Monday, April 25, 2011

The Blind Men and the Elephant Short Story

This is part of a long series of short Zen and Buddha stories that I'm writing. They offer simple solutions to complex problems in Life. Full of insight these ancient stories are a real treasure.

Some of Buddha’s disciples discussed God one day. The arguments went on till evening and there was no consensus. So they went to Buddha.

“What is God?” they asked Buddha.

The Buddha asked for an elephant and four blind men to be brought before him.
He then asked the Blind men to feel it and say what it was.

The blind men did as instructed.

“It looks like a pillar,” said one who felt its huge leg.

The second who ran his hand over the elephant’s belly replied, “That can’t be so, it’s actually a wall.”

“It’s certainly a thick rope,” said the third.

“I think it’s a piece of cloth,” said the fourth that held its ears.

The Buddha then asked his followers, “Each of these people seem to say different things about the same elephant. Which one is right?”

Notes: The world is not the same to all. Each person’s experience shapes the way one sees the world. The truth can be experienced in many ways. There is no single way. Each one must explore and discover the truth.