Monday, September 26, 2011

Zen Stories to Tell Your Neighbors 9

An inspiring Zen story about how fears stunt our thinking and prevent us from realizing our potential and above all understanding the truth. This Zen story about understanding fears is part of an eBook series 51 Short Motivational Stories from Zen, Buddha and Ancient Tales.

The Great Waves

Many centuries ago there lived a wrestler named, O-nami , meaning the Great Waves. He was so strong, so graceful a wrestler and so good in this sport that he defeated even his master.

All this he could do in private. But when he appeared before the public he seemed to panic. He would lose to inferior wrestlers from the neighboring village. Try as he might he could not overcome the fear of wrestling before the crowds.

Having heard of a Zen master, Hakuju, who was camping in the village, O-nami went to meet him.

After listening to O-nami’s peculiar problem, the Zen master asked him to stay with him for the night. O-nami did as told.

At night after dinner, Hakuju met O-nami. “You are the Great Waves, you must think like the great waves. You are powerful and strong live the waves. Think about sweeping away all those before you. Just forget that you’re O-nami and think that you’re the Great Waves that you see over here in the sea.”

The Zen master left after saying this. And O-nami kept looking at the waves.
Soon he began thinking as the master said that he was the great waves. He kept thinking all night and by dawn, he saw the waves rising higher and higher and them come ashore and wash away many boats the fishermen had left by the shore.

The master realising what had happened said to O-nami, “Now go and fight the best wrestlers. But think you’re the Great Waves.”

O-nami thanked the master and left.

After this he fought many wrestlers from near and far and defeated all of them. He became the most feared and most respected wrestler in the whole kingdom. Villagers narrated his heroism to their grandchildren by the fireside.

Notes: Fear is a very negative emotion that stunts our growth. If we need to realize our potential we need to understand our fears and overcome them. And you can do this with just a positive seed of thought.