12: Do not seek the true

不用求眞     Do not seek the true

唯須息見     Only cease to cling to views


Mind is where the idea of truth is not clung to but treated with indifference because of its causing bewilderment. – The Lankavatara Sutra

Inside there were four large chests of silver and a moderate chest of gold, and on seeing their contents a soldier said they had all risked their lives to gain this wealth and that in his opinion it should be shared out equally at once: now, now, equally and at once. His opinion was supported by several men there, but O’Higgins said, “A fig for your opinion,” and shot him dead. (Patrick O’Brian, Blue at the Mizzen)



Question: The sutra says: Heretics take delight in the various views; the bodhisattva is unmoved by the various views.
Answer: Because false views are the same as true views, the bodhisattva is unmoved. To be unmoved is to neither reject the true nor reject the false. At the moment of true understanding there is no false and true, so there is no need to reject the false in order to seek the true. Because he relies on the Dharma (doctrine) to investigate the lack of difference between the false and the true, he is said to be unmoved. Further, because it is unnecessary to him to reject the false in order to enter the true, he is said to be unmoved by the various views. A sutra says: By false appearances enter the true Dharma. It also says: Enter the eight forms of liberation without rejecting the eight heterodox practices.  (Bodhidharma’s Method for Quieting the Mind)

Hui-neng: “Verse of the true-false motion-stillness”

Nowhere is there anything true;
Don’t try to see the true in any way.
If you try to see the true,
Your seeing will be in no way true.
If you yourself would gain the true,
Separate from the false; there the mind is true.
If the mind itself does not separate from the false, there is no true.
What place is there for the mind to abide? (Yampolsky)


If you consider right to be right, there is something that is not right. If you consider wrong to be right, there is nothing that is not right. (Bodhidharma’s Method for Quieting the Mind)


Always recognize your own faults
And you will be in accord with the Way.
Each form has its own path;
They do not hinder or trouble one another.

If you truly walk the Way,
You are blind to the faults of the world.
If you find fault in others,
Your fault-finding itself is a fault.

Others’ faults I do not judge;
For my faults I judge only myself.
Simply cast out the fault-finding mind;
Once cast out, troubles are gone.

When hate and love no longer block the mind,
Stretch out your legs and lie down.

If you hope to teach and transform others,
You yourself must have the skillful means.
Do not raise doubts in others
And their essential nature will reveal itself on its own.
(Seeing the Nature)


Broughton, Jeffrey L. (1999). The Bodhidharma Anthology: The Earliest Records of Zen. University of California Press.

Jorgensen, John A. (1979). The Earliest Text of Ch’an Buddhism: The Long Scroll. The Australian National University.

Verhoeven, Martin J. (2014). The Sixth Patriarch’s Diamond Jewel Platform Sutra (3rd Edition). Burlingame, California: Buddhist Text Translation Society.

Yampolsky, Philip B. (1967) The Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch. New York: Columbia University Press. (http://www.fodian.net/world/Platform_Sutra_Yampolsky.pdf)

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