Friday, March 2, 2012

Tosui's Vinegar

Tosui was the Zen master who left the formalism of temples to live under a bridge with beggars. When he was getting very old, a friend helped him earn his living without begging. He showed Tosui how to collect rice and manufacture vinegar from it, and Tosui did this until he passed away.

While Tosui was making vinegar, one of the beggars gave him a picture of the Buddha. Tosui hung it on the wall of his hut and put a sign beside it. The sign read:

"Mr. Amida Buddha: This little room is quite narrow. I can let you remain as a transient. But don't think I am asking you to help me to be reborn in your paradise."

This is a funny Zen koan.  Just yesterday I was joking around with Ray about how I was hoping it could be possible to hop off the merry-go-round of reincarnation, as if we had a choice.  Round and round we go again, and I am getting rather dizzy!

I know that my speaking of koans probably defeats the purpose, which is to silence the mind, but I can't help myself.  :)


WilyBCool said...

Humor is very necessary as it can give a "step back" perspective. ;D I like it!

Sophia said...

Yes, there is a time to take life seriously, but not always. :) Life should be fun.