Skip to main content



From the Buddha

The Buddha and his disciples were walking along when they came to a river. The water was too deep for many people to wade across. ‘It’s less than neck-deep,’ Buddha said. ‘We can manage.’ It is then that they saw a young woman waiting helplessly on the bank. She was too scared to wade across. Could they help her?

‘Can you sit on my shoulders? I’ll take you across.’

She was more than happy. She had to get across one way or another.

They crossed the river with the young woman on Buddha’s shoulders. Nobody uttered a word. Was there a feeling in the air that something repugnant was being carried out?

The woman thanked Buddha as he left her on the other bank and went her way. The Buddha and the disciples continued to walk in silence. Something didn’t sound quite right. There was no sound, of course. Silence can be ominous sometimes.

Finally one of the young disciples broke that silence. ‘Master, was it right for you to carry that woman on your shoulders?’

Buddha looked at that disciple. The look had a lot of meaning. The disciples were used to such looks. They were more powerful than words. Sometimes words were not required after such looks.

Buddha spoke, however. ‘I left her on the bank of the river. You’re still carrying her?”

What we carry in our minds is our choice. What we carry in our minds determines our attitudes and emotions. These attitudes and emotions forge our character. If only we carried the right thoughts, the entire reality would be so very different.

Our reality is our creation too. The Buddha keeps re-creating his reality. That process is called enlightenment.

PS. The story of Buddha is not my creation. I read it somewhere many years ago. I remembered it a few minutes back as I lay in bed feeling terribly unwell with an unusual body ache. The head was splitting too. Then Buddha appeared in my consciousness. ‘Heal yourself,’ he said. I willed myself to feel better. The aches haven’t disappeared. But I abandoned the plan to drop today’s post. Now there’s a strange feeling within me that I’m sitting on the Buddha’s shoulders.



  1. Hari OM
    Perfection... YAM xx
    (Who sends a few ether-wishes for short duration of any remaining symptoms!)

    1. Thanks, Yam. Such gestures do matter. It was a bad night. I must consult a doc today.

  2. I read it in panchatantra stories. They replaced the characters :-) We keep on carrying many such luggage that slows down out path. If we are lucky enough to release them, that may be an enlightenment too! mahaparinirvan! Yet another enjoyable post. Thanks sir.

    1. I remember reading other versions too though long ago. Some stories are classics and they appear in various shapes in many traditions.

  3. I had read this story but just mentioned as a Guru. Dis not know it was a Buddha anecdote. Short, sweet and inspiring post. Wishing you a speedy recovery!

    1. I understand that there are many versions of this story.

      Thank you. I have made an appointment with a doc.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Adventures of Toto as a comic strip

  'The Adventures of Toto' is an amusing story by Ruskin Bond. It is prescribed as a lesson in CBSE's English course for class 9. Maggie asked her students to do a project on some of the lessons and Femi George's work is what I would like to present here. Femi converted the story into a beautiful comic strip. Her work will speak for itself and let me present it below.  Femi George Student of Carmel Public School, Vazhakulam, Kerala Similar post: The Little Girl

The Ugly Duckling

Source: Acting Company A. A. Milne’s one-act play, The Ugly Duckling , acquired a classical status because of the hearty humour used to present a profound theme. The King and the Queen are worried because their daughter Camilla is too ugly to get a suitor. In spite of all the devious strategies employed by the King and his Chancellor, the princess remained unmarried. Camilla was blessed with a unique beauty by her two godmothers but no one could see any beauty in her physical appearance. She has an exquisitely beautiful character. What use is character? The King asks. The play is an answer to that question. Character plays the most crucial role in our moral science books and traditional rhetoric, religious scriptures and homilies. When it comes to practical life, we look for other things such as wealth, social rank, physical looks, and so on. As the King says in this play, “If a girl is beautiful, it is easy to assume that she has, tucked away inside her, an equally beauti

Face of the Faceless

“When you choose to fight for truth and justice, you will have to face serious threats.” Sister Rani Maria, the protagonist of the movie, is counselled by her mother in a letter. Face of the Faceless is a movie that shows how serious those threats are. This movie is a biopic. It shows us the life of a Catholic nun who dedicated her life to serve some Adivasis of Madhya Pradesh [MP] and ended up as a martyr. If it were not a real story, this movie would have been an absolute flop. Since it is the real story of not only a nun but also the impoverished and terribly exploited Adivasis in a particular village of MP, it keeps you engrossed. It is a sad movie, right from the beginning to the end. It is a story of the good versus evil, the powerless versus the powerful, the heroic versus the villainous, the divine versus the diabolic. Having said that, I must hasten to add one conspicuous fact: the movie does not ever present Christianity or its religious practices as the only right way

All the light we cannot see

Book Review Title: All the light we cannot see Author: Anthony Doerr Publisher: Fourth Estate, London, 2014 Pages: 531 What we call light is just a tiny fraction of the electromagnetic spectrum. Most part of the electromagnetic spectrum remains beyond ordinary human perception. Such is human life too: so many of its shades remain beyond our ordinary perception and understanding. Anthony Doerr’s novel, All the light we cannot see , unravels for us some of the mysterious shades of human life. Marie-Laure LeBlanc leaves Paris with her father Daniel who is entrusted with the task of carrying a rare diamond, Sea of Flames , to safe custody when the second world war breaks out. The National Museum of Natural History, Paris, has made three counterfeit diamonds of the Sea of Flames. Four men are assigned the task of carrying each of these diamonds to four different destinations. None of them knows whether they are carrying the original diamond or the counterfeit. Marie-Laure a

The Little Girl

The Little Girl is a short story by Katherine Mansfield given in the class 9 English course of NCERT. Maggie gave an assignment to her students based on the story and one of her students, Athena Baby Sabu, presented a brilliant job. She converted the story into a delightful comic strip. Mansfield tells the story of Kezia who is the eponymous little girl. Kezia is scared of her father who wields a lot of control on the entire family. She is punished severely for an unwitting mistake which makes her even more scared of her father. Her grandmother is fond of her and is her emotional succour. The grandmother is away from home one day with Kezia's mother who is hospitalised. Kezia gets her usual nightmare and is terrified. There is no one at home to console her except her father from whom she does not expect any consolation. But the father rises to the occasion and lets the little girl sleep beside him that night. She rests her head on her father's chest and can feel his heart