Thursday, January 24, 2013

I generally don't post aphorisms, but this one struck me as appropriate as I continue further into middle age. The accompanying story is a classic. 


Once there were two monks who went on a pilgrimage across the country. One day, they came to muddy road and saw a noblewoman who was unable to cross for fear of getting mud on her clothes.Seeing her difficulty, the elder monk volunteered to carry the woman on his back while the younger one looked on in consternation. Once across, the noblewoman walked away without a word of thanks, while the old monk was covered in mud.

When the sun went down, the monks came upon a dilapidated shack and decided to stay there for the night. The elder monk quickly fell asleep while the younger one was unable to calm his mind and twisted around so much that the elder monk awoke and asked what was wrong. 

"That woman," said the young monk, "you carried her across the road on your back and didn't even get a word of thanks!" 

"Oh, that," said the elder. "Brother, I left that woman by the side of the road. Why are you still carrying her around?"

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