Anthony, The way Asian languages are transliterated into English is still a mystery to me. A good example is the simple work in Thai for 'shrimp'. Sometimes it's transliterated into 'gung', sometimes 'kung'. The truth is the beginning consonant is somewhere between the softer English 'g' and the harder English 'k'. I've seen Zhaozhou transliterated into English as Joshu and Joju. Who knows where they come up with all this?
That is an interesting point about ancient Chinese 'wu' being pronounced closer to 'mu'. It's important because when working on the koan Mu students usually eventually revert to just 'sitting only with mu' or even chanting mu while sitting. The hard 'm' at the beginning of the word and the following drawn-out 'ooooo' is great for a good exhale during zazen. This is one of the many, many reasons I think the koan Mu is such a gem. I have not read much or maybe even any pre-Mahayana literature. In general I don't read Buddhist literature anymore, only a little out of the Diamond and Hear Sutra. Otherwise it's just all zazen for me. ...Bill! From: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com [mailto:zen_fo...@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Anthony Wu Sent: Sunday, December 21, 2008 10:21 PM To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com Subject: RE: [Zen] Nature? Bill, I agree that at least 'mu' means 'no' or 'whatever'. If we go deeper, like you say, that sets up a conumdrum for the student to work as a koan. I don't understand why Zhaozhou becomes Joju in Japanese literature, it should be 'Chooshuu'. The former sounds more like Korean. To make things more interesting, the modern 'wu' was pronounced more like 'mu' in Zhaozhou's time. I should stop here, or Edgar would critisize me for 'showing off'. Anyway, it is 'mai-pen-rai'. To talk about something more serious, did you read any pre-mahayana literature that mentions 'Buddha nature'? I have not in my limited reading. Regards, Anthony --- On Sun, 21/12/08, billsm...@hhs1963.org <billsm...@hhs1963.org> wrote: From: billsm...@hhs1963.org <billsm...@hhs1963.org> Subject: RE: [Zen] Nature? To: Zen_Forum@yahoogroups.com Date: Sunday, 21 December, 2008, 6:19 PM Anthony, In answering that student's question in the koan your 'no' is absolutely just as good as my 'whatever'. I'm not an Asian language expert (although I do speak Thai), but Zhaozhou must have actually said 'wu' since he was Chinese. Joju is ZhaoZhou's name rendered in Japanese, and he is reported to have said 'mu' since this was a retelling of the encounter in Japanese. Thai's use 'mai' which means 'negative'. It can mean no, it can mean not, it can mean 'nothing'. The whole koan stems from the 'fact' that Siddhartha Buddha is reported to have said 'all sentient being have Buddha Nature'. JoJu's student then asked Joju: 'Does a dog have a Buddha Nature?' To which JoJu reportedly replied his now famous 'mu'. Now that could have meant 'no', and since the student already knew Buddha said ALL SENTIENT beings have Buddha Nature, it set up a conundrum for him, an un-solvable puzzle - a koan. Why does Buddha say one thing and Joju say something different? BUT, in the absolutely sublime response Joju could have also meant 'who cares?', or 'moot', or 'go fish', or maybe today even 'fuck off'. He could have meant anything to get the student to concentrate so hard on solving the unsolvable that his mind finally gives up and STOPS - No Mind - and that is KENSHO - an initial breakthrough. That No Mind is meeting Joju and all the other Buddhas and teachers face-to-face. That No Mind is Buddha Nature. ...Bill! From: zen_fo...@yahoogrou ps.com [mailto:zen_fo...@yahoogrou ps.com] On Behalf Of Anthony Wu Sent: Sunday, December 21, 2008 4:34 PM To: zen_fo...@yahoogrou ps.com Subject: RE: [Zen] Nature? Bill, I don't see a difference between my 'no' and your 'whatever'. Both mean 'stop bullshiting about Buddha nature'. Next time you meet Zhaozhou zen master, give him a better carrot. Anthony --- On Sun, 21/12/08, billsm...@hhs1963. org <billsm...@hhs1963. org> wrote: From: billsm...@hhs1963. org <billsm...@hhs1963. org> Subject: RE: [Zen] Nature? To: zen_fo...@yahoogrou ps.com Date: Sunday, 21 December, 2008, 11:32 AM I have met Zhaozhou face-to-face. His response 'mu' to his student's question on whether a dog (or duck or maggot) did not mean 'no'. In our vernacular it could be translated as 'whatever', or 'moot'. If you're spending all your time or posts speculating about Buddha Nature you're barking up the wrong tree, or swimming in the wrong pond, or gnawing on the wrong carrion. Back in Thailand and lurking no more...Bill! From: zen_fo...@yahoogrou ps.com [mailto:Zen_ fo...@yahoogrou ps.com] On Behalf Of Anthony Wu Sent: Saturday, December 20, 2008 3:42 PM To: zen_fo...@yahoogrou ps.com Subject: [Zen] Nature? Edgar, Your missed the point. On the one hand, everything has Buddha nature (your word 'innate' is correct). On the other, you should not attach to that idea. That is why Bill Smart's great grand father Zhaozhou zen master says, 'no', when asked 'does a dog have Buddha nature?'. Anthony --- On Fri, 19/12/08, Edgar Owen <edgaro...@att. net> wrote: From: Edgar Owen <edgaro...@att. net> Subject: Re: [Zen] Ducks Have Buddha Nature? To: zen_fo...@yahoogrou ps.com Date: Friday, 19 December, 2008, 11:56 PM Anthony, It is nonsense to think that humans could convey Buddha nature on to anything at all by thinking about them. Buddha nature is innate in all things. Your ignorant Zhaozhou master needs a duck to teach him about Buddha nature! Edgar On Dec 19, 2008, at 9:47 AM, Anthony Wu wrote: Karin, Ducks have Buddha nature when we have sympathy with them. When you think about them in general terms, they should have no Buddha nature. Otherwise, you would attach to them. That is a teaching from Zhaozhou zen master. Anthony --- On Tue, 16/12/08, Karin <tortillera77@ yahoo.com> wrote: From: Karin <tortillera77@ yahoo.com> Subject: [Zen] Ducks Have Buddha Nature? To: zen_fo...@yahoogrou ps.com Date: Tuesday, 16 December, 2008, 4:55 PM I work at a shopping mall and there is a canal nearby and there are lots of ducks in the area.. I feed them out of the back of the store sometimes, and they run towards me and I talk to them. That is fun. However, many people dislike the ducks because they poop a lot, and I have seen some people run them over with their cars when they are driving through the shopping center. They have contempt for the ducks and think that if the ducks are in the way of the car, it is OK to run over them. This is very sad to me. ____________ _________ _________ _________ _ Get your preferred Email name! Now you can @ymail.com and @rocketmail. .com. ____________ _________ _________ _________ _ New Email names for you! Get the Email name you've always wanted on the new @ymail and @rocketmail. 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