Punishing the Sky

A monk asked Funyo, "If there is not a cloud in the sky for ten thousand miles, what would you say about that?" "I would punish the sky with my stick," Funyo replied. "Why blame the sky?" the monk persisted. "Because," Funyo answered, "there is no rain when we need it and no fair weather when we should have it."

The monk is attaching importance to the state of mind he has achieved which is, perhaps, as clear and uncluttered as a cloudless sky. But the Zen Master strikes at whatever is necessary to awaken truth: monk, teacher, Buddha himself, sky, or universe. Fair weather is only possible when there is rain. Rain is only possible when compared to fair weather. If one attaches to either, problems are created.


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