We cannot express our love for anyone.

We are born with the seed of love. Unless we grow in consciousness we cannot grow in love. Love cannot be expressed through our actions.

Now anger is crude form of our unexpressed love. Even science says that when you are angry focus on your breath and you will calm down. Unless you become calm you cannot express your love. What is require from our side is to become alert towards our anger and change the direction from outside to inside. When you turn your anger energy inside it will transform from baser metal to gold. It will be from anger to calmness.

All this scriptures is just finger showing to moon. It will not be any difference in our life unless we transcend our all the senses. We are moving always with our senses outside and we miss. Unless we become alert towards our senses and turn them inside like how science says when you are angry focus on breath and your biochemistry will change, you will calm down. Same way when our five senses are turn inside through our alertness we transcend all our five senses for growing in consciousness, becoming empty like Dokuon.

Learning from the story Smoking Quietly: Become Empty

Experience Learning

Emptiness is the fullness of potential:

Emptiness is often discussed in Zen, Advaita, Non-Duality and Buddhism, but what does it truly point towards? There are subtle differences in how each tradition uses its teaching, but its essential essence remains the same.

Emptiness is complete inner-silence; a quiescent mind, empty of the belief that oneself is a separate entity with an independent existence, apart from all others.

Emptiness is empty of any egoic influence.

Emptiness is when a person’s inner-storytelling and self-conceptualizing has stopped entirely, leaving only an aware, empty presence of stillness, joy, contentment and peace. To realize true emptiness is to no longer be distracted by any thought that spontaneously appears, intuitively knowing that you are not any of them, and that you are empty and pure presence of consciousness that perceives them.

To abide in emptiness is to have the non-dual realization that you are not the personal “doer” who you’ve always thought yourself to be. It is an absolute understanding that there is nothing that needs to be done, as there is no separate entity within who is able to assert any such independent volition over its life.

There is only life being lived—which is empty of any conceptual meaning, empty of any praise or blame, empty of any separation or division, and empty of any personal entities who can control what is spontaneously happening.

Life happens—and “you” are its witnessing consciousness.

You are the empty awareness in which the entire universe blossoms from and flowers into.

Without your innate emptiness, no apparent thing could possibly appear to exist.

In truth, you are already empty—mind only imagines you to be otherwise. And this is the illusion that perpetuates the dream of life—you believe that you are something you are not.

Know yourself as the empty presence of consciousness that observes, that is empty of any independent attributes, that has nothing it needs to reject or control, that is empty of desire and fear. Know yourself as the empty and infinite presence in which all phenomenal manifestations spontaneously arise within, are sensed and cognized, and thereby are known .

When you finally let go of who you believe yourself to be and all concepts are abandoned entirely, your beautiful presence of emptiness can be realized at once.

Emptiness isn’t the emptiness that one might imagine, for in truth, it lacks no-thing. To be empty is to be filled with absolute and infinite potentiality, which is the essential essence of your true Self.

You are this emptiness; an absolute presence of blissful nothingness. Unbound and free.


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