From the Deer Park Monastery website comes a new statement from Thich Nhat Hanh regarding the ongoing crisis for the monastics of Bat Nha.
The Zen master writes:
[…] A koan cannot be solved by intellectual arguments, logic or reason, nor by debates such as whether there is only mind or matter. A koan can only be solved through the power of right mindfulness and right concentration. Once we have penetrated a koan, we feel a sense of relief, and have no more fears or questioning. We see our path and realize great peace.
“Does a dog have Buddha nature?” If you think that it’s the dog’s problem whether or not he has Buddha nature, or if you think that it’s merely a philosophical conundrum, then it’s not a koan. “Where does the one return to?” If you think this is a question about the movement of an external objective reality, then that is not a koan either. If you think Bat Nha is only a problem for 400 monks and nuns in Vietnam, a problem that simply needs a ‘reasonable and appropriate’ solution, then that too is not a koan. Bat Nha truly becomes a koan only when you understand it as your own problem, one that deeply concerns your own happiness, your own suffering, your own future and the future of your country and your people. If you cannot solve the koan, if you cannot sleep, eat or work at peace, then Bat Nha has become your koan. […]
Read the complete post here.