Song of Freedom
(Based on the Shodoka, or Cheng-Tao-Ko, by Yongjia)
Here comes Mr. Natural, at ease as you please, walking the Talk by keeping quiet and letting his feet do the speaking, not running toward or away, just walking on.
The essence of confusion and wisdom is identical, this dusty skin bag is Light’s own body!
When we finally see how things really are, what words can we muster to describe nothing?
We all share the same original innocence, that’s why the truth is so true.
Thoughts and sensations change like the weather -- the night sky doesn’t complain when the stars come out.
When we eventually sober up a little, concepts like me and mine, self and other, past and future no longer have the juice to intoxicate us.
Even that’s a tale – really, nothing happens.
See for yourself! Once we open our eyes, everything is obvious.
In the dream, there’s plenty of drama. When we awaken, where does it all go?
Ups and downs, profit and loss – none of it can touch our immaculate peace.
We’ve all heard about polishing the mirror, but wait, look directly – there is no mirror. That’s what I call clean!
Who am I? If I’m truly neither this nor that, I’m this and that too.
Ask a corpse to explain itself! How can we find ourselves by searching outside ourselves?
Give up the struggle – relax.
Everything changes. When we resist, we suffer. What more do you need to know?
Recognizing and understanding the intimate relationship between what changes and what doesn’t is wisdom; actualizing it is love.
If you don’t agree, it doesn’t matter. Life clarifies itself.
Even being in opposition is not being in opposition. It’s all one thing! No, not even that! It’s easy, don’t worry!
We’re lived by mystery, empty and marvelous – don’t try to figure out perfection with mind, just rest in it, in harmony, surrendered, released of any complication.
Beyond fear and desire, just be.
The wise don’t linger in concepts, regrets, plans, or frowns.
In this way, they’re like children – clinging to nothing, rejecting nothing.
Since there is no other, they go on their way, unnoticed. Since everyone is inherently free, they’re inconspicuous in their absence.
Truth is simple and open to all. Those who understand may not be rich, but they’re happy.
What better gift to share than one’s own original beauty?
To earnest seekers, all self-images are like tattered old costumes that never quite fit. They appreciate the naked freedom of their own unself-conscious nature – they’ve got nothing to prove.
People say all sorts of things, but what’s prior to the first word? Let them say what they will – the extent of any reactivity is a good test of true equanimity.
To become a natural human being, don’t linger in any provisional state or get bogged down in beliefs.
This is actually the way of things – fluid, dynamic, non-dwelling.
Most get frightened when they contemplate their own impermanence, but a rare one now and then wakes up laughing in the midst of the dream.
Walking, sitting, speaking, silent – it’s all the same. Let the Wheel spin. When raining, rain, when shining, shine.
I don’t mind.
When the arrow hit home, there was nobody there – not even a forwarding address.
What care I for fame or disgrace – the arrow does the work.
In the grace of supreme beauty, radiance, I discovered my own.
It is not mine, this love is for everyone. All revolve in perfection within me. There is no coming or going, all are already home.
No need for a pat on the back, who’s patting whom?
“Who knew it would be like this?”
What more can one say?
The moon still shines, the wind still blows – this light belongs to no one.
I am flowing water, following a course carved out by the Great One. I do not seek the truth – the truth moves me.
Neither empty nor full, my form is the form of the Real.
When I drop this form, nothing has changed. What has no beginning has no end.
Clarity – all is limitless light, mirrored in spotless mind.
Listen closely, Holy Friends – clinging to anything is taking false refuge. Running away amounts to the same.
Non-dwelling is living without limits, without borders, without chains. Grasping at any experience, concept, strategy, or identity is nothing but an amnesiac’s fantasy games.
Some long for the marriage of heaven and earth, yet who has the peace of mind to contemplate the mutual penetration of the known and the unknown within the sphere of ordinary activity?
Natural and spontaneous, it proceeds without delay or impediment, granting the universe the power to exist. Past, present, and future are included in one glance, all emerges from one mysterious gesture, thrives, dissolves – ecstasy!
What says, "I am"? It's not mind, a teaching, or a word – right here, before the tongue moves!
No praise, no blame, eternally serene. No way to it, no way out of it. The only stubborn obstacle -- our pretense of self.
The only recourse: understanding and discarding that fiction.
See through that one, and all is understood. The one and the all are not different – only appearances blind us to what’s what.
Just keep walking – if anyone asks directions, point to the heart. Yours and theirs are not two. Looking elsewhere, it’s completely missed.
I hail from a long line of jugglers who toss batons of existence and non-existence in a teeming carnival of ineffable light.
Don't ask me what I know – I just work here. When I jettison everything I think I know, I just might become honest and genuine.
The Real is direct and immediate – that's why it's so easily missed. Still, why complain? That only compounds the befuddlement. Just be grateful -- without reason. Gratitude itself is reason enough!
Nothing is as it appears. Whatever appears, I am not. Nor am I any different.
If this is not comprehended, the dream goes on. If this is comprehended, the dream still goes on. Let's be clear – the dream never ends, only the dreamer disappears.
For years I tried to figure it out, with efforts mounted against the wind. Finally, I gave up the struggle. Now the breeze blows through me.
I relaxed and just let go.
A closed fist opened.
Spirit breathed out.
This breath is for all.