Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Ven. Tong Songchol (1912~1993)

 Take a good look at yourself. You are already saved.

You are originally Buddha.
You are overflowing with happiness and glory.
To talk of paradise or heaven is to be talking in your sleep.
Take a good look at yourself.
Transcend time and space, and you'll see that you are eternal, you are infinite. Should the universe collapse and disappear, you would still be immovable. You are all forms and all formlessness in the universe, the universe itself. You are the twinkling stars and the dancing butterflies-you are everything.
Take a good look at yourself. All truths are within you. To look for truth outside yourself is to search for water outside of the ocean.
Take a good look at yourself. There is no death in eternity, but those who don't know themselves worry about death. They fret about it, and they dread it.
Take a good look at yourself. You are originally pure gold. But because you are blinded by personal profit and greed, you mistake this gold for alloy. Forget your selfishness and use all your energies to help others. If you remove all traces of greed and desire, the Eye of the Heart will open up and you'll see yourself as you really are, as pure gold.
Take a good look at yourself. Poverty and starvation are superficial realities; the poor and the starving are fundamentally noble and sublime. To feel sorry for people based on superficialities is a grave insult to them. We must learn to respect and serve everyone.
Take a good look at yourself. This age of rampant materialism is harming you. You are the ocean itself, yet you are paying attention only to the spray from the waves. Dwell on the ocean, not on the spray.
Take a good look at yourself. The Buddha did not appear in this world to save us. He came to teach us that we are already saved, originally saved. What a tremendous joy it is for us to live with this Truth-so let's all bless everything together!
Ven. Tong Songchol (1912~1993), one of the great Zen masters in the last century was also called the Living Buddha of Korea.

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