Moon and clouds are the same

by Wu Men (Hui-k'ai)

English version by Stephen Mitchell
Original Language Chinese

Moon and clouds are the same;
mountain and valley are different.
All are blessed; all are blessed.
Is this one? Is this two?

-- from The Enlightened Heart: An Anthology of Sacred Poetry, by Stephen Mitchell

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Commentary by Ivan M. Granger

The world, all of life, is like one of those games of visual perspective. Do we see mountains and a valley, or do we see mountains-and-valley? It is all one continuity, but with our mind we separate them into distinct objects of perception. Where is the point of separation? We become so convinced by our own mental concepts of distinction that we hardly ever think to search for the borderline that separates things. Put on your hiking boots and go find the exact point at which mountain becomes valley, always asking yourself, "Is this one? Is this two?"

It is both one and two. In two there is identity and capacity, but in one there is unity and rest.

All are blessed; all are blessed.



Recommended Books: Wu Men (Hui-k'ai)

The Enlightened Heart: An Anthology of Sacred Poetry The Gateless Gate: The Wu-men Kuan The Gateless Barrier: Zen Comments on the Mumonkan The World: A Gateway: Commentaries on the Mumonkan





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