Now this parable.
When Lin Lei was nearly a hundred, he put on his fur coat in the middle of spring, and went to pick up the grains dropped by the reapers, singing as he made his way through the fields.
Lin Lei is a Taoist master, but as Taoist masters are, they live a very ordinary life. They don’t live in any extraordinary way, they don’t claim that they are special beings, talented geniuses, sages, saints, mahatmas; they don’t claim anything. They simply live a very ordinary life because they are natural beings: natural like the trees, natural like the birds, natural like nature itself. They are not in any way egoistic. For example, if in India you want to find out where the mahatmas are you can easily find them. But if you had gone to visit ancient China and wanted to know a Taoist master, nobody would have been able to tell you where you would find one. You would have had to look, move, wander around the country…and at some time you might have come across one. But there is no way unless you have experienced something of it in your own being. Unless you have the taste, the flavor, you will not be able to recognize a Taoist master.
Lin Lei is a Taoist master – very simple, very old, very ancient; a hundred years old and he is picking up the grains dropped by the reapers. Now this is the lowliest job one can find, the most beggarly and yet…
…singing as he made his way through the fields.
The Taoist is always happy because he does not wait for any cause: he does not wait for any special situation in which he is going to be happy. Happiness is like breathing, happiness is like the beat of the heart – happiness is his being, it is not something that happens to him. Happiness is not something that happens and does not happen, happiness is something that is always there. He is full of happiness. Happiness is the stuff that existence is made of; and a Taoist has fallen in harmony with existence – naturally he is happy. Whatsoever he is doing, he is doing it happily. His happiness precedes his action.