The Scripture of the Fo...


The Scripture of the Founding Master

Chapter Three: Practice


The Founding Master appeared during the seated-meditation period at a meditation hall and asked the congregation, “What goal do you have in mind for sitting in meditation and resisting drowsiness?” Kwon Tonghwa answered, “The human spirit is originally whole and bright, but this integral spirit is lost because it splits into myriad pieces in response to greed-creating sensory conditions, which at the same time dim the radiance of wisdom. Thus, we meditate in order to calm the defilements and to unify our distracted spirit, so that we will gain the power of Cultivation and the radiance of wisdom.” The Founding Master said, “If you all truly understand the merit that derives from Cultivation, your dedication will naturally continue without anyone pressuring you. However, there is one thing you should be careful about: if you do not accurately understand this technique and, becoming either impatient or seeking out strange signs, you do not practice the genuine Sŏn dharma, then during your practice you may instead become ill, fall into a perverse path, or create more defilements. You must often assess your method against our dharma of seated meditation, or inquire about the correct procedures from your seniors, thereby assuring that your practice does not have the slightest error. If you diligently pursue the right practice, you will easily gain freedom of body and mind. All the buddhas, sages, and great masters have attained such power of mind through this Sŏn dharma.”