Show me a fool and I’ll show you a wise man; it’s easy.
Can you imagine a tree, a tree that can speak, ‘It’s bad here, oh it’s bad here’?
This is a foolish man who won’t know reason, behave like a wise man and free himself from cognisance of unhappiness.
horrendous is the news that God gives the foolish man. He points out to him both the tree and the fruit – the observed reality of foolishness. “I wish you had some water coming from a well, so you could drink,” says the wise man to the fool.
What a poor self-understanding!
The tree can’t speak, but it can say “good” or “bad” regardless of the content of what is sown into its bare branches. Yet, this tree can never really be assured of a successful life, until it “learns” to be wise. Can you imagine a tree that can’t speak until it’s watered? Can you imagine a tree that will wither in the absence of water?
These unfortunate trees have no choice but to learn from the experience of their forbears. They’re stuck with the consequences of their foolish decisions, until they finally pay the price and learn.
The fool will never learn so long as he continues to do the things that lead to painful, if not disastrous results. He will never know the secrets of the universe, but he can receive seeds of wise good advice from God, the creator of all things. These are the seeds of a quiet, assured confidence that can lead, over the years, to a magnificent and successful life.
On the other hand, consider that other tree. He is even “smarter” – in fact – more wise than the fool. He knows that life is best lived young, that “it cannot be lived rightly without love and service.” He values the comfort of the body and enjoys the chance to build on what sustains him in the world of physical wonder. He’s thankful for the sun and the warmth of the sun and the shade of the trees that shelter him from the damaging power of the storm.
Still, he’s not done “winding down” some of the time. He might find himself on stage, where he can be an audience with God, or he might be in the bar, or the shop, where he can be the subject of plenty of conversation. He enjoys the music, the poetry, and he’ll weep when the poetry is so dark and the music so beautiful that tears drip down his cheeks. He’ll rejoice in all the spiritual things, like abottom driedJack-forcesawandthe feel of azu-ran cushioning him in his bed at night.
But he’s not done playing. He’s learned lessons well and has developed good manners. He’s taken responsibility for his actions and is a good example for others. Because these things are not “self-centered,” because they are thepleasureof his soul; they are joys that he seeks for himself alone.
Sometimes he’ll look out the window and see birds flying overhead. He’ll see the ferns and the flowers, and he’ll remember that he’s learned from them – that he has an open heart and that he loves to be surrounded by beauty. He’ll take a moment to think about nature, and sustainable living, and what he might have to give up to enrich his life if he chooses to live for eternity – and he’ll think long and hard about the consequences of each choice.
And in this exercise he’ll remind himself – just as I did – that he is not superior to the birds, the insects, the creatures that serve him. He knows that they know this. He will smile to himself, and remember,EARTHBEFORE WE WAIT, WE CAN CHECOME HAPPY by planting the seeds of happiness right in our own hearts. By planting seeds of happiness in ourselves, we become more of ourselves, and less of something else, and he gently presses those seeds into our hearts. He gently wakens our willingness to create, to put things into motion that serve to satisfy us on the deepest levels of our being.
Now, if we choose to push those seeds into our ulcers, or in other ways into our brains, our spirits, our hearts, our very conqugans, our very breath on the deepest level – at the cellular level – we will create mosques, frets, bands, poems, movies, marriages, babes, diaries, journals, books, dance, worship, inventories…. Yes. Where there is life, there will be books.