|Why the long face..?|
Here's a little story from the Zen tradition that explains what I mean.......
The Zen master, Hakuin, was admired by all who knew him for his sincerity; the villagers who lived close by often praised him for living a pure life. But one day all that changed when a beautiful, unmarried, local girl was discovered to be pregnant. Her parents became angry and demanded to know who the father was. The girl was terrified that her boyfriend would be hurt, and so after much emotion and shouting, she named Hakuin as the father.
"I knew it!" the father said, and before long the whole village was up in arms over the affair. The parents lead a group of villagers to confront Hakuin; "You made my daughter pregnant" the angry father said in a fit of rage, to which Hakuin replied, "Is that so?"
When the child was born the parents took the baby to Hakuin and said, "Here, this is your child, I demand that you look after it, the child is your responsibility." To which Hakuin replied, "Is that so?"
After a year, the girl could stand it no longer, and confessed to her parents that she had lied about who the father was,that it was in fact one of the young men from the village. The parents realised they had been wrong to treat Hakuin as they had, and went to him to apologise, and to ask for the return of the child.
"We now know you are not the father, and we would appreciate it if you would let us have the baby back." Hakuin, having listened to the parents replied, "Is that so?" The child was then returned to its mother without fuss.
There is a strong message for karateka in this story, a massage of accepting that others will behave as they will, but what really matters is how you behave. It highlights the power of the truth, and how lies have to tell an ever evolving story to prove a point, while the truth has nothing to tell...it just quietly is!