Saturday, 28 January 2012

"How Could You Do That?"

I've been thinking about the story of the two monks and the courtesan for quite a while. This one's for the legalistic-minded, modern day Pharisees.

One day, the two monks came to a side of a river and noticed a courtesan. As they got nearer they could see that she wanted to get across the river, but she couldn’t, she had no way of getting across the river without ruining her finery. The young monk is freaking out and inside his head he is saying “Oh my God, there is a courtesan, what do we do, what do we do?” We can’t touch her, what do we do?”

As he is doing this the old monk, without even breaking stride, scoops the woman up and carries her across the river, puts her down on the other side and carries on. The young monk keeps looking back over his shoulder, thinking to himself, “He touched that women, he touched her, what has he done, how could he have done that!”

He was driving himself crazy, until he couldn’t take it any longer and after about an hour he said to the older monk “What did you do, how could you do that?” The older monk says “What?” The young monk replies “You, how, you picked up that woman, you, you carried her across the river!” The old monk smiles and says “Oh are you still carrying her? I've put her down an hour ago”.