Saturday, June 6, 2009

Book of Changes

A student once asked Shunryu Suzuki Roshi :

“Suzuki Rohi, I’ve been listening to your lectures for years, but I just don’t understand. Could you just put it in a nutshell? Can you reduce Buddhism to one phrase?”

Everyone laughed, Suzuki laughed and said :

“Everything changes.”

(Zen is right here, page 37).

And I wonder: Am I studying the right book?

The I Ching, or Book of Changes has been around since before Buddhism. It is one of the oldest of the Chinese classic texts. It describes an ancient system of cosmology and philosophy intrinsic to ancient Chinese cultural beliefs, centering on the ideas of the dynamic balance of opposites, the evolution of events as a process, and acceptance of the inevitability of change.

Are we not speaking about impermanence here ?

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