Saturday, August 06, 2016

I Visited Christianity and Return to Buddhism, My Entire Experience Explained in A Zen Koan - Is That So?

Is That So?  

The Zen Master Hakuin was praised by his neighbors as one living a pure life. A beautiful Japanese girl whose parents owned a food store lived near by. Suddenly, without any warning signs, her parents discovered she was with child.This made her parents angry. She would not confess who the man was, but after much harassment she at last named Hakuin.

In great anger the parent went to the master. "Is that so?" was all he would say. After the child was born it was brought to Hakuin. By this time he had lost his reputation, which did not trouble him. He took very good care of the child. He obtained milk from his neighbors and everything else he needed.

A year later the girl-mother could stand it no longer. She told her parents the truth - the real father of the child was a young man who worked in the fish market. The mother and father of the girl at once went to Hakuin to ask forgiveness, to apologize at length and to get the child back.

Hakuin was willing. In yielding the child, all he said was: "Is that so?"

My thinking behind using this koan to explain my whole Christianity experience is pretty simple. The Christians I met are sure their belief is the only right one, that everyone should believe what they believe and act & think like they do. There is no room for doubt. They seem to accept everything their pastor says as solid, indisputable truth and do no investigation on their own. Most of them have not studied the Bible and could not answer the simplest question. So when they told me homosexuality is a sin I knew they didn't know why they thought that, they couldn't tell me where to find it in the Bible and did not want to look any deeper. My response to them: Is That So?

I don't think they will ever hear the truth or come to me and say they were wrong. Fortunately, I don't need them to.