Citation from Dogen Zenji's SHUSHO-GI 山水經
The Meaning of Practice-Enlightenment
Citation from Zen Master Dogen:
Introduction, Selected Writings, trans. by Yuho Yokoi
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MAKING THE ALTRUISTIC VOW
To awaken to the Bodhi-mind means to vow not to cross over to the other shore [of enlightenment] before all sentient beings have done so. Whether [laity] or monk, living in the world of celestial beings or humans, subject to pain or pleasure, all should quickly make this vow.|
Though of humble appearance, a person who has awakened to the Bodhi-mind is already the teacher of all mankind. Even a little girl of seven can become the teacher of the four classes of Buddhists and the compassionate mother of all beings; for [in Buddhism] men and women are completely equal. This is one of the highest principles of the Way.
Though you have acquired sufficient merit to realize Buddhahood, you should place it at the disposal of all beings in order that they might realize the Way. From time immemorial there have been those who have [spontaneously] sacrificed their own enlightenment in order that they might be of benefit to all beings, helping them to cross over first to the other shore.