Moving village

There was a person coming to a new village, relocating, and he was wondering if he would like it there, so he went to the zen master and asked: 

“Do you think I will like it in this village? Are the people nice?”
The master asked back:

“How were the people on the town where you come from?”

β€œThey were nasty and greedy, they were angry and lived for cheating and stealing,” said the newcomer.

“Those are exactly the type of people we have in this village”, said the master.

Another newcomer to the village visited the master and asked the same question, to which the master asked:

“How were the people in the town where you come from?”

β€œThey were sweet and lived in harmony, they cared for one another and for the land, they respected each other and they were seekers of spirit,” he replied

“Those are exactly the type of people we have in this village”, said the master.

– Old story, Zen Tradition.

Wise man

Word spread across the countryside about the wise Holy Man who lived in a small house atop the mountain. A man from the village decided to make the long and difficult journey to visit him. When he arrived at the house, he saw an old servant inside who greeted him at the door.

“I would like to see the wise Holy Man,” he said to the servant. The servant smiled and led him inside. As they walked through the house, the man from the village looked eagerly around the house, anticipating his encounter with the Holy Man. Before he knew it, he had been led to the back door and escorted outside. 

He stopped and turned to the servant, “But I want to see the Holy Man!”

“You already have,” said the old man. “Everyone you may meet in life, even if they appear plain and insignificant… see each of them as a wise Holy Man. If you do this, then whatever problem you brought here today will be solved.”
– Zen Story, unknown origin. 

Is that so?

A beautiful girl in the village was pregnant. Her angry parents demanded to know who was the father. At first resistant to confess, the anxious and embarrassed girl finally pointed to Hakuin, the Zen master whom everyone previously revered for living such a pure life. When the outraged parents confronted Hakuin with their daughter’s accusation, he simply replied “Is that so?”

When the child was born, the parents brought it to the Hakuin, who now was viewed as a pariah by the whole village. They demanded that he take care of the child since it was his responsibility. “Is that so?” Hakuin said calmly as he accepted the child.

For many months he took very good care of the child until the daughter could no longer withstand the lie she had told. She confessed that the real father was a young man in the village whom she had tried to protect. The parents immediately went to Hakuin to see if he would return the baby. With profuse apologies they explained what had happened. “Is that so?” Hakuin said as he handed them the child.

– Unknown.