EIHEIJI, JAPAN—Zen Buddhist Dōgen Zenji, 38, revealed an esoteric trick to successful meditation known as dōnatsu no michi, the practice of masticating a piece of donut until one becomes united with the cosmos.
The history of the donut is disputed. Some historians claim that it was invented by Dutch settlers in North America, while other scholars contend that it was first made in 1847 by a 16-year-old American named Hanson Gregory. Still, other experts argue that it was first made by a baroness named Elizabeth Dimsdale, who credited a local cook known only as Mrs. Fordham. Dōgen, however, disagrees. “Pace Western historians, the modern donut evolved from a Japanese delicacy known as dōnatsu, which can be properly made only by a small enclave of monks who reside primarily in the Fukui Prefecture,” he said.
To prove his point, Dōgen elegantly retrieved a small batch of dōnatsu from his black shoulder bag before silently walking into the zendo, or Zen hall, to meditate. Upon sitting down, he lifted the dōnatsu to his mouth and simultaneously chewed and chanted, while bread crumbs from the dōnatsu fell onto his rakusu, a traditional Japanese zen garment worn around the neck.
“It is lamentable how the West keeps on robbing Japan and its culture,” said Dōgen. “First, they take away our traditional Toyota vehicles and get rich selling American cars, and then they take away our food and turn it into an unhealthy junk food. Have they no shame?”
When asked how an inexperienced Westerner might learn to meditate, Dōgen replied with consummate simplicity: “Eat.”
COLUMBUS, OH—A group of home-schooled fourth graders have established a new interdisciplinary peer-reviewed journal entitled Midwest Journal of the Metaphysics of Art, stunning professors and graduate students from disciplines ranging from the arts to biomedical engineering. “The problem with postmodern art is that much of it, while visually pleasing, is based on little to no understanding of basic propositional logic, let alone the rigorous philosophical methods that metaphysicians of art must employ,” said 10-year-old Tom Bruise, who received an honorary doctoral degree from The Ohio State University in 2004.
At a Rothko convention in Dayton, 10-year-old postmodernist Dustin Huffman disagreed, citing bits and pieces of Derrida and Buddhist philosophy. “A veritable comprehension of the dualism that is both inherent and negatively response-dependent within the realm of tauroscatological sufficiency cannot be attained by means of any conventional logical stratagem,” he quipped.
What followed Huffman’s incisive comment was a spirited intellectual debate among the top scholars in the field, with some even drawing abstruse evidence from chaos theory to bolster their points.
Under the supervision of their parents, the fourth graders continue to break new ground. Scores of scholars from across the nation will attend the fourth graders’ next Rothko convention in April.
TAICHUNG, TAIWAN—While teachers convened in preparation for a PTA meeting, American School in Taichung (AST) 8-year-old student Dustin Huffman sought nirvana in the science lab, to which he gained unauthorized access using a crowbar he had stolen from the general affairs office.
Designed in accordance to the reward-and-punishment system made famous by the eponymous behavioral psychologist B.F. Skinner, the 6 x 6 foot box contains an intricate system of buttons and levers which the human or non-human animal within must learn to manipulate.
Upon entering the container, Dustin suppressed every urge to work for a treat so that he could live the life of an ascetic. At 3 p.m., when Dustin was at the brink of achieving nirvana, AST veteran Lily Hsu walked into the room to pick up a a biology textbook, scaring the boy home.