I’ve written on Good News! for a long time about Living in Truth and now I’m discovering that my study of words overlaps the things I’ve learned about Truth in many places. For example, I found this old Zen story that shows how we fall into the Pit of Illusion because of the words we choose (stories we tell) to explain the events in our lives.
In the story two Zen monks are walking along a muddy, puddle filled road when they happen upon a beautiful young woman who can’t get across a particularly large and deep mud puddle. As he realizes the predicament the woman is in, the older monk lifts the woman in his arms, carries her across the puddle, sets her down, and then continues on his way with the younger monk following.
The two walk silently for hours, as monks are wont to do, leaving behind the dreary mud filled puddles and entering a beautiful green mountain side with spring blossoming trees, buzzing bees, singing birds, and colorful flowers nodding in the breeze. But the younger monk is so deep in thought he notices none of it.
Finally, after walking all day, they stop for the night and the older monk asks what has preoccupied the younger monk so much that he has not even been aware of the beautiful surroundings they have traveled through.
Fired by the long hours of deliberation, the young monk scolds, “You know that a monk should never touch a woman, and yet this morning you carried that beautiful woman across a puddle!”
The older monk smiles, “My young brother, I put the woman down hours ago. Why are you still carrying her?”