A exploration of spiritual stillness, 30 day fast of reading, studying and practicing the 26th verse of Tao Te Ching. (Living Calmly) The month long spiritual exercise in accepting and being gracious for what lies ahead. Being a avid hack writer, I’ll post 30 days consecutively, thoughts on “Being Content.” Poems, exercises, take-home assignments, etc.

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Day, 4 Contentment

Story 1

A Hindu holy man in India had reached the outskirts of the village and settled down under a tree for the night when a villager came running up to him and said, “The stone! The stone! Give me the precious stone!” “What stone?” asked the holy man.

“Last night the Lord Shiva appeared to me in a dream,” said the villager, “and told me that if I went to the outskirts of the village at dusk I should find a holy man who would give me a precious stone that would make me rich forever.”

The holy man rummaged in his bag and pulled out a stone. “He probably meant this one,” he said as he handed the stone to the ecstatic villager. “I found it on a forest path some days ago. You can certainly have it.”

The man gazed at the stone in absolute wonder and amazement. It was a diamond, probably the largest diamond in the whole world, because it was as large as a man’s head.

The villager took the diamond and walked away feeling rich and happy at last. He’d never have another financial worry the rest of his life. But when he went to bed that night, all night he tossed and turned, unable to sleep.

Next day, at the crack of dawn, he rushed to the outskirts of his village and woke the holy man. “Please, holy man,” the villager pleaded earnestly, “give me the wealth that makes it possible for you to give this diamond away so easily.”

author unknown

Story 2

A Zen Master lived the simplest kind of life in a little hut at the foot of a mountain. One evening, while he was away, a thief sneaked into the hut only to find there was nothing in it to steal.

The Zen Master returned and found him. “You have come a long way to visit me,” he told the prowler, “and you should not return empty handed. Please take my clothes as a gift.”

The thief was bewildered, but he took the clothes and ran away. The Master sat naked, watching the moon. “Poor fellow,” he mused, ” I wish I could give him this beautiful moon.”

author unknown

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