Once upon a time a big monk and a little monk were travelling together. They came to the bank of a river and found the bridge damaged. They had to wade across the river. There was a pretty lady who was stuck at the same damaged bridge and couldn’t cross the river. The big monk offered to carry her across the river on his back to which the lady accepted.
The little monk was shocked by the move of the big monk and was thinking “How can big brother carry a lady when we are supposed to avoid all intimacy with females?” But he kept quiet. The big monk carried the lady across the river and the small monk followed unhappily. When they crossed the river, the big monk let the lady down and they parted ways with her.
All along the way for several miles, the little monk was very unhappy with the act of the big monk. He was making up all kinds of accusations about big monk in his head. This got him madder and madder. But he still kept quiet. And the big monk had no inclination to explain his situation. Finally, at a rest point many hours later, the little monk could not stand it any further, he burst out angrily at the big monk. “How can you claim yourself a devout monk, when you seize the first opportunity to touch a female, especially when she is very pretty?” All your teachings to me make you a big hypocrite.
The big monk looked surprised and said, “I had put down the pretty lady at the river bank many hours ago, how come you are still carrying her along?”
Learning: This very old Chinese Zen story reflects the thinking of many people today. We encounter many unpleasant things in our life, they irritate us and they make us angry. But like the little monk, we are not willing to let them go away. There is no point in remaining hurt by the unpleasant event after it is over. Learn to move on in life!