Zuigan Calls His Own Master
Zuigan called out to himself every day: `Master.'
Then he answered himself: `Yes, sir.'
And after that he added: `Become sober.'
Again he answered: `Yes, sir.'
`And after that,' he continued, `do not be deceived by others.'
`Yes, sir; yes, sir,' he answered.
Mumon's Comment: Old Zuigan sells out and buys himself. He is
opening a puppet show. He uses one mask to call `Master' and another
that answers the master. Another mask says `Sober up' and another,
`Don't be cheated by others.' If anyone clings to any of his masks, he
is mistaken, yet if he imitates Zuigan, he will make himself fox-like.
Some Zen students do not realize the true man in a mask
Because they recognize ego-soul.
Ego-soul is the seed of birth and death,
And foolish people call it the true man.
A Zen koan from the classic collection The Gateless Gate.
Original transcription by Ben Walter and Adam Fuller of iBiblio.