A Buddhist monk who studied and meditated on the teachings of Buddha for over a decade wanted to speak with an enlightened one who dwelled alone in a small temple high in the mountains. He prepared for his journey eager to hear his teaching. After 7 days of rigorous hiking he reached the temple.
The master greeted him and welcomed him inside. The master put some tea on to boil and they sat in silence. The monk became very eager and unsettled in not hearing his teaching. The master poured the tea and sat with the monk. The monk didn’t drink his tea and began questioning his master of Buddha.
The master replied.. “You have studied Buddhism for 20 years and can not simply enjoy this cup of tea?” The monk wept…. as another step to enlightenment lay under his feet….
Bai Juyi (772-846 CE) was an important poet and government official of the Tang Dynasty in China. He once asked a monk for the most essential Dharma instruction, and the monk replied by quoting the Buddha’s summary teaching, “Avoid harm. Do good. Purify the mind.”
Bai Juyi was not impressed, “Every child of three years knows these words. What I want to know is the most profound and fundamental teaching of the Buddha.” The monk replied, “Every child of three years knows these words, but white-haired men still fail to put them into practice.”
Source: Children and Old Men
Masterpiece and Spontaneity
A master calligrapher was writing some characters onto a piece of paper. One of his especially perceptive students was watching him. When the calligrapher was finished, he asked for the student’s opinion – who immediately told him that it wasn’t any good. The master tried again, but the student criticized the work again.
Over and over, the calligrapher carefully redrew the same characters, and each time the student rejected it. Finally, when the student had turned his attention away to something else and wasn’t watching, the master seized the opportunity to quickly dash off the characters. “There! How’s that?,” he asked the student. The student turned to look. “THAT…. is a masterpiece!” he exclaimed.
Meanings: “Originality is what makes each of us a masterpiece. Don’t stick to the same old way of doing things.”
“Stop thinking and just do what’s natural for you, instead of what’s expected. Some of our best work is done when we least expect it.”
“You can’t perform perfectly under the watch of critical eyes. When you don’t force perfection, it happens by itself, spontaneously. Great things happen when you least suspect it.”
“Whenever you watch over someone you make them self-conscious and uncreative. It’s like trying to teach a child. If you let them alone they will usually figure it out themselves and it will be great.” – See
Two monks were returning to the monastery in the evening. It had rained and there were puddles of water on the road sides. At one place a beautiful young woman was standing unable to walk across because of a puddle of water. The elder of the two monks went up to a her lifted her and left her on the other side of the road, and continued his way to the monastery.
In the evening the younger monk came to the elder monk and said, “Sir, as monks, we cannot touch a woman ?”
The elder monk answered “yes, brother”.
Then the younger monk asks again, “but then Sir, how is that you lifted that woman on the roadside ?”
The elder monk smiled at him and told him ” I left her on the other side of the road, but you are still carrying her.”
She was a princess; and a queen; and a leader
She was stunning and punctual
A poetic goddess with a gleaming smile
Anything and everything at her fingertips
Although she never asked for it
So beautiful and yet so sad and lonely
Its true that money can’t buy you happiness
Nor can beauty define your soul
She wept many nights and days
Wishing she could be swept off her feet
And taken far, far from here
For the constraints of her life were a world of hell
She wanted so badly to see outside these walls
The walls built to protect
Yet desecrated everything sacred
The walls circled her like vultures
Awaiting her death to finally close in
She stayed awake late nights to watch the constellations
Every shooting star a wish
And many tears that followed
One late night on a full moon s
Guards tending to other things
Her royal queen decided she can no longer stay
She fastened bedsheets to a tree
And fell hard on the ground outside the walls
The wind whispered through the trees
As she walked along a path to unknown
And when morning rised
She was on her own
The princess had never felt so alone
So vunerable; but she continued to walk
The sun continued to rise
And the birds began to chirp
Like the birth of a new world
And the sun kissed her skin
And the world finally made sense
That she was finally vulnerable
Alone and on her own
Peace and serenity
It all began.
One day a young man on his journey home came to the banks of a wide river. Staring hopelessly at the great obstacle in front of him, he pondered for hours on how to cross the river.
Just as he was about to give up, he saw a great teacher on the other side of the river. The young man yells over to the teacher, “Oh wise one, can you tell me how to get to the other side of this river”?
The teacher ponders for a moment looks up and down the river and yells back, “My son, you are on the other side”.
Source: With the Flow: A Zen Story
Source: No one is a Buddhist