Story of two Tibetan monks

Discussion in 'Spirituality/Worship' started by springwater, Mar 16, 2009.

  1. springwater

    springwater Well-Known Member

    “An old monk and a young monk were walking through a forest when they came to a river bank and saw a beautiful young woman standing at the edge of the bank.The woman told the monks that she was afraid to cross the river because she might slip and be carried downstream. She asked if one of the monks might help her across.

    Now it so happened that these 2 monks were members of a sect which practiced celibacy and they had both taken vows never to touch a member of the opposite sex. But the old monk, sensing the extreme anxiety of the young woman, lifted her onto his back and carried her to the other side of the river.

    The young woman thanked him and went on her way. The 2 monks continued on their journey, but the young monk was shocked and disturbed at having seen his older companion break his vow so nonchalantly. Finally, after 3 hours of walking and thinking, he could contain himself no longer and he burst out, “Tell me, old man, what did it feel like to break your vow of so many years? What did it feel like to allow sensuality to tempt you from your spiritual path? Tell me, old man, what is it like to carry such a beautiful young woman?”

    The older monk remained silent for several steps and then said, “It is you who should tell me what it is like to carry such a beautiful young woman. You see I put her down 3 hours ago at the river, but you are still carrying her.”

    And another one

    Two Tibetan Monks meet each other a few years after being released from prison, where they had been tortured by their jailers.
    “Have you forgiven them?” asks the first
    “I will never forgive them! Never!” replies the second
    “Well,” says the first monk, “I guess they still have you in prison, don’t they?”

    God Bless

  2. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    I love those stories. Thanks much for posting them here.

    I often say to friends of mine, as a kind of short-hand, "you're still carrying her" or "Oy, I'm still carrying her." We both know exactly what I'm talking about.

    Do you remember Daniel Pearl, the journalist from the Wall St. Times who was kidnapped and killed in Pakistan? His wife, Mariane Pearl, spoke at an event hosted by some friends of mine - people I have taught meditation and with whom I discuss Buddhism, actually. They are Jewish Rabbis.

    Her father was Dutch and was imprisoned by the Nazis during the Holocaust - he committed suicide at 42 when she was 9. Her mother was Cuban. Her husband, Daniel, was the son of an Iraqi Jew and an Israeli. She is a Buddhist.

    The way her Buddhism has shaped the woman she is is so evident in the skillful means she uses to understand and discuss these events in front of an audience comprised largely of people touched by the Holocaust in some way - many of whom are too wounded to be able to ever "put her down."

    (part 1 of 5 - it's long but fascinating)

    I am so grateful to the Buddha and the path for giving us this way of being and this understanding. I am also very grateful to all your ancestors who kept and developed this tradition so that I might suffer less.

    I've been thinking a lot lately about the expression, "deafening silence." There has been a deafening silence from Lhasa and from Tibet over the past week.

    with metta to all,
  3. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    the reason I went into her background was to say that their son - she was five months pregnant when Daniel Pearl was killed - Adam is, to my mind, an ideal modern person.

    If we are to overcome our tribalism we may well do it with these kinds of loving alliances. Adam Pearl has a Cuban, Dutch, Buddhist mother and an Iraqi, Israeli Jewish father. His parents, mindful of his rich heritage, named him for the first man as they thought it was a fitting name for the man he would become in the 21 century.

    Peace out,

    ETA Good morning Rain, and SJ, we were posting at same time. I hope you are well and happy this fine spring day.

    [This Message was Edited on 03/17/2009]
  4. TwoCatDoctors

    TwoCatDoctors New Member

    I felt the story of the two monks was so important. The burdens that we continue to carry, shape our thoughts, our decisions, our futures and at times the futures of those around us and that we love. I think these stories of the monks make us think and are valuable teaching tools for each of us. Thank you so much for sharing.
  5. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi Springwater,

    Thanks much for the stories. RE: "“It is you who should tell me what it is like to carry such a beautiful young woman. You see I put her down 3 hours ago at the river, but you are still carrying her.”"

    I'm not quite sure the old monk is being TOTALLY honest. :)

  6. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    for those who want to put her down.

  7. springwater

    springwater Well-Known Member

    Glad you like these stories....


    when you said "Thanks much for the stories. RE: "“It is you who should tell me what it is like to carry such a beautiful young woman. You see I put her down 3 hours ago at the river, but you are still carrying her.”"

    I'm not quite sure the old monk is being TOTALLY honest. :)"

    Was it a roundabout way of saying you would still be carrying that beautiful lady in your mind?"
    Hahahahahahaha. Harrumph Wayne..whoever would have thought Wayne the lovely and gentle would be notty!

    God Bless

  8. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi Springwater & Rainbow,

    Gosh, you guys had me scrambling a bit. I wasn't sure of the definition of notty, so went looking on the internet for it and couldn't find it. So I askd my partner, and she asked me if perhaps it was a different spelling for "naughty". I paused for a second, and realized that is most likely the case. If that's is the case, then I have to unequivocally plead guilty as charged! :)

    Quite honestly, the way the story reads, I would find it hard to believe that a normal heterosexual male (no matter what religious or spiritual orientation) could so easily let go of an experience that could almost be described as "an opportunity of a lifetime". Or perhaps I'm just mirroring my own perspective???

    You know, I personally do not believe sexual abstinance as practiced by certain religious or spiritual organizations has very much (if any at all) spiritual merit. If anything, I think it can potentially create problems such as was seen with priests molesting young children.

    An interesting thing I learned is that the Catholic church did not originally require celibacy as a requirement for the priesthood. Nor did they prohibit marriage. The reason these practices came into being (around the 12th century) was because of the concern within the Catholic church that too many church resources were being left to the families of the priests after they died. So they made a political decision to solve this economic problem by preventing priests from getting married and having families. And they passed this poliitical decsion off as a spiritual value.

    I haven't been over here for a while, so was nice to see both of your notes tonight. Hope you you're both doing well.

    Nighty night, Wayne

    P.S. Don't you think that a little bit of naughtiness can keep a person from gettng the blues? :)[This Message was Edited on 03/27/2009]
  9. springwater

    springwater Well-Known Member

    That was some interesting info re why celibacy vows came into existence, it could very well have happened in Buddhism among their monks too...we have monks who abstain (or are supposed to) and those who marry.

    As for 'nottiness', I have yet to meet a man who did not have a teeny tiny spark of that in him...(Im 46 so I must have met/observed a lot of men); so i think 'to be a man, is to be 'notty'. (In varying degrees). And not necessarily a bad thing. I dont think women would want to be on a planet devoid of men, right rainbow?.

    God Bless
    [This Message was Edited on 03/28/2009]