Zen Story : Going with the flow

One day, an old man accidentally fell into the river rapids leading to a high and dangerous waterfall. Onlookers feared for his life. Miraculously, he came out alive and unharmed downstream at the bottom of the falls. People were surprised and asked him how he had managed to survive. The old man replied : “I accommodated myself to the water, not the water to me. Without thinking, I allowed myself to be shaped by it. Plunging into the swirl, I came out with the swirl.”


You have probably heard the modern story of a mighty tree and a lowly sapling facing a windstorm. The tree is uprooted but the sapling survives because it bends to the force of the wind. The modern story tells us to not to bow to dictatorial winds but to adjust our sails to the winds of change so that we come out bruised, but alive with lessons. It is Darwin’s survival rule.

Late last week I came down with a bad case of cold. I fall sick when the weather changes, and that is usually once in six months. Since I’d been sick just after Christmas, I was quite surprised that my body had given up so easily in merely 6 weeks. I usually pop 3 Cetrizine and get on with my chores like a superwoman. This time around, I decided to go easy on my body. Since Sunday, I’ve slept for a good 40 hours and consumed twice my usual intake of food. I also went on a sugar consumption spree because of the cravings. I usually take about a week to recover from cold, but I am already feeling much better!  I readjusted my sails to my circumstances. Are you ready to do the same?


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