I've always enjoyed it and with Mark's explanation, gained more insight. Submitted for your enjoyment:

If you have no ice cream, I will take it away.
If you have ice cream, I will give it to you.

This is the ice cream koan.

akinsgre's picture

That was a great Koan.

I think the "Juggling Koan" could more accurately be called a Kata; since it had concrete advice; and didn't appear to be in the class of question that "One Hand Clapping" appears to be in.

If I take your Ice Cream away, I remove suffering. Hence the want of Ice Cream demands that I give you something else (some metaphysical Ice Cream) that will replace your perceived suffering.

So if you don't have Ice Cream, I need to take away your perceived suffering by replacing your wants with understandings of your needs. Then you're suffering will be relieved not by getting what you want; but by understanding what you need.


Mark's picture
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Holy Moly! I bow to thee, senseis.

And I was wrong. It's Ko-awn. Not cone.