Ancient Wisdom – Enlightenment





A wise man seeking enlightenment, renounced worldly life, took a strict vow of celibacy which was a sine qua non for attaining enlightenment, and headed for the hills to live an ascetic existence of a hermit. He found a secluded cave and began his simple contemplative meditative life surviving on natural wild vegetation in the forest and began his journey towards enlightenment.  

One day he noticed holes in his robe and discovered that there were lots of rats in the cave who were chewing off his robes. The rats soon were nibbling at his toes disturbing his meditation. 

Perplexed, he went down to town and consulted his Guru who said, “No problem. It’s simple. Just get a cat who will take care of the rats.” So our wise man bought a cat and took it up to his cave. The cat took care of the rats and the wise man was undisturbed in his quest for enlightenment. A few days later the cat had eaten up all the rats, and famished, the cat started moaning with hunger. The constant moaning and crying of the cat again disturbed the wise man’s meditation and he again rushed to consult his Guru who advised him to acquire a cow whose milk would feed the cat and satiate its hunger. 

Now the wise man would spend some time milking the cow, feeding the cat and then settle down for his meditation. 

A few days later the cow stopped giving milk and mooed loudly. The cat too had started moaning again and disturbed by the moaning of the hungry cat and mooing of the starving cow the wise man ran to his Guru once again to seek his advice. The Guru gave him some seeds. The wise man planted the seeds which yielded food both for the cow and himself. But he now had to spend so much time tending to his garden, feeding and milking his cow, and giving milk to his cat, that he hardly got any time for meditation. 

He rushed to his Guru who once again had a ready solution, “There is a young widow – poor thing she is destitute. She will look after everything and you can meditate in peace and attain enlightenment.” 

It was a wonderful arrangement – the young widow looked after everything, the garden, cow and cat flourished, and the wise man was undisturbed in his quest for enlightenment. 

One day it began to snow, the temperature fell to sub-zero, and the young widow started to shiver owing to the biting cold. Soon she could not bear the bitter cold any longer, so she snuggled into the wise man’s bed and tightly embraced him as that was the only way for her to keep warm. 

Who can resist the tight embrace of an attractive woman in the prime of her life? 

The vow of celibacy lay shattered and there ended the wise man’s quest for enlightenment. 

And with all his new possessions [the cat, the cow, and the woman], he returned back to the material world from where he had began his journey towards enlightenment – back to square one. 


Moral of the story: – Less Baggage, Better Travel. 

Dear Reader.  Read the story again, close your eyes and reflect on it. Carry the story around in your mind all day and allow its fragrance, its melody to haunt you. Create a silence within you and let the story reveal to you its inner depth and meaning. Let it speak to your heart, not to your brain, and suddenly you will feel a sense of mystical epiphany when you realize the wisdom of the story. Now you are ready to apply the wisdom to your own life and experience the inner meaning of the story till it transforms you and puts you on the path to enlightenment. 





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