February 28, 2018

The teacher and the scorpion A Zen Master saw a scorpion drown and decided to pull it out of the water. When he did, the scorpion stung him. As a result of the pain, he left the animal that again fell into the water about to drown. The Master tried to pull it out again and the animal still stung it. A young disciple who was there approached him and said: “Excuse me master, but why do you continue? Do not you understand that every time you try to pull it out of the water it stings you? “. The Master replied: “The nature of the scorpion is to sting and this will not change mine which is to help.” Then, with the help of a leaf he took out the scorpion of the water and saved his life, then turning to his young disciple, he continued: “Do not change your nature: if someone hurts you, take only precautions. for men are almost always ungrateful of the benefit you are giving them. But this is not a reason to stop doing good, to abandon the love that lives in you. Some pursue happiness, others create it. Worried more about your conscience than about your reputation. Because your conscience is what you are, and your reputation is what others think of you. When life presents you with a thousand reasons to cry, show them that you have a thousand reasons to smile “.

February 27, 2018

My Dharma is too expensive Once, a certain student arrived at the Zen Center in Hyang-Bong and said, “Master, please, teach me the Dharma!” Hyang-Bong replied: “I’m sorry, but my Dharma is very expensive”. The student: “And how much does it cost?” Hyang-Bong: “How much can you pay?” The disciple put his hand in his pocket and took out some coins: “This is all the money I have.” Hyang-Bong said, “Even if you offered me a pile of gold as big as a mountain, my Dharma would be even more expensive!” So the student went out to go and practice Zen on his own. After a few months of hard practice he returned to Hyang-Bong and said, “Master, I will give you my life, I will do anything for you, I will be your slave, but please give me the teaching.” Hyang-Bong said, “Even if you offered me a thousand of your lives, my Dharma would still be too expensive.” Completely demoralized, the practitioner went away again. After several months of hard practice, he returned and said, “Master, I will give you my mind, will you teach me now?” Hyang-Bong said, “Your mind is a bucket of filthy trash, I do not need it, even if you offered me ten thousand minds, my Dharma would still be too expensive for you!” Again, the disciple left to practice hard. After another time he came to the understanding that the whole universe is empty. So he returned to the master and said: “Now I can finally understand how dear your Dharma was!” Hyang-Bong said, “And how expensive is it?” The disciple shouted: “KWATZ !!!!” (Scream that testifies the reached Zen understanding) Hyang-Bong said, “No, it’s even more expensive than that!” This time, when he came to his senses, the student was completely confused and in a state of profound despair. Then he vowed not to see the master again until he had reached the supreme awakening. In the end, that day arrived and he returned from Hyang-Bong: “Master, now I really understood” he said, “The sky is blue … and the grass is green!” … “No, No, No!” said Hyang-Bong, “My Dharma is even more expensive than all this!” At that point the disciple was furious: “I have already understood, I no longer need your Dharma, you can keep it and put it in your …!”. Then Hyang-Bong burst out laughing. This made the student anger even more, who turned around and started to leave the room. As soon as he had passed the door, Hyang-Bong called him: “Hey, wait a minute!” The disciple turned his head and stopped. “Do not lose it, this my Dharma, now!” said Hyang-Bong. On hearing these words, the disciple was immediately enlightened. His hands came in front of Hyang-Bong, he smiled and walked away. taken from the book “Ash that falls on the Buddha” by Seung Sahn- Trad. of Aliberth

February 26, 2018

The butterfly lesson One day, a small hole appeared in a chrysalis. A man, who was walking near it, stopped to look at the butterfly that, for several hours, was struggling to get out of that little hole. After a long time, it seemed that she had given up and the hole was always the same size. It seemed that the butterfly had now done all that it could, and that it no longer had the chance to do anything else. Then the man decided to help the butterfly: he took a penknife and opened the chrysalis. The butterfly came out immediately. But his body was small and shrunken and his wings were poorly developed and could hardly move. The man continued to observe, because he hoped that, at any moment, the butterfly’s wings would open and be able to support the body, and that it would begin to fly. Nothing happened! And the butterfly passed the rest of its existence dragging itself to the ground with a shrunken body and with little developed wings. He was never able to fly. What the man, with his gesture of kindness and with the intention to help did not understand, was that passing through the narrow hole of the chrysalis was the effort necessary for the butterfly to transmit the fluid of his body to his wings, so that it could fly. It was the way God made her grow and develop.

February 23, 2018

The miraculous stone

One day a man became aware of the existence of a stone with miraculous power: an ocher-colored stone that was able to transform any metal into gold! Since the news came from a reliable source, he decided to travel.

He wrapped himself in an iron chain and walked away. Whenever he saw an ocher-colored stone, he picked it up and pounded it on the chain around his waist, but nothing happened. Iron remained iron. Certainly it would not have been an easy search, but it did not despair.

Days passed, then weeks, months, and so on. After a few years, he was still searching for the miraculous stone, collecting, beating and throwing away.

While he was walking down a street on the outskirts of a village, a boy greeted him cordially and asked him where he had bought that beautiful gold chain he was wearing on his belt. The confused man looked down at the iron chain he was wearing and … yes, the iron chain had turned to gold! But he had not noticed which of the many stones that he had tried had been the one who had produced alchemy!

(Zen Story)

February 22, 2018

Two young monks They were studying in the seminary, and both were hardened smokers. Their problem was: “Can I smoke while I pray?” Failing to resolve it, they decided to turn to their superiors. Later, one asked the other what the superior had told him. “I was bitterly scolded just for talking about it,” said the first. “And your superior, what did he tell you?” “Mine was very pleased,” said the second. – He told me that I was doing very well. But tell me, what question did you ask him? ” “I asked him if I can smoke while I’m praying”. “You wanted it. I asked him: can I pray while I smoke? “. Ramesh Balsekar

February 21, 2018

Two vases An elderly chinese woman had two large pots hanging at the ends of a long stick with panning on the neck. One of the two pots had a crack in it, while the other was full. So at the end of the long journey from the source to the house, the whole pot always arrived full, while the one with the crack arrivave always half empty. For over two years, every day the old woman brought it to the house that is always a jar and a half of water. Of course, the whole pot was proud of himself, while the broken pot was ashamed terribly of his imperfection, and being able to perform only half his task. After two years, she finally found the courage to speak with the old woman and by the end of his stick, said:” I am ashamed of myself, because my crack makes you take home only half of the water that you take”. The old woman smiled and said: “have You noticed that on your side of the street, there are always firoti, while on the other there are? This happens because, since I know you have a leak and it leaks water, I have planted seeds of flowers only on your side of the road. So every day, coming home, you water the flowers. For two years I have been able to collect flowers that have brightened up my home and my table. If you do not fossì as you are, I never would have had their beauty to brighten up my home. Each of us has his weak side. But are the cracks and imperfections that we each have that make our lives together interesting and worthy of being lived. You just need to be able to take each person for what he is, and to discover its positive side.

February 19, 2018

The rumor Zeng Shen, a disciple of Confucius, had gone on a trip to the Dei kingdom. It was the case that, in that country, a man bearing his own name committed a crime. A neighbor of the disciple’s mother who was returning from the trip, went to the old woman and told her: – I heard that your son was arrested for murder. Sitting in front of her loom, without stopping working and without even turning her head, Ms. Zeng answered: -Impossible. My son is not capable of such a thing. A little later, a neighbor pushed the tip of her nose through the window: – They say your son killed someone. This time, the old woman stopped weaving and remained silent. In the evening, in front of the door of his house, a stranger asked a passer-by: – Zeng Shen, the killer here? The next morning, Zeng Shen’s mother had bundled up and left in a hurry for Fei’s reign. You can grab the hand that is about to hit you in time. But the language that accuses you, how to stop it?

February 18, 2018

Everyone finds what he has

One day, a wise old man was at the edge of an oasis of supply for camels. He was at the gates of the Middle East. Often it happened that travelers stopped to ask for information on the spot. One day, a young man asked him: “I have never been here. How are the inhabitants of this city? ”

The old sage answered with a question: “How were the inhabitants of the city you came from?” The young man said: “Egoists and villains. This is why I was happy to leave there “. “So are the inhabitants of this city!”, The old sage answered him.

Shortly thereafter, another young man approached the man and asked him the same question: “I just arrived in this country. How are the inhabitants of this city? ” The man answered again with the same question: “How were the inhabitants of the city you come from?”. “They were good, generous, hospitable, honest. I had many friends and I had a hard time leaving them! “. “Even the inhabitants of this city are like that!”, Replied the old wise man.

A merchant who had brought his camels to watering had heard the conversations and when the second young man turned away he turned to the old man in a tone of reproach: “How can you give two completely different answers to the same question asked by two people? “My son,” the wise man answered, “Each carries in his heart what is“. Who has not found anything good in the past, will not find anything good here either. On the contrary, he who has loyal friends in the other city will also find loyal and faithful friends here. Because, you see, every human being is brought to see in others what is in his heart.

February 17, 2018

Midnight Excursion Many pupils were studying meditation under the Zen master Sengai. One of them used to arise at night, climb over the temple wall, and go to town on a pleasure jaunt. Sengai, inspecting the dormitory quarters, found this pupil missing one night and also discovered the high stool he had used to scale the wall. Sengai removed the stool and stood there in its place. When the wanderer returned, not knowing that Sengai was the stool, he put his feet on the master’s head and jumped down into the grounds. Discovering what he had done, he was aghast. Sengai said: “It is very chilly in the early morning. Do be careful not to catch cold yourself.” The pupil never went out at night again.

February 16, 2018

The Hunter & The Dakwa (Cherokee Story) In the old days there was a great fish called the Dakwa which lived in the Tennessee River near the mouth of Toco Creek. This fish was so large that it could easily swallow a man. One day several hunters were travelling in a canoe along the Tennessee when the Dakwa suddenly rose up under the canoe and threw them all into the air. As the men came down, the fish swallowed one with a single snap of its jaws, and dived with him to the bottom of the river. This man was one of the bravest hunters in the tribe, and as soon as he discovered where he was he began thinking of some way to overcome the Dakwa and escape from its stomach. Except for a few scratches and bruises, the hunter had not been hurt, but it was so hot and airless inside the big fish that he feared he would soon smother. As he groped around in the darkness, his hands found some musselshells which the Dakwa had swallowed. These shells had very sharp edges. Using one of them as a knife, the hunter began cutting away at the fish’s stomach. Soon the Dakwa grew uneasy at the scraping inside his stomach and came up to the surface of the river for air. The man kept on cutting with the shell until the fish was in such pain that it swam wildly back and forth across the river, thrashing the water into foam with its tail. At last the hunter cut through the Dakwa’s side. Water flowed in, almost drowning the man, but the big fish was so weary by this time that it came to a stop. The hunter looked out of the hole and saw that the Dakwa was now resting in shallow water near the riverbank. Reaching up, the man pulled himself through the hole in the fish, moving very carefully so as not to disturb the Dakwa. He then waded ashore and returned to his village, where his friends were mourning his death because they were sure he had been eaten by the great fish. Now they named him a hero and held a celebration in his honour. Although the brave hunter escaped with his life, the juices in the stomach of the Dakwa had scalded all the hair from his head, and he was bald forever after.

 February 15, 2018

Zen Children Zen teachers accustom their young students to express themselves. Two Zen temples each had a child who was the favorite of all. Every morning one of these children, going to buy vegetables, met the other in the street. “Where are you going?” Asked the first. “I go where my feet go,” said the other. This answer left the first child confused, who went to ask his teacher for help. “When you meet that child in the morning,” the teacher told him, “ask him the same question. He will give you the same answer, and then you ask him: “Do not count your feet: where do you go, in that case?”. This will fix it. “ The next morning the children met again. “Where are you going?” Asked the first child. “I’m going where the wind is blowing,” the other answered. Also this time the child was baffled, and went to tell the master his own defeat. “And you ask him where he goes if there’s no wind,” the master advised him. The next day the boys met for the third time. “Where are you going?” Asked the first child. “I go to the market to buy vegetables,” the other replied.

February 14, 2018

Cherry Trees in Love Two cherry trees in love, born distant, they looked at each other without being touched. A cloud saw them and moved to compassion, cried in pain and waved their leaves .. but it was not enough, the cherry trees did not touch. A storm saw them and moved to compassion, screamed in pain and waved their branches, but it was not enough, the cherry trees did not touch. A mountain saw them and moved to compassion, shook with pain and waved their trunks, but it was not enough, the cherry trees did not touch. cloud, storm and mountain ignored, that under the earth, the roots of the cherry trees were intertwined in a timeless embrace.

February 13, 2018

The pig and the horse There was a farmer who had a horse and a pig. One day, the horse became ill and he called the veterinarian, who said “Well, your horse has a virus. He must take this medicine for three days. I’ll come back on the 3rd day and if he’s not better, we’re going to have to put him down.” Nearby, the pig listened closely to their conversation. The next day, they gave him the medicine and left. The pig approached the horse and said: Be strong, my friend. Get up or else they’re going to put you to sleep! On the second day, they again gave him the medicine and left. The pig came back and said “Come on buddy, get up or else you’re going to die! Come on, I’ll help you get up. Let’s go! One, two, three … On the third day, again they came to give him the medicine And the vet said “Unfortunately, we’re going to have to put him down tomorrow. Otherwise, the virus might spread and infect the other horses. After they left, the pig approached the horse and said “Listen pal, it’s now or never! Get up, come on! Have courage! Come on! Get up! Get up! That’s it, slowly! Great! Come on, one, two, three … Good, good. Now faster, come on … Fantastic! Run, run more! Yes! Yay! Yes! You did it, you’re a champion!” All of a sudden, the owner came back, saw the horse running in the field and began shouting “It’s a miracle! My horse is cured! We must have a grand party. Let’s roast the pig to celebrate!” (Ancient Cinese Story)

February 12, 2018

Those who was heated lived, those who had bread died Once there were sailors going by sea. It was winter and the cold was so strong it seemed that the tips of the nose were falling. Suddendly came a great storm and the ship sank. The sailors reached the ground. The locals helped them to put some of them in a house, some in another house. Some of the first house, had some bread since it was long since they ate them, the others asked for a lit fire to warm up because they were so cold. It was so cold that the ones who ate the next day were dead, and those who chose to warm up remained alive. So it remained that: -those who was heated, lived, those who ate, died … – (Sicilian Tale)

February 10, 2018

The Real miracle When Bankei was preaching at Ryumon temple, a Shinshu priest, who believed in salvation through the repetition of the name of the Buddha of Love, was jealous of his large audience and wanted to debate with him. Bankei was in the midst of a talk when the priest appeared, but the fellow made such a disturbance that Bankei stopped his discourse and asked about the noise. “The founder of our sect,” boasted the priest, “had such miraculous powers that he held a brush in his hand on one bank of the river, his attendant held up a paper on the other bank, and the teacher wrote the holy name of Amida through the air. Can you do such a wonderful thing?” Bankei replied lightly: “Perhaps your fox can perform that trick, but that is not the manner of Zen. My miracle is that when I feel hungry I eat, and when I feel thirsty I drink.”

February 9, 2018

No water, no moon When the nun Chiyono studied Zen under Bukko of Engaku she was unable to attain the fruits of meditation for a long time. At last one moonlit night she was carrying water in an old pail bound with bamboo. The bamboo broke and the bottom fell out of the pail, and at that moment Chiyono was set free! In commemoration, she wrote a poem:

In this way and that I tried to save the old pail Since the bamboo strip was weakening and about to break Until at last the bottom fell out. No more water in the pail! No more moon in the water!

February 8, 2018

The gates of paradise 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.

February 7, 2018

The thief A farmer, who had wood to split, could no longer find his ax. He searched for it in the yard, at the log, in the shed, and the barn. Nothing to do: disappeared, probably stolen! A brand new ax, purchased with its latest savings! The anger, that brief raptus of madness, overflowed from his heart and dyed the spirit of a blacker pitch ink. At a certain point, when he saw his neighbor pass by on the street, it seemed to him that his step was that of someone without a clear conscience, that his face let the guilty expression of the guilty face in front of his victim and that his a way of saying goodbye to him would betray the typical astuteness of the ax thief. And when the other opened his mouth to rattle off the usual meteorological banalities in use among neighbors, his was undoubtedly the voice of someone who stole a new flaming ax. Failing to resist, our farmer crossed the porch in great strides to go and tell his business to that thief, who also had the nerve to tease! During the journey he stumbled into an armful of dry branches abandoned on the side of the road. He staggered, strangling himself with the string of insults aimed at his neighbor, and went to smash his nose against the handle of the ax, surely fallen just before the wheelbarrow!

 February 6, 2018

The Wind and the Sun The wind and the Sun were disputing which was the stronger. Suddenly they saw a traveller coming down the road, and the Sun said: “I see a way to decide our dispute. Whichever of us can cause that traveller to take off his cloak shall be regarded as the stronger You begin.” So the Sun retired behind a cloud, and the Wind began to blow as hard as it could upon the traveller. But the harder he blew the more closely did the traveller wrap his cloak round him, till at last the Wind had to give up in despair. Then the Sun came out and shone in all his glory upon the traveller, who soon found it too hot to walk with his cloak on.

February 5, 2018

The horses of destiny In the north of China, a modest peasant lived on the borders of the steppes frequented by nomadic hordes. One day he came back whistling from the fair with a superb filly bought at a reasonable price, but anyway he had swallowed five years of economies. A few days later, his only horse, which represented all his capital, escaped vanishing to the border. The event went around the village and, one after the other, the neighbors came to pity the factor for his bad luck. But he shrugged and answered imperturbably: “The clouds hide the sun, but they bring rain, from fortune sometimes luck is born.” Three months later, the mare reappeared with a magnificent, wild stallion, which caracled beside it. She was pregnant. The neighbors came to congratulate the happy owner. “You were right to be optimistic, lose a horse and earn three!” “The clouds bring restorative rain, but sometimes even the devastating hurricane.In the folds of fortune lies the misfortune.We’ll see.” The farmer’s only son trained the fiery stallion and enjoyed himself mounting it. A short time later, he made a fall from a horse in which he risked breaking his neck. He got away with a broken leg. To the neighbors who once again rattled off their lamented, the country philosopher replied: “Bad luck, luck … who can say it? Everything changes in this impermanent world.” A few days later, the general mobilization was decreed in the district to reject a Mongol invasion. All the able young people were sent to fight and very few of them returned home. But the only child of the peasant, thanks to the crutches, escaped the massacre.

February 3, 2018

Arresting The Stone Buddha

A merchant bearing fifty rolls of cotton goods on his shoulders stopped to rest from the heat of the day beneath a shelter where a large stone Buddha was standing. There he fell asleep, and when he awoke his goods had disappeared. He immediately reported the matter to the police. A judge named O-oka opened court to investigate. “That stone Buddha must have stolen the goods,” concluded the judge. “He is supposed to care for the welfare of the people, but he has failed to perform his holy duty. Arrest him.” The police arrested the stone Buddha and carried it into the court. A noisy crowd followed the statue, curious to learn what kind of sentence the judge was about to impose. When O-oka appeared on the bench he rebuked the boisterous audience. “What right have you people to appear before the court laughing and joking in this manner? You are in contempt of court and subject to a fine and imprisonment.” The people hastened to apologize. “I shall have to impose a fine on you,” said the judge, “but I will remit it provided each one of you brings one roll of cotton goods to the court within three days. Anyone failing to do this will be arrested.” One of the rolls of cloth which the people brought was quickly recognized by the merchant as his own, and thus the thief was easily discovered. The merchant recovered his goods, and the cotton rolls were returned to the people.

February 2, 2018

No work No food

Hyakujo, the Chinese Zen master, used to labor with his pupils even at the age of eighty, trimming the gardens, cleaning the grounds, and pruning the trees. The pupils felt sorry to see the old teacher working so hard, but they knew he would not listen to their advice to stop, so they hid away his tools. That day the master did not eat. The next day he did not eat, nor the next. “He may be angry because we have hidden his tools,” the pupils surmised. “We had better put them back.” The day they did, the teacher worked and ate the same as before. In the evening he instructed them: “No work, no food.”

February 1, 2018

The Scorpion and the Turtle

One lazy afternoon day a turtle was swimming happily along a lake. As the turtle was nearing land he heard a scorpion hail it from the muddy shore. A scorpion, being a very poor swimmer, asked the turtle if he would carry him on his back across the lake. The turtle thought it was the craziest thing he ever heard, “Why would I carry you on my back?” he boomed, ‘You’ll sting me while I’m swimming and I’ll drown.” “My dear turtle friend,” laughed the scorpion, “if I were to sting you, you would drown and I would go down with you and drown as well. Now where is the logic in that?” The turtle pondered this for a moment, and eventually saw the logic in the scorpion’s statement. “You’re right!” said the turtle with a smile. “Hop on!” So the scorpion climbed aboard and the turtle paddled his big fins in the water. Halfway across the lake the scorpion gave the turtle a big sting, and he started to drown. As they both sank into the water the turtle turned to the scorpion with a tear in his eye. “My dear scorpion friend, why did you sting me? Now we are both going to drown…” the turtle was gasping for air. “Where is the… logic in that?” “It has nothing to do with logic” the scorpion sadly replied, “it’s just my nature.”
February ultima modifica: 2018-03-09T19:42:56+00:00 da Webmaster