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    If all the waves of the Zen stream were alike, innumerable ordinary people would get bogged down.


    Just as in Zen 1 I have to also agree with this koan. In differences there is certainly a lot of potential and life.This Koan makes it clear why I, and certainly many others I know of, have had a “bogged down” experience in the Catholic Church. Conformity, prudence and unity dictated very much the run of things. I certainly do not want to be critical, but I just personally did not feel that I was getting anywhere. This same principle is also true of everyday life. If everything runs well what measure would there be left to even appreciate this, and how could our gifts be measured? There is a saying in Germany: “What doesn`t kill me makes me stronger!”.  Just as Zen has been described with this quality, any spiritual path which doen`t challenge its followers is of no use whatsoever. Our lives are like a stream, and the challenges we face like stones beneath its surface causing very individual shapes and waves. The path which we take defines very much who we are. Carpe diem!


    I guess I’m getting caught up on the ordinary part.  What does it mean ordinary people?  Ordinary compared to who?  And is there an extraordinary person that wouldn’t get bogged down no matter what path they traveled? 

    But I do get the other point, that there is a path for everyone that works for them.  And, another thing you can take from this is that, if you’re off your path, you will find that the waves of the other stream will bog you down.  It’s a good way to tell if you’re on your path or not.  It won’t be the normal occasional difficulties.  But how to tell is a bit tricky too.  :-)


    I honestly didn’t know how to interpret this one, which is actually why I posted it.

    The best I can do is to notice that the implication is that all the “waves of the Zen stream” are not alike, and therefore people are not bogged down.  The lesson I take away from it then is that our differences are what make us free.

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