Once, a learned professor visited a Zen master. His intention was to learn about Zen. As the professor chatted about Zen and what he wished to accomplish, the master wordlessly served tea.

He poured tea into the professor’s cup, filled it to the brim, and continued to pour, even though the cup was now overflowing.

The astonished visitor watched him for some moments, then no longer able to contain himself, he burst out.

“Master, the cup can hold no more! Why are you not stopping?”

“You are similar to this brimming cup. Until you empty it, how can I show you Zen?”

When our being is filled with ego, where is the space for wisdom?