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Thursday, 10 August 2017

334 – A Chinese Tale Told by Lama Surya Das

                There’s a story that’s in Asia about a celebrated martial arts master of ancient China. The master was absolutely indomitable. When he was in combat he moved like a whirlwind; no one could touch him, and he seemed impervious to fear, pain, illness, or any form of attack. When he was fighting, this master would bellow “Yaaarghh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”—loud enough to shake the firmament.
                This forceful master taught his students to face life and death with equanimity, no matter what—whether surrounded by hundreds of brigands or by a vision of hundreds of Buddhas. One night, the master was walking up in the mountains by himself, and he was attacked by a dozen or more sword-carrying robbers. He fought intensely, and managed to ward most of them off, but he was one man, and they outnumbered him twelve to one. Finally just before dawn, one of them ran a sword through his stomach, and the master shouted “Yaaarghh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” All who heard it, far and wide, knew it was his death cry. It was so loud that the entire slumbering countryside was awakened and enlightened by the shout.
--quoted in Awakening the Buddhist Heart

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