LEARNING TO BE SILENT

The pupils of the Tendai school used to study meditation before Zen entered Japan. Four of them who were intimate friends promised one another to observe seven days of silence.

On the first day all were silent. Their meditation had begun auspiciously, but when night came and the oil lamps were growing dim one of the pupils could not help exclaiming to a servant: “Fix those lamps.”

The second student was surprised to hear the first one talk. “We are not supposed to say a word,” he remarked.

“You two are stupid. Why did you talk?” asked the third.

“I am the only one who has not talked,” concluded the fourth.

Source | Paul Reps and Nyogen Senzaki, Zen Bones, Zen Flesh
(Tuttle Publishing, 1998) pages 83-84

CONSIDER THIS

To observe silence in a healthy and life-giving way one has to leave ego, pride and competition behind.

CONVERSATION

Joe is walking down a darkened alley, when suddenly a man jumps out, brandishing a pistol.

“Don’t shoot,” Joe pleads, “I’ll give you all my money.”

“I don’t want your money,” says the man with the gun. “My whole life I’ve been trying to get someone to sit down and talk with me. Now I’m going to make you listen for one hour.”

Source | www.aish.com

CONSIDER THIS

God Speaks to us all a little differently, hoping we’ll tell each other. | John Stewart

With all the “smart” technology we own and run around with,  it seems that people today are busier than ever, with hardly any time left for honest conversation.  Are you listening to their unique part of the story?  Are you telling your unique part of the story?


HOW NOT TO COMMUNICATE

A man who wanted to work on his communication skills with his wife, someone he loved dearly and whom he didn’t want to lose, went to the bookstore and purchased a couple of books on communication.  He read them and a few other ebooks he downloaded free  from the internet. He then handed all of them to his wife and said, “Here. Read these. I’m not going to talk to you until you do.”

Source | unknown

PONDER AND CONSIDER

A little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing.