Richard Hunn (1949-2006) – British Sinologist.

‘In the meantime Richard was pursuing an academic career in Chinese Buddhist studies, and for a time ran the Chinese Buddhist Association at Essex University. This part of his life is rather diverse, involving an Oxford University sponsored research programme about the famous psychologist Carl Gustav Jung, which involved a trip to Zurich and a meeting with Jung’s grand daughter. At this time Richard was shown a document written in Jung’s handwriting apparently expressing his belief that reincarnation might well be a real phenomena. This, and similar work was kept from the public by the Jung family because they thought that its content might diminish Jung’s academic standing. Richard’s interest with Jung arose because of Jung’s contact with Charles Luk. In 1961, when Jung was on his death bed, he was reading Luk’s first volume of Ch’an and Zen Teachings. Jung had his secretary write to Luk and explain that when Jung read what master Xu Yun taught, and when Xu Yun explained the realisation of the mind – Jung felt that he himself could have said just that! Much later, whilst living in Japan, Richard stumbled upon Jung’s entire published works in English in a small bookshop for a very small price. Before this, however, Richard had settled in Norfolk founding the Norwich Ch’an Association. Many people would visit Richard’s home and seek Ch’an instruction, and on occasion Charles Luk would even send one or two people, notably Chinese students from Malaysia.’

Master Xu Yun (1840-1959) – Present Awareness.

‘Buddhism was tolerated however, despite some historical ups and downs, but leaving home to become a monk has always been a difficult affair. It still was in 1858 when master Xu Yun decided to leave home and pursue the Buddhist monastic path. As his father was a government official, Xu Yun was expected to follow in his footsteps, get married and produce a son to keep the family name of Xiao going. Even though he had expressed spiritual inclinations to his father, his father would not give permission for him to leave. Instead his father arranged for a Daoist teacher to come to the family home and teach Xu Yun internal and external qigong – or ‘energy work’.’

The Zoo Of Dogs-The Anatomy of the Gong-an (公案) Device As Used in Ch’an Buddhism.

‘What might be called a continuous effort in one direction, is ultimately doomed to failure, as the type of ‘hyper-knowledge’; and the legitimacy such a knowledge bestows, is based upon a core irrationality – that of knowledge existing ‘free’ of its organic root. This inconsistency lies at the heart of all accumulation of knowledge, and is the essence of the human condition that strives to rise out of the state of ignorance, and into the state of enlightenment. ‘

Inner Freedom and Outer Social Constructs

‘It is an interesting speculation to consider what would be the case if a being were born into a society that had no wont, and therefore did not create the social conditions for inner greed; that did not separate beings into arbitrary and unjust social divisions (and therefore did not give a foundation for hatred to arise); and that provided a perfect education system, an exposure to which did not allow delusion to arise.’

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