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  • Like Cats and Dogs Contesting the Mu Koan in Zen Buddhism


    内容提示: Like Cats and  Dogs This page intentionally left blank 1 Like Cats and  Dogs CONTESTING THE MU K Ō AN IN ZEN BUDDHISM Steven  Heine 1 Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. It furthers the University’s objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide. Oxford New  York Auckland Cape Town Dar es Salaam Hong Kong Karachi Kuala Lumpur Madrid Melbourne Mexico City Nairobi N...

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    Like Cats and  Dogs This page intentionally left blank 1 Like Cats and  Dogs CONTESTING THE MU K Ō AN IN ZEN BUDDHISM Steven  Heine 1 Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. It furthers the University’s objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide. Oxford New  York Auckland Cape Town Dar es Salaam Hong Kong Karachi Kuala Lumpur Madrid Melbourne Mexico City Nairobi New Delhi Shanghai Taipei Toronto With off ces  in Argentina Austria Brazil Chile Czech Republic France Greece Guatemala Hungary Italy Japan Poland Portugal Singapore South Korea Switzerland Thailand Turkey Ukraine Vietnam Oxford is a registered trademark of Oxford University  Press in the UK and certain other countries. Published in the United States of America  by Oxford University  Press 198 Madison Avenue, New  York, NY  10016 © Oxford University Press 2014 All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored  in  a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the  prior permission in writing of Oxford University Press, or as expressly permitted by  law, by license, or under terms agreed with the appropriate reproduction rights organization. Inquiries concerning reproduction outside the scope of the above should be sent to the Rights Department, Oxford University Press, at the address  above. You must not circulate this work in any other  form and you must impose this same condition on any acquirer. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication DataHeine, Steven, 1950– Like Cats and Dogs : Contesting the Mu Kōan in Zen Buddhism / Steven Heine.pages cmIncludes bibliographical references and index.ISBN 978–0–19–983728–1 (hardcover : alk. paper)—ISBN 978–0–19–983730–4 (pbk. : alk. paper)—ISBN 978–0–19–983729–8 (ebook) 1. Kōan. 2. Zhaozhou, Shi, 778-897. I. Title.BQ9289.5.H436 2013294.3'927—dc23 1 3 5 7 9 8 6 4 2 Printed in the United States of America on acid-free  paper { CONTENTS } Acknowledgments vii 1. More Cats Than Dogs? A  Tale of Two Versions 1 2. Would a Dog Lick a Pot of Hot Oil? Reconstructing the Ur Version 37 3. Fightin’ Like Cats and Dogs:  Methodological Ref ections on Deconstructing the Emphatic  Mu 74 4. Cats and Cows Know That It Is:  Textual and Historical Deconstruction of the Ur Version 110 5. Dogs May Chase, But Lions Tear Apart:  Reconstructing the Dual Version of the “Moo” K ō an 148 6. When Is a Dog Not Really a Dog? Or, Yes! We Have No Buddha-Nature 188 Notes Sino-Japanese Glossary Bibliography Index 213 239 251 261 This page intentionally left blank { ACKNOWLEDGMENTS } Like Cats and Dogs single k ō an case record. The f rst book on such a topic, Text:  Philosophy and Folklore in the Fox K second case of the Gateless Gate story of a wild fox appearing within the monastery gates of master Baizhang to ask a probing question about karmic causality. The current volume on the Mu K ō an examines the f rst case of the compilation of forty-eight k dialogue between master Zhaozhou and an anonymous disciple about whether or not a dog has Buddha-nature. In a subdialogue of one of the main versions of the k ō an, Zhaozhou remarks that the dog does not have spirituality because of its awareness of  karma. This publishing sequence was not done by design. Looking back, I  am some-what surprised, since the scholarly development was by no means a matter of systematic career planning. Rather, my focus on the f rst two cases is something that transpired in an unforeseen and unanticipated way some years apart. It was part of a more general continuing interest in examining the vast body of k ō an literature in relation to various interpretations and understandings that have been put forth by scholars and practitioners for more than a millennium. Although I  have commented elsewhere on the third case in the concerning Juzhi cutting a novice’s f nger, I  have no intention (as of now) of writing an entire book on that theme. Perhaps I  can best do such a sustained study of a particular k ō an record if it deals with animals, whether real or mythical. The Cat K ō an, which is case 14 in the collection and also involves an act of violence, is brief y discussed in these pages because part of the nar-rative is attributed to Zhaozhou, but this is not likely to become the topic of a full-length  study. My next scholarly tome will probably be a critical analysis of the styles of rhetoric in the Blue Cliff Record , particularly as seen through Yuanwu’s prose comments on Xuedou’s verses. As explained here, this seminal text—arguably the most eloquent and comprehensive in scope of the major k produced in Song-dynasty China—does not contain the Mu K the work was composed a century before the Cliff Record was probably published too early, rather than too late, to include a reference to the case of the dog, which did not become prominent until the 1130s based on a range of sociocultural factors affecting the formation of Zen thought in Southern Song intellectual history. represents my second monograph that deals entirely with a Shifting Shape, Shaping published in 1999, examined the collection produced in 1229 dealing with the ō an, ō ans, which is a Gateless Gate ō an collections ō an, even though . In fact, the Gateless Gate Blue viii Acknowledgments The out over two cases (63 on Nanquan’s cutting the cat, and 64 on Zhaozhou’s quixotic response upon hearing the story). It seems that at the time of the for-mation of the classic collections, Zhaozhou was probably better known for this case than for the Mu K ō an, which is striking given the apparently overwhelm-ing importance of the dog dialogue for the k sons for the oversight is one of the primary aims of this volume. Unlike Shifting Shape, Shaping Text , which deals extensively with the role of magical, shape-shifting foxes in monastic ritual as inf uenced by popular religiosity and folklore, here I  limit my discussion of dogs to the way they are depicted in Zen literature. The reader will learn of canines that bark at the moon, howl and growl, chase and disgrace, run after mistaken prey or gnaw on rotting bones, or lick hot oil or spilled blood. However, I  do not talk about dogs outside of their portrayal in Zen texts, such as those creatures that were used in ancient ceremonial sacrif ces, in palace veneration, or as objects of worship (especially in Japan) or sources of food (in China). For me, the dog is some-thing that is good to think, not to  eat. Nevertheless, it is important to recognize that, as with the fox, the image of dogs in Asian religion and culture is complex and continually evolving. I  recently learned that a Zen monk in Japan has taken the mimicking quality to new heights by training his pet to participate in the practice of temple rites by praying standing upright on its hind legs. This can be considered either a celebration or a mockery of canine behavior (http://thebuddhistblog.blogspot.com/2008/03/praying-dog-and-how-animals-teach-us.html). Like Cats and Dogs has been a long time coming, and I  am grateful for brain-storming and feedback received from various colleagues and associates over the years, including Roger Ames, William Bodiford, Ruben Habito, Victor Hori, Seijun Ishii, Chris Ives, Richard Jaffe, Gereon Kopf, Miriam Levering, Shir Matsumoto, Yuki Miyamoto, Michaela Mross, On-cho Ng, Takashi Odagiri, Steve Odin, Jin Park, Mario Poceski, Michael Quick, Morten Schlütter, Therese Sollien, John Tucker, Pamela Winf eld, Dale Wright, Lidu Yi, and Jimmy Yu, among many others. I  greatly appreciate the support of Cynthia Read and her staff, and also thank several student assistants who helped prepare the man-uscript for publication, including Jennylee Diaz, Maria Sol Echarren, Maria Magdaline Jamass, Kristina Loveman, and Gabriela  Romeu. In particular, I  express my warmest regards for translator and artist par excellence Kaz Tanahashi, who contributed the calligraphy for the book cover. Kaz f rst sent me a digital version and then mailed the actual scroll while he was overseas in Europe. Unfortunately, this arrived when I  was away on vacation and, left to stand outside my home by the postman, it was apparently stolen. When I  told Kaz, he was kind enough to send another version but also asked, “Why would anyone want to steal nothing?” Blue Cliff Record does, however, contain the Cat K ō an, which is spread ō an tradition. Exploring the rea-ō Acknowledgments ix I have also learned from an erstwhile supervisor what I  playfully call the Yes K ō an. This developed when I  persistently asked a simple either/or ques-tion about carrying out an important yet sensitive assignment—should I, or shouldn’t I?—and was f nally texted, in a word, “Yes,” but without it being made clear which alternative was the one being aff rmed. Ooooh! Or, should I  say,  U/You? May readers f nd within these pages the appropriate canine, or the one that will hunt best in relation to his or her style of learning about Zen teachings. Whether or not they will be able to meet Zhaozhou’s dog face to face, well, that is a horse of a different color. I  am reminded of a fox hunting expression that refers to the lead dog catching the scent of the vulpine and giving out a “full cry.” Once the call is made, all the other dogs fall into line to pursue the prey with unif ed vigor. Why not go fetch? But after hearing the cry according to the Zen injunctions, maybe you’d better shut your yap before even hounds start laughing at you. Just don’t do anything to make them dogs bark, as in the following verse: “Once Zhaozhou’s mouth made these unfounded remarks, / Who could distinguish right from wrong? / He had to endure hearing so much laughter of the dogs, / Who, in the dead of night, started barking in the vacant hall,” and  enjoy!Or, as the rock group The Band sings, “It’s dog eat dog and cat eat mouse / You can rag Mama rag all over my house.” x Chinese ChanBuddhist Temples FIGURE  0.1 Map of Chinese Chan Buddhist Temples. Like Cats and  Dogs This page intentionally left blank { 1 } More Cats Than  Dogs? A TALE OF TWO VERSIONS Overall Signif cance of the Mu  K ō an The Mu K tion) consists of a brief conversation in which a monk asks master Zhaozhou Congshen (Jp. J ō sh ū J ū shin, 778–897) whether or not a dog has Buddha-nature (Ch. foxing , Jp. bussh ō ), and the reply is Mu (Ch. Wu), literally, “No.” This case is surely the single best-known and most widely circulated and transmit-ted k ō an record of the Zen (Ch. Chan, Kr. Seon) school of Buddhism. It is recognized as “the k ō an of k ō ans,” according to Japanese authority Akizuki Ry ū min, or as the f rst and foremost example among thousands of cases. recently deceased master John Daido Loori, one of the main exponents of the S ō t ō school’s approach to Zen in America, said of its importance for the Zen tradition, “All the rest of the k ō an system, of the 700 or 2,000 of the cases, are simply a process of ref ning what’s originally seen in  Mu.” Another prominent contemporary Zen leader, the late Taiwanese monk Sheng Yen, whose teachings that were greatly inf uenced by the prominent twentieth-century Chinese Chan reformer Xu Yun spread extensively and remain highly inf uential in the West, has based his approach almost entirely on disseminating the Mu K ō an as a means of “shattering the great doubt.” Although, like Akizuki, he stems from the Linji/Rinzai school, a different lin-eage than Loori’s Caodong/S ō t ō school background, Sheng Yen reaches the same conclusion in calling Mu “the most clear-cut, the easiest to use, and the most effective” of case records. The focus on the Mu K ō an is most closely connected with the teachings of twelfth-century Linji school master Dahui Zonggao (Jp. Daie S stressed this case as the single most important “key-phrase” (Ch. wat ō , Kr. hwadu ), or “head-word” or “punch-line,” representing a shortcut path that leads to sudden awakening. The list of enthusiastically supportive comments mentioned by various modern masters is a powerful indicator of pan-sectarian unity showing that the priority of this k lines and historical boundaries that are otherwise rather conf ictive in regard to endorsing respective styles of teaching and practice. ō an 無 公 案 (or Wu Gongan in its original Chinese pronuncia- As 1 2 3 ō k huatou ō ), who , Jp. ō an runs across partisan 2 Like Cats and  Dogs FORMATION OF THE K Ō AN TRADITION The crucial role played by the case of Zhaozhou’s dog must be cast in terms of the history of k ō ans 公 案 (Ch. gongan , Kr. of the development of Zen literary arts, as well as ritual training. These spiri-tual riddles or reason-defying enigmas, often climaxing with pithy but seem-ingly nonsensical catchphrases, such as “three pounds of f ax,” “a cypress tree stands in the courtyard,” or “being and nonbeing are like vines entangling a tree,” to cite just a few of hundreds of examples, lie at the heart of theory and practice in nearly all circles of Zen past and present. The case records are contained in major k ō an collections that constitute the leading set of primary texts studied in temples and academies throughout China/Taiwan, Japan, and Korea and, since the twentieth century, in practice centers and universities in America and the  West. Most k ō an cases feature extensive poetic (Ch. (Ch. niangu , Jp. nenko ) commentaries explaining the brief and opaque yet reve-latory oral exchanges that constitute the Zen encounter dialogue (Ch. wenda , Jp. kien mond ō ). This type of question-and-answer dialogue constitutes an intriguing style of ref ective repartee generally held between an enlightened teacher and an aspiring disciple or rival teacher. At once formulaic and inno-vative with a deliberately bewildering manner of expression that highlights the role of irreverence and disingenuous blasphemy by utilizing the rhetorical devices of irony, duplicity, and wordplay, the encounter dialogue showcases one party demonstrating his or her authentic understanding through verbal prow-ess that relies on disassociation, misdirection, non sequitur, or reticence. The charged interplay exposes the extent of ignorance and suffering on the part of the interlocutor by challenging his or her misguided views and assumptions to the core. Such a comeuppance can be baff ing and humiliating, but the sense of profound self-doubt it generates helps trigger a sudden f ash of insight through stirring or shocking the dialogue partner out of an unconscious attachment to logic and reliance on conventional uses of language that had been blocking the path to spiritual awakening. As a repository of enigmatic verbal communication capped off by thought-provoking quips and puns, k ō an case records have formed the cen-terpiece of Zen for over a thousand years. During Song-dynasty (960–1279) China, which marked the classical period in the development of Chan texts, k ō ans were extracted from a remarkably large array of dialogues about the experience and transmission of enlightenment attained by ancestors from the formative period of the school that had emerged during the Tang dynasty (618–907). Old or precedent cases (Ch. collections with commentaries and, beginning in the late tenth century, were utilized in the setting of monastic training halls to inspire and test the level of understanding of trainees. The pedagogical function of k kongan ) representing the mainstay songgu , Jp. juko ) and prose jiyuan guze , Jp. kosoku ) were catalogued in ō ans was expanded More Cats Than  Dogs? 3signif cantly in the eleventh century, and during the late twelfth and thirteenth centuries these writings and forms of practice spread rapidly to Korea in the second half of the Goryeo dynasty (968–1392) and to Japan at the dawn of the Kamakura era (1185–1333). The process of dissemination, which took place amid the threat of Mongol invasions in both countries, was followed by the ongoing growth of inf uence of the Zen temple institution in East Asian societ-ies that continued through the early modern period. The major k ō an collections of Song China include the (Ch. Biyanlu , Jp. Hekiganroku ) of 1128 by Linji-Yangqi (Jp. Rinzai-Y stream master Yuanwu Keqin (Jp. Engo Kokugon) based on one hundred cases with verse comments selected by Xuedou (Jp. Setch century; the Record of Serenity (Ch. Congronglu Caodong school master Wansong (Jp. Bansh and verse comments in the record of Hongzhi (Jp. Wanshi) from half a century earlier; and the Gateless Gate (Ch. Wumenguan brief prose and verse comments on forty-eight cases by Wumen (Jp. Mumon), another Linji-Yangqi stream master. These texts elaborate on succinct dia-logues with stunningly eloquent yet puzzling and paradoxical poetic and other interpretive remarks. Each style of commentary, whether poetry or prose or a hybrid form known as the capping phrase (Ch. set of discursive rules and precedents that must be followed, thus demanding great literary skill on the part of the commentator, even if eminent secular writ-ers might f nd some of the Chan works too didactic and, in many instances, overly wrought or mannered. The three collections were complemented by dozens of similarly constructed Chinese texts. Two additional k ō an compilations, one Korean and the other Japanese, are crucial for understanding the transnational component of the later stages of the classical period of the k the collection of 1,125 cases in the thirty-volume Comments on Cases ( Seonmun yeomsongjip in Korea in 1226 by Hyesim, the successor to Jinul. The founder of the Jogye Order in the f rst decade of the thirteenth century, Jinul never went to China but greatly admired Dahui’s teachings about the key-phrase and abandoned his Huayan school background once he discovered these. Hyesim’s text is some-what contradictory to Jinul’s approach in compiling Chinese commentaries on so many k ō an records. This collection was expanded to include 1,463 cases with additional interpretative remarks in the Comments on Cases ( Seonmun yeomsong seolhwa hua ) by Hyesim’s disciple Gag’un. Since little is known about Gag’un’s life—he may have been an immediate follower or lived up to several generations later—the text can hardly be dated but is often linked to the thirteenth century. The main Japanese collection of this era is the Dharma-Ey e ( Sanbyakusoku Sh ō b ō genz ō Blue Cliff Record ō gi) ō ) during the mid-eleventh , Jp. Sh ō y ō roku ō ) based on one hundred cases 4 ) of 1224 by , Jp. Mumonkan ) of 1229 with zhuoyu , Jp. jakugo ), has a strict 5 ō an tradition. The f rst of these is Collection of Prose and Verse , Ch. Chanmen niansongji ) produced Explanation of Prose and Verse , Ch. Seonmun yeomsong shuo-300 Case Treasury of the True , a.k.a. Mana Sh ō b ō genz ō ) produced 4 Like Cats and  Dogsin 1235 by D Compiled relatively early in D ing, the k ō ans listed in this text became the basis for his innovative interpreta-tions of case records evident in two compilations of sermons composed over the next couple of decades:  the vernacular Japanese ( in the Treasury of the True Dharma-Eye ( which in different versions contains seventy-f ve or ninety-f ve fascicles (there are also several other variations) that were mainly completed by the mid-1240s; and the Sino-Japanese ( kanbun ) sermons contained in the f rst seven volumes of the ten-volume Extensive Record ( Eihei k over the last decade until D ō gen’s death in 1253. ume included in the Extensive Record, which contains ninety case records with poetic remarks that were compiled in 1236, makes this collection another pre-paratory k ō an text setting the stage for more elaborate prose commentaries. Drawing on narratives about ancestors primarily from an earlier period, the Chinese k ō an collections, which became the backbone of the classical canon, were relevant for both monk-poets trained in monasteries and scholar-off cials or literati involved in studies of Chan. These textual and ritual developments, which transpired during an era of intense government supervision of all possi-bly subversive cultural activities including writings spawned by expanding reli-gious movements that might seem to be critical of authority, would not have been able to succeed without the vigorous intellectual, as well as political and f nancial, support of educated lay followers. The participation of literati representing the emerging elite class of Song society’s new meritocratic bureaucracy was a crucial component in the growth of the Chan school. This group enjoyed visiting Buddhist temples to interact with and learn from knowledgeable priests. However, dramatic sociopolitical shifts greatly affected relations between clergy, who engaged in literary compo-sition as the primary means of expressing their understanding of the Dharma, and lay authors among scholar-off cials, who were intrigued by Chan and the promise of self-examination and self-fulf llment its teachings offered. The pri-mary loyalty of literati was to the imperial court or leaders of a local jurisdic-tion, rather than a diffused church institution, and they were wary of falling into disfavor or being accused by rulers of noncompliance or insubordination. In examining the impact of literati inf uences on the vast body of k mentaries, it is important to distinguish between two major historical phases of the Song dynasty. The f rst phase was the Northern Song (960–1127), an age when government policy promoted the unity and harmony of previously divided regions and cultural factions through a new emphasis on cultivating wen , or literary arts, rather than depending on expertise in During this phase, Chan masters generally occupied an insider position with imperial authorities and were greatly supported by scholar-off cials, which led to the f ourishing of rhetorical embellishments in their writings. This literary ō gen, which is a listing of case records without commentary. ō gen’s career before he had begun his major writ- 6 kana ō , a.k.a. ) sermons contained Kana Sh ō b Sh ō b ō genz ō genz ō ), ō roku ) that were mainly composed In addition, the ninth vol-7 ō an com-wu , or martial arts. More Cats Than  Dogs? 5trend culminated in the publication of the layered and allusive commentary on k stopped during this period, so that the pen became mightier than the sword, the image of weapons used as a tool to eradicate ignorance became a meme appearing frequently in k ō an commentaries, such as the famous saying regard-ing the function of a “double-edged sword” that at once kills delusion and gives life to spirituality (as in a verse remark on case 11 in the The Northern Song was not an altogether peaceful time for literati or priests, however. Opponents of the political reformer and poet Wang Anshi and his minions often had to face severe criticism and, in key instances, banishment or some other sort of punishment. Victims included the eminent poet Su Shi (a.k.a. Su Dongpo), who integrated sophisticated literary pursuits with a great interest in Chan practice in addition to taking on public administrative posi-tions such as serving as mayor of Hangzhou. Therefore, while ecclesial and secular roles often interacted in highly compatible and constructive ways, this combined activity could also work to the disadvantage of any literati or clergy who came into conf ict with secular powers, a trend that was greatly accelerated in the next period. The second historical phase was the Southern Song (1127–1279), when for-midable political developments forced Chan leaders to f nd themselves in a less favored or outsider position. This situation caused some leaders to endorse a discouragement or even disdain for writing as an end in itself since this endeavor was associated with failures leading to the fall of the Northern Song. Literature as an occupation was no longer praised and, in fact, was seen as ref ecting the def cient social condition that contributed to the ceding of north-ern lands to the invading Jurchen when the capital was relocated from Kaifeng to Hangzhou, south of the Yangzi River. The anti-literary trend within the Chan school was initiated, according to traditional accounts, with the destruc-tion of the xylographs of the Blue Cliff Record Dahui, which probably took place less than a decade after the completion of the  text. Exacerbating the problems in this signif cantly altered cultural environ-ment was the fact that many of the literary giants of the Northern Song had died. These included the incomparable Su Shi (d. 1101); the prominent monk-poet and Chan historian, Juefan Huihong (d. 1128), who endorsed a literary approach to practice; and the most prestigious scholar-off cial, Zhang Shangying (d. 1121), who embraced Chan and befriended Juefan, as well as other priests. Both Juefan and Zhang were closely associated with Yuanwu and also with Dahui, who was initially advised to seek out Yuanwu as a mentor by Juefan. Dahui was well versed in the subtleties of the literary approach to Chan training, although he admitted that it took him many years of frustrating strug-gles and false starts with trying to solve various k enlightened in the late 1220s. At a key juncture of his career during the early Blue Cliff Record ō an cases. Since internal warfare was with its multi-Gateless  Gate ). 8 by Yuanwu’s foremost disciple, 9 ō ans until he f nally became 6 Like Cats and  Dogsstages of the Southern Song a few years later, Dahui came to consider def cient the commentarial approach to k ō ans advocated by the literary f gures he knew well. He saw rhetorical enhancement as an act of indulgence that could no lon-ger be afforded since it would distract the mind in a way that was detrimental to the intensive concentration required for an experience of awakening. Based on this approach, Dahui emphasized the Mu K although not exclusive, vehicle needed by any disciple, whether lay or monas-tic, to realize enlightenment. He also rejected other forms of training as hope-lessly counterproductive. While the primary tendency in the was to compile multiple layers of commentaries, Dahui, who was trained as an expert in this standpoint, eventually maintained the seemingly opposite view. He argued that contemplating an abbreviated key-phrase, with Mu as the single main example, represents an excruciatingly diff cult task but, in the end, is the most effective and rewarding method that results in a path leading directly to the attainment of enlightenment. Dahui’s focus on a single k ō an case must be seen against the background of larger historical trends working against the priority of literary pursuits. This context forms an important but often unacknowledged framework for the advocacy of the Mu K ō an that is articulated by so many contemporary practitioners and researchers. From 1142 to 1161, there was a government ban on ordinations of new clergy and heavy taxation imposed on monasteries and priests. In this challenging environment, when he personally experienced peri-ods of banishment offset by stages of acceptance and favored treatment at the hands of imperial authorities, Dahui was highly critical not only of the Cliff Record but also of other forms of Chan, including various Linji factions and practices of the developing Pure Land and reviving Tiantai schools. While frustrated with what he often considered the impatience and superf ciality of literati who sought spiritual solace through reading texts, Dahui’s strongly held views on the eff cacy of the Mu K ō an as a shortcut that could be followed effec-tively by lay followers are still ref ected in remarks today about how this case functions as the centerpiece of his Zen training. Nevertheless, the literary approach or “lettered Zen” (Ch. monji Zen ) that prevailed in the Northern Song was by no means altogether abandoned because of Dahui, and this standpoint was perpetuated by count-less exponents in the Southern Song and later periods. In fact, many sup-porters of the key-phrase method also gained reputations for their verse and prose remarks on various k ō an cases. Despite at times shrill partisan polemics, there remained much overlap and interaction between factions. For example, Hakuin and Yamada Mumon, two strong supporters of Dahui in Edo-period and modern Japan, respectively, are among the most compelling commentators on the Blue Cliff Record . The former, who was probably the most passionate defender of Dahui in history, was said to have read carefully through Yuanwu’s text dozens of times. Understanding and coming to terms with the impact of ō an as the primary, Blue Cliff Record Blue wenzi Chan , Jp. More Cats Than  Dogs? 7underlying connections, rather than one-sided divisiveness, between advocates and detractors of a literary approach for interpreting the Mu K the main themes of this volume. ō an is one of HOW MANY K Ō AN  CASES? Around the time of the initial compilation of the major collections of k in the eleventh and early twelfth centuries, the task of solving the mystery of a case’s inner meaning was established through ritual re-enactments initiated by Yunmen (Jp. Unmon) and Fenyang (Jp. Fun’y passing, a k ō an case became the standard device for examining and certify-ing the degree of a disciple’s spiritual attainment. This meditative practice was further developed and transmitted in various conf gurations, or with modif -cations and adjustments. Contemplation of seemingly unfathomable k culled from Tang-inf uenced Song records as conducted under the tutelage of an esteemed mentor continues to be the fundamental pathway for reaching a transcendent realization in the monasteries of the Linji/Rinzai school in China and Japan, as well as the Jogye Order in Korea. It is also used in some Japanese S ō t ō (Ch. Caodong) sect lineages, although with less emphasis despite ample commentaries on k ō ans composed by D The creative employment of some type of k to contemplation has been disseminated worldwide and continues to develop in training centers that have proliferated in the West since the early stages of the twentieth century. Despite an emphasis on the Mu K ō an by numerous commentators, many varieties of k ō an records with commentaries are extant and supported by diverse theories concerning how to apply these sources to styles of meditation and related training rituals. Even with differing procedures and interpretative models that ref ect schismatic debates, as well as cultural variances and histori-cal discrepancies, between competing cliques, the role of the k in one fashion or another has been a constant of the Zen Buddhist approach to attaining authentic realization. Although frequently refuted by Confucian and other critics in the premodern period, and further attacked in modern times as a kind of “mumbo-jumbo” by some Orientalist skeptics, for many practitioners and researchers alike is based on the innate resistance of this literary form to being categorized neatly in terms of conventional catego-ries of language or philosophy since the primary aim of k to baff e and befuddle the ordinary intellect. It is often said that there are 1,700 k ō an case records to choose from, even if modern scholarship has shown this to be a misnomer that apparently derived from the fact that the names of approximately this number of ancestors are mentioned in the earliest and most inf uential of the Song-dynasty genre of transmission of the lamp records, the Jingde Transmission of the Lamp Record ō ans ō ). Finding a solution to, or ō ans ō gen and other medieval interpreters. ō an training cultivated in relation ō an functioning 10 the appeal of k ō ans ō an cases is precisely 8 Like Cats and  Dogs(Ch. collection that was prominent at the time of its composition contained the same amount of entries and, therefore, reinforced the i...


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