Thursday, 11 October 2012

What You really Have.

Structured Thinking ( Or As Close As I Can Get)

On more than one occasion in the last two weeks or so people have commented on my being quieter than I am normally. Please do not think I am a loud person, but I can be very much a part of a conversation even though I have this difficult voice of mine. In the opinion of many friends I have been a man of few words.

I suppose I am still feeling the effects of an afternoon I spent during my last venture in the mountains. It was just another afternoon. I had gone running as usual in the morning and now I was heading out for an afternoon walk. What made this walk different was my finding a Buddhist Monastery I had not expected to find, not even knowing of its existence.

There it was just off the road. It was called, “Paradise,” a name that seemed so appropriate, but not a name given by the Buddhists. This place had been a retreat for coal miners and families before becoming what it was now. It was they who had named it. 

The Buddhist had though, built a magnificent temple in the grounds. I entered, having taken off my boots and sat in the calm and peace. I just sat and thought, realising how much I had missed just such moments. Before I was aware I had been there for over two hours.

One of things I thought of that afternoon was the tale of the wise woman.

A wise woman who was traveling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream. The next day she met another traveller who was hungry, and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food. The hungry traveller saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him. She did so without hesitation. The traveller left, rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime.

But, a few days later, he came back to return the stone to the wise woman. 

"I've been thinking," he said. "I know how valuable this stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious. Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me this stone."

Sometimes it's not the wealth you have but what's inside you that others need.

This blog is linked to my other. Structured Thinking


  1. That's a beautiful story about the stone. I'm glad that you had the experience in the monastery. I've sometimes felt a powerful connection to a particular place, even though it's a place I've never been to before... I think some of us are more sensitive to the earth's moods and messages, especially you, who spends so much time with nature. The painting is gorgeous! I really like the soft blended colors and how they complement rather than fight against the straight, structured lines. Those colors are different than your usual palette, too. I love the purple, green and gold together. It's stunning!

  2. Good Afternoon, Ralph! I love the painting and the mystery in the shapes amongst the squares and rectangles. Colors, sure, but the mystery is what makes the painting for me. The story today is so you, too bad it is not just easy to read it and then be like that!There must be a rough road to get from here to there! Great day today, the sun is out and I will pick the figs!

  3. Nice story Ralph - Thanks for comments on my blog too.

  4. Nice story Ralph and I love your painting is bold and strong!

  5. I am intrigued by the shadow man in this piece, Ralph. And that red vertical rectangle...

    It would be so wonderful to just sit and center oneself for a bit. Glad you found a retreat and a respite from the everyday. How did your gardens fare this year?

  6. It is an intriguing painting, the patterns try to move my thoughts..I loved this story and Oh, yes, I believe in giving away whatever I can with out any hesitation and that total detachments is a joy to experience, a joy that I have passed on to my husband as well. Buddhist monasteries always radiate that kind of energy with which you find a connection to your core.