Nobushige, a great samurai, sought out Hakuin and asked: “Is there really a heaven and a hell?”
“Who are you?” asked Hakuin.
“I am a samurai,” Nobushige replied.
“You?” Hakuin snorted. “What lord would employ you? You look like a begger!”
A furious Nobushige began to draw his sword, but then Hakuin said, “Here open the gates of hell.”
Nobushige took the point, sheathed his sword, and bowed.
“Here open the gates of heaven,” said Hakuin.
Kinda feel like I’m in the 10th level right now…
A soldier named Nobushige came to Hakuin and asked: “Is there really a paradise and a hell?”
“Who are you?” inquired Hakuin.
“I am a samurai,” the warrior replied.
“You, a soldier!” sneered Hakuin, “What kind of ruler would have you as his guard? You look like a beggar.”
Nobushige became so angry that he began to draw his sword.
Hakuin continued: “So you have a sword! Your weapon is probably to dull too cut off my head.”
Nobushige drew his sword.
Hakuin remarked: “Here open the gates of hell!”
At these words the samurai, perceiving the master’s discipline, put away his sword and bowed.
“Here open the gates of paradise,” said Hakuin.
From Zen flesh, Zen bones