Poem Hunter
Not Stopping To Mark The Trail
S (1118 - 1190 / Japan)

Not Stopping To Mark The Trail

Poem By Saigyo

Not stopping to mark the trail,
let me push even deeper
into the mountain!
Perhaps there's a place
where bad news can never reach me!

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Comments (2)

in the boz below, my reference to Zen is not correct, as Saigyo was an Amida Buddhist priest Amidism was not a Japanese invention; Pure Land develops out of Mahayana Buddhism in India and became wildly popular in China, where the invocation of Amida (in Chinese, A-mi-t'o-fo) became the most common of all religious practices. But the spread of Pure Land through Japan signals a profound change in Japanese thought; above all else, the shift to Amidism represents a shift from a religion which stresses individual effort aimed at enlightenment to an exclusive reliance on salvation by the Amida; this opened up Buddhism to all classes, including women, who had previously been excluded from the various Buddhist priesthoods. Because of its democratic nature, the priesthood became evangelical rather than retiring; Buddhism began to become, in late Heian Japan and medieval Japan, a religion of the streets. Because of Pure Land, Japanese art also profoundly changed; the art of Heian Japan is placid and rigid; the Amidists began to produce more involved and animated artworks which portrayed such subjects as the tortures of all ten levels of hell, the pleasures of Paradise, and the transcendent and resplendent beauty of the Amida Buddha. (Richard Hooker)
'' Perhaps there's a place / where bad news can never reach me '' what a beautiful passage.. and it shows how Zen-Buddhism was not fully (completely) 'inside' him.. :)