The Three Essentials

Settan once wrote a set of guidelines for Zen monasteries: “An ancient said that Zen study requires three essentials. One is a great root of faith. The second is a great feeling of wonder. The third is great determination. If one of these is lacking, you are like a tripod missing a leg. Here I have no special stipulations. I only require that you clearly recognize that everyone has an essential nature that can be perceived, and that there is an essential truth that everyone can penetrate; only then will your determination continue. And there are sayings at which to wonder. If people go off half aware and half awakened, they cannot really succeed in Zen. It is imperative to be careful and thoroughgoing.”

Zen Antics


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