Friday, 20 July 2007

Wales and The Worm

There is a wonderful little story about two monks who lived together in a monastery for many years; they were great friends. Then they died within a few months of one another. One of them got reborn in the heaven realms, the other monk got reborn as a worm in a dung pile. The one up in the heaven realms was having a wonderful time, enjoying all the heavenly pleasures. But he started thinking about his friend, "I wonder where my old mate has gone?" So he scanned all of the heaven realms, but could not find a trace of his friend. Then he scanned the realm of human beings, but he could not see any trace of his friend there, so he looked in the realm of animals and then of insects. Finally he found him, reborn as a worm in a dung pile... Wow! He thought: "I am going to help my friend. I am going to go down there to that dung pile and take him up to the heavenly realm so he too can enjoy the heavenly pleasures and bliss of living in these wonderful realms."
So he went down to the dung pile and called his mate. And the little worm wriggled out and said: "Who are you?", "I am your friend. We used to be monks together in a past life, and I have come up to take you to the heaven realms where life is wonderful and blissful." But the worm said: "Go away, get lost!" "But I am your friend, and I live in the heaven realms," and he described the heaven realms to him. But the worm said: "No thank you, I am quite happy here in my dung pile. Please go away." Then the heavenly being thought: "Well if I could only just grab hold of him and take him up to the heaven realms, he could see for himself." So he grabbed hold of the worm and started tugging at him; and the harder he tugged, the harder that worm clung to his pile of dung.
Do you get the moral of the story? How many of us are attached to our pile of dung?

How many of us are afraid to let go of out-dated beliefs and take the step which will bring us to the promised land, the other shore?

1 comment:

cleckanndra said...


There is another way of reading that story and that is that what looks like heaven to one is actually hell to another. The price the worm would have had to pay to be forced in to his so-called friend's 'heaven' was too high. What friend would force another friend to leave a place he was happy in? I'd have liked to have heard why the worm was comfortable where(s)he was, and what price it would have cost him/her to have to go to this other 'heaven'.

I'd also have like to have known what this 'heaven' actually was like - in reality.

In my experience there is no such thing as the 'promised land'.

I think that by my mid-twenties I'd come to understand that the grass that looks so green just over there ain't like that when you arrive there and that it's all about the journey.

Or to put it another way it's always great to look at the stars but you've always got to deal (at the same time) with the dung-pile at your feet.

Any (which) way thanks for the posting 'cos it made me think.