Saturday, 31 January 2009

Dusk on the River

There's a Zen story in which a man is enjoying himself on a river at dusk. He sees another boat coming down the river toward him. At first it seems so nice to him that someone else is also enjoying the river on a nice summer evening. Then he realizes that the boat is coming right toward him, faster and faster. He begins to get upset and starts to yell, "Hey, hey watch out! For Pete's sake, turn aside!" But the boat just comes faster and faster, right toward him. By this time he's standing up in his boat, screaming and shaking his fist, and then the boat smashes right into him. He sees that it's an empty boat.

This is the classic story of our whole life situation.

Pema Chodron, Start Where You Are

Everyday Mind
, edited by Jean Smith, a Tricycle book

Received as
Daily Dharma from on the 29th of January 2009


Barry Briggs said...

Poor fellow waited until the end...

Puerhan said...

True, true! As so often we do...

AK-47 said...

Screaming and shaking my fist - that pretty much sums up my life situation alright.

I remember reading this a few years back in Pema Chödrön's book. Thanks for the reminder.