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"What is the sound of one hand clapping?" is a traditional zen koan -- a question posed by a Zen master to a student.

It is meant to be pondered from within the routine of daily life until the answer opens the true heart of the question. All koans must be answered from within the realm of one's own personal experience, and thus be encountered in the journey of living rather than in the rationalizations of logical thought.

Accordingly, each koan has many answers, answers that will vary both in words and in the stirring of one's mind and emotions.

Even the wisest Zen teacher cannot tell you your own answer. You must find it for yourself, and not in your mind, and not in the comfort of a rational response. Once experienced, the answer is often a life changing experience, and needs no confirmation from anyone else.

Here are responses to the question from a variety of WikiAnswer users:

  • What is the sound of one hand clapping? To know, you must experience those aspects of your own life that create this very soundless sound (emotion) within your own being. People who have truly lived with a koan for an extended period of time come to experience the answer. In my own travels down this path with this particular question, there eventually came to be a certain opening of awareness, and a manifestation of the heart of compassion became tangible within. In my experience, the sound of one hand clapping is the emotion of loneliness deeply felt in an increasingly self centered pursuit of enlightenment Experiencing this "answer" turned me away from relative isolation and the self-centered desire to "know," and towards the world and the practice of metta.
  • The simpler answer- It depends on what the hand is clapping against! The yin and yang of it. The Gestalt. The figure and the ground. The container and the contents.
  • What is the sound of one hand clapping in your own life?
  • The sound of one hand clapping is silence. The silence refers to the essence of being which is nothingness.
  • What is the sound of one hand clapping? Who are you when your thinking is silenced? .
  • Our true nature is stillness. That stillness is the same everywhere in everything. But like he up there... concepts won't teach you anything.
  • The sound of one hand clapping is a tiny sound that can be barley heard by humans.
  • the hand is the human heart and the clapping is emotions the other hand represents the one that makes us whole thus the clapping of both hands is the power of two people's emotions and the hands touching each other is the connection between the two people
  • The sound of one hand clapping is a conversation with someone that never connects with them so you try again and again before realizing you are only talking to yourself - they don't get it. If you never realize that, you are just insane by definition and you will continue to be the one hand that connects with nothingness.
  • Using a sound recording device, clap with one hand. Play back the result
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โˆ™ 2012-11-12 04:03:35
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Q: What is the sound of one hand clapping?
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How many pages does The Sound of One Hand Clapping have?

The Sound of One Hand Clapping has 425 pages.


What makes the sound of one hand clapping?

When clapping both hands one sound is heard. The sound only seems as one, but it is actually the sum of two sounds. Right hand and left hand. Each hand is making the sound of one hand clapping.


What is the duration of The Sound of One Hand Clapping film?

The duration of The Sound of One Hand Clapping - film - is 1.55 hours.


What is the ISBN of The Sound of One Hand Clapping?

The ISBN of The Sound of One Hand Clapping is 0-7329-0896-5.


When was The Sound of One Hand Clapping - film - created?

The Sound of One Hand Clapping - film - was created on 1996-04-23.


What is the sound of a one-hand clapping?

This question has 2 answers. Either a one-hand clapping makes a lighter sound than a two-hand clapping when your one hand tries to slap its fingers to its palm. The other answer would be that it sounds like this:


What is the sound of one robotic hand clapping?

dubstep


If you clap with one hand will it make a sound?

no.that is not true because, you have to think "well what can I clap on one hand for it to make a sound?" or "is my clapping metaphorical as in silent applause?"there are many answers to this but there wouldn't be a definite "yes" or "no"Well.... No. Clapping is useing both hands and hitting them against eachother to make a sound, you cannot make a sound useing only one hand. Unless you use a object or another hand. There for there is no sound of one hand clapping.


Who is clapping with one hand?

I'm not completely sure what you are asking but I think the sound of one hand clapping is snapping your fingers because the sound from a snap comes from the air escaping from under your middle finger when it contacts the base of your thumb.


What is the duration of One-Hand Clapping?

The duration of One-Hand Clapping is 1.57 hours.


What is the answer to -7?

What is the question ? The answer to -7 is a lot like one scissor, or the sound of one hand clapping.


What is the product of 134.4?

A product of one number is like the sound of one hand clapping. It cannot exist.


What is the sound made by one hand clapping?

This is called a loaded question. Loaded questions contain false or questionable assumptions. The classic example is "Do you still beat your dog?" This question assumes that the person owns a dog and that the dog has been beaten. If either of these assumptions are false the question cannot be answered with "yes" or "no", correct answers expose the false assumptions contained within the question. Answers might be "I do not own a dog" or "I have never beaten my dog." In our question the assumption is that one hand can clap and thereby make a sound. The answer to this question will be determined by how we define "clapping," which will then determine if the assumption it contains is true or false. If we define clapping as "two hands slapping together, thereby producing a sound," then the assumption that one hand can clap is false and the answer should then expose the false assumption. The answer would then be "one hand cannot clap." However, if we define clapping as "one hand slapping another object, thereby producing a sound," then the assumption is true, clapping only requires one hand, and the answer to the question is simply "a clapping sound".


What actors and actresses appeared in One Hand Clapping - 2013?

The cast of One Hand Clapping - 2013 includes: Kyle Worthington as Alex


What does Gandhi mean when he say no clapping is possible without two hand to do it?

Try clapping with one!


What is nonprejudicial rhetorical question?

nonprejudicial rhetoric defines itselfs; as in unbais discourse when asking a question. for example: what is the sound of one hand clapping?


What actors and actresses appeared in One Hand Clapping - 1972?

The cast of One Hand Clapping - 1972 includes: Don Arioli Dave Broadfoot Judith Gault


What is the GCF of 2 to the third power?

The sound of one hand clapping. GCF, greatest commonfactor, needs two or more numbers to work on.


Are there immortal Chinese wizards that walk the earth unseen?

Uh--they're unseen, it would be hard to know, like the sound of one hand clapping.


Clapping with one hand.....while laughing out loud'?

no I'm not


What is this entire quote I took an hour to watch a flower time has treated me well?

It is the sound of a single hand clapping


What is the product of six tenths?

A 'product' is the answer you get when you multiply two numbers (multiply one number by another).There's no such thing as the product of one number. It's like the sound of one hand clapping.


How do you make hand noises?

clapping


What is chest clapping?

A chest clap could be referring to a form of applause done with one hand.


What does the hand clapping at the beginning of the song mr postman?

The clapping at the beginning of the song "Please Mr. Postman" is known as the hook.