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If you have to ask what jazz is,
you will never know.
- Louis Armstrong -

The willow is green;
flowers are red.
- Zen Saying -

The flower is not red,
nor is the willow green.
- Zen Saying -

"But the Emperor has nothing on at all!”
cried a little child.
- Hans Christian Andersen -

One day a man approached Ikkyu and asked:
"Master, will you please write for me some maxims of the highest wisdom?”
Ikkyo took his brush and wrote:
"Is that all?” asked the man. Ikkyu then wrote:
"Attention. Attention.”
"Well,” said the man, "I really don’t see much depth in what you have written.”
Then Ikkyu wrote the same word three times:
"Attention. Attention. Attention.”
Half-angered, the man demanded:
"What does the word ‘Attention’ mean, anyway?”
Ikkyu gently responded,
"Attention means attention.”
- Zen Story -

The only Zen you find on the tops of mountains
is the Zen you bring up there.
- Robert M. Pirsig -

The nature of God is a circle of which the centre is everywhere
and the circumference is nowhere.
- Empedocles -

Fundamentally the marksman aims at himself.
- Zen in the Art of Archery -

If you cannot find the truth right where you are,
where else do you expect to find it?
- Dogen -

The eye with which I see God is the same eye
with which God sees me.
- Meister Eckhart -

Zen is the unsymbolization of the world.
- R.H. Blyth -

I saw somebody peeing in Jermyn Street the other day.
I thought, is this the end of civilization as we know it?
Or is it simply somebody peeing in Jermyn Street?
- Alan Bennett -

Rose is a rose is a rose is a rose.
- Gertrude Stein -

Our life is frittered away by detail…
Simplify, simplify.
- Thoreau -

Go – not knowing where.
Bring – not knowing what.
The path is long, the way unknown.
- Russian Fairy Tale -

Everything the same;
everything distinct.
- Zen Proverb -

The map is not the territory.
- Alfred Korzbyski -

The search is what anyone would undertake
if he were not sunk in the everydayness of his own life.
To become aware of the possibility of the search is to be onto something.
Not to be onto something is to be in despair.
- Walker Percy -

In walking, just walk.
In sitting, just sit.
Above all, don’t wobble.
- Yun-Men -

What happens to the hole when the cheese is gone?
- Bertold Brecht -

The true way goes over a rope which is not stretched at any great height
but just above the ground.
It seems more designed to make people stumble
than to be walked upon.
- Franz Kafka -

And everything comes to One,
As we dance on, dance on, dance on.
- Theodore Roethke -
Zen has nothing to grab on to.
When people who study Zen don’t see it,
that is because they approach too eagerly.
- Ying-An -

Teach us to care and not to care
Teach us to sit still.
- T.S. Eliot -

We think in generalities,
but we live in detail.
- Alfred North Whitehead -

Teachers open the door,
but you must enter by yourself.
- Chinese Proverb -

Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise.
Seek what they sought.
- Basho -

Zen is your everyday thought.
- Chao-Chou -

In this very breath that we take now
lies the secret that all great teachers try to tell us.
- Peter Matthiessen -

What is this true meditation?
It is to make everything:
coughing, swallowing, waving the arms, motion, stillness, words, action,
the evil and the good, prosperity and shame, gain and loss, right and wrong,
into one single koan.
- Hakuin -

Water which is too pure has no fish.
- Ts’ai Ken T’an -

The Layman was once lying on his couch reading a sutra.
A monk saw him and said:
"Layman! You must maintain dignity when reading a sutra.”
The Layman raised up one leg.
The monk had nothing to say.
- Zen-Story -

I threw my cup away when I saw a child
drinking from his hands at the trough.
- Diogenes -

Those who want the fewest things
are nearest to the gods.
- Socrates -

Truly, I say to you,
whosoever does not receive the Kingdom of God like a child
shall not enter it.
- Luke 18:17 -

We are more curious about the meaning of dreams
than about things we see when awake.
- Diogenes -

God is so omnipresent…
God is an angel in an angel,
and a stone in a stone,
and a straw in a straw.
- John Donne -

Picture a massless particle.
- A Koan of Modern Physics -

God made everything out of nothing.
But the nothingness shows through.
- Paul Valéry -

I have nothing to say,
I am saying it,
and that is poetry.
- John Cage -

Knock on the sky
and listen to the sound.
- Zen Saying -

We walk, and our religion is shown in how we walk.
Or to put it more accurately,
living in this world means choosing, choosing to walk,
and the way we choose to walk is infallibly and perfectly expressed in the walk itself.
Nothing can disguise it.
The walk of an ordinary man and of an enlightened man
are as different as that of a snake and a giraffe.
- R.H. Blyth -

Sitting quietly, doing nothing,
spring comes,
and the grass grows by itself.
- Zen Saying -

To see a World in a grain of sand,
And a Heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.
- William Blake -

What is the sound of one hand clapping?
- Zen Koan -
Things derive their being and nature
by mutual dependence
and are nothing in themselves.
- Nagarjuna -
(2nd century Buddhist philosopher)

An elementary particle
is not an independently existing, unanalyzable entity.
It is, in essence, a set of relationships
that reach outward to other things.
- H.P. Stapp -
(20th century physicist)

This magnificent butterfly
finds a little heap of dirt and sits still on it;
but man will never on his heap of mud keep still…
- Joseph Conrad -

I’m astounded by people
who want to "know” the universe
when it’s hard enough
to find your way around Chinatown.
- Woody Allen -

Great Faith.
Great Doubt.
Great Effort.
(The three qualities necessary for training)

The purpose of Zen
is theperfection of character.
- Yamada Roshi -

The world is its own magic.
- Shunryu Suzuki -

Can you walk on water?
You have done no better than a straw.
Can you fly in the air?
You have done no better than a bluebottle.
Conquer your heart;
then you may become someone.
- Ansari of Heart -

The most terrifying thing is
to accept oneself completely.
- Carl Gustav Jung -

If you gaze for long into the abyss,
the abyss also gazes into you.
- Nietzsche -

The aim of life is to live,
and to live means to be aware,
joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware.
- Henry Miller -

Get up and do something useful,
the work is part of the koan!
- Hakuin -

Lift the stone and you will find me;
cleave the wood and I am there.
- Jesus -

Zen is not some kind of excitement,
but concentration on our usual everyday routine.
- Shunryu Suzuki -

How can you think and hit at the same time?
- Yogi Berra -

Work is love made visible.
And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste,
it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple
and take alms of those who work with joy.
- Kahlil Gibran -

Draw bamboos for ten years,
become a bamboo,
then forget all about bamboos
when you are drawing.
- Georges Duthuit -
(on painting in China)

We don´t have a great war in our generation, or a great depression,
but we do, we have a great war of the spirit.
We have a great revolution against the culture.
The great depression is our lives.
- Tyler Durden -

That is happiness:
to be dissolved into something complete and great.
- Willa Cather -

We have to understand
that the world can only be grasped by action,
not by contemplation.
The hand is more important than the eye…
The hand is the cutting edge of the mind.
- Jacob Bronowski -

The prayer of the monk is not perfect
until he no longer recognizes himself
or the fact that he is praying.
- St. Anthony -

If you know the name of the bird,
you don’t know the bird.
- Takamatsu Sensei -

Children, one earthly Thing
truly experienced, even once,
is enough for a lifetime.
- R.M. Rilke -

The mystical is not how the world is,
but that it is.
- Ludwig Wittgenstein -

We are here and it is now.
Further than that,
all human knowledge is moonshine.
- H.L. Mencken -

I like reality.
It tastes of bread.
- Jean Anouilh -

Be master of mind
rather than mastered by mind.
- Zen Saying -

A condition of complete simplicity
(Costing not less than everything)
- T.S. Eliot -

It is not the same to talk of bulls
as to be in the bullring.
- Spanish Proverb -

The reason angels can fly is
that they take themselves so lightly.
- G.K. Chesterton -

I am that I am.
- Old Testament Koan -

"I´m breaking my attachment to physical power and possessions,
because only through destroying myself
can I discover the greater power of my spirit.”
- Tyler Durden -

Man’s main task in life
is to give birth
to himself.
- Erich Fromm -

Computers are useless.
They can only give you answers.
- Pablo Picasso -

"...I no longer want to be anything except what who I am.
Who what am I? My answer:
I am the sum total of everything that went before me,
of all I have been seen done, of everything done-to-me.
I am everyone everything whose being-in-the-world affected was affected by mine.
I am everything that happens after I’ve gone
which would not have happened if I had not come. [...]
I repeat for the last time:
to understand me, you’ll have to swallow a world.”
- Salman Rushdie -


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