Help with a Koan.

Discussion in 'Off Topic Area' started by Yoksha, Oct 4, 2004.

  1. Aegis

    Aegis River Guardian Admin Supporter

    Either that or people decided it wasn't right. That answer doesn't feel like it should be right, but then these things almost certainly don't have a single correct answer.
  2. MarioBro

    MarioBro Banned Banned

    Ahhh...people keep wanting to look for the more complicated answer...if it is too simple, it is not accepted. Even though it is actualy explained.

    A koan seems obviously meant to redirect a persons thoughts to stop them from seeing the obvious answer..I guess it does work quite well...
  3. semphoon

    semphoon walk idiot, walk.

    I saw it.
  4. timmeh!

    timmeh! New Member

    <<the sound of one hand ripples eerily down the foggy glen>>
  5. daftyman

    daftyman A 4oz can of whoop-ass!

    I too saw it.

    I think all the various answers say something about the person. I am thinking that this is the point of some of these koans. It makes us look at ourselves so that we can better attain 'enlightenment'. Whatever the hell that is.

    It's the nature of the response. Not the response itself.
  6. MarioBro

    MarioBro Banned Banned

    Sure, there is that theory...or maybe Koans are simply designed to point out the fact that we over-analyze things and end up with the wrong answer, when the simple and obvious answer is right there.
  7. Yoksha

    Yoksha Valued Member

    Occams Razor. A principle of philosophical discussion urging the use of the most economical and least complex assumptions, terms and theories.

    or to put it a different way: the simplest solution is usually the best.

    Unfortunately I don't think this applies to koans which are, by my experience, intended to be a little (a lot!) abstract.
  8. Jeff

    Jeff New Member

    koans are hazardous to my health and should be avoided at all cost!
  9. bambeer

    bambeer Whatareyoudoingrightnow

    Did you see the tree out in the yard? :)
  10. chapskins

    chapskins New Member

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha..... :)
  11. Th3_GOD

    Th3_GOD New Member

    Maybe the one that brought the tub was trying to gain favor and praise from the master (He brought something overboard so hes shallow), by going a little more extreme to fix the problem. While the one that brought the basket showed directness and simplicity by bringing a basket.

    Kind of like the one with the tub was "kissing up" to the master.
  12. chapskins

    chapskins New Member

    Hi Yoksha, i'm not that read up on Koans, their are very dirrect, maybe this will help, i dont know what the traditional answer to this koan is but the answer i can give is, the reason why the second got praised is because the basket can not be filled with water but the tub can, as with Zazen, when the mind is full one cannot see, when the mind is empty you can know your true nature.......
  13. woodrow

    woodrow Banned Banned

    I thought koans did not have an answer?

    There purpose is to "break" open someone's mind.

    In looking thru the answers, there are lots of logical ones. That is the kind of thinking the koan is meant to break.

    Logic is mutually exclusive of intuition or insight. The students brain has to be "broken" from it's reliance on logic so it can reach an intuitive state.
  14. YODA

    YODA The Woofing Admin Supporter

    That seems logical :D
  15. chapskins

    chapskins New Member

    Not so, the traditional way that the One hand clapping koan has been awswered, When akesked what is the sound of one hand clapping monk thrusts forward a hand, reason, two hands is Duality one hand non-duality/the now, like you mention, insight, you can illustrate the understanding of a Koan and a spontanious answer can be given to show your insight if asked in a monk like enviroment and is a tadd easier, less distractions.

    Footnote: Just thought i'd mention, am not trying to prove or diss-prove how enlightened or un-enlightened in am, just talk thats all, for anyone taking the remotest bit of interest in any of my waflings i so... ahhem...waffle, cool :D
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2004
  16. shodan-san

    shodan-san Valued Member

    In my humble experience, when a student is asked to answer a koan, it is most normally answered by direct action. If the action appears to be in the 'correct' framework, he is then asked why and what is the meaning of the direct action.

    It is then that the student attempts to put words to the action's meaning, if asked for by his teacher.

    Traditional koans have a traditional, 'correct' answer. An answer is only 'incorrect' if it shows the student is thinking too hard, or is attempting to slip by with a glib action that could be seen as spontaneous.

    Koans (problems) are good for you. In short, if given a koan (problem) go and sit in zazen - do not attack it with reason and logic. You are never closer to a solution until you are sitting in the middle of it with no attempt to 'solve' it.
  17. MadMonk108

    MadMonk108 JKD/Kali Instructor

    You do realize that by asking for help in solving a koan, you are robbing yourself of enlightenment? Your practice is like an egg. Practice badly, and you end up with a broken egg before you are ready to hatch.

    Never ask for help from anyone when practicing koan. Discuss it only with your master.

    You do have a master, don't you?
  18. sochin101

    sochin101 Varied Mambo

    look.. the answer is this: it was a really nice basket... it took the monk's mind off the leak and the dude who brought the basket was commended accordingly.
    Anyone can bring a tub when a tub's needed, but a real student of zen brings something better...

    This is where you gather at my feet and wait for more pearls of wisdom to flow from my succulent lips... ;-)
  19. sochin101

    sochin101 Varied Mambo

    I've just noticed that the first post on this was two years ago!
    1: holy thread necromancy, Batman!!!
    2: I hope everyone hasn't been meditating on the koan for the last two years!
  20. cloudz

    cloudz Valued Member

    tubs are for potatoes. :)

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