The Zen Master and his Dog.

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The Zen master’s dog loved his evening walks with his master. The dog would run to fetch a stick, then run back to the master, and wait eagerly for the next round.

One day, the Zen master decided to take one of his favorite disciples. He was the brightest of his disciples. He was intelligent and so rational that he was troubled by the contradictions in Buddhist doctrine.

‘You must understand,’ said the master, ‘that words are only guideposts. Never let the words or the symbols get in the way of truth. Here, I will show you.’

Having said that, the master called his dog.

‘Fetch me the moon,’ said the master and pointed to the full moon.

‘Where is my dog looking?’ asked the master to his bright disciple.

‘He’s looking at your finger,’ replied the boy.

‘Exactly. Don’t be like my dog,’ said the master, ‘Don’t confuse the pointing finger with the thing that is being pointed at. The Buddhist words are simply guideposts. Every man fights his way through other men’s words to find his own truth.’

Moral of the Story

It would be best if you found your truth by discernment; religious texts, articles, books, and other materials are guideposts for enlightenment. As per the story above, focus on the moon, not the pointing finger, your purpose (intention), and not necessarily the process. Your path differs from where you are headed or your reason for going there. There are usually multiple paths to reaching your goal; the journey is the reward. Don’t get caught up in reaching your goal; you lose sight of your ultimate aim.

Lifelong Learner | Entrepreneur | Digital Strategist at Reputiva LLC | Marathoner | Bibliophile -info@lanredahunsi.com | lanre.dahunsi@gmail.com

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