White Wind Zen Community

A Community practising and teaching Dogen’s Zen since 1985

5 Black Iron Ball

Found metal cash box with figurines of Keizan and Gikai

Himitsu Shobogenzo, Case 14

When Zen Master Gikai sees his attendant Keizan Jokin entering his room he confronts Keizan with, Show me your Ordinary Mind. When Jokin starts to answer Gikai strikes him directly on the mouth. Jokin is lost in hesitation.

One night as he sits in the monks' hall he hears a sudden wind lashing at the window and wakes up. He proceeds straight to Great Master Gikai's room, offers three great bows and says, I've got it.

Gikai says, What have you got?

Keizan says, A jet-black iron ball hurtles through the dark night.

Gikai says, Not enough. Say it further.

Keizan says, When thirsty I drink. When hungry I eat.

  • 11" by 5 ½" by 3"
  • 'sculpie' figures-2" high, cloth robes
  • metal vajra
  • wooden kotsu-Teacher's stick
  • antique onyx bead from my Nana's, Eliza Dodd Lamberton Jones, necklace
  • fishing line