One day, when the brilliant Chinese Cha'n master Chao-chou was sweeping the court of the monastery, a man asked him:
-Ch'an monastery supposed to be clean and pure. Why is there dust to sweep?
RETURNING WITH EMPTY HANDED
Shih-tou Hsi-chien (700-790) was a very well known Chinese Ch'an master. As a young monk, he was one of the disciples of the Sixth Patriarch Hui-neng. After Hui-neng passed away, Shih-tou continued his pilgrimage... He paid a vist to the Great master Hsing-szu at the Ching-yuan mountain. Hsing-szu asked: -Where did you come from? Shih-tou replied: -From Tsao-chi [referring where Hui-neng resided]. -What did you get at Tsao-chi? -Before I was at Tsao-chi, I was not lacking anything. -If so, why were you there? -If I were not there, how could I know I did not lack anything?
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