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Friday, February 20, 2009

Koan Question

If you cannot be happy while washing the dishes, can you ever be happy?

7 comments:

Josh Gentry said...

"If I am incapable of washing dishes joyfully, if I want to finish them quickly so I can go and have a cup of tea, I will be equally incapable of drinking the tea joyfully. With the cup in my hands I will be thinking about what to do next, and the fragrance and the flavor of the tea, together with the pleasure of drinking it, will be lost. I will always be dragged into the future, never able to live in the present moment."

Thich Nhat Hanh

http://www.serve.com/cmtan/buddhism/Treasure/bathing.newborn.html

JimII said...

Your carefully cited response has devilishly revealed my lack of originality.

Josh Gentry said...

Oh, crap, I didn't realize you were being original.

Josh Gentry said...

What I mean to say is that I did not cite that to debunk your originality, but to build on your post.

JimII said...

Of course.

What do you think of the question or the master's observation? Is it true?

I think it probably is. Which is weird because I remember as an adult thinking wisdom like this was sort "put on". I looked at koans as things I was not allowed to criticize for fear of looking like a boob, but which really didn't hold all that much truth.

Now, I think maybe I was just a boob.

M.I.A. said...

I'm usually angry when I'm doing the dishes... Mostly because I'm astonished at how two people can create such a mess...

~siobhan

Josh Gentry said...

LOL, siobhan.

Yes, I think it is true. Unfortunately, I suck at it. I do most of the dishes at our house, and I fail to be mindful 99% of the time.