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Seven People Cutting Stones

--by Roger Walsh (May 20, 2013)


For several weeks strange sounds had drifted over the mountains from the neighboring valley. There was much talk in the village about what these noises could be, but no one could make sense of them. Even the village elders had never heard anything like them. Finally one of the young men of the village was chosen to cross the mountains and see what was going on.
 
After two days of hiking he reached the mountaintop and saw in the valley far below a hive of activity with dozens of people working. As he drew closer, he saw a line of people, each with a huge stone in front of them that they were hammering and chiseling.
 
 When he finally reached the valley floor he approached a young man at one end of the line and asked, “What are you doing?”
 
“Huh!” grunted the young man. “I’m killing time until I get off work.”
 
Puzzled, the hiker turned to the second person in the line, a young woman, and asked, “Excuse me, but what are you doing?”
 
“I’m earning a living to support my family,” she responded.
 
Scratching his head, the hiker moved on to the third person and asked again, “What are you doing?”
 
“I’m creating a beautiful statue,” came the reply. Turning to the next person, the hiker repeated his question.
 
“I’m helping to build a cathedral,” came the answer.
 
“Ah!” said the hiker. “I think I’m beginning to understand.” Approaching the woman who was next in line he asked, “And what are you doing?
 
“I am helping the people in this town and generations that follow them, by helping to build this cathedral.”
 
“Wonderful,” exclaimed the hiker. “And you, sir? He called to the man beside her.
 
“I am helping to build this cathedral in order to serve all those who use it and to awaken myself in the process. I am seeking my salvation through service to others.”
 
Finally the hiker turned to the last stone worker, an old, lively person whose eyes twinkled and whose mouth formed a perpetual smile. “And what are you doing?” he inquired.
 
“Me?” smiled the elder. “Doing?” The elder roared with laughter. “This ego dissolved into God many years ago. There is no ‘I’ left to ‘do’ anything. God works through this body to help and awaken all people and draw them to Him.”

--Roger Walsh, in Essential Spirituality


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8 Previous Reflections:

 
On Jun 26, 2013 R Lu wrote:

Love it.  Have this book and will go look for the story.  May we all meet *all* the answers (we surely have met a few of them so far!)  



On Jun 6, 2013 Tamilyn wrote:

 i see steps of enlightenment ..as we each pass thru these "stones" on our journey to god .. thru one or many lifetimes of service.. thank you Nipun for making sure this arrived in my inbox as sometimes i don't get the  chance to come to the sites daily  ..HUGS!



On May 21, 2013 amy wrote:

 Depending on the task, our energy, our level of expertise, our passion, all seven "states of being" can be found in all of us.  Because we are people (in our human condition), we all have to make time to . . .  "kill time" . . . support our families . . .  to create (be creative) . . .  to help build something beautiful . . . to be part of "the bigger picture" (leaving a legacy) . . . to awaken others (in doing so, awaken self) . . . and to be and to work "One with God" (experiencing His power, influence and pull . . . by the power of His Holy Spirit).  
We do these things for "the health and wellness of it" (physical, emotional and Spiritual).
Thank you Conrad and David!  I very much appreciate your words!  Keep writing.
I love you! 
 



On May 21, 2013 jagdish P Dave wrote:

When it comes to work that brings fulfillment and joy, I consciously and largely unconsciously  follow my bliss. In this context, work becomes worship for me. I experience these feelings in many areas of my daily living; washing dishes to help my daughter-in-law, talking with my grandchildren, doing my one hour-a-day mindful walking , helping children learn, doing counseling and doing parental classes. Almost all such work is done on a voluntary basis and the blessings i derive from this way of living are countless. Such a  way of living did not happen overnight.( I am 88 years old. it is never too late to learn and continue learning!) My family planted the seeds and nurtured them and I learned many lessons of living holistically and mindfully from many teachers-live and  by coming across readings  such as the one i am reading now. I thank such teachers and my fellow brothers and sisters for extending and holding my hands lovingly. Life indeed is beautiful, simple  See full.

When it comes to work that brings fulfillment and joy, I consciously and largely unconsciously  follow my bliss. In this context, work becomes worship for me. I experience these feelings in many areas of my daily living; washing dishes to help my daughter-in-law, talking with my grandchildren, doing my one hour-a-day mindful walking , helping children learn, doing counseling and doing parental classes. Almost all such work is done on a voluntary basis and the blessings i derive from this way of living are countless. Such a  way of living did not happen overnight.( I am 88 years old. it is never too late to learn and continue learning!) My family planted the seeds and nurtured them and I learned many lessons of living holistically and mindfully from many teachers-live and  by coming across readings  such as the one i am reading now. I thank such teachers and my fellow brothers and sisters for extending and holding my hands lovingly. Life indeed is beautiful, simple and uncomplicated.

Now is the time for me to be silent and quiet.

Jagdish P Dave

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On May 21, 2013 Deepa Kothari wrote:

 This passage for me highlights how the very same situation/ action/ event can be interpreted , perceived, experienced so differently by each person. We have the ability to chose how we want to 'see' things and how we want to  'be' in each situation. Thinking about how our simple actions can help others, and taking part in these activities with this consciousness in mind,  will inevitably bring a satisfaction and fulfillment to activities that before may have just appeared to be a 'means to an end'.



On May 18, 2013 david doane wrote:

 I relate to the first two responses easily, that is, I've done some killing time (horrible as it is to do that), and I've done a lot of earning a living to support my family (I have mixed feelings about that).  I also relate to "I'm building a beautiful statue" and "I'm helping to build a cathedral" in that I've spent a good deal of time building something I very much believe in along with others who were working on the same project (cathedral).  In the process of building that cathedral, I had a sense of doing something for generations that follow, so I relate to that response.  I was also doing it to awaken myself and to serve all those who would use it and did some amount of seeking my salvation (ie, freedom) through service to others, so I can also relate to that response.  As for the response of "This ego dissolved into God many years ago" and "there is no I left" and "God works through this body to help and awaken all people and draw them to Him," I rel  See full.

 I relate to the first two responses easily, that is, I've done some killing time (horrible as it is to do that), and I've done a lot of earning a living to support my family (I have mixed feelings about that).  I also relate to "I'm building a beautiful statue" and "I'm helping to build a cathedral" in that I've spent a good deal of time building something I very much believe in along with others who were working on the same project (cathedral).  In the process of building that cathedral, I had a sense of doing something for generations that follow, so I relate to that response.  I was also doing it to awaken myself and to serve all those who would use it and did some amount of seeking my salvation (ie, freedom) through service to others, so I can also relate to that response.  As for the response of "This ego dissolved into God many years ago" and "there is no I left" and "God works through this body to help and awaken all people and draw them to Him," I relate to that as follows.  I prefer the word Being to God, and although I deeply believe that I and each of us is a unique expression of Being, I'm not dissolved into that belief and don't live dissolved into Being.  I still have plenty of I in an egoistic self conscious way that I don't like.  I believe Being works through this body as I am a projection of Being, and I believe that as I cooperate with that I do help and awaken others to the one Being that we all are, but I don't believe that Being (or a God) is goal-directed, that is, works through an individual being in order to help and awaken people and draw them in.  I don't believe Being operates in such a purposeful goal directed manner -- I think that's how we humans operate and we assume Being/God/a Higher Power operates in that way also.  I get closer to my version of the elder's experience by growing in what I just shared.  Thanks much for the opportunity. 

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On May 17, 2013 Conrad P Pritscher wrote:

By noticing my present experience I notice I am one with the universe and that whatever I do, what may be said about it is, the universe is universing. I do not consider it work to respond to articles that Somik sends weekly.  I am simply being me.  Rather than me being a drop in the ocean, I notice I am the ocean that is full of drops. This particular little drop who is spontaneously commenting on this article is noticing and being himself.  I notice the self is much more connected than disconnected to everyone and everything ( the universe--Self). In that sense there is no I doing anything.  It is no one going nowhere while the universe is universing.  The universe is wise and the highest form of wisdom is when each drop his kind to each of the other drops.  Thanks for the opportunity to respond.  Warm and kind regards to everyone