Nin sat on the beach and looked out over the bay and contemplated his life. He stared into the water, as if he expected to see some vision or portent in the depths. The light from the moon, reflected on the waves, danced before him and stung his swollen eyes.
He barely perceived the tiny puff of wind as a bluebird alighted on the rock beside him.
The master summoned Nin before him and gave him a koan to contemplate: “What does the mind think about in-between thoughts?” and then he sent Nin away to meditate on the answer.
A wise master lived on the far side of the forest. So early one morning Nin, hoping the master might take him as a student, set off on the winding, narrow road that lead through the woods to the master’s house.