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
"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)
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