Citations from COMMENTARY on Dogen Zenji's
OSAKU-SENDABA 王索仙陀婆 (The Ruler Seeking the Sendaba)
Eihei Dogen: Mystical Realist, by Hee-Jin Kim
Chapter Three: Activity, Expression and Understanding
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 SENDABA means "a word having four significations" — hence infinite, semantic possibilities. [...]
 For Dogen the enlightened person was adept at appropriating the semantic possibilities of ordinary words in order to express and act out the extraordinary, and even the ineffable according to the situation. Dogen's characteristic way of thinking here in connection with the use of language was that the meaning of an ordinary word was totally exerted (gujin) so that there was nothing but that particular meaning throughout the entire universe at that particular moment. This was the idea of the total exertion of a single thing (ippo-gujin), which was central to Dogen's entire thought. Elsewhere [Osaku-Sendaba] Dogen presented his view of life as sendaba — that is, the world sought sendaba from each of us, and we brought forth whatever we deemed to be sendaba in life. [...]
 Indeed, life was nothing more than searching for and acting out the myriad possibilities of meaning with which the self and the world were pregnant, through expressions (dotoku) and activities (gyoji). This involved not only the human world but the nonliving and nonhuman worlds as well.
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(Zen Master) DOGEN ZENJI'S (道元禅師)
(Gender Inclusive) STUDIES OF THE WAY (學道) | (INDEX)
95-Fascicle SHOBOGENZO (正法眼蔵) & Other Writings
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