A Cup Of Tea

A Cup Of Tea Author: Unknown Nan-in, a Japanese master during the Meiji era (1868-1912), received a university professor who came to inquire about Zen. Nan-in served tea. He poured his visitor’s cup full, and then kept on pouring. The professor watched the overflow until he no longer could restrain himself. “It is overfull. No…

God As Mother

God As Mother Author: Unknown There are some temples where God is worshipped as Mother. In one of these, in the state of Bengal, She is represented by a large stone image. The sculptor has carved in stone his idea of the Mother of the Universe, and many pious people, finding it attractive and inspiring,…

An Afternoon In the Park

An Afternoon In the Park Author: Unknown There once was a little boy who wanted to meet God. He knew it was a long trip to where God lived, so he packed his suitcase with Twinkies and a six-pack of root beer and he started his journey. When he had gone about three blocks, he…

Drowning Man

  Drowning Man Author: Unknown While out to sea, a large boat became shipwrecked and there was only a single survivor. This man prayed and asked God to save his life. Soon thereafter, another boat came by and offered the man some help. “No thanks,” he said. “I’m waiting for God to save me.” The…

The Battle Within

The Battle Within Author: Unknown An old Cherokee describes an experience going on inside himself…. “It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other is good – he is…

Digging a Well

Digging a Well Author: Unknown A man wanted to dig a well to water his farm. After digging for some time in a place recommended by water-diviners, he found no water and got disgusted. He had dug only about fifteen feet. Along came another man who laughed at him for digging there, and pointed to…

A Most Important Question

A Most Important Question Author: Unknown During my second month of nursing school, our professor gave us a pop quiz. I was a conscientious student and had breezed through the questions, until I read the last one: “What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?” Surely this was some kind of…

Concentration

Concentration Author: Paulo Coelho After winning several archery contests, the young and rather boastful champion challenged a Zen master who was renowned for his skill as an archer. The young man demonstrated remarkable technical proficiency when he hit a distant bull’s eye on his first try, and then split that arrow with his second shot….

Sharing Happiness

Sharing Happiness Author: Unknown Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to help drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room’s only window. The other man had to spend all his time…

Grand Canyon Focus: The Practice of Full Devotion to a Single Task

Grand Canyon Focus: The Practice of Full Devotion to a Single Task BY LEO BABAUTA There is a coffee shop here in Tokyo (where I’m visiting this week), Bear Pond Espresso, that has been called the best coffee shop in the world. The owner and barista, Katsu Tanaka, is a master of his craft. Tanaka-san only serves his…

The Worm

The Worm Author: Unknown There is a wonderful little story about two monks who lived together in a monastery for many years; they were great friends. Then they died within a few months of one another. One of them got reborn in the heaven realms, the other monk got reborn as a worm in a…

Crossing the Water

Crossing the Water Author: Sri Ramakrishna A farmer’s daughter duty was to carry fresh milk to customers in various villages had, one of whom was a priest. To reach his house, the milkmaid had to cross a good-sized stream. People crossed it by a sort of ferry raft, for a small fee. One day the priest,…