Fifteen Minutes to Live

Author Unknown
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The students of an enlightened monk walked up to him as he was working in his garden and asked, "If you knew you had only only 15 minutes left to live, what would you do?" The monk smiled, said "This" and went back to his gardening.

At every step of life, we are continuing to act but are those actions the ends in themselves or are they simply means to something else? When actions become means, expectations indefinitely arise, and if we "garden" with expectations for the fruits of our actions, our gardening doesn't hold any meaning without the fruit. But when each action is an end in itself, we select each action consciously so that our decisions are no longer dependent on circumstances over which we have no control. Our gardening may very well lead to some fruit, but we don't let this possibility govern the present moment of gardening; we simply continue doing "this" and meditate with each action.

--Author Unknown

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