This page is for Zen proverbs and Kōans.
- No snowflake ever falls in the wrong place.
- Quoted as a Zen proverb in Julia Shpak, "Power of Plentiful Wisdom" (2010), p. 43.
- When you reach the top of the mountain, keep climbing.
- Quoted as a Zen koan in Kevin Grange, "Beneath Blossom Rain: Discovering Bhutan on the Toughest Trek in the World" (2011), p. 284.
- Compiled by Wumen Huikai (Mumon Ekai )
- Not the wind, not the flag; mind is moving.
- Kōan 29 : Not the Wind, Not the Flag
- The following Zen stories, and many others, can be found in the collection Zen Flesh, Zen Bones compiled by Paul Reps and Nyogen Senzaki, Tuttle Publishing : ISBN 0804831866, 9780804831864
The Gates of ParadiseEdit
- A soldier named Nobushige came to Hakuin, and asked: "Is there really a paradise and a hell?"
- "Who are you?" inquired Hakuin.
- "I am a samurai," the warrior replied.
- "You, a soldier!" exclaimed Hakuin. "What kind of ruler would have you as his guard? Your face looks like that of a beggar."
- Nobushige became so angry that he began to draw his sword, but Hakuin continued: "So you have a sword! Your weapon is probably much too dull to cut off my head."
- As Nobushige drew his sword Hakuin remarked: "Here open the gates of hell!"
- At these words the samurai, perceiving the master's discipline, sheathed his sword and bowed.
- "Here open the gates of paradise," said Hakuin.
A Drop of WaterEdit
- A Zen master named Gisan asked a young student to bring him a pail of water to cool his bath.
- The student brought the water and, after cooling the bath, threw on to the ground the little that was left over.
- "You dunce!" the master scolded him. "Why didn't you give the rest of the water to the plants? What right have you to waste even a drop of water in this temple?
- The young student attained Zen in that instant. He changed his name to Tekisui, which means a drop of water.
- The Layman was sitting in his thatched cottage one day studying the sūtras. "Difficult, difficult," he said; "like trying to scatter ten measures of sesame seed all over a tree." "Easy, easy," Mrs. Pang said; "like touching your feet to the ground when you get out of bed." "Neither difficult nor easy," Ling Zhao said; "on the hundred grass tips, the great Masters' meaning.