Empty Your Cup
November 15, 2021
Buddhist scholar Toku-san was full of opinions about philosophy and the dharma(way of life).
Toku-san traveled far and wide, meeting different Buddhist Masters teachers to share his ideas while hoping to pick up new ones. He once came to the monastery or Zen Master Ryutan and expressed a desire to learn from him.
Master Ryutan welcomed Toku-san and offered to serve him tea before getting into a conversation about Zen Philosophy. He placed a cup on the low table where Tokusan was seated and started pouring hot tea. Even as the cup became full, Master Ryutan did not stop pouring the hot tea. The piping hot tea began to spill over the brim, running over the table onto Toku-san’s robe. “Please stop,” a flustered Tokusan snapped, ” can’t you see, the teacup is full ?”
“Exactly,” Master Ryutan said calmly. “You are like this cup, full of your own ideas. You come and ask for teaching, but your cup is full; I can’t put anything in. So before I can teach you anything, you will have to empty your cup.”
Absorb the power of this story and ask yourself, ” Is my cup empty or full?”
You can learn anything you want to if you show up being curious, humble, and open-minded. Keep your cup empty. Be open-minded.