“There was once a stonecutter who was dissatisfied with himself and with his position in life.
One day he passed a wealthy merchant’s house. Through the open gateway, he saw many fine possessions and important visitors. “How powerful that merchant must be!” thought the stonecutter. He became very envious and wished that he could be like the merchant.
To his great surprise, he suddenly became the merchant, enjoying more luxuries and power than he had ever imagined, but envied and detested by those less wealthy than himself. Soon a high official passed by, carried in a sedan chair, accompanied by attendants and escorted by soldiers beating gongs. Everyone, no matter how wealthy, had to bow low before the procession. “How powerful that official is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be a high official!”
Then he became the high official, carried everywhere in his embroidered sedan chair, feared and hated by the people all around. It was a hot summer day, so the official felt very uncomfortable in the sticky sedan chair. He looked up at the sun. It shone proudly in the sky, unaffected by his presence. “How powerful the sun is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be the sun!”
Then he became the sun, shining fiercely down on everyone, scorching the fields, cursed by the farmers and laborers. But a huge black cloud moved between him and the earth, so that his light could no longer shine on everything below. “How powerful that storm cloud is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be a cloud!”
Then he became the cloud, flooding the fields and villages, shouted at by everyone. But soon he found that he was being pushed away by some great force, and realized that it was the wind. “How powerful it is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be the wind!
Then he became the wind, blowing tiles off the roofs of houses, uprooting trees, feared and hated by all below him. But after a while, he ran up against something that would not move, no matter how forcefully he blew against it – a huge, towering rock. “How powerful that rock is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be a rock!”
Then he became the rock, more powerful than anything else on earth. But as he stood there, he heard the sound of a hammer pounding a chisel into the hard surface, and felt himself being changed. “What could be more powerful than I, the rock?” he thought.
He looked down and saw far below him the figure of a stonecutter.”
Power & Contentment
It doesn't matter how great, famous, wealthy, or powerful you seem; unless you are content with yourself, you won't ever be content. Contentment comes from acceptance what we already are. This story reminds us that power is relative, the stonecutter was considered "weak" to the high official but "powerful" to the stone. It's also an illusory concept since power is based upon arbitrary terms of comparison. What is power to one is weakness to another.
A parable is a simple story used to illustrate a moral or spiritual lesson, Stories have an amazing ability to transform the ways we see things and to open us up to new ideas.I hope you enjoy the parable I've selected below. If you'd like to read more posts like this, comment below!
**Credit to The Tao of Pooh, by Benjamin Hoff for the transcript of the story.
Img source: https://deceptivelyblonde.com/2014/04/30/japanese-legends-story-of-the-stonecutter/
With a newfound passion for life and a deep interest in the connection between science and art, this is where ideas develop and blossom and are shared with you, my friends. Thanks for stopping by and joining me on this journey.