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Koans ..

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NICE_1
Posts: 1165
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(@nice_1)
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Hi .

The word koan, just came to mind and it could of been Cone lol, but for some reason I wanted to look up Koan instead .

I raised a smile when I read about it's meaning .

Here is just a few excerpts regarding examples of it's meaning ..

[K]oan after koan explores the theme of nonduality. Hakuin's well-known koan, "Two hands clap and there is a sound, what is the sound of one hand?" is clearly about two and one. The koan asks, you know what duality is, now what is nonduality? In "What is your [url]original face[/url] before your mother and father were born?" the phrase "father and mother" alludes to duality. This is obvious to someone versed in the Chinese tradition, where so much philosophical thought is presented in the imagery of paired opposites. The phrase "your original face" alludes to the original nonduality

The aim of the break-through koan is to see the "nonduality of subject and object":
The monk himself in his seeking is the koan. Realization of this is the insight; the response to the koan [...] Subject and object - this is two hands clapping. When the monk realizes that the koan is not merely an object of consciousness but is also he himself as the activity of seeking an answer to the koan, then subject and object are no longer separate and distinct [...] This is one hand clapping

...in the beginning a monk first thinks a kōan is an inert object upon which to focus attention; after a long period of consecutive repetition, one realizes that the kōan is also a dynamic activity, the very activity of seeking an answer to the kōan. The kōan is both the object being sought and the relentless seeking itself. In a kōan, the self sees the self not directly but under the guise of the kōan... When one realizes ("makes real") this identity, then two hands have become one. The practitioner becomes the kōan that he or she is trying to understand. That is the sound of one hand .

Victor Hori

t would take 10 years to solve all the kōans [...] in the sōdō. After the student has solved all koans, he can leave the sōdō and live on his own, but he is still not considered a roshi. For this he has to complete another ten years of training, called "go-go-no-shugyō" in Japanese. Literally, this means "practice after satori/enlightenment", but preferred the translation "special practice". Fukushima would explain that the student builds up a "religious personality" during this decade.

I would say it is a kind of period that functions to test if the student is actually able to live in regular society and apply his koan understanding to daily life, after he has lived in an environment that can be quite surreal and detached from the lives of the rest of humanity. Usually, the student lives in small parish temple during this decade, not in a formal training monastery .

Interesting ..

I have heard the one hand clapping analogy before like many have (didn't know was referred to as a koan) lol but it certainly gets the old brain box ticking over hahah, although one has to disengage the intellect also to derive at such an answer ..

Don't suppose this is a thread that will create a lot of response but I like to post what comes to mind, some of what comes to mind may hold some interest to some lol .

It say's that it would take 10 years to solve all koans .. would that seem a waste of 10 years to some?

x dazzle x

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(@wildstrawberry)
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It say's that it would take 10 years to solve all koans .. would that seem a waste of 10 years to some?

Isn't your question a koan in itself, daz. Would it seem like a waste of 10 years to you?

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Energylz
Posts: 16602
(@energylz)
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Hi Daz,

Good read, thanks.

It say's that it would take 10 years to solve all koans .. would that seem a waste of 10 years to some?

Perhaps, especially if there are lots of koans that are all effectively demonstrating the same concept. If they are all telling us that everything is One (non-duality) and duality is a construct within the one mind, then once we recognise this then we don't need to solve the others.... unless of course they've got something new to tell us. 🙂

All Love and Reiki Hugs

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NICE_1
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(@nice_1)
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Isn't your question a koan in itself, daz. Would it seem like a waste of 10 years to you?

The question is quite possibly a koan W.S. I am still getting my head around them doh!! haha I mean Eee Eee .. I think I have milked that for the last time .

Getting back to the question .. I don’t see anything as being a waste of time if there is such a thing . For one to understand koans or riddles or mysteries of life and creation, duality and such likes will be as important for them to do so as is every breath that one takes also .. I relate to the discipline / attention and the focus that one applies to anything . on the other hand not paying any attention to anything also is equal in practice / non practice lol .

I do have a zen master as a guide perhaps by speaking of koans this is his way of letting me know he is around ..

Speaking of dedication and such likes

I had an interesting chap from spirit this morning named Henry Pelham Holmes Bromwell (August 26, 1823 – January 9, 1903) was an American lawyer, politician from Illinois, and prominent Freemason it is claimed that Bromwell spent "sixteen hours a day for Six years and two months" working on what he described as "a dissertation on the lost knowledge of the lodge .

Wowzeers I thought .. I thought I was dedicated lol, but perhaps a part from the interest in the elements and geometry which he was also I would say this is why this chap stepped forward and not only because he resonated with my own disciplined nature .

x dazzle x

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NICE_1
Posts: 1165
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(@nice_1)
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Hi Daz,

Good read, thanks.

Perhaps, especially if there are lots of koans that are all effectively demonstrating the same concept. If they are all telling us that everything is One (non-duality) and duality is a construct within the one mind, then once we recognise this then we don't need to solve the others.... unless of course they've got something new to tell us. 🙂

All Love and Reiki Hugs

I agree in one respect Giles . If one gets the answer so to speak for one particular koan then one would assume that the same answer (or should I say the same principles and such likes) applies to every koan related question .

On the other hand perhaps there are no ''real'' answers . tee hee .

I will list a few koan examples .. they are raisning a few smiles ..

x daz x

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NICE_1
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(@nice_1)
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[url]Zen Koans - AshidaKim.com[/url]


Emperor Wu of China was a very benevolent Buddhist. He built many temples and monasteries, educated many monks, and performed countless philanthropic deeds in the name of Buddhism. He asked the great teacher Bodhidharma, "What merit is there in my good works?" Bodhidharma replied, "None whatsoever." The Emperor then asked, "What is the Primal meaning of Holy Reality?" Bodhidharma answered, "Emptiness, not holiness." The Emperor then queried, "Who, then, is this confronting me?" "I do not know," was Bodhidharma's reply. Since the Emperor did not understand, Bodhidharma left his kingdom.

Nothing Exists

Yamaoka Tesshu, as a young student of Zen, visited one master after another. He called upon Dokuon of Shokoku.

Desiring to show his attainment, he said: "The mind, Buddha, and sentient beings, after all, do not exist. The true nature of phenomena is emptiness. There is no relaization, no delusion, no sage, no mediocrity. There is no giving and nothing to be received."

Dokuon, who was smoking quietly, said nothing. Suddenly he whacked Yamaoka with his bamboo pipe. This made the youth quite angry.

"If nothing exists," inquired Dokuon, "where did this anger come from?"

Temper

A Zen student came to Bankei and complained: "Master, I have an ungovernable temper. How can I cure it?"

"You have something very strange," replied Bankei. "Let me see what you have."

"Just now I cannot show it to you," replied the other.

"When can you show it to me?" asked Bankei.

"It arises unexpectedly," replied the student.

"Then," concluded Bankei, "it must not be your own true nature. If it were, you could show it to me at any time. When you were born you did not have it, and your parents did not give it to you. Think that over."

Muddy Road

Tanzan and Ekido were once traveling together down a muddy road. A heavy rain was still falling.

Coming around a bend, they met a lovely girl in a silk kimono and sash, unable to cross the intersection.

"Come on, girl" said Tanzan at once. Lifting her in his arms, he carried her over the mud.

Ekido did not speak again until that night when they reached a lodging temple. Then he no longer could restrain himself. "We monks don't go near females," he told Tanzan, "especially not young and lovely ones. It is dangerous. Why did you do that?"

"I left the girl there," said Tanzan. "Are you still carrying her?"

x dazzle x

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NICE_1
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Everyday Life is the Path

[INDENT] Joshu asked Nansen: `What is the path?' Nansen said: `Everyday life is the path.'
Joshu asked: `Can it be studied?'
Nansen said: `If you try to study, you will be far away from it.'
Joshu asked: `If I do not study, how can I know it is the path?'
Nansen said: `The path does not belong to the perception world, neither does it belong to the nonperception world. Cognition is a delusion and noncognition is senseless. If you want to reach the true path beyond doubt, place yourself in the same freedom as sky. You name it neither good nor not-good.'
At these words Joshu was enlightened.
[/INDENT] Mumon's Comment: Nansen could met Joshu's frozen doubts at once when Joshu asked his questions. I doubt that if Joshu reached the point that Nansen did. He needed thirty more years of study.

In spring, hundreds of flowers; in autumn, a harvest moon;
In the summer, a refreshing breeze; in winter snow will accompany your.
If useless things do not hang in your mind,
Any season is a good season for you.

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(@geomsaja)
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Zen

“Even if it seems certain that you will lose, retaliate. Neither wisdom nor technique has a place in this. A real man does not think of victory or defeat. He plunges recklessly towards an irrational death. By doing this, you will awaken from your dreams.”
― Yamamoto Tsunetomo, Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai

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