Thursday, March 30, 2006

Eight Earthly Winds

Eight Earthly Winds

There was a well-known scholar who practiced Buddhism and befriended a chan master. Thinking that he had made great stride in his cultivation, he wrote a poem and asked his attendant to deliver it to the master who lived across the river. The master opened the letter and read the short poem aloud:

"Unmoved by the eight worldly winds, [1]
Serenely I sit on the purplish gold terrace."

A smile broke up on the lips of the master. Picking up an ink brush, he scribbled the word "fart" across the letter and asked that it be delivered back to the scholar.

The scholar was upset and went across the river right away to reprimand the master for being rude.

The master laughed as he said, "You said you are no longer moved by the eight worldly winds and yet with just one 'fart', you ran across the river like a rat!"

[1] Eight worldly winds/concerns: Gain and loss, honor and disgrace, praise and blame, happiness and pain.


At 4:44 AM, Blogger doc-t said...

why does it disturb me that i'm laughing at this story?

LOL i probably shouldn't but i do!

i can't stop laughing... and i HATE fart jokes...


but... maybe it's the deeper meaning. it's amazing the mountains one can move with a single word...

I feel certain that wars are started and ended that way.

I KNOW relationships have ended with a single word...

a single word can be like a sharp pin quickly stabbed into the balloon of pride.

Your story, for example, it was the man's PRIDE that was injured and motivated him to storm across the river.

I didnt like the movie, but did you see "Michael" starring John travolta and William Hurt..

the angel michael tells ths story about a challenge between the wind and the sun... they both claimed they could force a man to take his coat off...

The wind blew cold and the man held tight to his coat. The harder the wind blew, the harder the man held onto his coat.

Then the sun came up and shone down warm. and the man took his coat off...

umm... maybe that doesn't apply at all... but it's a great story don't you think? I guess it's kind of the flip side... A single nice action brought about taht which a barrage of force could not...

At 6:54 AM, Blogger Rinda Elliott said...

Hey, I'm laughing.

At 10:05 AM, Blogger Betty S said...

Me too.

At 10:06 AM, Blogger Betty S said...

Sometimes I think we take life way too seriously.

At 1:43 PM, Blogger Betty S said...

I actually liked the movie "Michael". I'm still not sure why.

I think the words we speak and the thoughts we think are extremlyI think the words we speak and the thoughts we think are extremely important. Because of that, I am very drawn to the Buddhist concept of mindfulness and living in the now. For me it is a very spiritually connected way of being. A vital part of the journey.

Yes. A single word can be very hurtful and sometimes destructive. All the more reason to watch my thoughts and language.

I have this posted at work:

Watch your thoughts; they become words.
Watch your words; they become actions.
Watch your actions; they become habits.
Watch your habits; they become character.
Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.


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