The Venerable Yi of Qixia entrusted the Great Mind Seal Dharma to him expecting him to take responsibility for it and to protect the Proper Dharma well. In the Earth Store Sutra, you read about the Chapter of Entrustment to Humans and Gods. To "entrust" means to ask someone to do their best to carry out some responsibility and not forget about it. It means that you expect that person not to be hesitant and indecisive. In this case, the Venerable One transmitted the Treasury of the Proper Dharma Eye to the Master, along with the robe and bowl. He transmitted the Mind Dharma to him.
He initially propagated the Dharma at Mengbi (Dream Brush) in Fujian Province. Mengbi must be the name of a monastery. In the summer of the year yi chou, he left Huxin (Heart of the Lake) Monastery and returned to Bao'en (Repaying Kindness) Monastery in Jianzhou. That autumn, he sat down and left the world. He perfected the stillness. A stupa was built on the west side of the monastery, in a place where the geomancy was probably very favorable. Four people received the Dharma from him. He had four Dharma heirs.
A verse in praise says:
He skillfully proclaimed the essentials of Dharma
Without leaving any tracks.
Like fire melting ice:
Even the Buddhist Patriarchs could not fathom him.
The stone maiden holds her needle;
The wooden man sticks out his tongue.
What are these, but Forms of Buddhism in the age of resemblance.
He skillfully proclaimed the essentials of Dharma. He explained the essential Dharma very well, without leaving any tracks. His explanation of Dharma was very spontaneous; he didn't make any marks or signs. It wasn't predetermined. He didn't write a book or even write notes. He didn't prepare lecture notes ahead of time.
When he spoke the Dharma, it was like fire melting ice: He made everyone's afflictions disappear. Not only ordinary people could not understand him, even the Buddhist Patriarchs could not fathom him. It was not easy for them to comprehend him. Although the stone maiden holds her needle, it is merely a pose.
The wooden man sticks out his tongue. The wooden man with his tongue stuck out is also artificial. They are all symbolic. What are these, but / Forms of Buddhism in the age of resemblance. There is no mystery to these. One sees that a stone maiden can hold a needle to embroider flowers, and a wooden man can stick out his tongue. These are all just forms symbolizing Buddhism in the Age of the Dharma's Resemblance. The Master left no traces and no poses. Unlike the stone maiden holding the needle and the wooden man sticking his tongue out, the Master left no tracks. He left nothing at all, for he wanted none of that.
Another verse says:
The second son of the Zhang family had planted good roots.
The butcher let go of everything and tallied with the truth.
He wondered about the donkey grazing in the backyard.
When he awoke from his dream, birds still flew
before the mountains.
Qixia's cane struck his original face.
The dozing elder kicked over the lamp on the ocean floor.
He could depart while sitting, standing, talking, or laughing.
Thus we know that there are sages in Buddhism.
The second son of the Zhang family had planted good roots. That child must have planted very deep, good roots in his past lives.
The butcher let go of everything and tallied with the truth. The butcher put down his knife and became a Buddha on the spot. Although he was a butcher, if he would put the knife down he could tally with the truth. To tally with the truth means to understand the Buddhadharma.
He wondered about the donkey grazing in the backyard. There's nothing unusual about a donkey grazing in the backyard, but he had a doubt about it: "How can it be eating grass?"
When he awoke from his dream, the birds still flew before the mountains. When you shatter your doubts and awaken from the dream of delusion, the birds in front of the mountains are still flying. That is nothing to wonder about.
It's a common scene in nature. There's nothing special about it. As the saying goes, "Cooped up chickens have food to eat, but will soon be scalded in the pot. Wild cranes go hungry, but enjoy the vast freedom of earth and sky." These are common scenes in nature.
Qixia's cane struck his original face. When someone inquired about his original face before his parents bore him, the Venerable One of Qixia promptly gave him a beating. He was beating that person's original face. The original face deserves a beating!
The dozing elder kicked over the lamp on the ocean floor. The dozing elder refers to the Venerable One of Qixia. He kicked over the lamp on the ocean floor. That lamp shines day and night, but he kicked it over.
He could depart while sitting, standing, talking, or laughing. He was able to perfect the stillness while sitting, or standing. Or he could depart while talking and laughing at ease.
Thus we know that there are sages in Buddhism. From that kind of freedom to come and go, that kind of freedom over birth and death, we know that among the generations of patriarchs, there were those who were truly in charge of their own destinies. These were wise sages who appeared in Buddhism.