YAMAOKA TESSHU, as a young student of Zen, visited
one master after another. He
called upon Dokuon of Shokoku.
Desiring to show his attainment, he said: "The
mind, Buddha, and sentient beings,
after all, do not exist. The true nature of phenomena
is emptiness. There is no
realization, no delusion, no sage, no mediocrity.
There is no giving and nothing
to be received."
Dokuon, who was smoking quietly, said nothing.
Suddenly he whacked Yamaoka with his bamboo pipe. This made the youth quite
"If nothing exists," inquired Dokuon, "where did
this anger come from?"