Zen Truth

The rabbit and the hunter.

A man sits on a patch of grass in the fork in a road meditating peacefully. He’s a monk and has taken many vows, two of which are honesty and do-no-harm.

He looks up to see a rabbit running past him taking a right at the fork. A couple seconds later a hunter with a rifle appears in front of him. The hunter is out of breath and asks the monk, “Did you see a rabbit run past? Which way did he go?”

If he’s tells the hunter correctly, keeping his vow of honesty, the rabbit will be killed. If he lies, which violates his vows of being truthful, the rabbit will be spared it’s life. He must answer. To say nothing is as bad as a lie.

How does the monk answer? Which answer is ‘the truth’?


3 thoughts on “Zen Truth

  1. This probably depends on if you are or are not in agreement with hunting.

    But I say, he tells the hunter he has not seen the bunny. For me, the bigger truth and love is protecting innocent life.

    I’m enjoying your blog.


    1. It’s a Zen Koan, which is trying to say that there aren’t any absolutes in life. sometimes a lie is needed and sometimes not. and you can’t really make a blanket vow of no lying or killing. Ya have to be in the moment and react to each situation as it happens.


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