|Jap., Basho Esai
|born: c. 880
died: c. 950
This is a different "Basho" than the famous
Haiku poet of Japan, who lived about 700
Also, this Basho is different than the
well-know "Baso" (Ch., Mazu), although the
Japanese names look similar. Mazu was
Chinese and lived about 300 years before
Basho told how he first met with the master,
He said, "When I was twenty-eight years old, I
went on a pilgrimage, and reached where Nanto
was living. Ascending the rostrum, Nanto said,
`All you people, if you are enlightened, you will
come out of your mother's womb and roar like a
lion. You know what this roaring means?'"
Basho added, "Immediately my mind and body
were rendered motionless, and I stopped with
him for five years."
Just the way he said `roaring', just the way he
was, his presence, his heartbeat; and Basho
lived with him for five years without a single word
passing between the master and the disciple.
And Basho became one of the greatest masters
in his own right. He deserved it. Every man of
silence, of love, of no-mind is a born master.
Whether he has disciples or not does not matter.
The master can be alone and yet be the master.
His being a master does not depend on
followers, on disciples, but on his own
Zen: The Quantum Leap From Mind to No-Mind,