Two enemies are locked together in a small room. As time goes by, they gradually lose their hatred of one another and become friends At last, the door to the room is unlocked. Don't want to jinx it, but it sounds like things turned out just fine?

The koan: "The Voice of Happiness"

After Bankei had passed away, a blind man who lived near the master's temple told a friend:

"Since I am blind, I cannot watch a person's face, so I must judge his character by the sound of his voice. Ordinarily when I hear someone congratulate another upon his happiness or success, I also hear a secret tone of envy. When condolence is expressed for the misfortune of another, I hear pleasure and satisfaction, as if the one condoling was really glad there was something left to gain in his own world.

"In all my experience, however, Bankei's voice was always sincere. Whenever he expressed happiness, I heard nothing but happiness, and whenever he expressed sorrow, sorrow was all I heard."

The enlightenment: This whole business about being able to "hear" hidden emotions in someone's tone of voice is utter and complete pseudoscience. I'm sorry. There's just no evidence for that.

This has been "Zen Koans Explained." A worthless penny buried until it becomes a priceless fossil.

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