TAMING THE WILD OX
Ten Oxherding Pictures, by Zen Master Kakuan, China, 12th C.
9. Reaching the Source*
Too many steps have been taken
returning to the root and the source.
Better to have been blind and deaf from the beginning!
Dwelling in one’s true abode,
unconcerned with that without —
The river flows tranquilly on and the flowers are red.
Comment: From the beginning, truth is clear.
Poised in silence,
I observe the forms of integration and disintegration.
One who is not attached to “form” need not be “reformed.” The water is emerald, the mountain is indigo,
and I see that which is creating
and that which is destroying.
If we were to return to the absolute abstract space, beyond all manifestation and unmanifestation, would we choose to create again?
What if we were beyond eternity? To be or not to be, that is the question.
Source: *Translation by: Paul Reps in Zen Flesh Zen Bones, Tuttle Publishing, Boston, 1989.