Replying to someone in Rinzai Zen discussion group, John Tan wrote recently:

“I think we have to differentiate wisdom from an art or a state of mind.
In Master Sheng Yen’s death poem, 
Busy with nothing till old. (无事忙中老)
In emptiness, there is weeping and laughing. (空里有哭笑)
Originally there never was any 'I'. (本来没有我)
Thus life and death can be cast aside. (生死皆可抛)
This "Originally there never was any 'I'" is wisdom and the dharma seal of anatta. It is neither an art like an artist in zone where self is dissolved into the flow of action nor is it a state to be achieved in the case of the taoist "坐忘" (sit and forget) -- a state of no-mind. 
For example in cooking, there is no self that cooks, only the activity of cooking. The hands moves, the utensils act, the water boils, the potatoes peel and the universe sings together in the act of cooking. Whether one appears clumsy or smooth in act of cooking doesn't matter and when the dishes r out, they may still taste horrible; still there never was any "I" in any moment of the activity. There is no entry or exit point in the wisdom of anatta.”
1 Response
  1. tao Says:

    At the beginning, one is cooking and that's all. But that's ignorance

    Later one is observing and the body is cooking. But that's a temporary error.

    Much later noone is cooking, and the food gets cooked. But that's not always enough, there's still some kind of not-cooking going on.

    Finally all is cooking and nothing is not cooking, and that's good.

    So this are the four yogas of cooking.