Wisdom from Ripples November 4, 2010Posted by TheIntentionalSage in Nature, Visions.
Tags: Choice, Master, Pebble, Pond, Question, Ripples, Wisdom
The Master was walking through an open field going about his regular routine when a young man approached. This young man seemed to be particularly troubled with a rather furrowed brow. The Master said to him, “Why, it is such a beautiful day outside. It must be rather difficult to say looking so serious.” The young man responded, “Beautiful out? I hadn’t noticed.” Stopping to look around and see his surroundings, the young man tried to see the beauty around, but nothing seemed to catch his eye. The Master watched continued to walk, “Join me, if you like.”
The Master continued to walk to the edge of a nearby pond spotted with an assortment of trees on the banks. “Please, sit down, ” the Master offered to the young man, motioning to the space next to him. Looking at the ground carefully before sitting, the young man brushed off the leaves that were occupying the place that the Master patted for him to sit. “Find a small stone, please,” the Master requested. “Huh?” The young man quizzically responded. “A stone. Please find a small stone and then cast it into the pond.” Searching nearby, the young man found a pebble. He picked it up and threw it out into the pond as far as he could.
“Tell me what you see,” the Master posed. Straining his eyes, so as not to miss anything happening before him, the young man looked out over the pond and responded, “I see ripples.”
“Where did ripples come from?”
“From the pebble that I tossed into the pond.”
“Please reach your hand into the water and stop the ripples.”
Not understanding, the young man reached his hand into the pond as a ripple neared, only to cause more ripples. The young man, now completely baffled, wondered what was going on. Had he missed some piece of wisdom? Was there something that was lost in the translation of the Master’s words to his understanding of them? Should he not of sought out the sagely advice of the Master? After all, he was not a student, maybe he couldn’t be helped.
“Were you able to stop the ripples with your hands?” the Master asked.
“No, of course not,” replied the young man.
“Could you have stopped the ripples?”
“No, Master, I only caused more ripples.”
“What if you had stopped the pebble from entering the water to begin with?” The master smiled real big, making it rather difficult for the young man to be upset. “Next time you are unhappy with your life, catch the stone before it hits the water. Do not spend time trying to undo what you have done. Rather, change what you are going to do before you do it.” The Master looked kindly upon the young man.
“But Master, how will I know what I am going to do before I do it?”
“Take the responsibility for living your own life. If you’re working with a doctor to treat an illness, then ask the doctor to help you understand what caused the illness. Don’t just treat the ripples. Keep asking questions.”
The young man stopped, his mind reeling, “But I acme to you for answers! Are you saying that I know the answers?”
“You may not know the answers right now, but if you ask the right questions then you shall discover the answers.”
“But what are the right questions, Master?”
“There are no wrong questions, only unasked ones. We must ask, for without asking, we cannot receive answers. It is your responsibility to ask. No one else can do it for you. Start with yourself. Go within. Ask yourself, what is it that I need to know from this situation. More times than not, you’ll answer your own question and if you don’t, you’ll get an inkling of who to ask and what to ask them.” The Master smiled wisdom.