27/38 Muchu-setsumu



Preaching a Dream in a Dream

Mu means “dream,” chu means “in,” and setsu means “preach.” So muchu-setsumu means “preaching a dream in a dream.” In Buddhist philosophy there is an idea that our life is a kind of dream, because in everyday life we cannot recognize our life itself. In other words, our actual life is just a moment here and now, and we cannot grasp such a moment. We are living at every moment of the present, and every moment cannot be expressed with words. So we can say that we are living in something like a dream. At the same time, to preach Buddhist theory is a kind of preaching a dream, and furthermore to live our life is also a kind of preaching, telling, or manifesting a dream. So Master Dogen compared our life to preaching a dream in a dream.