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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   The Dhammapada: The Way of the Buddha, Vol. 11
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Chapter 9: What Mischief!

A master gives up mischief.
He is serene.
He leaves everything behind him.

He does not take offense
and he does not give it.
He never returns evil for evil.

Alas for the man
who raises his hand against another,
and even more for him
who returns the blow.

Resist the pleasures of life
and the desire to hurt -
till sorrows vanish.

Never offend
by what you think or say or do.

Honor the man who is awake
and shows you the way.
Honor the fire of his sacrifice.

Matted hair or family or caste
do not make a master
but the truth and goodness
with which he is blessed.

Your hair is tangled
and you sit on a deerskin.
What folly!
When inside you are ragged with lust.

The master’s clothes are in tatters.
His veins stand out,
he is wasting away.
Alone in the forest
he sits and meditates.

Hank was riding the range, a-singing and a-humming. Suddenly his horse reared and stopped. In front of them was a huge snake. Hank drew his gun and was about to fire when the snake cried, “Don’t shoot! If you spare my life I have the power to grant you any three wishes you make!”

“Okay,” said Hank, figuring he had nothing to lose. “My first wish is a handsome face like Paul Newman. Second I want a muscular body like Muhammad Ali. And my last wish is to be equipped like my horse here!”

“Granted!” said the snake. “When you wake up tomorrow you will have all these things.”

Next morning Hank awoke and rushed to the mirror. Sure enough, he had a face like Paul Newman and to his delight he saw a pair of massive shoulders and arms like Muhammad Ali. Then glancing down in great excitement he let out a blood-curdling howl, “My God, I clean forgot!” he babbled. “Yesterday I was riding Nellie!”

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