to poke or not to poke

Posted on feb 28, 2018

[…Porcupine was to become a teacher…]

Black Bear said, “I’m afraid I’ll get poked with her quills.”
Raven said, “That’s the risk.”
Mole said, “I’d like to hear from Porcupine.”
Porcupine said, “Actually, I don’t poke, you poke yourself.”
Black Bear said, “How can I avoid poking myself?”
Porcupine said, “Don’t mess with me.”

Robert Aitken Rōshi

Uit:  Zen Master Raven,The Teachings of a Wise Old Bird, Robert Aitken, Wisdom Publications, Boston, 2017, p. 146.
Afbeelding: Fragment of the book’s cover, by Jennifer Rain Crosby.

In the tradition of the great koan collections and the records of ancient masters, Robert Aitken distills a lifetime of teaching down to its essence. Intriguing and deceptively simple, Zen Master Raven is a brilliant encapsulation of Zen in over a hundred koan-like encounters alongside many charming illustrations. Featuring curious beginners like Mallard and Mole and profound teachers like Brown Bear, Moose Roshi, and Zen Master Raven himself, this classic of contemporary Zen and will inspire seekers for generations to come. wisdompubs.org

 

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