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Ch’eng-t’ien was asked, “How should I apply my mind twenty-four hours a day?” He replied, “When chickens are cold, they roost in trees; when ducks are cold, they plunge into water.” The questioner said, “Then I don’t need cultivated realization, and won’t pursue Buddhahood or Zen mastery.” Ch’eng-t’ien responded, “You’ve saved half my effort.”
From “The Pocket Zen Reader,” edited by Thomas Cleary, 1999. Reprinted by arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Boston,

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