Sound of one hand  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

"You know the sound of two hands clapping; tell me, what is the sound of one hand?" is the most popular koan of Hakuin Ekaku.

Hakuin preferred this new koan to the most commonly assigned first koan from the Chinese tradition, the Mu koan. He believed his "Sound of One Hand" to be more effective in generating the great doubt, and remarked that "its superiority to the former methods is like the difference between cloud and mud".

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