Brian Wilcox 'Yellow Bearded Iris ~ Maine'
The Sage said to his followers, "Remember, a being of the Light calls attention to the Light simply by walking in the Light. Such beings are devoted to the Light, like a finger consecrated so to point to the Sun. You are not witnesses of yourselves, for you are not the Light. You are many mirrors of a single Resplendence. You are each a moon reflecting the effulgence of the Sun. Hence, the naturalness of surrender to Life."
Therefore, a lovely prayer, known as the Prayer of St. Ignatius (d. 1556), which may be adapted easily for persons of different spiritual paths:
Take, Lord, receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding, my whole will, all that I have and all that I possess. You gave it all to me, Lord; I give it all back to you. Do with it as you will, according to your good pleasure. Give me your love and your grace; for with this I have all that I need.
* * *
A seeker posed this question to the Sage: "Do you believe there're enlightened beings on the Earth?
"We all live in delusion."
"So, there's no one enlightened?"
"I didn't say that."
"Well, what do you think?"
"It's an idea, but if so, I'd prefer 'enlightening'."
"What do you mean?"
"Is there an end?"
"Now, that's a very good question."
"If you ever get there, come back and tell me."
* * *
The following is from a teaching session of Chan Master Sheng Yen:
There is a story of a high Chinese official who came to pay his respects to a famous modern Chan master, Xuyun (1839–1959), who lived on a mountain. At the bottom of the mountain, he saw an old monk who was spreading manure on a vegetable patch. Not very respectfully, he demanded of the old monk to tell him how to get to the top of the mountain so he could visit the Chan master.
The old monk said, "Why do you want to see him?"
"Don't you know? He is a very famous master. I want to pay my respects to him."
"That fellow? Pfeh! Don't bother. It is not worth the trip! He is nothing."
"How dare you say that about a famous Chan master! Look at you and your filthy manure!"
"Well, if you want to see him, it is none of my business. The path to the mountain is that way."
When he reached the temple, the official demanded to know where the master was. One of the monks said, "Oh, he is down the mountain spreading manure in the garden." The chagrined official hurried down the mountain and prostrated to the old Chan master, right on top of the manure. So if you see an old monk hauling a bucket of manure, please pay some respect.