There are four famous lines of text that are attributed to Bodhidharma, which I have termed the “Zen Slogan.” Here is that slogan: A special transmission outside of the teachings Not established on words and letters It directly points to the human mind And seeing one’s Nature one becomes a Buddha Act as a Zen commentator and unpack the meaning in each of these lines. Provide examples, such as stories and/or related doctrine and practices that are relevant to the point being made in each line. How do you see earlier Buddhist and/or Daoist ideas giving rise to, influencing, or differing from the points made in Bodhidharma’s “slogan”? Cite specific traditions and philosophical concepts from our readings wherever possible. ( Draw on the material from Robinson’s Buddhist Religion, the “Way Of Laozi and Zhuangzi” from Sources of Chinese Tradition (T. De Bary, Ed., New York: Columbia University Press, 1999), McRae’s Seeing Through Zen, and Foster & Shoemaker’s Roaring Stream.
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