This blog presents Kando Inoue roshi's activities, mainly his dharma talks of shobogenzo in English. Kando is the top advocate of shobogenzo by Zen Master Dogen.


 The observation that mind is without constancy” To observe the mind is without constancy. Although the word "mind" is used here, it is not the kind of word that people commonly think of when they think of something. The word "mind" refers to all things, right? It is a pronoun that refers to everything. I'm sure you're all well aware of the term "impermanence," without constancy. If you take a closer look at life itself, it's already obvious. There is no one who is doing what has just been done. All in all, no matter where you look in your body, there is not a single person who is doing what we just did. So that's the way it's made. What are we obsessed with? Where do we get caught up in and worry about? There's nothing to worry about. There's nothing left. There's nothing left to problematize. That is the state of impermanence. You don't see impermanence that way, do you? Being without constancy, it's not enough to be what you think it is, it's boring. Look truly. You really have to see it. To put it nicely, people do things they've never experienced before, and that's what it means to be alive.

It's the first time I've seen something like this. (He looks around the room.) It's different from what I saw earlier. What I saw a moment ago is what I did a moment ago. I do it now, for the first time, ever. I've never done this before, not once. And yet, this head is saying again, again, again. I don't see it that way. There's nothing like what happened before, at a time like this. It is the whole body. It's not just the human body, as mentioned here in the word "mind," everything is acting in such a way. This is called seeing the impermanence of the mind. As a way of studying, if you make it this far, you will surely feel clearer.

“The old Buddha Sokei says “Non constancy is the Buddha-nature.” It is said that because there is such a thing, when we truly understand the state of this impermanent, we can know exactly what the Buddha really realized. “Therefore, non-constancy understood by various things is also the Buddha-nature.” You might say that all things are impermanent and impermanent, but the contents are made in this way. It's such a simple thing, but people think that things that happened a while ago, things that happened years ago, are still coming up. You think like I am talking. It's not that it's really happening, but you' re thinking that way. You are just thinking, such things, like that, in the way of thinking. In the reality, there is not such a thing. The question is whether or not you can see the mind to that extent, and whether or not you can correctly see the state of things. That is what this practice is all about. In the Four Abodes of Mind fulness “the observation that mind is without constancy” is.
There is a man in China named Great Master Yoka Shinkaku in China.
There is a saying that he left behind. “All things are impermanent, all is empty.” He says that all activities, various things, there is really only the appearance of activity now, and nowhere else later, even though that activity has taken place, there is no trace of it. Emptiness. “Just this is the Tathagata’s Great and Perfect realization.” The Buddha's enlightenment is wonderful like that, he says so.
“The present observation that mind is non-constancy is the Tathagata’s Great and Perfect realization,” When we realize that the way we are now is really just unfolding now, we can definitely be saved.
There's no way to fix what's going on right now. Okay? CLAP! (He claps his hands) You can't hear this sound again. CLAP! It's all done. CLAP! Even though it doesn't do anything. CLAP! It's good that you can hear exactly as it sounds. It's not like you can only hear half of it. Everything is exactly as it should be, there is no shortage of things, as it is said Great and Perfect realization. That's what it looks like. That' s what is clear. “Kaku; realization” is being enlightened. It is self-awareness. There is no need to deal with, it's made in such a way that there's no need to fix it. What would you do if you noticed something wrong and fixed it? What if there is a person who has the ability to fix things, and when he sees something wrong here, he fixes it immediately? If he fixes it as soon as he sees it, the mistake will never be noticed.
Let me tell you something about the body. If there are people who treat their pain as if it is not painful when it is painful, or if there are people who take it as if it is not painful when it is, they will not be able to recognize their own body or illness. It looks good, when you're in pain, it looks better if it doesn't hurt, but when it hurts, it really hurts, and if you try to fix it, then you won't know, even when you go to the doctor. If you have a pain here(A) and you change it to a pain around here(B), and you say, "It hurts here(B)," they say, "What? It's nothing.” They will send you home. In the reality, it hurt here(A). But humans are that kind of animals, aren't we? When something is wrong, you try to make it right. That's not true. The only way to make things right is to make it clear that what is wrong is wrong, right? It is the saints who can recognize a mistake as a mistake. Ordinary people cover up their mistakes. That is an ordinary person. This kind of thing comes out in these parts.
“Mind, even if it intends not to observe,” We try to not see things, to not see such things.  However, as it is said, “it follows the others,” we are always living together with all the movements, so it is impossible for us to be here all alone. Look around you. See how you are here now. You are living with all things as your content. We are not living without tatami mats. We are not living without the room. We are not living without all this air. Yes, we really don't know how much of it is the way of us, it is “it follows the others.” There is no boundary. This much is about me. Things are so clear here that we think of only the visible side of this body as ourselves, and the rest as the others. That's not true.
We have eyes and if there weren’t things like those as circumstances, the eyes would not grow. Those things are the nutrition of eyes. Eyes eat those things and live. To be able to see like this is what makes our eyes grow. If you put your eyes in complete darkness, you can't see things. They lose their ability to function. If you put a person in a room with no sound for years on end, he will lose his hearing. If you leave someone bedridden, he or she will not be able to walk. Because all of that is “it follows the others.” All the things around us are also the nutrients of this body. They are not separated, are they? “If there is mind, there is also observation.” There is no such a person who has a body but without a mind. There is no such a person who has only a body but no function of the mind. Even if you say that a person is placed in a vegetative state or a brain-dead state, if you touch him, his body will always react as you touched him. Even though he may not be conscious of it. That's how we' re made.
On the whole to reach the Supreme Truth of Bodhi, the Supreme Right realization is non-constancy” Well, even if something is said to be the supreme state, if you ask what the content is, it is just this truth. The truth of non-constancy is that there really is neither after nor before, it's only carried through in the way things are now. We can recall what we did yesterday, but we can't do what we did yesterday today. We can think about tomorrow, but we can't do what we will do tomorrow right now. It's really just what you're doing right now, is right now where you're doing it. This is the highest state of being.There's really nothing more to say. Do you want something more, yet? Is there something missing? When you live like that, you can make a good living, I guess, if you have various occupations. If we spend our time staying the way we are properly, in our occupation, in each situation, and in each moment, we will be able to do good work. That's what it means t to observe the mind. The observation of the mind.
“Mind is not necessarily constant,” If you ask me if there is always something like a mind, there is no such thing. The function which has nothing like the mind is called the mind for a while. What it means is that there is a function that we see red when we face a red rose and white when we face a white rose. There is nothing that forces us to look at it this way. There is nothing fixed, but depending on what you touch, this one exactly changes into the color (the state) as it is. Just because this one has changed, where does it stay, does it stick? When we come into contact with the next thing like this, we are all living in a state of detachment from the former one, from one thing to another. I think this is what is meant by “Mind is not necessarily constant,”
There is a saying, “Because it separates the four corners; tetralemma, existence, nonexistence, both existence and nonexistence, neither existence nor nonexistence, and surpasses the hundred negations,” Four corners mean being or not being. Things like " there is" or " there isn't" is typical example. The hundred negations mean many things can be listed as " it is not so,” “it is not so,” “it is not so." We have the habit of seeing things from a fixed point of view. It' s strange, isn't it?  When I talk to people, I can understand it very well. Even if someone seems like they don't have such a fixed view of things, before they know it, they have their own way of thinking. It' s about showing up in various places, that's what. That's probably what it means. That's probably what it means to be bothered, isn't it? Whenever you touch something in your life, whenever you are bothered by something, you have something inside of you that you think it must be like this without knowing it. So, when you touch it like this, you react to it. If you are bothered by such things as why they are like that, why they do such things, or why they talk like that, then you have something inside you that is like this, or should be like this. You should realize that these things are making you uncomfortable.
Sometimes it is said, “I came for the first time, zazen is to become nothingness, it is to become no-mindedness, isn’t it?” Where did you learn? How is it like? How do you know what it means to become no-mindedness? When I say such, everyone certainly has something this or that in his head. So, no matter how much I talk to him, he doesn't accept it honestly. When I talk about something that is different from the way they see things they have studied, they say, "That person is strange, why is he saying that? I don't think I came here to learn such things.” Saying that, they don't accept it. That's how grasping something inside yourself can cause strange situations. But when you truly become honest and you have nothing in this (pointing himself), what people say comes in quickly and you understand things. The people who take a long time to practice have always a lot of such things (possessions) in themselves. They are accumulating them without knowing it. The way of leaving or cutting off all such things would be “it separates the four corners and surpasses the hundred negations.” Then, as you can see here, when you come in contact with things called fences, walls, tiles, pebbles that exist around there, that is, pebbles, walls, broken fences that you don’t value, you come to realize. If you have possessions, you look at as if they are nothing. They think it is not what they are looking for. If you see a stone, you think if this is the study of Buddhism, if you are told to look at a stone, you would not think that it is the study of Buddhism. There's a wall over there, look at the wall, what's that? So what? That's how it works. It's impossible to study.
 Here is another one. “stones large and small,” The word "stone head" is written as "head of stone," and when you go to a place called Seoktusan (石頭山), stone mountains, there are many stones, big ones and small ones, there is such a tale and it is mentioned here. That is the way we can study. In a more general way, there is a way of seeing things as they are, which you are using. It's really the power of receiving it exactly as it is. When you do that, things start to change. In our way of seeing things, there are things like likes and dislikes, good and bad, right and wrong, and, generally speaking, these things always happen the moment we see them. It's the only way to see things. There are few people who see things as they are. When we see something, we never see it in comparison to other things. When you say, "Look at this," you don't look at it in comparison to other things. And yet, when you look at them like this, they are big, or small, or beautiful, or what it is that comes up. You are comparing it to something. You're doing it without knowing it, aren't you? You're not really looking at the thing exactly as it is, are you? You don't realize it. It is so simple thing, though. There's a good word for it, "see things as they really are.” I wonder if you really can see things as they are. I wonder if you' re doing it. Being so, it is said here “fences, walls, tiles, pebbles, and these are the mind, and are non-constancy, and are precisely observation.” So that's how it comes out. It's not that there is something special about practicing. 
You do it with the thing you're doing right now, the thing you're touching. Although you practice with what you are doing, but if you' re not careful, you can't do things like this. Well, maybe that's what makes us say it's difficult. So, this is the end of “the observation that mind is without constancy.” 



Sanjushichi-Bon-Bodai-Bunpo Thirty-seven Items of Bodhi

The Four Abodes of Mindfulness          By Kando Inoue rohsi 

The Four Abodes of Mindfulness

There is the reality of old buddhas, it is, namely, the teaching, practice, and realization of the thirty -seven items of bodhi. The entanglement of ascending and descending classes, is still more the entanglement in reality. We call it the buddhas and we call it the patriarchs.
It is also called the four abodes of mindfulness.
The first is the observation that the body is not pure.
The second is the observation that feeling is suffering.
The third is the observation that mind is without constancy.
The fourth is the observation that Dharma is without self.

It' s still going on. There is
the reality of old buddhas, and the reality ; koan is the thing that everyone is dealing with now, in front of their eyes, publicly, and the character for "公;kou" is publicly. Rather than saying that we have to protect them, it would be easier to say that we cannot live without them. That is what a koan is.

There are 37 items listed in the list. We are going to go through them from now on. It's the teaching, practice, and realization, so there is a teaching, and then you actually experience it, and when you experience it, you can clearly see what the content of that experience is. That's a proof. It's a testimony of enlightenment.
The first thing that will come out is that it's impossible to just read and understand what's written. Teachings.
If you hear it, if the teaching is there, you will receive it, and then you will say, "Oh, so that's what it is," and then you will wonder how it is or what it means, and then you will try it or say it, that’ how it works. Whenever something is done, the result of the work is always there, and based on that, you will say, "I see, I see, it is just as I was taught at first,” something like that  comes out. This is teaching, practice, and the proof of enlightenment.There is the phrase, “The entanglement of ascending and descending classes, is still more the entanglement in reality.” I could say rise and fall. Ups and downs, ascending and descending. There will be things you understand well or you don’t understand. In this way we become one with things, go on living, and get at the truth of the things. That's how we go on and on, isn't it? The representatives of those who have lived in this way are called buddhas or Zen adepts.                                                                                       

A single moment is as mentioned the above sentence, “There is the dharma which is obtained and the person who obtained it. This is the great disease. It is a single moment in time.”(井上義衍老師語録 38 空の真相 the collected sayings of Gien Inoue Roshi 38 the truth of Emptiness. )   The True State of Emptiness

 As the working, it is surly the one moment of now. There is not the dharma obtained and a person who obtained it. 
Two-facedness does not exist because it is one state. When we see T.V., we say that this side and the other side, however, there have never been two. But if one sees based on that one recognizes oneself as the self, as this side and the other side, he sees being now relative to the basic point what he experienced previously, like you saw a standing tree, on which you take it up the state of a tree being cut now, then you cannot readily affirm this 一機一境; a single moment, which I know.  ( By Kando Inoue roshi)

 一機一境は、上文を受けています。(得た法と得た人がある。これまさに大病なり。一機一境です。義衍語録38 空の真相)


 “Shakyamuni Buddha says “All buddhas and bodhisattvas rest in this Dharma forever as it is a sacred womb (a sacred body of the buddha).” Go on living like this. Nothing is more comfortable than this. What’s more, it is a sacred womb. Can we call it the sacred body of the buddha? There might be a long word ‘Seitai choyo, a sacred womb and long rest.’ “So all buddhas and bodhisattvas have regarded these Four Abodes of Mindfulness as a sacred womb, a sacred body of buddha, you should know that they are the sacred womb of balanced realization. And the sacred womb of subtle realization.” There was a person who expressed the content of realization as the stage of fifty-two ranks such like balanced realization or subtle realization. Among such studying there are this sort of expression though, in a word, it means whichever condition you are in. Whoever he is, he is really in the state of his own and see though the thing of this sort like this. The first is the observation that the body is not pure, the second is the observation that feeling is suffering, the third is the observation that mind is without constancy, the fourth is the observation that Dharma is without self. This is the practice that the Buddha did. Therefore, in Buddhism, Dharma Seals is firstly expressed, namely, all things are impermanent, all dharmas are selflessness, Enlightenment leads serenity, which are Three Dharma Seals. That is how it is called as the truth of things.

 “It has already spoken of all buddhas and bodhisattvas, and so buddhas are not the subtle realization, also regard it as the sacred womb. Bodhisattvas who have sprung out being prior to balanced realization or beyond subtle realization also regard these Four Abodes of Mindfulness as a sacred womb.” Not only the realized people but also people on the way of practice go on practicing on this way. The way like this is said, “Truly, the skin, fresh, bones, and marrow of the buddhas and the patriarchs” which says that the fine realized people’s life is such in content. What are they doing? Although they live in the same way and live together, the place they are touching is different. There is big difference between just being there randomly or being able to receive the content correctly. If you don’t know things truly, you live the same life, it is entirely different. And the way of life comes to change completely. You don’t know what they are doing as it is the matter of the other, you might not know, but I can know well that there are many people around me whom I have known dozens of years. Such people have come to change. Their life has come to change utterly. If I say what they are doing, they don’t especially live differently than before. They do the same thing every day.

Therefore, firstly the four abodes of mindfulness, the four ways to touch things are. For the present I would like to finish here. Itemized like this and entitled, you are easy to study. (The end)

This is a collection of Zen Master Dogen’s essays, Fukan-zazengi, A Universal Recommendation for Zazen; Shobogenzo Genjo-koan, The realized Universe; Shobogenzo Sanjusiti-bon-Bodai-bunpo Shinenju, Thirty-seven Elements of Bodhi The Four Abodes of Mindfulness.

Master Dogen is the founder of the Soto school of Zen in Japan. He is the 52nd generation as Zen patriarch. He was transmitted the Buddha-Dharma from his teacher Rujing in China. In order to transmit the Dharma-Seal to his disciples, he wrote 95 volumes Zen essays, Shobogenzo, The Right-Dharma-Eye Treasury. 

In 2015, I came across the teachings of Master Inoue Gien and realized that Dogen's teachings are about inheriting this enlightenment. All of his writings can be read from the perspective of enlightenment. Master Inoue Gien and his fifth son, Inoue Kando Roshi, have rightly inherited the Dharma of Zen Master Dogen, and have passed on the true Dharma through the advocacy of the Shobogenzo throughout their lives.

Gien Inoue roshi says that the enlightenment in Buddhism is to go through to the root of our origination that we are born without knowing. Though we are now able to live in the awakened state, toward it a doubt arises with thoughts and discrimination, which becomes a problem. To realize truly the fundamental mistake bottomless is the enlightenment of the Dharma, he indicates. And everybody can be through like Zen adepts by the practice being free from thoughts and discrimination. The deportment of the practice is not to fall into thoughts and discrimination, to be free from your views, and to be just as the functioning of the six organs as tools. When keeping suchlike practice, you can come to attain the state as the Buddha-Dharma in the real world, you are able to live on the activity free and limitless, he preaches. 

I am now studying under Kando Inoue roshi. For four years, having transcribed Kando roshi’s talks of Shobogenzo, I learned that transcription should be expressed as it is without interpretation. Like Zen practice, being free from thoughts, views, and discrimination, we can accomplish our work exceedingly, which I have found. On translation I take the same method. I have been careful not to use conceptional words and the words expressing thoughts and ideas. I believe that this is still in its early stages. If I really know the content of words, I may come not to care about what words I use.  

In his book "Genni-bi", Master Inoue Kando says, "There is no Buddha Dharma without enlightenment. There should not be such a thing.”

The Master Dogen’s ‘Genjho Koan’ explains what we need to practice in order to clarify our own state of enlightenment, the original face. To be aware that all things are unfolding before our perception, we need to do non-thinking zazen at any cost.

I am truly grateful to Kando Inoue roshi for his generosity and kind guidance. 

I am very thankful that I could run across many English translations of Dogen’s works by experienced people.