The Harmony of Difference and Equality)
Sekito Kisen (700-790 Common Era)
From west to east, unseen, flowed out the mind
Of India’s greatest sage, and to the source
Kept true as an unsullied stream is clear.
Although by wit and dullness the true way
Is varied, yet it has no patriarch
Of south or north. Here born, we clutch at things
And then compound delusion later on
By following ideals. Each sense gate and
Its object all together enter thus
In mutual relations and yet stand
Apart in a uniqueness of their own,
Depending and yet non-depending too.
In form and feel component things are seen
To differ deeply, and the voices in
Inherent isolation, soft and harsh.
Such words as “high” and “middle” darkness match;
Light separates murky from the pure.
The properties of the four elements
Together draw just as a child returns
Unto its mother. Lo! The heat of fire,
The moving wind, the water wet, the earth
All solid; eyes to see, sounds heard, and smells;
Upon the tongue the sour, salty taste.
And yet in each related thing, as leaves
Grow from the roots, and “high” and “low”
Are used respectively. Within all light
Is darkness, but explained it cannot be
By darkness that one-sided is alone.
In darkness there is light, but here again
By light one-sided it is not explained.
Light goes with darkness as the sequence does
Of steps in walking.
All things herein have Inherent, great potentiality;
Both function, rest, reside within. Lo! with
The ideal comes the actual, like a box
All with its lid. Lo! with the ideal comes
The actual, like two arrows in mid-air
Completely understand herein
The basic truth with these words. Lo! Hear!
Set up not your own standards. If, from your
Experience of the senses, basic truth
You do not know, how can you ever find
The path that certain is not matter how
Far distant you may walk. As you walk on,
Distinctions between near and far are lost,
And should you lost become, there will arise
Obstructing mountains and great rivers.
This I offer to the seeker of great Truth:
Do not waste time.