The Way (Two Koans)

Joshu asked his Master Nansen, “What is the Way?” Nansen replied, “Ordinary mind is the Way.”

Ordinary mind is Buddha Mind. That is good news for everybody with an ordinary mind, which is all of us.

A monk and Zen Master were walking along a mountain stream. The monk asked “How do I enter the Way?” The Master replied, “Do you hear that bubbling stream? Enter there.”

You don’t need to go to ancient China and find that stream to enter the Way. You don’t need any special mind to enter the Way. You just need to use the mind you have and whatever you happen to be experiencing to enter the Way. You might wonder what is so special about the Way if it is just your ordinary mind and ordinary sensations. The Way is special because it is beyond suffering. The fact that it can be accessed through any ordinary experience with an ordinary mind is extraordinary.

Do you feel that suffering? Enter through there. Suffering is an added layer of experience caused by your thinking, opinions, beliefs and judgements. These thoughts are the bubbling mountain stream. If you ever notice yourself suffering, you can notice what you are thinking. Notice what your ordinary mind is doing and enter. Enter the Way with what you have, where you are. See where the suffering goes.

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