A story

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A story

Postby JohnC » Sun Aug 25, 2002 5:47 am

There was once a Samurai who came to visit an old Zen master, said to be at least a hundred or more years old. The warrior said, "Respectable master! I have been a Samurai for some years and served my lord faithfully. Yet, I am confounded by something. I have heard that you are a very wise master, so I come to ask you a very serious question and hope you can give an answer for me."

"Oh" said the Zen master, making pictures in the sand with a polished stick, seated on a woven mat at the edge of his garden, distracted.

"Yes, teach me about heaven and hell, I am vexed by this!" cried the Samurai.

"Teach you about heaven and hell?" said the master now looking up at this fearsome warrior, "I doubt that you could even learn to keep your own sword from rusting, or find your way home. You ignorant fool, how dare you bother my meditation and suppose that you could begin to understand anything that I have to say to you!"

The old master went on and on, with an increasingly insulting tirade that at first, shocked, then confused the young Samurai, and finally drove him to hot anger, raging by the second. Master, or no master, no one insults a Samurai so and lives!

At last, with teeth clenched and face flushed with his blood rising and a look of menacing fury upon his face, the warrior blindly drew his sword and prepared to end the master's life by severing his head and thought gleefully of it rolling into the sand, spilling blood on the sand art the master had been foolishly making.

At the last split second before the fatal strike, the master's eyes locked with the Samurai's and he said clearly, "This, is hell." The swing halted in mid arc. The warrior realized as his rage peaked and then ebbed, that this was indeed his teaching: the master had bounded him to a living hell, driven by uncontrolled anger, ego and a complete loss of self-restraint.

The young warrior, profoundly humbled, sheathed his sword gently and bowed to this great spiritual teacher. Looking up into the wisened face of the master with eyes that still sparkled and a countenance that beamed, he felt more love and compassion than he had ever felt in his life - at which point the master raised his index finger, as would a teacher and said, " And this, is heaven."

JohnC

[This message has been edited by JohnC (edited August 25, 2002).]

[This message has been edited by JohnC (edited August 25, 2002).]
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A story

Postby dominiuno » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:53 am

I like this, where'd you get it?
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A story

Postby Jackie Olsen » Mon Aug 26, 2002 1:02 am

Excellent! Thanks for sharing this Zen lesson.

------------------
In Beauty,

Jackie
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A story

Postby JohnC » Mon Aug 26, 2002 4:44 am

This is an old martial folk tale found in the writing of Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming, embellished a little by me. Dr. Yang's publications are rich in the history, folk tales and stories of kung fu, along with very detailed work on Shaolin White Crane Kung-Fu, Tai Chi and Qigong. His work has dozens of these little gems woven throughout to make his points about the essence of kung fu and qigong.

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