Buddha said, “That I can understand, but before you go, before I bless you to go, I will ask three questions. First: If they insult you, what will be your response?”
The young man said, “I will thank them, I will feel grateful that they are only insulting me. They could have beaten me. They are good people. They are not beating me; they are simply insulting me – and what can words do? Words are words, they can’t hurt me.”
Buddha said, “The second question: If they beat you, what will be your response?”
The young man said, “I will thank them, I will feel grateful that they are beating me. They could have killed me. They are only beating me – they are so compassionate, so kind. It would have been so easy for them to kill me.”
Buddha said, “Now, the last question. If they kill you, dying, in the last moments, what will be your response?”
The young man said, “Still I will be grateful and thankful to them because they are taking a life away from me in which I may have done something wrong. If I had lived more I may have committed some crime, some sin; I may have fallen from my peak of awareness. They are simply taking that life which is useless to me. I have attained the treasure, I don’t need life anymore. They are taking something useless away from me and I will be grateful because, who knows, if I had lived more, in some situation I may have gone astray.”
Buddha said, “Now you can go anywhere you like with my blessings. You have not only become enlightened, you have become capable of being a master.”
Remember it, that every enlightened person is not a master, although every master has to be enlightened. Many enlightened people have lived on the earth without ever becoming masters for the simple reason that to be a master needs certain qualities which are not necessary for being enlightened. Enlightenment is an individual process; it is something inward, subjective, it can happen within you. To be a master means the capacity to communicate, and not only to communicate but to commune with others, others who are almost mad, others who are almost incapable of seeing things.
Keller paid a lot of money for Buck, a golden retriever. One morning Keller went duck hunting with Buck. Within ten minutes he shot a duck that fell into a pond.
Buck ran over the surface of the water, picked up the duck, returned running over the top of the water, and laid it at the feet of his master.
The rest of the morning every bird that fell into the pond when shot was retrieved by Buck running over the top of the water without even wetting his feet.
Around noontime Keller met a fisherman. While they chatted a duck flew by and Keller quickly sent it hurtling down into the middle of the pond.