I was wondering if someone could help me with the kanbun reading of this text:

這箇是誰誰是我. (It is an expression used by Dôgen in Eihei kôroku 9, 55).

Although I am unsure, I figured one possible reading might be:

是【これ】這箇【しゃこ】は 誰【だれ】是【これ】我【われ】は 誰【だれ】.

  • FYI the sentence belongs to Early Modern Chinese rather than typical Classical Chinese (because of the time Zen was introduced to Japan) so it's kind of on the edge of whether traditional kanbun reading can be applied or not. – broken laptop Jul 8 '16 at 16:05

The 1988 Shunjusha edition of Dogen (ed. Kagamishima Genryu 鏡島元隆) gives this reading:


kore wa kore ta so, tare ka kore ware

"Who is this? Who am I?" (or more provocatively "... is me?")

Points that might interest you:

  • 這箇 can be pronounced "shako" but in most of the kanbun I've seen it's just assigned the reading "kore"

  • When 是 is used as a copula, as it is here, the "kore" is normally put just before the predicate, not at the start of the sentence: "X是Y" → "X (wa), kore Y" → (En.) "X is Y"

  • 誰 is traditionally "ta(re)" in kanbun rather than "dare", because the rules for kanbun were set down before the first consonant of "tare" became voiced a couple of centuries ago

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