Zen Koans {33}

Zen is a man hanging from a tree over a cliff. He is holding onto a twig with his teeth. His hands hold no branch. His feet can find no branch. Up on the cliff-edge a man shouts at him: ‘Why did Bodhidharma come from India into China?’

If he fails to answer he is lost. If he answers, he dies. What must he do?

6 thoughts on “Zen Koans {33}”

  1. A wonderful example of God’s games of life and death.

    The point I guess ….whether this person answers or not….he is going to die surely.

    And the point here is to die quickly or not.

    The great message I feel is humans are immortal and so never afraid to talk or think of death.

    Talking about death is taboo in most of the cultures.

    Feel free to correct me and guide me further Amber.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, thanks for sharing this. This is my take on it ~ The man is a metaphor for consciousness. The tree, branches, and twig is thought. His teeth are attention. Consciousness is holding onto thought with the attention. The line, “his hands hold no branch, his feet find no branch” is about the true nature of thought. Thought only has the reality we give it. It is a phantom. One cannot really get a hold of it or control it. The man shouting at him is insight. A flash of self awareness. It asks a question about the nature of what is. What is the attention holding onto a thought. If he fails to find the meaning of the insight, he is lost, still stuck in thought. If he answers the question he sees the true nature of the false self. Thought stops with the awareness of it’s true nature. The false self based on thought and not conscious awareness.

      Liked by 2 people

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