May I tell you a story?

image_6This is exactly what a young female friend of mine  said to me @shoreditchhouse  a few days ago.   “I was in the foothills of Himilayas, Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, India. Living in a cave was a nun who was from Ireland, but had been living in Himalayas for 11 years. I went to the cave to see her, but once I got there she was meditating. So, as not to disturb, I sat next to her and meditated too for about half an hour.

When I  got up to leave  she turned to speak to me.   This is what she said: There’s a story about two monks whom live in the Himalayan mountains and meditate in the caves, treading the path to enlightenment. One day on their walk back from collecting water, they came across a woman who had fallen and hit her head on the ground of the mountain passage. The monks looked at one another.

image_1One of the monks picked up the woman and carried her to the nearby village, where she was eventually nursed back to health. When the monk got back to the cave, he found the other monk waiting. The waiting monk said to his friend, “how could you pick up that woman… It’s not allowed.” The other monk replied, “Friend, I put her down hours ago. You’re still carrying her around.”

The woman who told me this story is Bobbi.   She was also a photographer for Tibetan Post in Northern India for Dalai Lama teachings and so  got to meet Dalai Lama too. These are her pictures.



2 thoughts on “May I tell you a story?

  1. Nice story . . but its very similar to one from Krishnamurti’s book ‘Freedom From the Known’ first published in 1969?!::
    There is a rather nice story of two monks walking from one village to another and they come upon a young girl sitting on the bank of a river, crying. And one of the monks goes up to her and says, `Sister, what are you crying about?’ She says, `You see that house over there across the river? I came over this morning early and had no trouble wading across but now the river has swollen and I can’t get back. There is no boat.’ `Oh,’ says the monk, `that is no problem at all’, and he picks her up and carries her across the river and leaves her on the other side. And the two monks go on together. After a couple of hours, the other monk says, `Brother, we have taken a vow never to touch a woman. What you have done is a terrible sin. Didn’t you have pleasure, a great sensation, in touching a woman?’ and the other monk replies, `I left her behind two hours ago. You are still carrying her, aren’t you?’

    • It is similar. I have no doubt the story I was told originated in the one you mention. That’s the beauty of story. My friend came across a woman in a cave who had clearly read or been told the same story.

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