illustration (attribution, if any possible, is at the end of the article)
neither both, nor none.
« Form is emptiness, emptiness is form. »
Stop parroting Zen classics!
What do you say for yourself?
« Neither form, nor emptiness. »
Nor suffering… so what are you doing here?
Stop denying the obvious!
« Form is form, emptiness is emptiness. »
You is you, me is me, nothing should change
except everything does?
Neither user manual, nor 'is'.
Look and respond.
Transmission beyond words
Zen transmission relies on scriptures, stories, koans, etc. The transmission beyond words is not without words… Simply, parroting is not the game, is not the point, is not the goal.
Until you can express with your own words the nature of reality, or even without words (because your acts talk for themselves!), there's less knowledge to cling to.
It's not that the knowledge (necessarily) is wrong, inaccurate, etc. It is that clinging to it blinds you from reality! And blindness is another name for Buddhist 'ignorance.'
Knowledge itself becomes a veil. Enlightenment becomes hidden because you cling to a description you heard about it. It's not that the description was (necessarily) wrong but, as any use of language, it was context-dependent (without the whole context —with all its conditions and circumstances— being made explicit!) and your context is not the same, so your manifestation of Enlightenment and your words about it have little reason to fit old descriptions…
Does this mean forgetting Buddhism, forgetting the Path, pretending you're Enlightened already (even though it's pretty clear to all you're not free from suffering just yet!)? Of course, not. It only means "not clinging", realising the third Noble Truth.
Knowledge might be useful, but your relation to knowledge has to be mature and wise. If knowledge helps, great! If it doesn't, look and figure out by yourself what needs to be done, don't blind yourself by thinking that « the world should fit the knowledge. »
Art: "strawdust", © (theartofrandymonteith.com)