The Sword of Wisdom 109

Day 3 Practice Is Not Limited to Sitting Meditation

Walking is Ch'an, sitting is Ch'an;
Speaking or silent, moving or still, the essence is undisturbed.
Remain composed even if facing a sharp weapon,
Be at ease even if given poison.

In this stanza, Yung-chia explains that a practitioner is never separate from Ch'an, no matter what he does or where he is. Ch'an is everywhere. Whether you practice or do not practice, you are never apart from Ch'an.

People sometimes ask me: "Do you teach Japanese Zen or Chinese Ch'an?" It is a ridiculous question. In 1976, during the first retreat I held in the United States, I said to the participants, "I didn't bring Ch'an with me from the Far East. Ch'an is not something I can carry and give to you. Ch'an has always existed in the West."