Green Koans Case #32: The Buddha's Mission

Clark Strand

CASE #32: The Buddha’s Mission
A sutra teaches:

As long as selfish and defiled minds create their own worlds and circumstances, there will be no end to the Buddha’s mission.

Their own worlds and circumstances     A core teaching of Buddhism, found in numerous Mahayana sutras, states: “If a person’s mind becomes pure, his surroundings will also become pure.” Naturally, the obverse is also true: If a person’s mind is impure, his surroundings will be, too. That seems to be the meaning here.

Why does a buddha appear in the world? Because deluded beings create their own world, separate from all that is. And not just one world. Around each deluded thought another and another world appears, until eventually there is a multiplicity of worlds. Flowers go unnoticed. Species come and go. Whole epochs pass while we wander from one world to another, looking for the one that is real.

Into this situation steps the Tathagata, or “Thus Come One.” Where does he come from? It’s the wrong question. The world of Nature doesn’t come or go.

Buddha once held up
A flower for all to see.
Who knew a blossom
Could contain every being
Ever born into this world?


Read all the Green Koans

Share with a Friend

Email to a Friend

Already a member? Log in to share this content.

You must be a Tricycle Community member to use this feature.

1. Join as a Basic Member

Signing up to Tricycle newsletters will enroll you as a free Tricycle Basic Member.You can opt out of our emails at any time from your account screen.

2. Enter Your Message Details

Enter multiple email addresses on separate lines or separate them with commas.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Dominic Gomez's picture

Who knew a blossom
Could contain every being
Ever born into this world?

...or a world in a grain of sand, a heaven in a wild flower, infinity in the palm of your hand, or eternity in an hour. Who knew that William Blake contained Buddha?