Sunday, April 7, 2013

Not Zen 53: On the Way

Many pilgrims travelled together on an old bus. They were on their way to build homes for the victims of a disaster. Among the travellers were two friends, one a student of the Way, another a student of Zen.

"How can you say everything is not an illusion?" asked the Zen devotee, arms around her knees in her bus seat by the window. "You admit that the physical world, samsara, is full of deception and is, at its base nature, transitory. Everything passes, in time."

"There is a great difference between being transitory and being illusory," said the Daoist, an older woman. "After all, would you say that this pilgrimage is an illusion? Would you call your good deeds an illusion?"

"Yes, I would," insisted her friend.

"Really? Then is love an illusion? Is our friendship?"

"You are asking the wrong questions." The Zen devotee shifted uneasily in her seat. "That is like asking if enlightenment is an illusion."

"Is enlightenment an illusion?"

"It makes no difference if enlightenment is an illusion or not."

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