Salt and the Lake

One old and wise monk accepted a young monk as his disciple.

This disciple, however, constantly complained about anything and everything.

One morning the old monk called his disciple and told him to bring a handful of salt. He had the disciple to pour the salt into a cup of water and drink the water. The disciple put a scowl on his face and drank the water.

The old monk asked: “How was it?”

“It tasted salty.” replied the disciple in a somewhat angry voice.

The old monk then told his disciple to bring another handful of salt and took him to the lake. He grasped his disciple’s hand which had the salt, placed his hand into the lake and stirred the waters.

A while later the old monk scooped a cup of water from the lake and had his disciple drink it.

“How was it?”

“It was refreshing.”

“Did it taste salty?”


The old monk explained: the pain we experience in life is like untainted salt. The extent of its saltiness, however, differs depending on the container. If you find yourself in pain, stop being like a cup and instead strive to be like a lake

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