Take the sixteen-foot golden body and turn it into a green vegetable leaf. This is a miracle, transforming a green vegetable leaf into the sixteen-foot golden body of thusness. Thusness is “this-very-momentness.” There is no before, there is no after. This moment contains a hundred thousand eons. It is past; it is present; it is future—all at once. And it arrives as it leaves, simultaneously.

This is the miraculous transformation—a work of the Buddha that benefits all sentient beings. This includes you yourself. Do you understand? Do you understand that he is not speaking of eminent masters of the past? He is not speaking of buddhas and ancestors, of Maitreya Buddha of the future. He is describing you and your life with all the blemishes showing as the marvelous mind of nirvana.

It is wonderful to bring yourself to the present moment. But that is not what we are talking about here; we are talking about more than that. We are talking about the present moment filling the universe, reaching everywhere, swallowing this great earth itself so that there is no place to stand, no place to put this gigantic body. Dogen says to the chief cook,

Do not see with ordinary eyes, and do not think with ordinary mind. Take up a blade of grass and construct a Treasure King’s land. Enter into a particle of dust and turn the great Dharma wheel. Do not arouse disdainful mind when you prepare a broth of wild grasses; do not arouse joyful mind when you prepare a fine cream soup. Where there is no disdain, how can there be distaste? Thus do not be careless even when you work with poor materials, and sustain your efforts even when you have excellent materials. Never change your attitude according to the materials.

In other words, always have the utmost respect.