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Orthogonal Thinking - I Riddle you a Koan from the Hidden Mind of the Ancients

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posted on Feb, 28 2017 @ 08:21 PM
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Defining Orthogonal Thinking - Orthogonal thinking draws from a variety of, and perhaps seemingly unrelated, perspectives to achieve new insights. It is the even momentary blurring of boundaries to see what might emerge.

When you read the following Koan, you will scratch your head a bit. By digging, you find seemingly unrelated directions to turn. The word orthogonal means 'at right angles.' To think at right angles, you must connect the symbolism to the web of connecting meaning. From linguistics to hidden related symbolism, this Koan has both humor and knowledge of Hebrew scriptures and linguistics.

Here's what we can do if you are interested. Tell me what you think this means to you. From this, I will lead you toward the higher meaning that is profound!

QUESTION ONE: What does the man represent? Where is the humor? Believe me, when you see it, you will laugh.

Case 19-1 Xiangyan’s “Up a Tree”1 BOOK: Entangled Vines

Xiangyan Zhixian said, “It’s as though a person were up a tree, hanging from a limb by his teeth and unable to grab a branch with his hands or touch the trunk with his feet. Someone under the tree asks, ‘What is the meaning of Bodhidharma’s coming from the West?’ If the person doesn’t reply, he fails the questioner; if he does reply, he loses his life. In such a situation, how would you respond?”

The senior monk Hutou said, “I don’t care about climbing the tree. Please say something, Master, about before the tree was climbed!”

The master gave a hearty laugh.

Regarding this, Xuedou Chongxian commented, “It’s easy to speak when up a tree, hard to speak beneath it. This old monk will climb a tree.

Bring me a question!”


edit on 28-2-2017 by DayAfterTomorrow because: Bring me a question and I'll tell you....




posted on Feb, 28 2017 @ 08:27 PM
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I throw you a hint. What hangs from a limb, representing the man hanging from the tree? What does the tree represent? Think at right angles. Symbolism requires this, which is how it hides its secrets from you. This is how truth is right in front of you, yet you cannot see it. By showing you this, I potentially show you an entire hidden world.

First question. What is the man hanging from the tree?


edit on 28-2-2017 by DayAfterTomorrow because: Bring me a question and I'll tell you....



posted on Feb, 28 2017 @ 11:54 PM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow
Its it. (as FNM stated...lol)
Where affirmations and negations merge.
We all hang from the same tree, in the tree, below the tree, before the tree, after the tree.
Its all just dirt from the same hole.



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 03:10 AM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow

Interesting idea for a thread, DayAfterTommorow.

Your Koan, definitely has me thinking.

The man evoked an image of a cat, when I reflect on the Koan you shared with me.I found this bizarre.Thinking deeper, I feel it's a connection to my sense of curiosity.

I've often heard it said curiosity killed the cat.They usually smile when I tell them satisfaction brings it back.lol
edit on 1-3-2017 by dffrntkndfnml because: Misc grammer



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 04:44 AM
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originally posted by: DayAfterTomorrow
Here's what we can do if you are interested. Tell me what you think this means to you. From this, I will lead you toward the higher meaning that is profound!

Warning; ego out of control! *__-



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 06:15 AM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow

Would the man happen to represent the pine cone (pineal gland)? Only when the cone is fully blossomed or "enlightened" does the cone fall from the tree. When the man answers the question (gains enlightenment, is able to spread his "seed" or knowledge) his mouth opens and no longer clings to the branch and he "dies" or falls away from his old self while at the same time gaining the ability to spread his seed or knowledge through the "pollination" process which is what the blossoming of the cone heralds.

As for it being easier to talk up in the tree as opposed to on the ground I think that may represent the fact that a pine cone cannot blossom or open its mouth (become enlightened) unless it is first attached to the tree so in order to become enlightened the man says he will go up the tree to let the enlightening process occur.

How close am I?
edit on 3/1/2017 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 06:41 AM
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a reply to: CovertAgenda

But what do the tree and the man represent?

a reply to: dffrntkndfnml

That's an interesting take, but it's much simpler. Think back to the garden story in Genesis. What hangs from a tree?

a reply to: namelesss

While you may have heard that Koans have no meaning, this is only a misdirection from the masters. All Koans have interconnected meaning to the primary realization of enlightenment. Each circle a center truth. This Koan is one of the easiest to understand, as well, it has a great deal of meaning. I won't give the answer away until someone thinks at a right angle. What hangs from all trees in season?




edit on 1-3-2017 by DayAfterTomorrow because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 06:43 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

The pine cone is an example of the new seed that hangs from the tree. You are now thinking much warmer to the answer. One word. It hangs from a tree in season, then falls. Think toward the garden story with Adam and Eve. What did Adam know?

You are closer than anyone yet. On the right track for sure. Falling away form the old self is very much part of this. There are many right angles you can take. Yours is right on target. Why is it funny? What's the humor in bringing the master a question?

Very good answer so far. There's much more you can now add. You found the answer to the first question. He represents fruit.
edit on 1-3-2017 by DayAfterTomorrow because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 06:46 AM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow

An apple? An apple cannot become mature or ripe unless it is attached to the tree, only after it's ripe or enlightened does it fall.

I still think it may represent the pineal gland where the tree represents the tree of life. If you look at the cross section of a brain the brainstem and blood vessels resemble a tree with the pineal gland (fruit) right in the middle.
edit on 3/1/2017 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 06:55 AM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow


But what do the tree and the man represent?

Are the representations of greater significance than the lesson?



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 06:59 AM
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originally posted by: 3NL1GHT3N3D1
a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow

An apple? An apple cannot become mature or ripe unless it is attached to the tree, only after it's ripe or enlightened does it fall.

I still think it may represent the pineal gland where the tree represents the tree of life. If you look at the cross section of a brain the brainstem and blood vessels resemble a tree with the pineal gland (fruit) right in the middle.


Yes to the tree of life. Yes to fruit. The man is hanging by his teeth. This part might be harder to get. Two front teeth in Hebrew is SHIN, or Shine in English. It represents light and death. The fire that consumes the coal is symbolism in Hebrew for the teeth, which is a recurring theme in Koans. If he opens his mouth to speak, he falls. If he keeps his mouth closed, entropy (ripening of the fruit) will cause him to fall anyway. As you say, he dies no matter what he does.

As a secondary clue, his death allows him to become the tree.

What does it mean for Bodhidharma to travel East to China from India (West)? Bodhi is a fig tree. It's the same Tree Buddha sat against for enlightenment. Dharma is the universal nature of things. What two directions in the mind sit beside each other?

There is a whole story behind this if you search Google.

Where is the humor in the question at the end?



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:05 AM
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a reply to: CovertAgenda

The lesson it teaches is how to gain an activated mind. The symbolism is secondary to the lesson, allowing you to gain more insight from the stories that are connected to the lesson. The Bible is a Koan. All scribes in every nation did this, locking volumes of information into smaller symbols. The part contains the whole. Once you start to unwind each Koan, you circle center (Evolution / Rising to new life). E in Latin means out of. Volution means circling a center. The fruit of knowledge brings toil in a garden of seeds that must be planted.

Where is the humor in climbing the tree for a piece of fruit? What does the fruit represent as East is to West? What happens when two become one? How does this humor connect to BodhiDharma traveling West to find yoga (union) with China?



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:06 AM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow

His teeth clinging to the tree represents him not being fully ready to fall away from his old self, only when he becomes ripe is he allowed to open his mouth and fall away and eventually become a tree and bear his own fruit which will continue the process.

Him traveling East represents him going toward the light (where the sun rises).

The humor is that you can't ask the question (open your mouth) until you have become the tree? I'm not sure about that one.
edit on 3/1/2017 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:08 AM
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originally posted by: 3NL1GHT3N3D1
a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow



Yes to the top. No to the second part. He is a man. What is the other side of a man? What is East of Eden? Who was beside Adam on the tree?
edit on 1-3-2017 by DayAfterTomorrow because: (no reason given)

edit on 1-3-2017 by DayAfterTomorrow because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:10 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1




The humor is that you can't ask the question (open your mouth) until you have become the tree? I'm not sure about that one.


Nearly there. What is the question he asks (knows)? Who is she???
edit on 1-3-2017 by DayAfterTomorrow because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:11 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

Climb a tree (on top of it). Who is the tree producing the next fruit? Bring me a question!!!! Know the answer. How do you know the tree?



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:12 AM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow

East of Eden is Nod which means "to go to sleep" which could be a reference to blocking out external stimuli or meditating?

I'm not sure about the humor part though.



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:14 AM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow

The tree is the body, the fruit is the Spirit? She is the tree or body, he is the fruit or Spirit.

When Eve ate the fruit it represents the fruit being ripe which is why they "fell" from grace. Eating the fruit represents self awareness which comes with the knowledge of death which is why God says they would surely die because self awareness (eating the fruit) means you learn of your own mortality.

When you learn about your own mortality you try to make the most of this life and in the process hurt others for your own gain (falling into sin).
edit on 3/1/2017 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:18 AM
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a reply to: 3NL1GHT3N3D1

Adam 'knew' Eve (She's the tree / question). How did he know her? Bring me a question!!!

Now go back to the tree and fruit as two halves (East and West) of a mind that has not found union. BodhiDharma (East and West / Tree and Universal nature) travels west. Two become one.

Ultimately, the tree is you (your mind). Adam and Eve are East and West (Yin / Yang). Two become one. What is the humor in the Master saying to the one willing to 'climb a tree,' "bring me a piece of fruit." He was wanting a question (female).

Know the truth. It's funny when you realize. Amazing how you arrive. A Tree is Line, Branch Fold. Right angles (orhtogonal).



posted on Mar, 1 2017 @ 07:27 AM
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a reply to: DayAfterTomorrow

I think I may understand the humor of it, the Master already has the fruit and is already the tree which means he is asking for something he already has.

BodiDharma traveling from West to East represents him transitioning from the fruit to the tree, becoming the Master himself in the process who bears the fruit.

Is that a little closer?
edit on 3/1/2017 by 3NL1GHT3N3D1 because: (no reason given)




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