Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Zen Koan - The Black Nosed Buddha

A nun sought enlightenment just like the Buddha and to inspire her she had a Buddha statue made and covered it in gold leaf. This was her constant companion and she carried this Buddha statue along with her wherever she went. Eventually when she was old she went to live in a little temple in a country which had many Buddha temples and many Buddha shrines.

To pay homage to her statue she liked to burn incense in front of her particular Buddha but was disturbed to think that this smoke could filter away from her golden Buddha and go to other shrines. So thinking about this problem she constructed a funnel which would gather the smoke and deliver it only to her much–loved Buddha statue. This had the effect of darkening the nose of her golden Buddha thus rendering it especially ugly.

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