When Tired

A student once asked his teacher, "Master, what is enlightenment?"

The master replied, "When hungry, eat. When tired, sleep."

(In other versions of this story, one disciple is bragging about his master to the disciple of another master. He claims that his teacher is capable of all sorts of magical acts, like writing in the air with a brush, and having the characters appear on a piece of paper hundreds of feet away. "And what can YOUR master do?" he asks the other disciple. "My master can also perform amazing feats," the other student replies. "When he's tired, he sleeps. When hungry, he eats"........... or simply, "When he sleeps, he sleeps. When he eats, he eats.")

People's reactions to this story:
"Living in the now is the most difficult task for us humans. Most live in the past or future."

"Pleasures are simple things. Make the most of what you have."

"Enlightenment may not be an unachievable task - it may be right in front of us all the time."

"You have to accept and enjoy the basics before you can understand the more complicated aspects of life."

"Do what you want to do. You are not given instructions on how to act. When you feel a need, fulfill it."

"If you satisfy your needs, you will be happy."

"Complexity is not always needed to get the job done. Life is only as difficult as we make it out to be."

"This doesn't sound like much of story, even though the message makes sense. It sounds like something a child would come up with. I would like to ask my boyfriend about this statement, because he seems to like these kinds of things."

"The master is truly at peace."

"When your body signals messages to you, and you answer your body's questions, you will reach happiness. It reminds me of last night. It was dinner time, but I didn't feel like eating. I was exhausted. So I laid down to take a nap, and woke up when my body wanted to wake up. I felt very revived and happy, and was able to go back to the work that I had to finish that night. I guess I was "enlightened" because I listen to my body."

"To know yourself is enlightenment."

"I think he means you choose what your enlightenment is."

|| Masterpiece || Useless Life || True Self ||

John Suler, Ph.D. 1997 All rights reserved.