Tradition Values Experience Higher Than Lineage

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However, the winning of Southern school is not an indication that Chan tradition values experience higher than lineage. Even in Southern school, the lineage is important. For example, Shenhui set up his own lineage hall in imitation of Puji. He worked to establish the transmission from Bodhiharma to Huineng and the sole lineal succession of Chan. Shenhui’s attack is not a rebellion toward the Chan tradition, but is only a method to legitimize his position in Chan tradition. Shenhui actually enhanced the Chan tradition and lineage, as indicated by McRae: “The northern school has organically generated the basic configuration of the Chan genealogical model, but only with Shenhui was its unilineal quality highlighted so clearly” (McRae 55). Based on our knowledge of Northern school and Southern school, we say that during this debate, the Northern school represent the official lineage and practice methods and the Southern represent the experience. However, even the Southern school itself cannot get rid of the influence induced by lineage and Northern school. The Chan lineage provides the stand point for anyone in Chan’s tradition and provides meditation method that leads towards enlightenment. The southern school is in tension itself because of the unsolved lineage and experience dispute. Although Southern school claim people need “Direct, complete awareness [that] is non-mediate awareness” (Gomez 75), such claim is impaired by its Southern school’s vague standard of awaken and
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