Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Simple Way, Part 21

The Simple Way
The Life & Teachings of Zhouzi
by Scott Bradley

One of the senior monks espied another monk, who had been a recent combatant in a fight in the garden, attempting to sneak away. Accosting him, he convinced him not to add cowardice to folly, and to meet with Zhouzi to inform him of his departure.

Standing before Zhouzi he said, “Master, I have brought disgrace upon myself and the community. No matter how hard I try, I cannot control myself. Please, I request permission to leave.”

Zhouzi replied, “Of course you may leave. And good riddance, too! For even now you pollute my chamber with your talk of ‘disgrace’ and ‘control’ and ‘trying’! But it’s too late! Now I am polluted by this talk of pollution! I will go with you, for I, too, am unworthy to stay! There is no difference between us! Our sins are the same!”

At this, the monk broke down in tears, and Zhouzi, also in tears, embraced him and said, “If you will stay, so also can I.”

After they both had had a good laugh, the monk returned to his duties.

If you're interested in reading more from this series by Scott Bradley, go here. To check out more of Scott's writings, please visit TRT's shadow blog and look in the Table of Contents in the left sidebar.

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