Meredith Garmon’s Koan Index

Meredith Garmon’s Koan Index July 28, 2017

Oxherding 1

Koan Index

Meredith Garmon

An amazing resource put together by the Reverend Meredith Garmon, a dharma teacher with Boundless Way Zen as well as senior minister of the Community Unitarian Universalist Congregation at White Plains, New York.

This index lists the koans of the three central collections used in Harada-Yasutani lineages of Zen:

  • GG: Gateless Gate (a.k.a. Wumenguan, Wu-men-kuan, Mumonkan) – 48 cases
  • BCR: Blue Cliff Record (a.k.a. Biyan Lu, Pi-yen Lu, Hekiganroku) – 100 cases
  • BOS: Book of Serenity (a.k.a. Book of Equanimity, Congrong Lu, Ts’ung-jung Lu, Shoyoroku) – 100 cases

Some koans appear in more than one collection, and the total number of different koans is 210.* This index, when complete, will list all 210 cases, with links to posts providing the text of each case, plus a number of comments and verses. The order of the koans is roughly chronological with koans that have the same “main character” grouped together.


The Index
1. BOS4. The World-Honored One Points to the Ground
2. GG32/BCR65. A NonBuddhist Questions Buddha
3. BCR92/BOS1. The World-Honored One Takes His Seat
4. GG42. A Woman Comes Out of Samadhi
5. BCR94/BOS88. The Surangama Sutra and “Unseeing”
6. BOS45. Four Phrases from the Sutra of Perfect Enlightenment
7. BOS67. The Wisdom in the Flower Garland Sutra
8. BCR97/BOS58. The Diamond Sutra’s “The Transgression is Wiped Out”
9. GG6. Buddha Holds Up a Flower
10. GG22. Kashyapa’s Flagpole
11. BCR84/BOS48. Vimalakirti’s “The Gate to the One and Only”
12. BCR78. Bodhisattvas in the Bath
13. BOS3. The Indian King Invites the Patriarch
14. BCR1/BOS2. Emperor Wu Asks Bodhidharma
15. GG41. Bodhidharma Puts the Mind to Rest
16. BCR67. Great Master Fu Concludes His Lecture on the Sutra
17. GG23. Think Neither Good Nor Evil
18. GG29. Not the Wind, Not the Flag
19. BOS5. Qingyuan’s “Price of Rice”
20. GG17. National Teacher’s Three Calls
21. BCR99. Nanyang and the Ten-Bodied Herdsman
22. BOS42. Nanyang and the Water Jug
23. BCR18/BOS85. Emperor Daizong Asks About the Style of the Pagoda
24. GG30. Mind is Buddha
25. GG33. No Mind, No Buddha
26. BCR73/BOS6. Mazu and the Hundred Negations
27. BCR53. Baizhang and a Wild Duck
28. BCR3/BOS36. Mazu’s “Sun-faced Buddha, Moon-faced Buddha”
29. BOS8. Baizhang and the Fox” (first part)
30. GG2. Baizhang and the Fox (extended)
31. BCR26. Baizhang Sits on the Great Sublime Peak
32. GG40. Kicking Over the Water Jug
33. BCR70. Guishan’s “I Would Ask You to Say It”
34. BCR71. Wufeng’s “Shut Up”
35. BCR72. Yunyan’s “Can You?”
36. BCR91/BOS25. Yanguan and the Rhinoceros Fan
37. BCR42. Layman Pang’s “Beautiful Snowflakes”
38. BCR37. Panshan’s “Three Worlds, No Dharma”
39. BCR74. Jinniu and the Rice Pail
40. BOS72. Zhongyi’s ‘Monkey
41. BCR75. Wujiu’s Unfair Blows
42. GG14/BCR63/BOS9. Nanquan Kills the Cat (part 1)
43. GG14/BCR64/BOS9. Nanquan Kills the Cat (part 2)
44. GG19. Ordinary Mind is the Way
45. GG27. What the Holy Ones Have Not Preached (first part)
46. BCR28. What the Holy Ones Have Not Preached (extended)
47. GG34. Knowing Is Not the Way
48. BCR31/BOS16. Mayu Comes to Zhangjing
49. BCR40/BOS91. Nanquan’s “This Flower”
50. BCR69. Nanquan Draws a Circle
51. BOS69. Nanquan’s “Cats and Oxen”
52. BOS93. Shizu Does Not Understand
53. BOS23. Luzu Faces the Wall
54. BCR81. Yaoshan Shoots the Great Deer
55. BOS7. Yaoshan Takes the High Seat
56. BCR76. Danxia’s “Have You Had Your Dinner”
57. BCR11/BOS53. Huangbo’s “Partakers of Brewers Grain”
58. BOS86. Linji’s Great Enlightenment
59. BCR4. Deshan Visits Guishan
60. BCR24/BOS60. Liu Tiemo, the Old Cow
61. BOS15. Yangshan Thrusts His Hoe Into the Ground
62. BOS37. Guishan’s Karmic Consciousness
63. BOS87. Shushan: With or Without
64. BCR36. Changsha Went for a Walk
65. BOS79. Changsha Takes a Step
66. GG1. Zhaozhou’s Dog (Mu)
67. BOS18. Zhaozhou’s Dog (extended version)
68. GG7/ BOS39. Zhoazhou’s “Wash Your Bowls”
69. GG11. Zhoazhou Examines the Hermits
70. GG31/BOS10. Zhoazhou Sees Through an Old Woman
71. GG37/BOS47. The Oak Tree in the Garden
72. BCR2. Zhaozhou’s “The Real Way Is Not Difficult”
73. BCR9. Zhaozhou’s Four Gates
74. BCR30. Zhaozhou’s “A Big Radish”
75. BCR41, BOS #63. Zhaozhou and the Great Death
76. BCR45. Zhaozhou’s Seven-Pound Hempen Shirt
77. BCR52. Zhaozhou’s Stone Bridge
78. BCR57. Zhaozhou’s “I Alone am Holy Throughout Heaven and Earth”
79. BCR58. Zhaozhou’s “No Justification”
80. BCR59. Zhaozhou’s “Why Not Quote to the End”
81. BCR80. Zhaozhou’s “A New-Born Baby”
82. BCR96. Zhaozhou’s Three Turning Words
83. BOS57. Zhaozhou’s “Carry It with You”
84. BCR55. Daowu’s “I Won’t Say”
85. BCR89/BOS54. Yunyan’s “The Whole Body is Hand and Eye”
86. BOS21. Yunyan Sweeps the Ground
87. BOS83. Daowu’s Nursing the Ill
88. GG.28. Longtan’s Name Echoed Long
89. BCR32. Elder Ding Stands Still
90. BOS13. Linji’s “Blind Donkey”
91. BOS38. Linji’s “True Person”
92. BOS95. Linji Draws a Line
93. BCR10. Muzhou’s “Empty-Headed Fool”
94. BOS22. Yantou’s Bow
95. GG13/BOS55. Deshan Carries His Bowl


*Counting duplications is not always straightforward. For example, BCR1 and BOS2 are listed here as one koan, as are BCR84 – BOS48, and BCR91 – BOS25, though they have slightly different endings. BCR63 and BCR64 are two separate koans in the BCR, but are combined into one koan in both GG14 and BOS9. This index counts them as two koans. The following are also treated as two separate koans because one adds substantial material at the end while the other gives only the first part.

  • GG2 and BOS8: “Baizhang and the Fox.” GG2 is the long version of which BOS8 is the first part.
  • BCR28 and GG27: “What the Holy Ones Have Not Preached.” BCR28 is the long version of which GG27 is the first (and modified) part.
  • BOS18 and GG1: “Zhaozhou’s Dog.” BOS18 is the long version of which GG1 is the first part.
  • BOS30 and BCR29: “Dasui’s ‘It will be gone with the other.'” BOS30 is the long version of which BCR29 is the first part.
  • GG3, BCR19, BOS84: “Jinhua Juzhi’s One Finger.” GG3 is the long version. BCR19 and BOS84 are the first part.


Aitken = Robert Aitken. The Gateless Barrier.
Cleary = Thomas Cleary. No Barrier: Unlocking the Zen Koan.
Low = Albert Low. The World: A Gateway.
Sekida = Katsuki Sekida. Two Zen Classics.
Senzaki = Nyogen Senzaki. Eloquent Silence.
Shibayama = Zenkei Shibayama. The Gateless Barrier.
Wumen = fr. Yamada, The Gateless Gate.
Yamada = Koun Yamada. The Gateless Gate.
Verses from Various Chinese Masters: fr. Thomas Cleary, No Barrier: Unlocking the Zen Koan.


Hakuin = fr. Thomas Cleary, trans, Secrets of the Blue Cliff Record.
Rothenberg = David Rothenberg. Blue Cliff Record: Zen Echoes.
Sekida = Katsuki Sekida. Two Zen Classics.
Tenkei = fr. Thomas Cleary, trans, Secrets of the Blue Cliff Record.
Xuedou = fr. Thomas & J.C. Cleary, trans, The Blue Cliff Record. Or fr. Sekida, Two Zen Classics.
Yamada = Koun Yamada. Teisho on Hekiganroku (unpublished. Numbers 1-47 at sanbo.zen/hek###.pdf. Numbers 48-100 at sanbo-zen/Hek###.pdf)
Yuanwu = fr. Thomas & J.C. Cleary, trans, The Blue Cliff Record. Or fr. Sekida, Two Zen Classics.


Hongzhi = fr. Thomas Cleary, trans, Book of Serenity. Or fr. Wick, Book of Equanimity.
Wansong = fr. Thomas Cleary, trans, Book of Serenity. Or fr. Wick, Book of Equanimity.
Wick = Gerry Shishin Wick. The Book of Equanimity.
Yamada = Koun Yamada. Teisho on Shoyoroku. (unpublished. sanbo-zen/shoyoroku_##.pdf)
Verses from Various Students of Reb Tenshin Anderson, Koan Class Tribute.

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