In the same way that rain breaks into a house with a bad roof, desire breaks into the mind that has not been practising meditation. While in the same way that rain cannot break into a well-roofed house, desire cannot break into a mind that has been practising meditation well.
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 ...