John Suler's Zen Stories to Tell Your Neighbors
Word spread across the countryside about the wise Holy Man who lived in a small house atop the mountain. A man from the village decided to make the long and difficult journey to visit him. When he arrived at the house, he saw an old servant inside who greeted him at the door.
"I would like to see the wise Holy Man," he said to the servant.
The servant smiled and led him inside. As they walked through the house, the man
from the village looked eagerly around the house, anticipating his encounter with
the Holy Man. Before he knew it, he had been led to the back door and escorted outside.
He stopped and turned to the servant, "But I want to see the Holy Man!"
People's reactions to this story:"This reminds me of Jesus. He was born a simple carpenter's son. It also reminded me of Martin Luther King believing that we are all human and worthy of respect."
"Anticipation of something may be greater than the thing itself. Anticipation of looks is always a mistake."
"You can't judge a book by its cover."
"This is too obvious to be a story. You don't have to think about the point and make it yours. It just hits you on the head."
"We see ourselves in everyone we meet."
"Every step you take in life is significant. There are meanings to all and every event that takes place."
"The man in the story got lost looking for a deep solution to his problem, when all along the answer was right on the surface."
"This is like the age-old story of Beauty and the Beast. Don't judge people until you get to know them. They may surprise you."
"Reminds me of when Luke Skywalker meets Yoda. I think many people go searching for things (love, happiness) and don't recognize them when they see them."
"Everyone you meet in life will know something about life that you may not."
"I don't like this story. It's a bit too much like the Little House on the Prairie for me. It makes me nauseous. Most people aren't wise. Anyone who says so is unrealistic."
"A wise man learns more from a fool than the fool from the wise man."
"If you feel love and respect for all people that you meet, you will receive inward peace."