Zen and the Nature of Ideas

Thoughts adorn, writing lays bare.

An AI-generated painting in traditional Japanese style of a young graduate and a Master.
The Graduate and the Master. Image generated with AI by DALL-E.

A young graduate came to see a Master, and said: “Master, I have this wonderful idea for a new business. It is going to change the world!”

“That sounds exciting,” said the Master.

“Indeed, Master. But I wonder how to begin. There are so many options, I don’t know where to start!”

“Why don’t you put your plan in writing,” said the Master.

“But Master, that is so much work. Do I truly need to write it down?”

The Master nodded. “Yes, my Son. You need to write it down.”

The young graduate thanked the Master, greeted, and left.

When the young graduate returned, he seemed surly and upset.

“Master, with all due respect, your counsel was no good.”

“Was it not?”

“No, Master. My idea just used to be so great. But once I wrote it down, it made no sense at all.”

He turned to the Master, but the Master merely smiled.

At that moment, the young graduate was Enlightened.

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