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The art of Zen, or teaching Zen, is like deceiving a child with an empty fist. You know how you intrigue a child by pretending you have something very precious in your fist. You can play this game for an hour, provoking the child to ever greater enthusiasm to find out what you have. At the end, the revelation is that nothing was there. Many people say in the course of their Zen training, “I realize there was nothing to realize. It was all there from the beginning.” Standing opposite this realization that you cannot do anything about your desires, and equally that you cannot do nothing about them is the awakening that this realization is true because there is no you separate from you. In other words, when you try to control your thoughts, or feelings, there is no difference between the thoughts and the controller. What you call the thinker is simply your thought of yourself. The thinker is a thought among thoughts, and the feeler is a feeling among feelings, but trying to control thoughts with thoughts is like trying to bite your own teeth.

Alan Watts (via thebigelectron)
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