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What wisdom can you achieve from this proverb.?

“The moon! Look at the moon, master!” the acolyte cried.
The moon grew narrower and narrower, shrinking under a shadow. The Master had seen this happen before. The charts predicted an eclipse, but the Youngling has never seen such a thing.
“We must save the moon, master,” said the acolyte.
“Worry not, youngling,” said the master. “See how the tides remain in order. The moon remains in its place, though now its face is hidden.”
Then he slapped the acolyte hard across the face.
“The moon was always dead,” the acolyte said, having achieved satori.


  1. Get your knowledge from a source that is not allowed to use corporal punishment.
    It makes you less likely to avoid another learning experience.

  2. often zen masters use words or actions that are appropriate for a specific student at a specific time. There is no specific knowledge in this proveerb for me, perhaps someone else can learn something.

  3. Hmm-what an odd story! I’m not familiar with zen stuff. at all. It’s going to be waayyy over my head, apparently.
    But I’m game to guess: the acolyte realized the moon isn’t a person which needs to be saved. It just is.
    (yup. way over my head.)


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