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欽山文邃 Qinshan Wensui (?-841?)

(Rōmaji:) Kinzan Bunsui
(Magyar átírás:) Csin-san Ven-szuj


by Andy Ferguson
In: Zen's Chinese Heritage: The Masters and Their Teachings, Wisdom Publications, pp. 236-239.


QINSHAN WENSUI (n.d.) was a disciple of Dongshan Liangjie. He came from ancient Fuzhou. As a young man he entered a Zen monastery in Hangzhou headed by a teacher named Zishan Huanzhong. Later he studied with his friends Yantou and Xuefeng under the famous teacher Deshan Xuanjian. Deshan’s strict methods were too severe for Qinshan, and he left to study under Dongshan Liangjie. Under Dongshan’s instruction Qinshan realized the Buddhadharma and went on to become a well-known teacher.


Qinshan asked Deshan, “Tianhuang spoke thus, and Longtan spoke thus. How does the master speak?”

Deshan said “Why don’t you check out Tianhuang and Longtan and see?”

Qinshan started to speak when suddenly Deshan hit him.

Qinshan went back to the Long Life Hall and said, “Right is right, but hitting me is going too far.”

Yantou said, “If you speak like this, you’ll never see Deshan.”


Qinshan studied under Dongshan and attained realization. He became Dongshan’s Dharma heir. At the age of twenty-seven, Qinshan traveled to Mt. Qin. There, in front of the entire congregation, he realized great enlightenment. He then told the congregation about his initial meeting with Dongshan.


“Dongshan asked me, ‘Where have you come from?’

“I said, ‘From Mt. Dazi [“Great Compassion”].’

“Dongshan said, ‘Did you see Great Compassion?’

“I said, ‘I saw it.’

“Dongshan said, ‘Did you see it before form? Or did you see it after form?’

“I said, ‘I saw it neither before nor after form.’

“Dongshan was silent.”


Qinshan then [said to the congregation at Mt. Qin], “I left the master too soon. I had not yet fully realized Dongshan’s meaning.”


A monk asked, “All of the buddhas and all of the Buddhadharmas come forth from this sutra. What is this sutra?”

Qinshan said, “Forever turning.”


A monk asked, “What is the style of the master’s house?”

Qinshan said, “A silver embroidered fragrant sachet. When the wind blows the entire road is filled with fragrance.”


Once, Qinshan, Yantou, and Xuefeng were sitting together and Dongshan brought some tea. Qinshan closed his eyes.

Dongshan said, “Where have you gone?”

Qinshan said, “I’ve entered samadhi.”

Dongshan said, “Samadhi has no gate, so how have you entered it?”


Qinshan went into the bathhouse. A monk there was turning the water wheel.

Qinshan said, “Luckily, I’ve already turned the wheel. So why are you doing that?”

The monk got off the wheel and said, “What if you hadn’t turned it?”

Qinshan said, “If not, then what good would Qinshan’s eye be for anyone?”

The monk said, “What is the master’s eye?”

Qinshan pointed at his own eyebrows.

The monk said, “How can the master act like this?”

Qinshan said, “It’s what I do. It’s not what you do! It’s not what you do!”

The monk was silent.

Qinshan said, “If you enter battle without valor, you’ll lose morale at the first engagement.”

After a long pause, Qinshan asked the monk, “Do you understand?”

The monk said, “I don’t understand.”

Qinshan said, “Qinshan will only do half of it for you.”


The following passages are taken from the Transmission of the Lamp.


Qinshan, Yantou Quanhuo, and Xuefeng Yicun were once passing through Jiangxi, where they stopped at a teahouse.

Qinshan said, “Anyone who can’t turn with penetrating spirit doesn’t get tea.”

Yantou said, “In that case I certainly won’t get tea.”

Xuefeng said, “The same with me.”

Qinshan said, “You two fellows don’t recognize the words right here.”

Yantou said, “The words where?”

Qinshan said, “Although the crow inside the bag is alive, it’s like it was dead.”

Yantou said, “Retreat! Retreat!”

Qinshan said, “Elder brother Huo is dismissed. What will Duke Cun do?”

Xuefeng used his hand to draw a circle.

Qinshan said, “No gaining, no asking.”

Yantou laughed and said, “Too far.”

Qinshan said, “Some mouths don’t get any, but there are many who are drinking tea.”

Yantou and Xuefeng were silent.


While speaking to some monks, Qinshan raised his fist straight up and said, “I open my fist and the five fingers are separated. And if I now close my fist then there is nothing that surpasses it. Now tell me, does Qinshan have penetrating talk or not?”

The monk came forward and raised his fist.

Qinshan said, “If that’s it, then it’s just a mouthless fellow.”


A monk said, “I’m not familiar with how the master receives people.”

“If I receive people, then each and every one of you go!”


A monk said to Qinshan, “It’s something special about meeting with you, Master, that causes one to vomit up the doctrinal wind of our school.”

Qinshan said, “If you come in some special way, I’ll have to vomit.”

The monk said, “Please do.”

Qinshan hit him.

The monk was silent.

Qinshan said, “Trying to catch a rabbit by waiting for it to run into a stump. You’re wasting your mind.”