Monday, September 21, 2015
When the mind is at peace
By P'ang Yun (Layman P'ang)
(740? - 808)
English version by Stephen Mitchell
When the mind is at peace,
the world too is at peace.
Nothing real, nothing absent.
Not holding on to reality,
not getting stuck in the void,
you are neither holy nor wise, just
an ordinary fellow who has completed his work.
-- from The Enlightened Heart: An Anthology of Sacred Poetry
Layman P'ang chose to be a householder sage rather than a monk in a monastery. Although he had accumulated considerable wealth, he did not keep it. It felt his goods would contaminate whoever he gave it to, so he sent all he owned out on a boat and sank it in the middle of a lake. He and his wife lived frugally thereafter, supporting themselves by making bamboo baskets.