Under the bushel you go, light!

Reading doujinshi for the Buddha’s sake.

和光同塵
wa.kou.dou.jin

Literally: harmony – light – same – dust

Alternately: An especially wise or talented person hiding their abilities (often through self-effacement) and living a common life among the common people. In a Buddhist context, the phrase describes how Buddhas and Bodhisattvas may hide their true nature and live among us in order to bring enlightenment to the masses.

Notes: Perhaps ironically given the Buddhist usage, this phrase comes to us from a foundational Taoist text: the 『老子』 (Japanese Roushi), i.e. the eponymous Laozi, a.k.a. the Tao Te Ching.

This is another compound of compounds: 和光 refers to the “softening” of light; 同塵 refers to something being matched to ordinary life, or to secular society.

 
But which is the secret Buddha, and which is being led toward enlightenment

A couple of completely ordinary schmucks, just hangin’ out

About Confanity

I love the written word more than anything else I've had the chance to work with. I'm back in the States from Japan for grad school, but still studying Japanese with the hope of becoming a translator -- or writer, or even teacher -- as long as it's something language-related.
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