PZI Teacher Archives
Deshan's Bowls in Hand (GG1)
Deshan one day descended to the dining hall, bowls in hand. Xuefeng asked him,
“Where are you going with your bowls in hand, Old Teacher? The bell has not rung, and the drum has not sounded.” Deshan turned and went back to his room.
Xuefeng brought up this matter with Yantou. Yantou said, “Deshan, great as he is, does not yet know the last word.”
Hearing about this, Deshan sent for Yantou and asked, “Don’t you approve of this old monk?” Yantou whispered his meaning. Deshan said nothing.
Next day, when Deshan took the high seat before his assembly, his presentation was very different than usual. Yantou came to the front of the hall, rubbing his hands and laughing loudly, saying, “How delightful! Our Old Boss has got old of the last word. From now on, no one under heaven can outdo him!”
—Gateless Gate Case 13
An Invitation to Life – Deshan & His Bowls
PZI Zen Online: An Invitation to Life – Deshan with his bowls coming in at the wrong bell without distress, his complete integration. The universe is always inviting us and it is in that subtle moment ‘before’ the invitation. Koan practice helps us – we are grabbed by a piece of the koan – the universe talking. Play is key, and a willingness to accept that invitation to embrace life. As recorded Aug 3 2020.