Monday, May 01, 2006

What for is a koan, sir?

Yesterday afternoon, a gentleman paid a visit to the deluded old man. After saluting to each other and just before sipping the first cup of green tea, the gentleman asked a question like this:
- What is a koan** and what for is it, sir?
- It is like a candy handed out to make a baby who is crying to stop it.
- Then what for is it after the baby aready stops crying?
- Just put it aside.
- And what would you tell the baby when he is no longer crying?
- Just tell him do not get hurt and cry again.
- That's wonderful, sir!
- You are a crying baby, aren't you?

(** koan - A puzzling, often paradoxical statement or story, used in Zen Buddhism as an aid to meditation and a means of gaining spiritual awakening.)

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