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




25. The Third Seat Speaking the Dharma


Venerable Yangshan dreamed of going to Maitreya's place and being placed in the third seat. The Arhat having the first seat with the white-gavel said, "Today the acting third seat will speak the Dharma."

Shan thereupon got up with the white-gavel and said, "The Dharma of the Mahayana leaves the four conditions and cuts off the hundred negations. Hear the truth, truly hear.


Wumen says: Just say, was that speaking the Dharma or not speaking the Dharma? If you open your mouth, you immediately lose by failure; if you shut your mouth, again you lose by death. Not open, not shut; one hundred and eight thousand.


The Ode says:

[MM37]Clear day; blue sky;

In the middle of a dream he tells a dream

Weird shaping, weirdly shaped,

He deceives and admonishes the whole assembly.


Return to the Gateless Checkpoint's Table of Contents


This page last edited September 08, 2007.