(Turns out, pretty similar to two hands. Though slower, less rhythmic, and with far more taps on the delete key.)
But clapping? What is the sound of one hand clapping?
What color is the universe?
Can a dog catch its own tail?
How much wood can a woodchuck chuck, if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
The great mysteries.
Unanswerable, unfathomable, unknowable.
The Zen koan — a Möbius strip of a Gordian knot of an enigma at the center of a labyrinth. A mental puzzle to unlock the complicated truths of simplicity itself. An oxymoronic paradox. To contemplate the deepest vagaries, we must open our minds to what would seem impossible. To write “Turn over” on both sides of a piece of paper, but metaphysically.
When we purposely trap our minds in knowing the unknowable, seeking the impossible, assigning logic to that which is illogical — either we actually discover some great and ponderous truth about the very nature of existence (a plus to be sure) — or more likely, you willingly short-circuit the rational, temporal part of your brain — which means you actually live in the moment, in the present. And now you’re meditating.
All you had to do was tie yourself up in a mental Jacob’s ladder, a cat’s cradle of thought, to get out of your own way. Sit back and enjoy the enlightenment.
If you want an exquisite backdrop in which to break your brain for the better, there’s no place more Zen than the Portland Japanese Garden.