崛起大覺 雷震雲門 霈然滂澍 普潤三根
高懸寶鏡 龍象魂驚 兒孫遍地 道冠古今
A verse in praise says:
He rose to eminence at Great Enlightenment,
Like thunder shaking up Yunmen.
The rain poured down in torrents,
Moistening all the three roots.
A precious mirror was suspended on high,
Frightening the dragons and elephants out of their wits.
His descendants are everywhere;
His crown of virtue caps those of ancient and
He rose to eminence at Great
Enlightenment. “Great Enlightenment” refers to Great
Enlightenment Monastery in Yunmen. His becoming eminent there probably
means he had his beginnings there, or he became enlightened there, or
he had some connections with Yunmen at some point. I’m not very clear
on this point. Anyway, he became eminent at Great Enlightenment
Monastery. Like thunder shaking up Yunmen. When he
rose to prominence, he shook up all the people at Yunmen mountain. The
rain poured down in torrents. The Works of Mencius says, “When
the clouds gather darkly in the sky and the rain falls in torrents,
then the sprouts suddenly grow up.” The character pei in the line from
Mencius is not the same as the pei in the verse, for it is missing the
‘rain’ radical on top, but the meanings are pretty much the same. When
the clouds gather darkly, literally “like grease,” the sky has a greasy
appearance and doesn’t look clean. For example, when glass gets greasy,
you have to use some dishwashing detergent to wash it clean. If you
don’t clean it, it will look dirty. When clouds gather darkly in the
sky, it is as if the sky becomes smudged and soiled with patches of
clouds forming and gathering together. The sky doesn’t look clean
anymore. When the rain falls in torrents, that means there is a sudden
shower of rain. “Then the sprouts suddenly grow up”: Then the sprouts
of grain that have been planted suddenly grow up. This describes how he
suddenly became prominent at Great Enlightenment Monastery. He probably
had his origins at Great Enlightenment Monastery, so he rose above his
peers and stood out from the crowd. Thunder shook up Yunmen: his
influence was so powerful that it was like thunder shaking up Yunmen.
The rain poured down in torrents: Because the fountainhead of the
Dharma was there with him, he was like falling rain—a sudden copious
rain that filled the ditches and watercourses. Moistening all
the three roots: And so all those of superior, average, and
inferior roots, those of dull faculties and sharp faculties, are
together nourished and enriched. From the great trees down to the small
sprouts, all the myriad things receive nourishment from him. This is
speaking of the Dhyana Master’s achievement and merit.
A precious mirror was suspended on high.
He hung up the most treasured mirror of wisdom. Frightening
the dragons and elephants out of their wits. When the men of
outstanding talent in Buddhism, the “dragons and elephants in the gate
of Dharma,” saw him, they behaved themselves and didn’t have anything
to say. Their tongues were as if severed, so they had nothing to say.
They were all scared, because their tongues had been cut off. He had
sliced off their tongues, so they were very obedient. The dragons had
to coil up, the tigers had to lie down, and the elephants had to be
submissive, too, and do whatever work they were supposed to be doing. His
descendants are everywhere. “Descendants” refers to Dharma
heirs. His heirs in Dharma pervade the land. His crown of
virtue caps those of ancient and modern times. This crown is a
hat. This means that his moral virtue is like a hat worn by the
eminent, virtuous monks of ancient and modern times. This doesn’t mean
that he climbed on top of their heads to relieve himself.
Deep, pure, and
placid, the lake water is clear;
Winds calmed and
waves stilled, the universe is at peace.
He shook up the Dong
tradition and expounded the proper teaching.
Propagating the Way
of the patriarchs, he continued the transmission of the lamp.
His bright glory
illuminated all under heaven;
Even Korea and Japan
received the single transmission of the torch.
pervaded the land and his source flowed afar,
Frightening the ghosts and spirits of the
When there was nothing to be done, I deliberately
looked for something to do in order to waste everybody’s precious time.
That’s why I uttered these lines of irrelevant talk.
Deep, pure, and placid, the lake water is
clear: Didn’t he say that the moon penetrated to the lake
bottom and shattered it? Didn’t he talk about how those waves didn’t
smile? Therefore, this line says that he was deep, pure, and placid.
Since his body, mouth, and mind—the three vehicles of karma—were
purified, he was deep and pure. The lake water is clear: It is just
like the water in the lake becoming settled and clear. Winds
calmed and waves stilled, the universe is at peace. In his
lake, the winds were calm and the waves were quiet; there weren’t any
waves or ripples, and the universe was all peaceful. Therefore, he
shook up the Dong tradition and expounded the proper teaching.
He was able to stir up the Cao Dong sect in a great way, and he
promoted the Treasury of the Proper Dharma Eye. Propagating
the Way of the patriarchs, he continued the transmission of the lamp.
He taught and spread the Way of the patriarchs and carried on the
transmission of the lamp. He was able to continue the transmission of
the lamp, in which each lamp seals the next lamp and each patriarch
transmits the Dharma to the next patriarch.
His bright glory illuminated all under
heaven. Those of ancient times basked in the light of his
glory, and those of the present also enjoy the radiance of his glory.
Thus he is said to illuminate all under heaven. Even Korea and
Japan received the single transmission of the torch. The Cao
Dong sect was transmitted as far as Korea and Japan. It was all from
the single transmission of the torch in the Cao Dong sect that the
teaching was spread abroad. His descendants pervaded the land
and his source flowed afar. His source flowed a long ways. Frightening
the ghosts and spirits of the trichiliocosm: All the ghosts,
goblins, demons, and monsters in the great trichiliocosm were
frightened, and all the demon palaces were shaken up. When the proper
Dharma dwells in the world, when our Buddhadharma exists in the world,
then the demonic dharma is weak. Thus they were all afraid.