The Gateless Gate, Case 30

The Gateless Gate, Case 30.

The Case: A monk asked Baso, “What is Buddha?”

Baso said, “This very mind is Buddha”

Commentary: Baso’s ‘Mind is Buddha’ has been persistently misunderstood. People might think there is a special state of mind free from delusion, or a mind realm of Buddha, or that mind is true reality, or similar, but they are mistaken.

Baso said “This very mind”. That is: your mind now, your experience now, but unconstellated by the self, not stained by attachment or aversion. When we sit, we wobble between self and buddha.

The crucial issue is not what is true and what is false, but how we live.

Picture vigorous fish in the ocean: they might want to see the water clearly but they can’t: their activity blurs and distorts it. But this same activity is the ocean’s life. It is nowhere else.