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Burning logs become ashes – Genjo Koan

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Genjo
Last updated on June 7th, 2016

Burning logs become ashes — and cannot return again to logs. Therefore you should not view ashes as after and logs as before. You must understand that a burning log—as a burning log—has before and after. But although it has past and future, it is cut off from past and future. Ashes as ashes have after and before. Just as ashes do not become logs again after becoming ashes, man does not live again after death. So not to say that life becomes death is a natural standpoint of Buddhism. So this is called no-life.
To say that death does not become life is the fixed sermon of the Buddha. So this is called no-death. Life is a position of time, and death is a position of time … just like winter and spring. You must not believe that winter becomes spring—nor can you say that spring becomes summer. Dogen Genjo Koan