Just as the grammarian makes one study grammar,
A Buddha teaches according to the tolerance of his students;
Some he urges to refrain from sins, others to do good,
Some to rely on dualism, other on non-dualism;
And to some, he teaches the profound,
The terrifying, the practice of enlightenment,
Whose essence is emptiness that is compassion.
quoted in the book “The Embodied Mind: Cognitive Science and Human Experience”
When you don’t have obsession,
When you don’t have hang-ups,
when you don’t have inhibition,
When you are not afraid,
You will be breaking certain rules.
When you are not afraid,
You will not fulfill somebody’s expectations.
What more enlightenment do you want?
– Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
Trying to find a Buddha or enlightenment is like trying to grab space. Space has a name but no form. It’s not something you can pick up or put down. And you certainly can’t grab it. Beyond this mind you’ll never see a Buddha. The Buddha is a product of your mind. Why look for a Buddha beyond this mind?
from the book “The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma”
ISBN: 978-0865473997 – https://amzn.to/12XUhNW
translated by Red Pine
If enlightenment comes first, before thinking, before practice, your thinking and your practice will not be self-centered. By enlightenment I mean believing in nothing, believing in something which has no form or no color, which is ready to take form or color. This enlightenment is the immutable truth. It is on this original truth that our activity, our thinking, and our practice should be based.
– Shunryu Suzuki
from the book “Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind”
With thanks to Gems of Wisdom – Zen Tradition
Life on the practical level does not contain any subtle philosophy or subtle mystical experience. It just is. If we are able to see that isness, so to speak, then there is a sense of realization. We experience sudden enlightenment. Without a sense of hopelessness, there is no way to give birth to sudden enlightenment. Only giving up our projects brings about the ultimate, definite, positive state of being, which is the realization that we are already enlightened beings here and now.
– Chögyam Trungpa
from the book “Crazy Wisdom”
The literal meaning of guru yoga is ‘union with the teacher´s nature’. To blend your mind with the teacher’s mind is the most profound of all practices, and the shortest path of realization. It is the life force of the path and the one practice that includes all others. It was through relying on a spiritual teacher that all the bodhisattvas of the past generated the mind of enlightenment and reached perfection.
– Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
from the book “The Heart Treasure of the Enlightened Ones”
You might think you could practice zazen much better if you had no problem, but actually some problem is necessary. It doesn’t have to be a big one. Through the difficulty you have you can practice zazen. This is an especially meaningful point, which is why Dogen Zenji says, “Practice and enlightenment are one.” Practice is something you do consciously, something you do with effort. There! Right there is enlightenment.– Shunryu Suzuki
from the book “Not Always So: Practicing the True Spirit of Zen”
Enlightenment is like the moon reflected on the water. The moon does not get wet, nor is the water broken. Although its light is wide and great, the moon is reflected even in a puddle an inch wide. The whole moon and the entire sky are reflected in one dewdrop on the grass.
– Dogen Zenji
from the book “Dokusan With Dogen: Timeless Lessons in Negotiating the Way”