The Gateless Checkpoint of the Zen Lineage

Chan Zong Wumen Guan (J. Mumonkan)


By Wumen Huikai (1183-1260, J. Mumon Ekai)


Translated by Gregory Wonderwheel © 2007




15.  Dongshan's Three Beatings


Yunmen: Because Dongshan interviewed in the line, Men asked, "What place did you leave from nearby?”

Shan stated, "Chadu."

Men said "At what place in the summer?"

Shan stated, "Baoci, ‘South of the Lake’ (Hunan Province).”

Men said "When did you leave there?"

Shan stated "The 25th of the Eighth month."

Men said "I release you from three beatings of the stick."

The next day Shan arrived and went up again to ask a question, "I’m unclear why yesterday the venerable released me from three beatings of the stick. I do not know, at what place do I pass through?”

Men said, "Mister Bag of Cooked Rice, ‘West of the River’ (Jaingxi Province) and ‘South of the Lake’ (Hunan Province), how do you go thus?”

At this Shan had a [MM 26] great realization.


Wumen says:  At that time, had Yunmen thus given the root for Dongshan to use separate from the fodder, then another would have given birth to the one-path function and not caused the House of Men to be deserted.  The whole night he came to be directly manifesting in the ocean of right and wrong until the light of day came again. Again he gave his concentration to see through.  Dongshan went directly and awakening issued; his nature was not dry.  Now, I ask you various people, was it fitting for Dongshan to bear three beatings of the stick or not fitting to bear it?  If you say it was fitting to bear, then it is fitting that the whole jungle of grass and trees bear the stick.  If you say it was not fitting to bear, Yunmen again succeeds in his deceiving talk.  If within you are able to clarify this, you are compared with Dongshan to produce air (spirit) from one [and the same] mouth.


The Ode says:

Mister Lion taught the son the enchanting tricks of the trade;

Intending to leap forward, [the son] prematurely faltered and tripped over himself;

Not ending there, he again [MM 27] discussed it and equaled the top trick;

It was as if the front arrow was light, the rear arrow was deep.




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This page last edited September 08, 2007.