Art of Being Still

We live in the era where having materialistic happiness is much more important than any other form. Here people are becoming a part of the rat race of acquisition of money and worldly benefits in their life as a primary motive. Losing our patience and trust and bearability. But we don’t realize why does it happen? Is money becoming sole purpose of our lives?

It is evident from various real-life incidences where we see money drives people crazy to such extent that they never think twice before committing a crime. In this era of materiality, we all lack the art of being still.

Many people mistakenly think being still is actually doing nothing or wasting time. But in reality, being still is an art which requires a ‘Herculean Effort’ to master. Just tell a person to sit at a particular place for five minutes doing nothing and most of them will not be able to. As Jackie Chan famously said in the new Karate Kid ‘Being Still’ and ‘Doing Nothing’ are two very different things and till we learn the difference between them we will not be able to learn.

Doing nothing can be termed as resting physical body, but being still implies resting your body and your mind as well. Resting physical body is a very easy task but resting mind takes lots of efforts and time. Some master it early and some are unable to master it over their entire lifespan. There is a beautiful story of a Zen master, which illustrates how a still mind instills calmness and patience in one’s life which helps to tackle toughest of the situation with ease.

 

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There was a Zen master who made a living in this materialistic world by selling clothes and pieces of cloth. He was known for his calmness and patience. Many people even persuaded him to teach them how not to get angry in an ideal anger inflicting situation. One young lad who resided in that very own challenged the townsmen, that he would make that so-called master lose his temper. And thus began his task of making the master angry. He went to the shop where the master worked and demanded few meter of cloth. On being displayed he asked the master that whether the quality of the cloth is guaranteed? The master politely replied in affirmation. He took a pair of scissors and cut it to pieces and said see I cannot buy a piece of cloth which gets torn by scissors and he left the shop, without waiting for master’s reply. After few steps down the lane, the young man heard a faint noise behind as if someone was calling him. He turned and saw the master approaching. The master said, “Look young man, if you don’t want to buy that torn piece of cloth, it is okay. Come with me I will fetch you a different piece of cloth which is much more sturdy than the torn one. Do not be upset. Please come with me.” Hearing this the young man burst into tears and apologized for his rude behavior and also paid for the torn cloth.

 

This story is a classic example that by practicing stillness of mind and body you gradually gain peace and a hold on your anger and other varied emotions. By still mind you can make your mind think twice before taking any decision. Something that can help people in their life making it better is definitely worth a shot.

 

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Written by: Ramachandra Koppar

Edited by: Lipi Gupta

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