Good and bad have no self-nature;
'Holy' and 'unholy' are empty words.
Before the six gates is a land of stillness and light:
Spring comes, and the grass grows by itself.
Zen means understanding my True Self: "What am I?" It is not a religion, a theology, a creed, a belief system or philosophy. Zen is an ancient technology of clearly perceiving the roots of our original nature, before-thinking appears. Utilizing sitting meditation, chanting meditation, mantra practice, and bowing meditation (prostrations), Zen is a science of profoundly looking, straight into the actual nature of self, attaining don’t know, and then functioning from moment to moment to save all beings from suffering. That is Great Love, Great Compassion — the Great Bodhisattva Way.

“The true man of no-rank —
what a piece of dried shit he is!”
           Zen Master Linchi (?-866)
Hyon Gak Sunim (Paul J. Muenzen) was born in 1964 to a family of devout Catholics in New Jersey, U.S.A. Educated in literature and literary theory at Yale University (1987) and comparative religions at Harvard Divinity School (’92), he was ordained in 1992 in China. He has been doing Zen training in various remote mountain places, including 3 intensive 100-day solo meditation retreats and some twenty-eight 3-month intensive meditation retreats (ango) in the ancient Zen temples of Korea.

He received formal public certification of his enlightenment and authorization to teach (inka) from Zen Master Seung Sahn, at a public ceremony in Hwa Gye Sah Temple, Seoul, Korea, in August 2001.

At the request of his Teacher, he has compiled and edited several of Zen Master Seung Sahn's books, including The Whole World is a Single Flower, The Compass of Zen, and Only Don't Know.

He also translated into English the 500 year-old classic of Zen Master So Sahn, The Mirror of Zen.

He currently lives as a wandering monk, based in Europe, giving talks and leading retreats and conducting seminars wherever invited.

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