The journey of a 1000 miles begins with a single step

Bankei’s enlighted kill

No photo description available.


A samurai, who was also a fencing master had an audience with Master Bankei.

“After years of training, “began the samurai, “I have reached the stage where my hands respond perfectly according to my mind. Now I am at a level of skill where I can defeat opponents without even picking up my sword. My gaze pierces them to their bones and disrupts them completely. It is the same penetrating look you yourself use to assess the depth of a person’s enlightenment.”

You say you have perfected your skill in your art,” Bankei said.
“Now, try to strike me!”
The samurai hesitated for an instant.

“My blow has already fallen,” said Bankei.

The man’s jaw sagged. “I’m astonished,” he sighed. “Your stroke is swifter than the spark off a flint. My head rolls at my feet. Please, master, teach me the essentials of Zen.”

– Zen master Bankei (1622-1693)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.