Below are my own Cstan98 study notes. Not mean to replace actual course.
Tsai Chih Chung. Small Fish asks Big Fish: "what is sea?" Answer: "sea is in you. Sea is outside you. You are sea. And sea is you. Everywhere is sea. We are all part of sea."
(*Zen may be Tao Program Universe We are inside. Something like the sea.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Small Wave to Big Wave: "I am so depressed. Everyone is larger. I am so small." Answer: "waves are temporary things. Our true nature is water. Once you know the truth. Sufferings end."
(*all Our Buddha nature is light. Once you know the truth. Sufferings end.)
Tsai Chih Chung. General asks Zen Master: "what is Zen?" Zen Master keeps pouring cup with tea. Tea overflows. General: "Master. It is full!!!" Answer: "you are like the tea cup. So full. How can Zen tea pours inside?"
(*Zen Masters use common events/things to teach.)
Tsai Chih Chung. All Zen Masters after many years of cultivation. When reach enlightenment. All same state statement: "nothingness."
(*for panda. Since 1998. Zen is everythings. But 2019. Still unable to understand every things. Because of information overload.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Buddha wants to select next Mandate Master. Take out a flower and smell. Big Disciple smiles. Rest of Disciples don't know what it means. Buddha: "Big Disciple seize the moment. He is to be next Mandate Master."
(*Heaven Tao says Buddha plays the flower around the enlightenment spot. And only Big Disciple begins starts to know that main point source of Zen. Heaven Tao says that spot is where our light Buddha nature resides.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Buddha asks: "life is how many years? 50? 60? 70? No. It is one breath."
(*because you breathe in. You may be unable to breathe out.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Disciple asks Big Disciple who have Mandate: "what is the secret Buddha pass to you?" Answer: "laundry is dry. Go and collect."
(*because Disciple is too low dan. Need to cultivate common things first.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Little Monk follows Teacher Monk. Teacher Monk carries beautiful female across river. After walking 2 km. Little Monk asks Teacher Monk: "Teacher. Monks are not supposed to carry female. Why you touch that female?" Answer: "I already leave Her at the river side. Why you still carry her for 2 km?"
(*because Teacher Monk heart is to help that Female. Not to touch Her. For me. I don't dare to touch. Panda knows Himself.)
Tsai Chih Chung. General asks Zen Master: "where is Hell?" Zen Master: "you such a stupid General. How to know?" General so angry. Open his sword want to kill Zen Master. Answer: "you are now entering Hell." General calms down and apologizes. Answer: "you are now entering Heaven."
(*Heaven or Hell. It is all state of mind.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Official go to 2 z/Zen Master/s to ask for discipleship. One Zen Master: "you so stupid. Can never enter Zen." Another zen master: "don't worry. I can teach you." Official chooses Zen Master who says stupid can never enter Zen.
(*Panda: "Zen is both easy/difficult to enter. But enter once. It is like drinking cold/ice Coke Zero.")
Tsai Chih Chung. Disciple asks Zen Master: "after you die. Where you go?" Answer: "Hell. Or else who go down to teach You."
(*don't you feel Hell is where Buddha are most needed.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Painter paints bamboo painting for Customer. Customer: "but it is in red. Should be in black." Answer: "whoever see black bamboo?" Exit.
(*you say it is wrong. But your right may be wrong also.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Person asks Zen Master to write lucky poems. Zen Master: "Grandfather dies. Father dies. Son dies." Person: "how can this be lucky?" Answer: "each generation dies naturally accordingly. Is it not lucky?"
(*unlucky is lucky. Lucky is unlucky. Depend on how you see them.)
Tsai Chih Chung. 4 Little Disciples staring at a candle at night. Their Rule is not to speak. A wind comes to blow away the candle fire. First: "fire is extinguishing." Second: "you must not talk." Third: "why are you people talking?" Fourth: "only I not talk."
(*when you point out others mistake. You are also pointing out your mistake.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Disciple shows off to Zen Master: "I am nothingness." Zen Master hits his head with rod. Disciple angrily: "why you hit me for?" Answer: "nothingness where come this Temper?"
(*mouth reach. Heart not reach.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Someone wants to become Disciple. Zen Master: "You go & administer to Your Buddha at home first. When You go home. You find Her in blanket with only one shoe." So that Person goes back home at late night. His Mother is so happy that Son is back. Run out of house to greet Him. In blanket dropping one slipper.
(*respect Your Parents first. Before coming to respect Buddha.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Disciple asks 6th Zen Master about Scripture verse. 6th Zen Master: "you read to me first. I am unable to read." Disciple: "you don't words. How to understand Scripture?" Answer: "words are like a finger pointing to moon. You can just look at moon."
(*go directly to the source of Teachings.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A thief disciple is caught stealing again. Everyone wants to chase him out of Temple. Zen Master: "cannot. If you all leave. I still keep him. Because Everyone understands Truth. But he is most pitiful. Don't understand."
(*me thinks that why JESUS CHRIST go for that lost sheep. Abandoning the good 99 sheep.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A thief robs Zen Master. Zen Master: "money is in drawer. After take. Say thank you." After few days. Police brings the thief to Zen Master: "this guy steals your money?" Answer: "no. I give them to him. And he says thank you." The thief is so touched. After prison. Repented to become a Disciple.
(*touch hardcore criminals.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Person plays music. A listener: "don't understand. What is meaning of that music?" So Person replays whole music again. Answer: "that is the meaning of that music."
(*some Teachings like Scriptures. You must read very fast to complete everythings. Then you understand the meanings of overall.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Disciple asks Zen Master: "what do you call Person who know something unable to say." Answer: "Mute eating honey." Disciple asks again: "what do you call Person who knows nothing but say a lots." Answer: "like you a parrot who talks a lots."
(*Panda is a Parrot who everyday takes honey.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Disciple breaks Zen Master favourite cup. Disciple asks Zen Master: "why do things die?" Answer: "it is Universe natural causes & effects of events." Disciple shows pieces of cup: "your cup dies." Quickly run away.
(*when face with a difficult event. Make a Zen Joke out of it.)
Tsai Chih Chung. General Jack goes to see Zen Master. Tell His Disciple: "General Jack is here to see Zen Master." Zen Master: "I do not know a General Jack." So General Jack tells His Disciple again: "Friend Jack is here to see Zen Master." Zen Master comes out to meet Him.
(*when You enter Buddha ground. Outside Buddha Jedi dan must be put aside.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Doctor mental breakdown. Because Soldiers He cures. Keep getting injuries to come back to cure. And finally They die. Doctor reasons: "if They suppose to die. Why I need to cure Them in first place?" So He goes into Zen for few years. After that practice medicine again. Answer: "because I am a Doctor."
(*why Panda needs to earn so much money. When all money all to be gone in lawsuits. Answer: "because I am Founder & CEO Panda.")
Tsai Chih Chung. Old Lady everyday comes to pray Buddha. Same recite: "when are You Buddha to take me to Heaven?" So one day. Little Monk makes fun behind Buddha statue replies: "fetching You tonite." Old Lady dies of heart attack.
(*You pray so much to go Heaven. When God is fetching You. Are you ready to die?)
Tsai Chih Chung. Person goes through valleys to find Zen Master. Ask: "how to enter Zen?" Answer: "where the valley hear sounds. Enter through there."
(*heart of the valley. In fact. Heart of everythings = Zen.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Every war. General throw a coin in front of Temple: "head win. Tail lose." Always get head. Whole Army: "gods are with Us!!!" General shows 2 sided head coin: "is it?"
(*fate is in Our hands.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Person asks Zen Master: "how many years need to cultivate to enter Zen?" Answer: "10 years." Person: "if I work double hard. How many years?" Answer: "20 years." So Person: "if I use all my might. How many years?" Answer: "30 years."
(*harder you try to enter Zen. Harder it becomes.)
Tsai Chih Chung. General is playing with favourite antique cup. When almost drop. Almost have heart attack. General reasons He not scare in all death war situation. Why now this cup? General reasons it is His attachment to that cup. So General throws & breaks cup.
(*break all cups. If You want to be a good General.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Old Zen Master before dying: "I know Our Zen School. There is no Scriptures. But I am passing a Scripture pass down from generations of Zen Masters." New Zen Master throws that Scripture into fire: "what are you saying?"
(*do You practice what You preach.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Musician all along playing chinese violin. Only His Friend can understand the music. After His Friend dies. Musician to chinese violin: "now no one understand you." Kill and destroy the chinese violin.
(*even Tsai Chih Chung/Panda knows how to tell Zen Stories. If no readers like You People understand. Not much We can do.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Blindman carries lamp walking very fast at night. Bump into Someone. Scold that Person: "can't You see lamp." Answer: "that lamp already extinguishes."
(*Those who tell Zen Stories. Must be able to see also. Or else. It just like a blindman carrying extinguished lamp Zen Stories.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master comes home. Discover thief checking through His belongings. Zen Master: "I only have this valuable thing. My Zen Uniform. Take it." After thief leaves. Zen Master: "I wish I can give Him the moon also."
(*thieves steal from you. Because previous debts. The faster no thief. The faster no debts.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Disciple is fetching hot water for Zen Master bathing tub. Zen Master: "water is too cold." So Disciple starts pouring away cold water down the drain. Zen Master: "why don't you pour the water to water the flowers?" Disciple gains Zen Enlightenment then.
(*nothing goes to waste. Even rubbish can still be used. Buddha House thing are all donations from Donors.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Man is standing on top of hill. 3 Strangers ask Him why he stands down there? Is it for fresh airs? Is it waiting for a Friend? Is it for the view? Answer: "just standing here."
(*when Zen Masters talk. Each word out. Should be Zenly.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Person while running from bandits. Fall into deep cliff. So Person starts climbing up plant vine. Person sees tiger below want to eat Him. Further up the cliff have 2 poisonous cobras waiting for him. And 2 rats on top of cliff is chewing the plant vine. Then Person see a cherry at His cliff level. Person just eats enjoys the cherry. Forgetting all his troubles.
(*past = tiger. The future = cobras. Time running = rats chewing on plant vine. The moment is now = that cherry in mouth.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Wrestler in practice always wins everyone. But in actual contests. Lose to even weakest opponents. So Wrestler consults Zen Master. Zen Master: "you just imagine you are a big wave. Sweeping all your opponents." Since then. Wrestler always wins.
(*visualization techniques have been widely used by modern Success Guru like Brian Tracy.)
Tsai Chih Chung. 80 years old Zen Master is found farming under hot sun. Person: "why You work under hot sun." Answer: "because I am here. And sun is there."
(*answer to that moment.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Disciple asks Zen Master: "are You able to paint mind?" Zen Master use brush with ink point at His Enlightenment Spot in His head. Disciple angrily: "what are You doing?" Zen Master paints His angry face: "this is the mind." Disciple asks Zen Master: "are You able to paint Buddha Nature?" Answer: "You show me Buddha Nature. I paint for You."
(*Panda Understanding of Buddha Nature = it is light energy. With Body + Buddha Nature = come the mind emotions.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master always walks past Old Lady. Always find Her crying. Ask why? Old Lady: "when rain. My Elder Daughter shoe business no business. So I cry. When shine. My Younger Daughter umbrella business no business. So I cry also." Zen Master laughs falls down. Answer: "You should when rain. Think of Your Younger Daughter good umbrella business. When shine. Think of Your Eldest Daughter good shoe business." Since then. Old Lady is forever laughing.
(*it is just the thinkings. Change the thinkings. Change the daily emotions.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A robber robs Zen Master. Zen Master: "you here for money or life?" The robber: "money." Zen Master: "take it. Remember to close door while leaving." The robber to friends: "I never so scare like hell (of robbing that Zen Master.)"
(*because Zen Master never done anythings wrong. So need not scare.)
Tsai Chih Chung. General has been fighting wars all these years. After He enters Zen: "mountains/rivers don't change. What change is my heart."
(*heart changes. Everythings change.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen monk writes love letter to Zen Nun. Zen Nun in public: "if you so love me. Come and hug me." That Zen monk is torn between his love for Her & Zen no sex cultivation.
(*face your discord head on in public.)
Tsai Chih Chung. An emperor asks Zen Master: "this nature is Buddha Nature right?" Zen Master: "if I say yes. You think you know correctly. If I say no. I am denying what Everyone says." The emperor: "after death. Where do Zen Masters go?" Zen Master: "don't know. Because I am not dead yet."
(*answer as a matter of fact.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Swordman has been expert in sword fighting all these years. It is said. In His Old Ages. He fights anythings without a sword. Because everythings are His sword.
(*everything is a weapon.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A man approaches Zen Master: "after I quit all bad habits. I become Zen Monk with You." Answer: "ok." After few years. Approach Zen Master saying He is ready. Zen Master: "faster you become Zen Monk. Faster your wife sleep with someone." The man becomes angry. Zen Master: "you are not ready yet."
(*it is true. To become Zen Monk. Your Wife becomes Someone assets.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A big spider always come to disturb Zen Monk when mediating. So Zen Master asks Him to write a circle of that big spider when it is there. After leaving mediation. He discovers the circle is in his tummy.
(*you are your greatest heart disturbances.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A farmer while farming discovers a golden sub-sub-buddha statue. That golden statue is part of collection of 18 statues. Although he becomes very rich selling that statue. He become very depressed saying because he doesn't know where is the rest of 17 statues.
(*greed worry have no end.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A richman always very stingy. Zen Monk asks him if fist is forever a fist what is that. The richman: "deformed." Zen Monk asks again if fist is forever flat palm what is that. The richman: "deformed." Zen Monk leaves then. Richman ponders what the meaning for a few days. Since then. Open treasury and donates money to all poor.
(*fist = stingy it is actually poorman. Palm = spendthift it is actually poorman also. Best is Zen Balance can fist and palm.)
Tsai Chih Chung. 2 Zen Temple are fighting. Zen Monk A asks Zen Monk B: "where You are going." Answer: "where my legs bring me." Teacher asks Zen Monk A to answer what happens if He has no legs. Next day. Answer: "where the winds bring me." Teacher asks Zen Monk A to answer what happens if there is no winds. Next day. Answer: "to the market."
(*flow with the flow. So that satan the devil cannot have a foothold.)
Tsai Chih Chung. When night clouds clear & moon appears. Zen Master laughs so loud that 10 km away everyone can hear the laughters. Everyone asks what is that last night. All Zen Monks: "that is last night Our Master Enlightenment Laugh."
(*when merge with Zen. Everythings become amplified.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Everyone expects Zen Master to give a lecture. But instead Zen Master just leave the crowd without speaking a word. Answer: "I am not Scripture Master. I am Zen Master. And Zen has no words."
(*sometimes silence speak louder than words.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A scholar visits Zen Master after hearing so many things about Him. When see Him. Want to leave finding Zen Master just a common man. Zen Master: "you believe your ears more than your eyes." So scholar apologies and asks what is Zen? Zen Master: "cloud in sky. Water in bottle."
(*Zen is permutations changes of Universe.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Man is shown to the gate at Zen Temple. Snows is falling. Man: "each snow falls to its rightful places." Zen Attendants: "and what places are that?" Man slaps Zen Attendants: "you call yourselves Students of Zen?"
(*all my words letters fall into rightful places. Please slap yourself. If you deserve to be slapped.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Monk comes for famous Stone Bridge of Zen Temple. All He finds is a wooden log bridge. When ask why? Zen Master: "it is called Stone Bridge. Because many Beings cross into Zen Enlightenment."
(*this Website is Zen teleporter portal.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Monk practices first few days. Ask what is cultivation? Zen Master: "you taken breakfast. Go and wash the bowl."
(*when taking breakfast. It is cultivation. When washing bowl. It is cultivation.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Man asks what is cultivation. Zen Master: "I just eat and sleep." Man: "you call that Cultivation?" Zen Master: "You guess what I do everyday."
(*eat with Zen heart. Sleep with Zen heart. It is all about controlled thoughts.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Monk: "when does a tree become Buddha?" Zen Master: "when sky falls to earth." Zen Monk: "when does sky falls to earth?" Zen Master: "when tree becomes Buddha."
(*when it takes too long time. Need to use cyclic teachings.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "all things return to one. Where does one return to?" Zen Master: "I see Zen Uniform 7000 Kg in weight."
(*a very heavy question.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "what is Zen Temple." Zen Master: "eastern gate. Western gate. Northern gate. Southern gate."
(*Zen Master sees things at higher level.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student asks where is Zen Temple? Old Lady: "just walk straight. Don't turn left. Don't turn right." Zen Student to Zen Master: "that Old Lady seems to be enlightened in Zen." Zen Master: "no. Isn't Zen Temple in front of You People."
(*Zen Enlightenment has higher and higher levels.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "what is Buddha Nature?" Zen Master: "tree in the courtyard." Zen Student: "please don't use figure speech. What is Buddha Nature?" Zen Master: "I am not using figure speech. Tree in courtyard."
(*because Zen Master Buddha Nature is seeing now the tree in courtyard.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "what the meaning of Zen?" Zen Master: "just like you going toilet is a personal thing. Can I go toilet for you."
(*You have to find meaning of Zen yourself.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "I drop everythings. I am so in empty." Zen Master: "drop the thought." Zen Student: "I drop everythings. Where got thing?" Zen Master: "then keep it as you wish."
(*drop the drop-thoughts thought also.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master asks all Visitors in Zen Temple. First time here or old timers. Regardless of answers. Ask Them to go in to have tea. Zen Student: "why all same go in to have tea?" Zen Master: "you go in and have tea."
(*having tea is quiet time in Zen.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Northern Sect Zen is about Scriptures. Southern Sect Zen is about no words. Northern Sect Zen Monk comes south to challenge Southern Sect Zen. As Northern Sect Zen Monk asks Old Lady along the way for a snack donations. Old Lady: "there is 3 times of heart (snacks). Past/Present/Future. Which heart (snacks) you want?" Northern Sect Zen Monk is dumbfounded. When Northern Sect Zen Monk reaches Southern Sect Zen Temple. Southern Zen Master says give Him a candle light to bedroom. But immediately blow away the candle light. Next morning. Northern Sect Zen Monk gains Enlightenment and burns aways all His Scriptures He is carrying.
(*when you have no external light to depend on. Your internal lights shine the brightest.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Masters uses shout and shout back to tell Zen. But all Zen Students shouts at each others. Don't know meaning. So Zen Master: "if 2 persons repeat shout at each other. Who is Teacher? Who is Student? If you people do not know. Please do not imitiate my shouts."
(*shouts are just to halt thoughts to gain Zen moments.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master to Zen Student: "sometimes a shout is like a roaring lion. Sometimes a shout is like a luring fish. Do you undertand?" Zen Student don't understand. Zen Master shouts at Student
(*don't go for the stone. Go for the heart of stone thrower.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master visits pagoda. Zen people stations there: "you want to pay respect to Buddha first or 1st Zen Master first?" Zen Master: "neither." And Left.
(*because the people respect building. Don't respect Zen.)
Tsai Chih Chung. When Old Zen Master passes away. Zen Monk asks Zen Master: "where is Old Zen Master?" Zen Master: "cannot say He is alive or dead." Zen Monk: "why cannot say." Zen Master: "cannot say mean cannot say." Zen Monk is so angry beat Zen Master up. When Zen Master passes away next. A Zen Visitor says same thing: "cannot say He is alive or dead." Zen Monk gains enlightenment. And He is seem walking up and down Temple Hall trying to bury Zen Master.
(*He is not alive to to Us. He is not dead to Himself in another world.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master cultivates alone. One day a beautiful Zen Nun: "if You can say one Zen thing. I take my hat off." Zen Master does not know what to say. Zen Nun: "since you unable to answer. I take leave." And leave. Zen Master becomes very depressed for unable to answer. Have a dream. Old Zen Master: "why don't you just point your finger up. That is Zen Truth." Ever since Zen Master point finger up to everyone.
(*because all is Zen Light Truth.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master always point a finger up to all Zen Temple Visitors. So Little Zen Monk when Zen Master not around. Point a finger up to Visitors also. So Zen Master cut off his finger. And when ask to show Zen Truth. He is unable to show.
(*the finger is pointing to Zen Master Zen level.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master: "a Man mouth bites a tree trunk. Everyone asks Him what is Zen? If He answers. He falls off from tree and dies. If He doesn't answer. He is being disrespectful. So what to do." Zen Student: "I asks how he get up there to bite the tree trunk."
(*if you tell what is Zen. You loses your Zen level. If you don't tell. You are not being compassionate. So teach People to your Zen level.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student asks Zen Master: "is there any differences in Scriptures and what Mandate Zen Masters say." Zen Master: "birds rests in nest. Ducks dive into pond."
(*Zen is just permutations of the Truth.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "how can I experience Buddha Nature." Zen Master: "when Zen Master calls a Person in house. That Person calls back out sounding through all doors/windows."
(*Buddha Nature is all 6 senses.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Monk asks Zen Master cutting grass at roadside the way to Zen Temple. Zen Master: "I pay 3 dollars for this cutter." Zen Student: "I am not asking the cutter. But for way to Zen Temple." Zen Master: "the cutter is very sharp."
(*if You can get to Zen Master. Why get to empty Zen Temple?)
Tsai Chih Chung. Scholar read 10,000 Classics. Ask Zen Master: "according to Scripture. How does whole Universe fits into a mustard seed." Zen Master: "then how you fit 10,000 Classics into your mind."
(*life essences are in the mustard seed.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A widow feeds Zen Monk behind house hut. After few years. Ask his beautiful Daughter to hug Zen Monk asking what He feels. Zen Monk: "feel like a wooden block." The widow burns the hut saying I feed a wooden block for all these years.
(*Panda: "feel warm and soft. But cannot endure.")
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student every morning tells Himself: "Master... Be alert... Don't get trick by people... Will do."
(*if You cannot find any Zen Master. Be a Zen Master to Self.)
Tsai Chih Chung. 80 years old asks Zen Master: "how to cultivate?" Zen Master: "good do. Evil don't do." 80 years old: "even 3 years old know that." Zen Master: "3 years old know. 80 years old don't know."
(*simple truth things are most difficult to do.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student asks Zen Master: "how to cultivate?" Zen Master: "time to eat eat. Time to sleep sleep." Zen Student: "isn't that what everyone does." Zen Master: "but everyone does with many desires. We are supposed to do without desires."
Tsai Chih Chung. Wandering Zen Monk is wandering around searching for Zen Truth. At pig meat store. Someone asks butcher: "give me a good piece of meat." The butcher: "everywhere is good meat." Wandering Zen Monk gains Enlightenment.
(*everywhere there is Zen.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student asks Zen Master: "what is Zen?" Zen Master: "I don't hide anythings from You. Come with me into the forest... Do You smell the flowers?" Answer yes. Zen Master: "then I never conceal anything from You."
(*Zen is all 6 senses at this moment.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student asks Zen Master: "what is fundamental meaning of Zen?" Zen Master: "when no one around. I tell you." When no one around. Zen Master points to bamboo plants: "some bamboo are tall. Some bamboo are short."
(*Some are high dan. Some are low dan.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Old Zen Master is farming in farmlands. When ask why so tired? Old Zen Master: "Someone needs it." When ask why don't ask that person to do it? Old Zen Master: "He needs me to help along."
(*Zen Talk as a matter of facts. That person is himself.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Old Zen Master is pouring tea. When ask why he is pouring? Old Zen Master: "Someone needs it." When ask why don't ask that person to do it? Old Zen Master: "I am here."
(*Zen Talk as a matter of facts. That person is himself.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Raining outside Zen Master asks what is outside. Zen Student: "raining." Zen Master: "all beings upside down in senses." Zen Student: "then what am I suppose to feel." Zen Master: "I am raining."
(*raining and You become one Zen.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Official asks Zen Master: "what is everyday We are using. And still don't know." Zen Master asks Him to eat a nut. Zen Master: "this is it. You everyday eats. And still don't know."
(*Zen is knowing all senses at that moment.)
Tsai Chih Chung. People asks Zen Master what He gains from 6th Zen Master. Zen Master: "I gain nothing." Then ask Him why He still goes there. Zen Master: "if I never go there. I don't know I need nothing."
(*everyone Buddha Nature is self sufficient.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master: "2 persons walk in rain. Not 1 person get wet. Why? Because both 2 persons get wet."
(*don't get trick by words.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "Old Zen Master says there is no Heaven and Earth. But You say there is Heaven and Earth." Zen Master: "Old Zen Master does not have Wife and Children. But You have. So talking in different terms."
(*no sex Zen Monks have less up and down. So no Heaven and Hell.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Wandering Zen Monk loses way in mountains. Find Old Zen Master. Ask how long been here? Old Zen Master: "leaves turn yellow and drop." Ask how to get out from mountains. Old Zen Master: "you just follow flow of river."
(*a sign of attainment of Zen. Is You able to talk without attachments.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master: "if you take step forward. You lose materials goods. If you take step backward. You lose Zen. If you don't move. You are not improving. What you do? ... Take one step forward then one step backward."
(*same time stroke.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Monk is very hardworking but lack sense of humour. Zen Master: "you remember your last Zen Teacher. He falls into river. And says dirts wash from Buddha Nature. Hahaha..." And leave. Zen Monk become sleepless for many nights don't know why Zen Master laughs. Zen Master: "clowns love people to laugh. But You scare of people to laugh."
(*Zen Masters have high sense of humour.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Monk is feeling cold. So take some Buddha statues to burn. Stationing Zen Monk: "why you burning our Buddha statues." Zen Monk: "just seeing whether statue can burn out buddha essences gems." Stationing Zen Monk: "how can wooden statues burn out buddha essences gems." Zen Monk: "then let burn the rest also."
(*it is not external statues. But internal hearts.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Monk to Zen Master: "is that Zen Monk wrong to burn Buddha statues." Zen Master: "when cold burn wood." Zen Monk: "then He is not wrong." Zen Master: "when hot under bamboo shade."
(*We should not burn Buddha statues when We are not cold desperate.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "how can I get Universe to come to me?" Zen Master: "You should return to the Universe."
(*small should go to big.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "is there eternal truth when everythings pass away." Zen Master: "flowers bloom like silk cloth patterns. River looks still when they are flowing."
(*Zen Masters tell things which make you think and smile.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student greets Zen Master farewell. Say He is going elsewhere to search for Zen Truth. Zen Master: "I also have a Zen Truth here." And take out a loose thread.
(*Zen Truth are everywhere.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master: "are You able to catch nothingness?" So Zen Student graps mid airs. Zen Master: "wrong. But be like that." And graps Zen Student nose.
(*everythings are nothingness. Why not grap something?)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student asks Zen Master: "what is Buddha?" Zen Master: "fire god comes ask for fire." Zen Student: "I get it!!! I get it!!!" So Zen Master asks Him what He gets. Zen Student: "I am Buddha. Looking for Buddha. Correct?" Zen Master: "You still don't get it." Zen Student becomes confused because He knows He is right. So ask again: "what is Buddha?" Zen Master: "fire god comes ask for fire." Zen Student: "this time I really get it!!! I really get it!!!"
(*because Zen Student asks correct? Still has doubts. Not a Buddha)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "all roads lead to Buddha Heaven. I need to start from where." Zen Master uses staff to draw a line on ground in front of Zen Student: "start here."
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Student: "cold winter We go where? Hot summer We go where?" Zen Master: "when cold winter turn yourself into cold. When hot summer turn yourself to hot. Then you have no cold no hot."
(*You are what You feel.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Nun: "must cultivate how long so next life I become male Monk." Zen Master: "what are you?" Zen Nun: "all these years everyone knows me is a Zen Nun." Zen Master: "how I know."
(*Buddha nature has no male no female.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Monk leave Zen Temple visits Other Zen Master. Zen Monk asks First Zen Master: "what is Zen?" First Zen Master: "3 kg of rice plants." Confused. Zen Monk asks Second Zen Master: "what is Zen?" Second Zen Master: "flowers bloom silk patterns." Confused. He goes back to Original Zen Master. Original Zen Master: "go for sources of Zen Teachings. Zen Student should go for Persons who throws stones. Not go to the stones."
(*why that Zen Masters say that. What are Their reasons for saying that.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master: "a cow pass through small window. First his horns. Then head. Then body. Then legs. But his tail gets stuck at window hole."
(*almost Zen through. Just your tail part.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master: "before Universe creation is formless. Then power over all things. Never change through the 4 seasons."
(*there is eternal fixed principles in all these changes flows.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Zen Master: "do not let one day clear moon block emptiness. Do not let emptiness block one day clear moon. One day clear moon = at this moment."
(*live at this moment.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Snake head has always been leading the way. One day snake tail wants to lead. Or else coil to tree don't let snake head move. So snake head let snake tail leads. Finally snake falls down a cliff and die.
(*Zen Teachers should lead Zen Students. Not the other ways round.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Frog King says flies are created as foods for frogs population. Pond waters are created as drinks for frogs population. Everythings are created for frogs population. Then a snake appears and eat a frog. Frog King says even snake is created for frogs population. Or else frogs population become too many.
(*everythings are created for Us.)
Tsai Chih Chung. Buddha in Heaven sees down a well. See many beings burning in Hell. A Hell being cry to Buddha for help. Buddha sees his past good deed. Last time. This hell being doesn't want to step on a spider. So Buddha let a spider thread go down to Hell to take that Hell being up. As Hell being is climbing up. Many others follow suit. So that Hell being cut off rope below him. Say the thread is for him alone. Then Buddha also cut the spider thread on top also.
(*sometimes your bad over shadows the only good you do.)
Tsai Chih Chung. A man is starving in famine years. No choice take out a knife to rob. The man finds a old lady no choice plucking out dead females hairs to sell. So the man says he is also no choice to rob the old lady only piece of clothing.
(*before no choice. You must quickly make a choice to before that no choice)