The amazing story that was shared by one of my mentors has been an insight into mindfulness and I decided to start my article with that story. Once there was a learned professor who thought he was the most intelligent person alive. And thus he was full of himself. But one day someone told him that in the forest lived a hermit and he was known to be the most intelligent man in the world. the professor was over whelmed with ego that he wanted to go meet the hermit. finally arriving at the hermitage he finds the hermit pouring tea from the tea pot to a cup. the professor seeing the hermit announcers his arrival with pride but the hermit continues to pour tea and ignore the professor. The professor re announces his arrival to which the hermit says nothing but continues to pour tea. The cup fills to the brim and then begins to overflow and the professor quite irritated by the lack of attention and seeing the cup overflowing retorts back in harsh words
“How can you be the most intelligent man in the world if you can’t even se the cup overflowing”
To which the hermit has a calm response “your mind is like the overflowing cup, you are so full of ego and yourself that you mind is like this overflowing cup, nothing stays in it all flows out. So I see no purpose in talking to you”.
The professor was ashamed of his ego and was humbled by the act of the hermit. Which enabled him to have a meaningful conversation with the hermit.
Some people like bird watching as much as I am intrigued by birds I am also find observing humans and their behaviour intriguing. The human being does not know how to be anymore, instead they have to keep doing. It’s almost st being might bring disastrous consequences. Therefore nothing any longer in a being perspective but from a doing perspective. Being home resting and relaxing on a sunday would not be seen as acceptable. Instead it’s presumed that you have to do something that seems exciting and post it on social media. To prove that you are a human doing that you have no time to slow down that you are keeping up with the latest trends, the latest cafe, the latest movie, the latest street food joint, the newest pub or restaurant.
In this rush to do, all we we achieve is an over crowded cluttered mind. Thus full mind robbing us off our capacity to experience the moment just like the over flowing cup we lose that experience is lost to us. The bible says that God rested on the seventh day from creation. I makes me wonder if God rested on the seventh day why we human beings have to keep doing on all seven days of the week never giving ourselves an opportunity to empty our overflowing cup and prepare for a new week of mindful living. In my world work is also apart of mindful living.
Recently reading an amazing book called the “Art of Mindful Walking”by Adam Ford a very interesting and profound preaching of the Lord Buddha caught my eye and it said ” when walking walk, when standing stand, when sitting sit, when lying down, lie down”. In this simple statement we find that rushing off to multi task and achieve too many things we become like the overflowing cup losing out on the full experience to the point that we have not achieved anything to the expected level of achievement.
The secret of mindful living is to de-clutter the mind focus on one thing at a time and present for the complete experience. Be alert and aware of your self, those around you and the context in which the experience takes place. This is true not just for work but it is true for every life situation. Empty mind helps you have a mindful experience.