Birth is just like riding in a boat. You raise the sails and you steer. Although you maneuver the sail and the pole, the boat gives you a ride, and without the boat you couldn’t ride. But you ride in the boat, and your riding makes the boat what it is. Investigate a moment such as this. At just such a moment, there is nothing but the world of the boat. The sky, the water, and the shore are all the boat’s world, which is not the same as a world that is not the boat’s. Thus you make birth what it is; you make birth your birth. When you ride in a boat, your body, mind, and environs together are the undivided activity of the boat. The entire earth and the entire sky are both the undivided activity of the boat. Thus birth is nothing but you; you are nothing but birth.
from the book The Essential Dogen: Writings of the Great Zen Master
translated by Kazuaki Tanahashi
Read a random quote or see all quotes by Dogen Zenji.
Further quotes from the book The Essential Dogen:
- Enlightenment poem
- What is sitting
- Beneficial action is an act of oneness
- Since this word is already expounded
- Countless blossoms