A verse in praise says:
Entering madhi in every mote of dust,
He appeared foolish and dull.
Sometimes his brilliance would shine through.
He constantly sang nostalgic praises of the ancients.
Entering samadhi in every mote of dust. Every speck of dust was brought about by his samadhi. Every land was a manifestation of his wisdom.
He appeared foolish and dull. He seemed like an idiot, like Confucius' disciple Yan Hui.
Confucius said, "Hui seems dumb, for he never opposes what I say. But I examined his behavior after he left and found that he really practiced (what I taught him). Hui is no fool."
Confucius said that Yan Hui was not really a fool. As for ignorance, Zeng Seng considered himself ignorant. He was also Confucius' disciple, but was not as smart as Yan Hui. He was dull. "Dull" generally means a little more intelligent than foolish, but here it also means a little more foolish than "foolish." Why? Yan Hui was able to "hear one and know ten." When Confucius explained one principle to him, Yan Hui would be able to understand ten other principles. As for Zi Gong, he would "hear one and know two." When Confucius explained a principle, he could only infer one other principle. As for Confucius' disciple Zeng Seng, he was a bit slow.
Sometimes his brilliance would shine through. Although he appeared foolish and dull, he wasn't truly so. He was simply concealing his light and hiding his tracks. He never showed off or recklessly tried to do things he was not good at. Regarding this point, we should find the Middle Way. We cannot always play dumb with the pretext of not showing off. That's uncalled for. We should neither go too far nor come up short, but should stick to the Middle Way. Maintaining the Middle Way means being the same as everyone else, doing whatever everyone else does. Don't try to show off or act different. If you want to be different from other people, then you aren't even a person.
As human beings, we should be the same as other humans. This Dhyana Master was not truly foolish or dull. He was like a fool; he resembled one, but was not one in actuality. Sometimes his true style would show through; a little bit of his light would shine out occasionally.
He constantly sang nostalgic praises of the ancients. He often chanted verses, the way we chant the "Song of Enlightenment." One chants a line, then pauses to savor its meaning. For example, you recite, "Buddhism in Fujian flourished day after day...Buddhism in Fujian flourished day after day...Buddhism in Fujian flourished day after day." You recite the first line, then think about the second line. It is similar to singing. The ancient scholars would sway their heads as they chanted. This Dhyana Master often chanted verses about the virtuous conduct of the ancients.
Another verse says:
Buddhism in Fujian flourished day after day.
Elder Dexie groomed divine dragons.
He received precepts from Xubai, laying his foundation;
Then he attended upon Weilin,
Causing Drum Peak to quake.
Immersing himself in his practice
At Bubbling Spring for decades,
He extensively propagated the essentials of Dharma;
A thousand lamps were lit in succession.
With awesome demeanor and true practice,
He was an eye for humans and gods.
Yet his original face neither increased nor decreased
This verse does not resemble any fixed form of poetry. It's pure nonsense, composed when I had nothing better to do. The first line goes:
Buddhism in Fujian flourished day after day. Fuzhou was Buddhist territory. How can you tell? Because Fujian has Drum Mountain (Gushan), which reminds one of the evening drum and morning bell, which wake people up. The mountain resembled a drum; it would arouse the deaf and startle the blind, waking up confused people.
Elder Dexie groomed divine dragons. At that time there was a Good and Wise Advisor who trained and produced Dharma vessels, dragons and elephants, within the gate of Dharma. They were vessels capable of holding the Dharma.
He received precepts from Xubai, laying his foundation. The Venerable Xubai laid a good, solid foundation for the basic cultivation of Buddhism.
Then he attended upon Weilin. He served at Drum Mountain as the attendant of Dhyana Master Weilin, also known as Daopei, for over twenty years.
Causing Drum Peak to quake. Later on, he was like the bird that
Didn't call for three years,
and then startled people once it called;
Didn't fly for three years,
and then soared to the heavens once it flew.
While serving as an attendant, he was quiet and unobtrusive. The Elder Weilin certainly did not praise him to others. You should realize that if you praise a cultivator, others will be jealous of him; if you criticize him, others will scorn him. Therefore, good and wise advisors do not casually praise or criticize people. They do not get involved in praise and criticism, rights and wrongs. At that time, that Dhyana Master cultivated quietly, which means he practiced without people noticing. No one knew he was a cultivator. True cultivators, people with genuine skill, do not advertise themselves. But occasionally his true talent would be revealed, and the peak of Drum Mountain would quake.
Immersing himself in his practice at Bubbling Spring for decades. He practiced quietly by himself in Bubbling Spring Monastery for a long time.
Later, as the abbot, he extensively propagated the essentials of Dharma. When he opened his mouth, people were awestruck. At that point,
a thousand lamps were lit in succession. The lamps illumined one another and passed the light on endlessly.
With awesome demeanor and true practice, / He was an eye for humans and gods. His demeanor was stern and majestic, and there was not a bit of hypocrisy in his actions. Therefore, he could be the eyes of human and heavenly beings; gods and people all took refuge with him.
Yet his original face was just that way; it
neither increased nor decreased. What is the original face? It is the inherent nature, the Buddha nature which neither increases nor decreases. You could say that he was a Bodhisattva who came back by the power of his vows to guide all of us foolish and immature beings.