Student and Master ,“ a lesson for those with ears to hear

Just sitting here, something jogged my memory. I remembered an old story about a young Brother. He had studied hard and learned so much. He was of course proud of himself, as some might well be. It came the time of the giving of account*, and after the celebrations were over he left with some of his friends. He told them that he was going into the mountains, to contemplate all that he had been taught by the Master. He needed to be alone, which is not unusual.

The next morning, when his family awoke, he was already gone. Nothing was heard of him for the next five years. Then again, at the giving of account, he appeared. He strode into the centre of the room as if he owned it, shouting, “I have great news ,• great news!”

The Master bade him step forward; and tell all present what this great news was. He said, “For five long years I have worked and practised, and now ,• now I can walk on water!”

The great Master looked at him for a moment, then said, “Tell me brother. Why could you not have spent all that time doing something useful?”


An ass which turns a millstone did a hundred miles walking. When it was loosed, it found that it was still at the same place. There are men who make many journeys but make no progress towards any destination.


*The Solstices are a time for the giving of account.


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