SHEPHERD OR BUTCHER

Two people were watching a man drive a herd of sheep through the main street of a small town.

“I thought shepherds led sheep. I didn’t know they drove them with a whip.”

“They do,” the other fellow remarked. “That’s not a shepherd. That’s the town’s butcher.”

Source: Robert R. Cueni, The Vital Church Leader
Abingdon press, 1991

CONSIDER THIS

God, my shepherd!
I don’t need a thing.
You have bedded me down in lush meadows,
you find me quiet pools to drink from.
True to your word,
you let me catch my breath
and send me in the right direction.

Psalm 23:1-3 (The Message)

STOP CHASING YOUR TAIL

A big cat saw a little cat chasing its tail and asked, “Why are you chasing your tail so?”

Said the kitten, “I have learned that the best thing for a cat is happiness, and that happiness is in my tail. Therefore, I am chasing it: and when I catch it, I shall have happiness.”

Said the old cat, “My son, I, too, have paid attention to the problems of the universe. I too, have judged that happiness is in my tail But, I have noticed that whenever I chase after it, it keeps running away from me, and when I go about my business, it just seems to come after me wherever I go.”

Source | From C.L. James, “On Happiness,”
in Caesar Johnson, To See a World in a Grain of Sand
(Norwalk, Conn.: The C.B. Gibson Co., 1972)

______________________________

Here’s a slightly different version as told my Wayne Dyer

There was an old wise cat and a small kitten in an alleyway. The old cat saw the kitten chasing its tail and asked, “Why are you chasing your tail?”

To it the kitten replied, “I’ve been attending cat philosophy school and I have learned that the most important thing for a cat is happiness, and that happiness is located in my tail. Therefore, I am chasing it: and when I catch it, I shall have happiness forever.”

Laughing, the wise old cat replied, “My son, I wasn’t lucky enough to go to cat philosophy school, but as I’ve gone through life, I too have realized that the most important thing for a cat is happiness, and indeed that it is located in my tail.  The difference I’ve found though is that whenever I chase after it, it keeps running away from me, but when I go about my business and live my life, it just seems to follow after me wherever I go.” 

Source | Wayne DyerYour Erroneous Zones
(William Morrow Paperbacks; 1st HarperPerennial ed edition, 2001) page 68.

 CONSIDER THIS

Happiness is like a butterfly which, when pursued, is always beyond our grasp, but, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you. | Anonymous although often wrongly attributed to both Nathaniel Hawthorne and Henry David Thoreau.

YOU MUST SEE THE RABBIT

A young aspirant to holiness asked his teacher, “Why is it that some who seek God come to the desert and are zealous in prayer but leave after a year or so, while others, like you, remain faithful to the quest for a lifetime?”

The old man smiled and answered, “One day I was sitting here quietly in the sun with my dog. Suddenly a large white rabbit ran across in front of us. Well, my dog jumped up, and barked loudly, took off after the rabbit with a passion. Soon other dogs joined him, attracted by his barking. The pack of dogs ran barking across the creeks, up stony embankments and through the thickets and thorns. Gradually, however, one by one, the other dogs dropped out of the pursuit, discouraged by the course and frustrated by the chase. Only my dog continued to hotly pursue the white rabbit.”

The young man sat in confused silence, and finally said, “I don’t understand.”

The old man replied, “Unless you see the prey, the chase is just too difficult . . . you must see the rabbit!”

If I am not to lose heart
and abandon my spiritual quest,
you must teach me how to be an everyday mystic
who finds you in life’s holy humdrum.

 Source | Edward Hays,  A Book of Wonders
(Ave Maria Press, 2009) pages 251-251