HERMETIC  - ESOTERIC - MYSTICAL PHILOSOPHIES

DIALOGUE WITH WEI WU WEI

PAGE 3


THE PURE LAND

Is IT possible to be rid of the concept of “other” without at the same time being rid of the concept of  “I”, or to be rid of the concept of “I”' without at the same time being rid of the concept of ”other”?
☼ It is not possible.

With which should one begin?
☼ With neither. An identified subject cannot rid itself of either concept.

That is news, bad news! I thought that was what is required of us?
☼ As well be required to scoop up the moon by baling its reflection out of a puddle!

What then?
☼ Until an identified subject knows what he is, he cannot be expected to realize what he is not.

Cannot I say also that until he knows what he is not, he cannot realize what he is?
☼ You can. You should. You must.

There seems to be no way out!
☼ That is why we are not all Buddhas. If it seemed to be possible should we not have done it long ago?

But there must be a way out!
☼ There is no 'way', and nothing 'out'. It is here and now.

Then what is it?
☼ What it is—is quite obvious.

Not to me.
☼ If you can't find it by looking—don't look, if you can't find it by thinking—don't think! It is where there is no looking, and no thinking.

Because it cannot either be seen or thought?
☼ Not at all.

Why, then?
☼ Not because it cannot be seen or thought, but because there is no 'one' to look or to think!

Then what does one do?
'☼ One' does not do. 'One' does not even cease to do.

And so?
☼ It is better for you to tell me. Is what your identified subject is—anything he can know?

Surely not.
☼ Is what he is—anything he can not-know?

What he is—is not likely to be an object of knowledge.
☼ Can he see, know, or find what he is or what he is not?

I do not think so.
☼ Why is that?

Probably because what he is looking for, trying to know, seeking to find, is what is looking, trying, seeking?
☼ Exactly. That is the answer.

But is it an answer?
☼ It is the only answer. Finding no 'thing', he finds that he is what he is, which is also what he is not.

So that what he is not is what he is?
☼ In so far as words can suggest it.

But does that answer my question?
☼ You asked me how to be rid of the interdependent concepts of 'other' and “I”. They have been mutually abolished.

So that. . . ?
☼ No 'other', no “I”.

And what I am is also what I am not, and what I am not is also what I am! No room for self, no room for other-than-self! Is that not a definition of Nirvana or of the Pure Land?
☼ It is also a definition of the Kingdom of Heaven.

Is there a historical precedent for such an approach?
☼ There are many. For instance when Hui K'o had 'his' supposed mind tranquillized by Bodhidharma, by being unable to find it—that was not the result of his having no mind to find, but because there was no 'he' to have anything. The mind was not missing: it was he that could not be found.

It was mind that was looking for mind and not finding itself as an object?
☼ And not-finding was finding!
 

 An excerpt from the remarkable book: "Open Secret" by Wei Wu Wei 
 Hong Kong University Press

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