Drop all 'isms'
Mind of a Sage
Judging a saint
The Fake Monk
Zen Sage & Thief
Zen Master in Jail
The Game of Chess
Innocence is Divine
Knowledge is Trouble
Respond with awareness
3 set of
You are already a Buddha
Sound of one Hand Clapping
Master waits 4 right Moment
- Stories 1 - 2
- Stories 3 - 4
- Stories 5 - 7
- Stories 8-9
- Stories 10
- Stories 11
- Stories 12-14
- Stories 15-16
- Stories 17-18
- Stories 19 - 21
- Stories 22 - 24
- Stories 25 - 27
- Stories 28 - 32
- Stories 33 - 36
- Stories 37 - 38
- Stories 39 - 41
- Stories 42 - 44
- Stories 45 - 46
- Stories 47 - 48
- Stories 49 - 50
- Stories 51 - 53
- Stories 54 - 56
- Stories 57 - 59
- Stories 60 - 61
- Stories 62 - 64
- Stories 65 - 66
- Stories 67 - 68
- Stories 69 - 72
- Stories 73 - 75
- Stories 76 - 78
- Stories 79 - 82
- Stories 83 - 86
- Stories 87 - 89
- Stories 90 - 91
- Stories 92 - 94
- Stories 95 - 97
- Stories 98 -101
49. Black-Nosed Buddha
A nun who was searching for enlightenment made a statue of Buddha
and covered it with gold leaf. Wherever she went she carried this
golden Buddha with her.
Years passed and, still carrying her Buddha, the nun came to live in
a small temple in a country where there were many Buddha’s, each one
with its own particular shrine.
The nun wished to burn incense before her golden Buddha. Not liking
the idea of the perfume straying to the others, she devised a funnel
through which the smoke would ascend only to her statue. This
blackened the nose of the Golden
Buddha making it especially ugly.
50. Ryonen's Clear Realization
The Buddhist nun known as Ryonen was born in 1797. She was a
granddaughter of the famous Japanese warrior Shingen.
Her poetical genius and alluring beauty were such that at seventeen
she was serving the empress as one of the ladies of the court. Even
at such a youthful age fame awaited her.
The beloved emperor died suddenly and Ryonen's hopeful dreams
vanished. She became acutely aware of the impermanency of life in
this world. I was then that she desired to study Zen.
Her relatives disagreed, however, and practically forced her into
marriage. With a promise that she might become a nun after she had
borne three children. Ryonen assented. Before she was twenty-five
she had accomplished this condition.
Then her husband and relatives could no longer dissuade her from her
desire. She shaved her had took the name of Ryonen which means to
realize clearly, and stated on her pilgrimage.
She came to the city of Edo and asked Tetsugyu to accept her as a
disciple. At one glance the master rejected her because she was too
beautiful. Ryonen then went to another master, Hakuo. Hakuo refused
her for the same reason, saying that her beauty would only make
Ryonen obtained a hot iron and placed it against her face. In a few
moments her beauty had vanished forever. Hakuo then accepted her as
Commemorating this occasion. Ryonen wrote a poem on the back of a
little mirror: In the service of my Empress I burned incense to
perfume my exquisite clothes, Now as a homeless mendicant I burn my
face to enter a Zen temple.
When Ryonen was about to pass from this world she wrote another
Sixty-six times have these eyes beheld the changing scene of autumn.
I have had enough about moonlight,
Ask no more.
Only listen to the voice of pines and cedars when no wind stirs.