The Pathway and the Power
A young man has been dreaming about becoming a mage. One day, on a dusty road he met a follower of Lao Tzu.
“How can I do this?” he asked him.
The Lao Tzu follower told him a parable:
“Once upon a time a kind man started feeding a couple of wolves in the forest with the dead meat because he wanted them to stop hunting animals. But the wolves continued hunting animals in the forest. So the kind man decided to feed the wolf puppies who have not yet felt the taste of hunting and he did it. Five wolf pups grew up and four of them got used to eat dead meat, but in the fifth, the call of the wild was awoken and he ran away.”
“I understood,” the young man interrupted the Lao Tzu follower. “You have to listen to the voice of blood.”
“Idiot,” said the Lao Tzu follower. “It was just the beginning of the parable; now I’m not going to tell you this parable.”
The young man sat down on the dusty road and started crying.
“I will tell you another parable,” told him the Lao Tzu follower.
“In a forest, once lived a smart wolf. He was so smart to realize that he exists and the forest around him also exists. The wolf was very happy to realize it. But nothing was telling him that the forest realized its existence as well. And if the forest doesn’t realize that it exists then it actually doesn’t exist – the thought came to the clever wolf. Then, the rabbits or squirrels do not exist either. The clever wolf died of hunger because he could not hunt the animals which were not existed.”
“I don’t understand anything. What is the meaning of this parable?” said the young man.
“That means that this parable is for you,” responded the Lao Tzu follower.
“But what should I do?” asked the young man.
The Lao Tzu follower shrugged his shoulders and said, “This is very simple: everything that exists is the Pathway and there is nothing else and you are a part of this Pathway. If you understand this you will become a mage, if not, you will die of hunger.”
“But why?” asked the young man.
“Because you can operate only with something, that you are a part of. If you are a part of the Pathway and the Pathway is all that exists then you are a mage,” said the follower.
“Oh, thank you, sage!” the young man exclaimed. “Now tell me how to achieve it.”
The Lao Tzu follower looked at him surprisingly and said, “You asked me how to become a mage, but not what it takes to become a mage. I don’t answer two questions; I don’t even know the answer for the second question. But here comes my brother, another follower of Lao Tzu, he can answer you.”
“Oh, he could be my Teacher,” thought the young man and rushed to meet him and asked him the same question.
“But didn’t you talk about that with my brother?” enquired the second sage.
“Yes,” said the young man, “he discovered the Truth to me but didn’t show the way to it. He didn’t tell me where I should go and what I should do. However, he said that you can teach me that. I’m just afraid that if you both share the same Knowledge …”
“No, we don’t,” said the second sage. “We have different opinions. My brother thinks that the Pathway is the only thing that exists, but I know that there is nothing but the Power. The Power determines the existence of a mage. If there is nothing but the Power and you have that Power, then you are a mage. Follow the Power and it will take you to the Pathway.”
“Oh, Sage, I’ve got it!” said the young man. “Tell me the secret how to get that Power that will make me a mage?”
“It’s very simple,” answered the second Lao Tzu follower. “If you don’t get off the Pathway then the Power will be always with you.”
And both brothers continued their way on the dusty road to the point, where the first was forced by the Power and the second started following the Pathway.
The young man stayed sitting where he was, at the same place of a dusty road.
… Two Lao Tzu followers thought a little about how good it is sometimes to think with the place you are sitting on. For it is under it there is the dusty road leading to …
By Anton Platov, 2010