What use is your matted hair, you fool? What use is your antelope skin? You are tangled inside, and you are just making the outside pretty.
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:
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 ...