Zen Buddhism Koans and other Secrets
The Koans of Zen Buddhism are short riddles from China that became a magical tool in Japanese Zen: Whoever finds the answers is enlightened!
Do you want to try?
In the box on top of every page you find a riddle
and its secret answer!
Having tried some you might be curious about
Some background information about Zen might be helpful to understand the purpose of Koans and where they come from.
Buddhist Koans and Zen riddles - the answers and how to find them by yourself
In the box, right on top of every page you'll find a Koan with a hidden answer and a short explanation of this answer.
Use these boxes just to become familiar with Koans.
At first glance it may seem quite impossible to answer Zen riddles without help.
Go to Zen riddles
to find the three rules on how to deal with Zen Buddhism's mysteries.
The solution of the Koan "What is the sound of one hand clapping?" you find here.
You might even like to look for pattern
of Zen Koans.
Finally there are many more Zen riddles and answers.
Zen-Meditation - attractive and easy to Learn
Meditation is recommended by lots of people:
- by your GP and many therapists,
- by fitness trainers and your parish priest,
- by soft speaking Tibetan rimposches and greedy gurus.
Meditation is today an all-round cure for all kinds of mental problems.
Meditation doesn't need to be serious, boring, testing your persistence, steadiness and patience.
Discover the basic and liberating meditation with the Buddha at "how to meditate for beginners
That's meditation without limitations. Laugh and sit and smile that's the sparkling core of Zen.
Would you like to take the direct way instead? Go to Zen at Meditation Hall
The Way of Zen - Promises, Obedience and Rituals
The main promise of Zen Buddhism
, its goal, is to become enlightened. How? Don't ask. The master will tell you.
Until the goal is achieved follow the rituals, meditate as long as you can, recite sutras by heart, work whatever you are told. Don't ask why.
One day, after enlightenment you will be a teacher yourself, giving orders, being able to lead Zen students to enlightenment.
That's a strange way to deal with people, isn't it? Especially as everybody knows enlightenment
is an illusion, a fairy tale.
No, not everybody knows that. Many Zen people believe in enlightenment and this makes their Zen master very powerful.
He (only a few women are in this job) is the unquestioned boss of monasteries and Zen-centres
Like an absolute king the master decides everything and is accountable to nobody.
Christian Zen - Spirituality, Experience and Science
In the 80's Christian priests and nuns were trained in Japan as Zen teachers. Since that time Christians have practised Zen as a revival of Christian mysticism.
Is this approach plausible?
The importance of religious behaviour and experience
seems to be quite different in Zen and Christianity.
The relationship between spirituality, personal experiences and science
is seen quite differently in Zen and in Christianity.
Zen is a offspring of Buddhism
has its own traditions and believes.
How can Christianity and Buddhism, two religions unrelated by time and geography, become one?
But nevertheless aren't there similarities or even equalities? Decide yourself!
History of Zen - from ancient India to San Francisco
3000 years ago there were no Zen Buddhists in India but only Hindus, tribal warriors that originated from the Caspian Sea.
Their beliefs were refined in Indus Valley Culture where the warriors first arrived and further refined again much later by the Buddha.
But still, writing and reading was unknown in India for thousands of years.
Zen Buddhism proper began much later in China
, when a fat laughing Buddha stopped preaching, wrote down Indian sutras for the first time and dropped Indian rituals and robes.
"Meditate with our Buddha" his Chinese followers said and, please, laugh with him.
Later, in Japan
, serious monks refilled Zen Buddhism with miles of holy scriptures and heaps of morality. The laughing Buddha from China turned serious and religious again.
This rigid form of Japanese Zen was exported to San Francisco and other western cities.
Koans - a short collection
(More Koans are here!)
Q: Zen Meditation talks a lot about mind control and mindfulness.
How do I have do it? (Fritz, Germany)
A: Fritz, don't bother about stupid Zen talk. Choose one of
the many easy meditation techniques and just start your practice. Got
Q: Is it necessary in Zen to meditaten every day? (Andree,
A: Laugh about yourself Andree, and take time to enloy your life
and a good meal. The Buddha's already dead.
Q: Does original Buddhist meditation leads to Buddhist enlightenment
A: Stop laughing about Josefina's serious question dirty old
I feel sorry about this guy. He's hopeless.
Q: Are Buddhist Koans
, helpful to deepen meditation and to understand the
history of Buddhism? (Kana, Japan)
A: The koans and the history of Buddhism are hocus-pocus. Believe it or not,
Do YOU have similar questions? Contact me!
Go to Free Zen Riddle and Koan Service.
Is this THE END of ZEN?
Click the OX to find out