Zen wants you to "just look."
If you do more than look, the Zen master slaps you – either physically with his hand or intellectually with a koan.
A koan is a ridiculous expression or dialogue designed to get the listener past the subject-object perspective.
A layman, for instance, once asked a Zen master: “What is it that transcends everything in the universe?” The master said, “I will tell you after you have drunk up all the waters of the West River in one gulp.” The man replied, “I have already drunk up all the waters of the West River in one gulp.” The master responded, “Then I have already answered your question.”
In effect, through use of a koan, the Zen master throws you into the absurd, saying, “If you insist on answers, on sorting through distinctions that don't exist, you are insisting on dwelling in the absurd, so I'll play along and give you even more absurd."
"A student once asked him: 'If I haven't anything in my mind, what shall I do?' Joshu replied: 'Throw it out.' 'But if I haven't anything, how can I throw it out?' continued the questioner. 'Well,' said Joshu, 'then carry it out.' 122 Zen Koans