December 11, 2014

Shen-hsiu's and Hui-neng's Poem (From the Platform Sutra)

Shen-hsiu's Poem 

Our bodies function as mind-holding frames,
Securing our mind-mirrors: edificial stands
Keep your mind-mirrors clean, ever wiping them down,
So the muck won’t build as it constantly lands

Hui-neng's Responding Poem

Noting originalness, that's all you'll need,
This mirror of mind has no bodily stand
If our pristine divinity is ineffable, beyond structure,
Then where would it be that this filth would land?

From the Sixth Patriarch Platform Sutra
tr. by Sol Ta Triane