Sitting the December retreat was a young man from Louisville. He was staying in the Lodge with a few others. At midnight the young man heard someone in the foyer calling, "Hello".
It was a very drunk stranger in his mid 50’s, cold and wet to the bone. It was raining and freezing out. The young man invited him in, gave him a hot cup of tea, dried his clothes in the dryer while the stranger sat wrapped in a blanket. The young man then woke another person who had a car, called the stranger's sister and then drove him up the hill to where he was staying. The man was astonished at how helpful the retreatant was, asking, “Why are you being so nice to me?”
I wondered, "In the same situation, would I have been as compassionate as this young man?"
The only view that truly works for a dharma practitioner is that there are no solutions
to the sufferings of samsara and it cannot be fixed. ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
Can we respond in a moment to someone in need even if it seems scary or unsafe or impossible?
All the sufferings of Samsara solved in a warm cup of tea on a cold rainy night.
Love and happy holidays to you all,
Zen Master Dae Gak and the Furnace Mountain Community