Become a Lake

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An aging master grew tired of his apprentice complaining, and so, one morning, sent him for some salt. When the apprentice returned, the master instructed the unhappy young man to put a handful of salt in a glass of water and then to drink it. "How does it taste?" the master asked.

"Bitter" spit the apprentice.

The master chuckled and then asked the young man to take the same handful of salt and put it in the lake. The two walked in silence to the nearby lake, and once the apprentice swirled his handful of salt in the water, the old man said, "Now drink from the lake."

As the water dripped down the young man's chin, the master asked, "How does it taste?" "Fresh," remarked the apprentice. "Do you taste the salt?" asked the master. "No," said the young man.

At this, the master sat beside this serious young man who so reminded him of himself and took his hands, offering, "The pain of life is pure salt; no more, no less. The amount of pain in life remains the same, exactly the same. But the amount of bitterness we taste depends on the container we put the pain in.

So when you are in pain, the only thing you can do is to enlarge your sense of things .... stop being a glass. Become a lake.

--Mark Nepo (a Hindu parable)

Add Your Reflection:

7 Previous Reflections:

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    On Jul 19, 2020 Julie wrote:
    How do you become a lake? I'm grief-stricken and in a lot of emotional pain right now. I don't know how to become a lake? How do I enlarge my sense of things?

    1 reply: Valentine | Post Your Reply
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    On Apr 5, 2019 Tom wrote:
    Wow! Just what I need to do today!

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    On Sep 16, 2017 Stephanie wrote:

     I am here today because I am gay

    Post Your Reply
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    On Sep 16, 2017 Craig wrote:

     Hi my naim is Craig I'm nighteen and I never leraned how to read

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    On May 12, 2015 Nethi wrote:

     Wonder why the Ocean is so salty! how much ever sugar you may put in it, it will remain salty ;)

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    On Nov 28, 2014 Dave wrote:

     And the lake becomes a bigger container for joy also.

    Post Your Reply

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