From last issue: Illusory rest or true rest: he rested without resting.
Seeking north and south: what was there to be sought?
The water divided into a thousand branches, flowing from a single source. Although the water might be divided into many large rivers, small rivers, creeks, gullies, mountain streams, and so forth, all these tributaries originate from a single source, a single fountainhead.
The dust flew in all directions, accumulating into myriad hills. The dust flies, moving from one place to another, and then back again. Look at the dust drifting back and forth in the air. Why does it drift about like that? Under the sunlight, you can see that it is swirling in circles. It is actually alive! Even though we say dust is an insentient thing, it is actually living, drifting freely throughout the air. When it is tired of drifting and wants to sleep, it falls and lands on a hilltop. If it is not tired, it continues traveling through the air, having a holiday. Did you know that the motes of dust were having holidays? Likewise, people also drift about, liking to take holidays and go on vacations. People are all that way, like a mote of dust suddenly rising up above and suddenly descending down below, sometimes soaring up to the skies to mount the clouds, sometimes falling down to the ground. When it grows weary from flying in the air, it returns to earth and heaps itself up to form a hill. Accumulating into a myriad hills, there are big mountains, small hills, high mountains, low hills, and dirt mounds. The mountains gather together to form a range; then there appears geomancy, a dragon pulse. That is the way it is. Look at the motes of dust: they are all alive and moving in the air!
“Teacher! At the beginning, I thought what you said made some sense. But now you are getting farther and farther off track. How can dust be alive?” Well, if you don’t believe it, I have no way to make you believe it. In any case, sentient and insentient beings can all perfect the Wisdom of Modes together. They will all change and transform in the future. Did you know that dust belongs to the element of earth? People are a combination of the four elements of earth, water, fire and air. How can you say it is not alive? Think: It is formed by accumulation. It can be formed into animals, any kind of animals—big or small. All living beings have this earth element within them. So, if you do not believe it, I cannot make you believe.
At Five Breasts Summit, there was good news. Before the Five Breasts Summit, there was the greatest news. What was it? It was that everyone can become a Buddha; all living beings have the Buddha-nature, and thus all can become Buddhas.
At the temple of Master Baizhang, he entered the flow of sages. Dhyana Master Baizhang established rules for Buddhism. If you want to stand out above others, to get enlightened, or to become a patriarch, you have to abide by the rules. You should not create your own style, trying to be different from others, and say, “I want to be fancy! I want to be special!” Then you would be neglecting the proper order of things and not following the rules. The Sutra of Forty-two Sections Spoken by the Buddha says very clearly, “You should be cautious and not trust your own thoughts.” You should not trust your own ideas, your mind consciousness. From time immemorial till now, you have been listening to your mind consciousness; that is why you have not gotten enlightened and become a Buddha. If you want to become a Buddha, you have to extinguish your mind consciousness and not be so attached to your “self” that you keep defining yourself as being this way or that way. Well, what about you? Can you be your own master at the time of death? If you don’t want to die, can you avoid it? If you say you can avoid death if you choose to, then that is okay. You have ended birth and death! If you have not ended birth and death, you cannot listen to yourself, since you always have such great attachments. Thus, “At Five Breasts Summit, there was good news. At the temple of Master Baizhang, he entered the flow of sages.” You must use a compass and a ruler or else you will not be able to make circles and squares. You have to behave and follow the rules. Moist wood can only be made round after going through a round hole.
The boat of compassion saved all, sailing the four seas. Dhyana Master Ci Zhou (“boat of compassion”), also called Dhyana Master Fang Nian, saved all beings in the four seas. His vessel was a great one which rescued those in the four quarters and sailed in the four seas.
Through the hours, days, months, and years, he roamed at leisure. Through hours, days, months, and years, he was always there. Would you say he was busy? He wasn’t. Would you say he had nothing to do? Well, that wasn’t the case either. He just propagated the Buddha-dharma, teaching and transforming living beings at leisure.