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The Manliness Of The Zen Monk And Of The Samurai
Thirdly, both the Zen monk and the Samurai were distinguished...

Introduction Of Zen Into China By Bodhidharma
An epoch-making event took place in the Buddhist history of C...

Zen In The Dark Age
The latter half of the Ashikaga period was the age of arms an...

The Five Ranks Of Merit
Thus far we have stated how to train our body and mind accord...

Bodhidharma And The Emperor Wu
No sooner had Bodhidharma landed at Kwang Cheu in Southern Ch...

The Law Of Balance In Life
It is also the case with human affairs. Social positions hig...

Universal Life Is Universal Spirit
These considerations naturally lead us to see that Universal ...

The Great Person And Small Person
For these reasons Zen proposes to call man Buddha-natured or ...

The World Is In The Making
Our assertion is far from assuming that life is now complete,...

Enlightenment Implies An Insight Into The Nature Of Self
We cannot pass over, however, this weighty problem without sa...

Sutras Used By Zen Masters
Ten Dai failed to explain away the discrepancies and contradi...

Buddha Dwelling In The Individual Mind
Enlightened Consciousness in the individual mind acquires for...

The Disciples Under The Sixth Patriarch
Some time after this the Sixth Patriarch settled himself down...

Flight Of The Sixth Patriarch
On the following morning the news of what had happened during...

The Irrationality Of The Belief Of Immortality
Occidental minds believe in a mysterious entity under the nam...

The Ten Pictures Of The Cowherd
[FN#275] The pictures were drawn by Kwoh Ngan (Kaku-an), a...

Life And Change
A peculiar phase of life is change which appears in the form ...

Nature Favours Nothing In Particular
There is another point of view of life, which gave the presen...

The Betterment Of Life
Again, people nowadays seem to feel keenly the wound of the ...

A Sutra Equal In Size To The Whole World
The holy writ that Zen masters admire is not one of parchment...




The Parable Of The Monk And The Stupid Woman








The confused or unenlightened may be compared with a monk and a
stupid woman in a Japanese parable which runs as follows: One
evening a monk (who was used to have his head shaved clean), getting
drunk against the moral precepts, visited a woman, known as a
blockhead, at her house. No sooner had he got into her room than the
female fell asleep so soundly that the monk could not wake her nap.
Thereupon he made up his mind to use every possible means to arouse
her, and searched and searched all over the room for some instrument
that would help him in his task of arousing her from death-like
slumber. Fortunately, he found a razor in one of the drawers of her
mirror stand. With it he gave a stroke to her hair, but she did not
stir a whit. Then came another stroke, and she snored like thunder.
The third and fourth strokes came, but with no better result. And at
last her head was shaven clean, yet still she slept on. The next
morning when she awoke, she could not find her visitor, the monk, as
he had left the house in the previous night. 'Where is my visitor,
where my dear monk?' she called aloud, and waking in a state of
somnambulation looked for him in vain, repeating the outcry. When at
length her hand accidentally touched her shaven head, she mistook it
for that of her visitor, and exclaimed: 'Here you are, my dear, where
am I myself gone then? A great trouble with the confused is their
forgetting of real self or Buddha-nature, and not knowing 'where it
is gone.' Duke Ngai, of the State of Lu, once said to Confucius:
One of my subjects, Sir, is so much forgetful that he forgot to take
his wife when be changed his residence. That is not much, my
lord, said the sage, the Emperors Kieh[FN#173] and Cheu[FN#174]
forgot their own selves.[FN#175]


[FN#173] The last Emperor of the Ha dynasty, notorious for his
vices. His reign was 1818-1767 B.C.

[FN#174] The last Emperor of the Yin dynasty, one of the worst
despots. His reign was 1154-1122 B.C.

[FN#175] Ko-shi-ke-go.





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