Hi All,

As so happens with zen, small chance encounters with people, books, bamboos 
striking bamboo poles etc. can lead to a deeper understanding. In relation to 
the 'mountains are mountains, water is water' quote, I like the story I heard 
about an American practicioner who came to Japan and sat thru a lecture about 
reality/illusion given by the temple's roshi. Admitting his confusion 
afterwards, the American asked for some clarification. The roshi explained that 
at first mountains are mountains, water is water. Then after some sometime 
studying Zen, mountains are no longer mountains , water is not water. Finally, 
after satori, mountains are mountains, water is water again. The student said 
that he could understand the first two lines but not the third, so the roshi 
said, "Mountains are mountains, water is water". Seeing the student's still 
confused expression the roshi elaborated, "Mountains are mountains, water is 




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