Opening Speech for Prague Zen Center
Dharma speech given at the opening ceremony of the new Prague Zen Center, 7 October 2007.[Hits the table with the Zen stick.] This is the true home of Buddha. [Hits the table with the Zen stick.] This is the true home of Dharma. [Hits the table with the Zen stick.] This is the true home of Sangha. So tell me: Where is this true home of these three treasures? KAAATZ! [Starts speaking in Polish]: Now we are in this nice Prague Zen Center and I'm happy to meet all of you. [Oleg translates into Slovakian.] Translation please. [Everybody laughs.] Ah! Ok, sorry! [Laughs] We are in the nice Prague Zen Center and it's nice to meet all of you. Congratulations on having a new Zen Center. In fact this is not a new Zen Center. This is the reincarnation of the old Zen Center, because the name remains the same. The name of your Zen Center is beautiful. As far as I know it is Soeng Kwang Sah. Soeng Kwang means nature of light. Light is the natural guide for those who look for the path. So Soeng Kwang Sa is a new bright point on the map of the world. We need such bright points to find our way. Buddha said that human beings originally have no meaning, have no direction, have no sense. And thanks to his teaching we can make, out of this lack of meaning, the great meaning. Out of this lack of direction, big direction, true direction. That's why we need these bright points on the map of the world. Otherwise we are lost. Once Zen master Un Mun said to his students: "This world is open and wide. Why do you put on your robe on the sound of the bell?" We could ask after Un Mun: "This universe is wide and open. Why make a Zen Center?" Wide and open means everything is complete and free, with no hindrance. Everything is endowed with this Buddha nature from the very beginning. And this whole universe is really a big Zen Center - a wonderful Zen Center. You don't need to open this Zen Center, because it was never closed. But I know and you know, this is only kind speech. Unfortunately we feel a little bit separated from this wide, open home. That's why it is necessary to use these skillful means like making a Zen Center: to find our original way. And finally we can discover the whole universe is our home and the whole universe is our Zen Center. So please take care of this place. It is very very precious. If you want to be supported by this place you must support it too. Cause and effect act very clearly in this world. If you don't support this place, this place won't support you. This place is very, very special. This place is the home of sangha. In this place you can find a mirror in which you can find yourself - your true face. So please take care. Do your best to take care of this place. I wish everybody will. Okay? Vera said an interesting thing: "Gate Gate Paragate". That means moving from one shore to the other. When we study the meaning of this mantra we hope that after reaching the other shore we can relax and stop our job. But as you can see reaching the other shore doesn't stop anything. We still have plenty of work to do, because sentient beings are numberless. So we hope to save them all. So the direction of this place is just this. Don't stop your work. Take refuge in this place and make this place refuge for the others. And try, try, try, ten thousand years. So congratulations again. [Hits the table three times with the Zen stick.] Is it open or closed? If you say it is open I will hit you thirty times. If you say it is closed I will also hit you thirty times. What can you do? KAAATZ! Don't do anything. Enjoy your place and practice here. Thank you for your attention.