One day, when I was traveling through Idaho, I went into some woods.
There I found a spring and a little pond covered with autumn leaves.
The water appeared red because of the red foliage.
I was very thirsty, so I knelt down and scooped some water into my hands.
The water was clear.
It had not been stained or tinted by the autumn leaves.
Our mind, I realized, must be pure like this pond.
The original nature of mind is not so far away.
It can be attained immediately.
Purity is the nature of this original mind.
When you go to Riverside Drive and sit beside the Hudson River
your thoughts come and go like sailing boats.
Finally they go away – the mind becomes blank –
and you do not see the sailing boats.
Then the mind goes away and you are absolutely not there.
But you still see the river and the green trees;
you are expanded into the universe;
and your heart beats in the rhythm of nature.
Then, “Oh!” and you come back.
— Sokei-an Roshi (Sokei-an Shigetsu Yeita Sasaki, 1882-1945)