No Place to Get to

Dharma Discourse by Geoffrey Shugen Arnold Sensei
Blue Cliff Record, Case 99
Suzong's Ten-Body Controller

Featured in Mountain Record 28.4, Summer 2010

The Pointer

When a dragon howls, mist arises; when a tiger roars, wind arises. In the fundamental design of appearing in the world, gold and jade play together; in the strategic action of omnicompetence, arrowpoints meet each other. The whole world is not concealed, far and near are equally revealed, past and present are clearly described. But tell me, whose realm is this? To test, I cite this to see.


The Main Case

Emperor Suzong asked National Teacher Zhong [Nanyang Huizhong], “What is the Ten-Body Controller?”

The National Teacher said, “Patron, walk on Vairochana’s head.”

The emperor said, “I don’t understand.”

The National Teacher said, “Don’t acknowledge your own pure body of reality.”


The Capping Verse

“The Teacher of a Nation” is also a forced name
Nanyang alone may flaunt his good fame:
In Great Tang he helped a real son of heaven—
Once he had him tread upon Vairochana’s head.
Then his iron hammer struck and shattered the golden bones;
Between heaven and earth, what more is there?
The lands and seas of three thousand worlds
by night are still and silent;
I do not know who enters the Blue Dragon’s cave.