Is there necessary an answer?
Will there be an answer?
What if there is no answer?
Is it a trick question?
Or is it just a statement?
How can there be a sound of one hand clapping?
What kind of question is this?
The sound, whatever name I call it, whatever label I put into it, whatever countless questions I attest to it – will simply be exactly as what it is, irrelevant what meaning I put into it. But the meaning of the sound I put into it is not the actual sound that exist in its natural state – it is about the sound rather than the sound. My label has gone far beyond what is, into something that distort the reality of things, that brought concepts over what is true.
When I labelled you with a name, I already don’t see you at all. As the greeting in the movie Avatar goes: “I see you” – I am only seeing you what I perceived about you. I have not understood you, neither can I ever understand you, simply because my perception will always gets into my way colouring you with what you truly are. For that I have to seek forgiveness from you, for interpreting you. I also have to seek forgiveness from myself, for what I see in this world is not truly what it is, except a perception of what is.
When I see a tree, I don’t see a tree except my concepts about a tree. When I have a label of what a tree should be, any other tree that goes beyond my concept is not considered a tree. From a meaning of a tree, I branch further in adding concepts upon it – beautiful tree, thin tree, fat tree, short tree, tall tree, ugly tree, leaveless tree, bushy tree, frutiful tree, useless tree – I am going further and further away from what truly is, exactly as it is with all my meaning I put into the world. How then can I expect to see the truth except layers of fabrications and lies? So long as I don’t recognize them as lies and fabrications, I will be living a world of delusion, evolving around delusion, ending my life in delusion. What a life to live!
If I have a concept what should be right and wrong, I will always judge you according to my own concepts, not what you truly are. All my judgments are self-judgment and for that when I condemned you I am already condemning myself to limitation, to isolation and ignorance. If my life evolves around the polarity of right and wrong, I will be living a life of a tunnel vision, leaving behind the opportunity for wisdom to arise.
I will never be able to see beyond the form what the great masters are, in essence, telling me. I will only see them superficially, making a mockery of their wisdom and turning what is true into something disastrous, for me and the world. All forms are simply label in action. Devoid of true meaning of what is, I will continuously use it for my own means, for my own egoic trip until another label sets in for me to grasp on. So long as wisdom is not allowed to grow in me, getting myself into the way, I can never see any light at the end of the tunnel except darkness.
Until I take full responsibility of my own created delusion, the Truth is always hidden from me.
Know what is in front of your face, and what is hidden from you will be disclosed to you. For there is nothing hidden that will not be revealed.
– Pursah’s Gospel of Thomas
So what is the sound of a one hand clapping? Any answer that I give will either lead me to Timbuktu, Salvation, Freedom or Emancipation, what ever label I put to it. All these labels doesn’t mean anything if I do not experience directly with clear insight into what it is. The direction of what I finally arrive at is solely my choice, albeit an unconscious choice, though in truth is a delusion of my own doing. So long as I don’t see the illusion of this game, I am in the game! Every form I held onto in my own space is all part of the game of delusion.
The Tao that can be told
is not the eternal Tao
The name that can be named
is not the eternal Name.
– Tao Te Ching