Speak the truth, don't get angry, and always give, even if only a little, when you are asked. By these three principles you can come into the company of the devas.
Monks behaving badly
Shouting, burning books, cutting off fingers, falling off a 10' pole, no doubt about it, these are the punk rockers of Buddhism.
Koans are a part of formal training in Zen Buddhism and although several collections have been published it it critical to understand:
- Koan study is a part of Zen monastic training and is done under the guidance of a roshi or "venerable teacher".
- The student would thus be expected to have a foundation of Buddhist training including sutras, precepts, and an established meditative practice.
Koan can be translated a public record or public case and on the surface Koans read very much like fables or short stories.
There are several collections of Koans and a partial listing includes:
- The Shaseki-shu (Collection of Stone and Sand)
- The Mumonkan (The Gateless Gate)
- The Shoyo Roku (The Book of Serenity)
- The Hekiganroku (Records of Blue Rock Temple or Blue Cliff Record>)
Although some Koans may seem easier to understand then others, reading a Koan is akin to hitting a brick wall. How to pass through the 'Gateless gate'?
First, some Koans are a bit easier then others and if you are new to Koans I highly suggest you start with the Collection of Stone and Sand.
To be continued ...