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Anthony De Mello

Spirituality
Posts
@petergec
15 hours ago
A woman stepped out of her shower stark naked and was about to reach for her towel when she saw, to her horror, that there was a man on a scaffolding washing her window and eyeing her appreciatively. So shocked was she by the unexpected apparition that she stood transfixed to the ground, gaping at the man. “What’s the matter, lady?” the fellow asked cheerfully “Have you never seen a window cleaner before?” 🙂
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@petergec
1 day ago
The choir was going through its final rehearsal in the midst of pandemonium because the stage crew was busy putting the finishing touches to the stage. When one young fellow began hammering away so loudly that the din became intolerable, the conductor stopped the singing and looked at him pleadingly. “Go right ahead with the singing, conductor.” the merry worker said. “They’re not disturbing me.” 🙂
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@petergec
3 days ago
A flea decided to move with his family into the ear of an elephant. So he shouted, “Mr. Elephant, sir, my family and I plan to move into your ear. I think it only fair to give you a week to think the matter over and let me know if you have any objection.” The elephant, who was not even aware of the existence of the flea went his placid way so, after conscientiously waiting for a week, the flea assumed the elephant’s consent and moved in. A month later Mrs. Flea decided the elephant’s ear was not
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@petergec
4 days ago
Guess what the ant said to the elephant when Noah was lining up all the animals to get them into the ark. He said, “Stop pushing.’” 🙂
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@petergec
5 days ago
A rooster was scratching around in the stall of a large farm horse. When the horse began to get restless and started moving around, the rooster looked up at him and said, “We’d, both of us, better be careful, brother, or we are likely to step on each other’s toes.” 🙂
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@petergec
6 days ago
An elderly man stood at the door with a piece of cake in his hand. “My wife is eighty-six today,” he said, “and she wants you to have a piece of her birthday cake.” The cake was received gratefully, particularly because the man had walked nearly half a mile to deliver it. An hour later he was back. “Is anything the matter?” he was asked. “Well,” he replied sheepishly. “Agatha sent me back to say she’s only eighty- five.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 week ago
A woman was deeply hurt by the behaviour of her fifteen-year old son. Each time they went out together he would walk on ahead of her. Was he ashamed of her? One day she asked him. “Oh, Mom, no,” was his embarrassed reply. “It’s just that you look so young that I’m worried my friends will suspect I have a new girl friend.” Her hurt vanished as if by magic. 🙂
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@petergec
1 week ago
A tourist in Japan discovered, when he visited the golf links, that most of the good caddies were women. One day he arrived late at the course and had to take a young lad of ten as caddie. He was a tiny fellow, knew next to nothing about the course or the game and he spoke only three words of English, Thanks to those three words, however, the tourist made him his caddie for the rest of his stay. After each shot, regardless of the result, the little fellow would stamp his foot-and shout with feel
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@petergec
1 week ago
The devil, transformed into an angel of light, appeared to one of the holy Fathers of the Desert and said, “i am the Angel Gabriel and I have been sent to thee by the Almighty.” The monk replied, “Think again. You must have been sent to someone else, I have done nothing to deserve the visit of an angel.” With that the devil vanished and never again dared come anywhere near the monk. 🙂
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@petergec
1 week ago
A seeker, in search of a Master who would lead him to the path of holiness, came to an ashram presided over by a guru who, in addition to having a great reputation for holiness, was also a fraud. But the seeker did not know this. “Before I accept you as my disciple,” said the guru, “I must test your obedience. There is a river flowing by the ashram that is infested with crocodiles. I want you to wade across the river.” So great was the faith of the young disciple that he did just that: he walked
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@petergec
1 week ago
There is a revealing story of a monk living in the Egyptian desert who was so tormented by temptation that he could bear it no longer. So he decided to abandon his cell and go somewhere else. As he was putting on his sandals to carry out his resolve he saw another monk not far from where he stood who was also putting his sandals on. “Who are you?” he asked the stranger. “I am your self.” was the reply. “If it is on my account that you are leaving this place, I would have you know that no matter
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@petergec
1 week ago
A teacher was giving a lecture on modern inventions. “Can any of you mention something of importance that did not exist fifty years ago?” she asked. One bright lad in the front row raised his hand eagerly and said. “Me!” 🙂
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@petergec
1 week ago
THE SELF An elderly gentleman ran a curio and antique shop in a large city. A tourist once stepped in and got to talking with the old man about the many things that were stacked in that shop. Said the tourist, “What would you say is the strangest, the most mysterious thing you have here?” The old man surveyed the hundreds of curios, antiques, stuffed animals, shrunken heads, mounted fish and birds, archaeological finds, deer heads... then turned to the tourist and said, “The strangest thing in
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@petergec
2 weeks ago
“Prisoner at the bar,” said the Grand Inquisitor, “you are charged with encouraging people to break the laws, traditions and customs of our holy religion. How do you plead?” “Guilty, your Honour.” “And with frequenting the company of heretics, prostitutes, public sinners, the extortionist tax-collectors, the colonial conquerors of our nation-in short, the excommunicated. How do you plead?” “Guilty, your Honour.” “Finally, you are charged with revising, correcting, calling into question the sacre
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@petergec
2 weeks ago
The Master was in an expansive mood so his disciples sought to learn from him the stages he had passed through in his quest for the divine. “God first led me by the hand,” he said, “into the Land of Action and there I dwelt for several years. Then He returned and led me to the Land of Sorrows; there I lived until my heart was purged of every inordinate attachment. That is when I found myself in the Land of Love whose burning flames consumed whatever was left in me of self. This brought me to the
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@petergec
2 weeks ago
Of the great Zen Master Rinzai it was said that each night the last thing he did before he went to bed was let out a great big belly laugh that resounded through the corridors and was heard in every building of the monastery grounds. And the first thing he did when he woke at dawn was burst into peals of laughter so loud they woke up every monk no matter how deep his slumber. His disciples asked him repeatedly to tell them why he laughed but he wouldn’t. And when he died he carried the secret of
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@petergec
2 weeks ago
There was once a priest so holy that he never thought ill of anyone. One day he sat down at a restaurant for a cup of coffee which was all he could take, it being a day of fast and abstinence, when, to his surprise, he saw a young member of his congregation devouring a massive steak at the next table. “I trust I haven’t shocked you. Father,” said the young fellow with a smile. “Ah! I take it that you forgot that today is a day of fast and abstinence,” said the priest. “No, no. I remembered it di
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@petergec
2 weeks ago
Wandering ascetics are common in India and a peasant mother had forbidden her son to have anything to do with them for while some of them were reputed to be holy, others were known to be exploiters in disguise. One day a mother looked out of her window and saw an ascetic surrounded by the village children. To her surprise, the man, quite unconscious of his dignity, was doing somersaults to entertain them. So impressed was she by the sight that she called out to her little boy and said, “Son, thi
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@petergec
2 weeks ago
A family of five were enjoying their day at the beach. The children were bathing in the ocean and making castles in the sand when in the distance a little old lady appeared. Her grey hair was blowing in the wind and her clothes were dirty and ragged. She was muttering something to herself as she picked up things from the beach and put them into a bag. The parents called the children to their side and told them to stay away from the old lady. As she passed by, bending down every now and then to p
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@petergec
2 weeks ago
During the Meigi era two well-known teachers lived in Tokyo; as unlike each other as it was possible to be. One, Unsho, a Shingon teacher, was a man who meticulously observed every one of Buddha’s precepts. He rose well before dawn, retired when the night was young, ate nothing after the sun had passed its zenith and drank no intoxicating drinks. The other. Tanzan was a philosophy professor at the Imperial Todai University. He observed no precepts for he ate when he felt like eating and slept ev
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@petergec
3 weeks ago
A man was fishing in the northern mountains. One day his guide took to telling him anecdotes about the bishop whose guide he had been the previous summer, “Yes.” the guide was saying, “he’s a good man except for his language.” “Are you saying that the bishop swears?” asked the man. “Oh, but of course, sir,” said the guide. “Once he caught a fine salmon. Just as he was about to land it, the fish slipped off the hook, so I say to the bishop, “That’s damned bad luck!’ and the bishop, he looks me st
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@petergec
3 weeks ago
Two Irish navvies were working on the road outside a house of prostitution. Presently the local Protestant minister came along, pulled down his hat and walked into the building. Pat said to Mike, “Did you see that? What can you expect? He’s a Protestant, isn’t he?” Soon after a rabbi arrived on the scene. He pulled his collar up and walked in too. Said Pat, “What a terrible example for a religious leader to give his people!” Finally, who should pass by but a Catholic priest. He drew his cloak ar
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@petergec
3 weeks ago
Gessen was a Buddhist monk. He was also an exceptionally talented artist. Before he started work on any painting, however, he always demanded payment in advance. And his fees were exorbitant. So he came to be known as the Greedy Monk. A geisha once sent for him to have a painting done. Gessen said. “How much will you pay me?” The girl happened to be entertaining a patron at that time. She said, “Any sum you ask for. But the painting must be done right now before me.” Gessen set to work at once a
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@petergec
3 weeks ago
Laila and Rama were lovers, but too poor to get married as yet. They lived in different villages separated by a broad river that was infested with crocodiles. One day Laila heard that her Rama was dangerously ill with no one to nurse him. She rushed to the river bank and pleaded with the boatman to take her across even though she did not have the money to pay him. But the wicked boatman refused unless she agreed to sleep with him that night. The poor woman begged and pleaded but to no avail so,
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@petergec
3 weeks ago
Once someone approached a disciple of the Muslim mystic Bahaudin Naqshband and said, “Tell me why your Master conceals his miracles. I have personally collected data that shows beyond any doubt that he has been present in more than one place at a time; that he healed people by the power of his prayers but tells them it was the work of nature; that he helped people in their troubles and then attributes it to their good luck. Why does he do this?” “I know exactly what you are talking about,” said
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@petergec
3 weeks ago
When the Egyptian deserts were the abode of those holy men called the Fathers of the Desert a woman suffering from cancer of the breast went in search of one of them, a certain Abba Longinus for the man had the reputation of a saint and a healer. Now as the woman was walking along the sea, she came upon Longinus himself collecting firewood, and said, “Holy father, could you tell me where the servant of God Abba Longinus lives?” Longinus said, “Why are you looking for that old fraud? Do not go to
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@petergec
4 weeks ago
Nisterus the Great, one of the holy Fathers of the Egyptian Desert, was one day walking in the desert with a large number of disciples who revered him as a man of God. Suddenly a dragon appeared before them and they all ran away. Many years later, as Nisterus lay dying, one of the disciples said to him. “Father, were you also frightened the day we saw the dragon?” “No,” said the dying man. “Then why did you run away with the rest of us?” “I thought it better to flee the dragon, so I would not ha
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@petergec
4 weeks ago
An earthquake hit the town and the Master was pleased to note how impressed his disciples were by his display of fearlessness. When asked some days later what it meant to conquer fear, he reminded them of his own example. “Did you observe how, while everyone was running to and fro in panic. I sat still, calmly sipping water? Did any of you see my hand shake while I held the glass?” “No,” said a disciple. “But it wasn’t water you were drinking, sir but soya bean sauce.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
The local priest was often seen talking to a comely woman of bad repute-and in public places too to the great scandal of his congregation. He was summoned by his bishop for a dressing down. When the bishop had done, the priest said. “Your Excellency, I have always held that it is better to talk to a pretty woman with one’s thoughts set on God than to pray to God with one’s thoughts fixed on a pretty woman.” When the monk goes to the tavern the tavern becomes his cell. When the drunk goes to a p
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@petergec
1 month ago
There was once an ascetic who lived a celibate life and made it his life’s mission to fight against sex in himself and others. In due course he died. And his disciple, who could not stand the shock, died a little after him. When the disciple reached the other world he couldn’t believe what he saw: there was his beloved Master with the most extraordinarily beautiful woman seated on his lap! His sense of shock faded when it occurred to him that his Master was being rewarded for his sexual abstinen
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@petergec
1 month ago
One day a bishop knelt before the altar and. in an outburst of religious fervour, began to beat his breast and exclaim. “I’m a sinner, have mercy on me! I’m a sinner, have mercy on me!” The local priest, inspired by this example of humility, fell on his knees beside the bishop and began to beat his breast and say. ‘’I’m a sinner, have mercy on me! I’m a sinner, have mercy on me!” The sexton who happened to be in church at the time was so moved he could not restrain himself. He too fell on his kn
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@petergec
1 month ago
An influential British politician kept pestering Disraeli for a baronetcy. The Prime Minister could not see his way to obliging the man but he managed to refuse him without hurting his feelings. He said, “I am sorry I cannot give you a baronetcy, but I can give you something better: you can tell your friends that I offered you the baronetcy and that you turned it down. 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
A man walked into a doctor’s office and said, “Doctor, i have this awful headache that never leaves me. Could you give me something for it?” “I will.” said the doctor, “But I want to check a few things out first. Tell me, do you drink a lot of liquor?” “Liquor?” said the man indignantly, “I never touch the filthy stuff.” “How about smoking?” “I think smoking is disgusting. I’ve never in my life touched tobacco.” “I’m a bit embarrassed to ask this, but... you know the way some men are., do you do
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@petergec
1 month ago
Four monks decided to go into silence for a month. They started out well enough but after the first day one monk said, “I wonder if I locked the door of my cell at the monastery before we set out.” Another monk said, “You fool! We decided to keep silence for a month and now you have gone and broken it!” A third monk said. “What about you? You have broken it too!” Said the fourth. “Thank God I’m the only one who hasn’t spoken yet!” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
A ninety-two year old priest was venerated by everyone in town. When he appeared on the streets people would bow low such was the man’s reputation for holiness. He was also a member of the Rotary Club. Every time the Club met he would be there, always on time and always seated at his favourite spot in a corner of the room One day the priest disappeared. It was as if he vanished into thin air because, search as they might, the townsfolk could find no trace of him. The following month, however, wh
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@petergec
1 month ago
An old rabbi was lying ill in bed and his disciples were holding a whispered conversation at his bedside. They were extolling his unparalleled virtues. “Not since the time of Solomon has there been one as wise as he,” said one of them. “And his faith! It equals that of our father Abraham!” said another “Surely his patience equals that of Job.” said a third. “Only in Moses can we find someone who conversed as in intimately with God “ said a fourth. The rabbi seemed restless. When the disciples ha
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@petergec
1 month ago
Buddha’s disciple Subhuti suddenly discovered the richness and fecundity of emptiness: the realisation that everything is impermanent, unsatisfactory and empty of self. In this mood of divine emptiness he sat in bliss under a tree when suddenly flowers began to fall all around him. And the gods whispered, “We are enraptured by your sublime teachings on emptiness.” Subhuti replied, “But I haven’t uttered a word about emptiness.” “True,” the gods replied. “You have not spoken of emptiness, we have
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@petergec
1 month ago
Holiness, like greatness, is unself-conscious. For thirty-five years Paul Cezanne lived in obscurity producing masterpieces that he gave away to unsuspecting neighbours. So great was his love for his work that he never gave a thought to achieving recognition nor did he suspect that some day he would be looked upon as the father of modern painting. He owes his fame to a Paris dealer who chanced upon some of his paintings, put some of them together and presented the world of art with the first Cez
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@petergec
1 month ago
There once lived a man so godly that even the angels rejoiced at the sight of him. But, in spite of his great holiness, he had no notion that he was holy . He just went about his humdrum tasks diffusing goodness the way flowers unselfconsciously diffuse their fragrance and street-lamps their glow. His holiness lay in this that he forgot each person’s past and looked at them as they were now, and he looked beyond each person’s appearance to the very centre of their being where they were innocent
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@petergec
1 month ago
Lady Pumphampton’s gentleman friend had come to tea so she gave her maid a large tip and said, “Here, take this. When you hear me scream for help, you may leave for the day.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
THE SAINTS Some are born holy. others achieve holiness. others yet have holiness thrust on them. An oil well caught fire and the company called in the experts to put out the blaze. But so intense was the heat that the fire-fighters could not get within a thousand feet of the rig. The management, in desperation, called the local volunteer Fire Department to help in any way they could. Half an hour later a decrepit looking fire truck rolled down the road and came to an abrupt stop just fifty fe
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@petergec
1 month ago
Some things are best left as they are: An enthusiastic young man who had just graduated as a plumber was taken to see Niagara Falls. He studied it for a minute, then said. “I think I can fix this.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
One Sunday morning after church God and St Peter went to play golf. God teed off. He gave a mighty swipe and sliced the ball off into the rough beside the fairway. Just as the ball was about to hit the ground, a rabbit darted out of a bush, picked it up in his mouth and ran with it down the fairway. Suddenly an eagle swooped down, picked the rabbit up in its claws and flew it over the green. A man with a rifle took aim and shot the eagle in mid-flight. The eagle let go of the rabbit. The rabbit
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@petergec
1 month ago
A man in his eighties was once asked the secret of his enormous stamina. “Well,” he answered, “I don’t drink, I don’t smoke. And I swim a mile a day,” “But I had an uncle who did exactly that, and he died at the age of sixty.” “Ah, the trouble with your uncle was he didn’t do it long enough.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
A young composer once came to consult Mozart on how to develop his talent. “I would advise you to start with simple things.” Mozart said. “Songs, for example.” “But you were composing symphonies when you were a child!” the man protested. “True enough. But then I didn’t have to go to anyone for advice on how to develop my talent.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
A devout religious man fell on hard times. So he took to praying in the following fashion: “Lord, remember all the years I served you as best I could, asking for nothing in return. Now that I am old and bankrupt I am going to ask you for a favour for the first time in my life and I am sure you will not say No: allow me to win the lottery.” Days passed. Then weeks and months. But nothing happened. Finally, almost driven to despair, he cried out one night, “Why don’t you give me a break, God?” He
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@petergec
1 month ago
A woman dreamt she walked into a brand new shop in the marketplace and, to her surprise, found God behind the counter. “What do you sell here?” she asked “Everything your heart desires,” said God. Hardly daring to believe what she was hearing, the woman decided to ask for the best things a human being could wish for. “I want peace of mind and love and happiness and wisdom and freedom from fear,” she said. Then as an after thought, she added, “Not just for me. For everyone on earth.” God smil
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@petergec
1 month ago
“Mummy, I want a baby brother.” “But you’ve just got one.” “I want another.” “Well, you can’t have one so soon. It takes time to produce a baby brother.” “Why don’t you do what Daddy does at the factory?” “What’s that?” “Put more men on the job.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
A family of refugees was very favourably impressed with America-especially the six-year-old daughter who rapidly adopted the view that everything American was not only the best but also perfect. One day a neighbour told her she was going to have a baby, so little Mary marched home and demanded to know why she couldn’t have a little baby too. Her mother decided to introduce her to the facts of life right there and, among other things, explained that it took about nine months for a baby to arrive
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@petergec
1 month ago
The President of the largest Banking Corporation in the world was in hospital. One of the Vice-Presidents came to visit him with this message: “I bring you the good wishes of our Board of Directors, that you should be restored to health and live to be a hundred years. That’s an official resolution passed by a majority of 15 to 6 with 2 abstensions.” 🙂 Are we ever likely to stop our efforts? to burn fire, wet water and add colour to the rose?
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@petergec
1 month ago
A group of expectant fathers sat nervously in the hall. A nurse beckoned to one of them and said, “Congratulations, you have a son!” Another man dropped his magazine, jumped up and cried, “Hey, what’s the idea? I got here two hours before he did!” Some things, alas, resist organization! 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
A man was lost in a desert. Later, when describing his ordeal to his friends, he told how, in sheer despair, he had knelt down and cried out to God to help him. “And did God answer your prayer?” he was asked. “Oh, no! Before He could, an explorer appeared and showed me the way.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
In his Narrative of the Saints, Attar tells of the great Sufi Habib Ajami who went to bathe in the river one day leaving his coat lying unattended on the bank. Now Hasan of Basra happened to pass by, saw the coat and, thinking that it had been left there through someone’s carelessness, decided to stand guard over it till the owner showed up. When Habib came looking for his coat, Hasan said, “In whose care did you leave this coat of yours when you went to bathe in the river? It could have been s
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@petergec
1 month ago
Goldberg had the loveliest garden in town and each time the Rabbi passed by he would call out to Goldberg, “Your garden is a thing of beauty. The Lord and you are partners!” “Thank you. Rabbi,” Goldberg would respond with a bow. This went on for days and weeks and months. At least twice a day the Rabbi, on his way to and from the synagogue would call out, “The Lord and you are partners!” until Goldberg began to be annoyed at what the Rabbi evidently meant as a compliment. So the next time the Ra
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@petergec
1 month ago
A disciple came riding on his camel to the tent of his Sufi Master. He dismounted and walked right into the tent, bowed low and said, “So great is my trust in God that I have left my camel outside untied, convinced that God protects the interests of those who love him.” “Go tie your camel, you fool!” said the Master. God cannot be bothered doing for you what you are perfectly capable of doing for yourself.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
“So this was your first flight. Were you scared?” “Well, to tell you the truth, I didn’t dare put my full weight down on the seat.” 🙂
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@petergec
1 month ago
An old woman observed how, with scientific precision, her rooster would begin to crow just before the sun rose each day. She therefore came to the conclusion that the crowing of her rooster caused the sun to rise. So when her rooster suddenly died she hastened to replace it with another lest the sun fail to rise the following morning. One day she fell out with her neighbours and threatened to move out of the village with her sister several miles away. When her rooster started to crow next day
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@petergec
1 month ago
An elephant broke loose from the herd and charged across a little wooden structure that stretched across a ravine. The worn-out bridge shivered and groaned, barely able to support the elephant’s weight. Once it had gone safely to the other side, a flea that had lodged itself in the elephant’s ear exclaimed in mighty satisfaction, “Boy, did we shake that bridge!” 🙂
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@petergec
2 months ago
At a party in Japan a visitor was introduced to a popular Japanese drink. After his first drink he noticed the furniture in the room moving around. “This is a very powerful drink.” he said to his host. “Not particularly,” the host replied. “This happens to be an earthquake.” 🙂
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@petergec
2 months ago
Two monks were on their travels. One of them practiced the spirituality of acquisition, the other believed in renunciation. All day long they discussed their respective spiritualities till, towards evening they came to the bank of a river. Now the believer in renunciation had no money with him He said, “We cannot pay the boatman to take us across, but why bother about the body? We shall spend the night here, chanting God’s praises and tomorrow we are sure to find some kind soul who will pay ou
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@petergec
2 months ago
GRACE A priest was sitting at his desk by the window composing a sermon on Providence when he heard something that sounded like an explosion. Soon he saw people running to and fro in a panic and discovered that a dam had burst, the river was in spate and the people were being evacuated. The priest saw the water begin to rise in the street below. He had some difficulty suppressing his own rising sense of panic but he, said to himself, “Here I am preparing a sermon about Providence and I am bei
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@petergec
2 months ago
The priest announced that Jesus Christ himself was coming to church the following Sunday. People turned up in large numbers to see him. Everyone expected him to preach, but he only smiled when introduced and said, “Hello,” Everyone offered him hospitality for the night, especially the priest, but he refused politely. He said he would spend the night in church. How fitting, everyone thought. He slipped away early next morning before the Church doors were opened. And, to their horror, The priest a
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@petergec
2 months ago
Among Jews, the observance of the Sabbath, the day of the Lord, was originally a thing of joy but too many Rabbis kept issuing one injunction after another on how exactly it was to be observed, what sort of activity was allowed, until some people fell they could hardly move during the Sabbath for fear that some regulation or other might be transgressed. The Baal Shem, son of Eliezer, gave much thought to this matter. One night he had a dream. An angel took him up to heaven and showed him two thr
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@petergec
2 months ago
To be properly wicked, you do not have to break the Law. Just observe it to the letter. 🙂
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@petergec
2 months ago
Among the truly religious the Law is observed. But it is neither feared,... “What do you do for a living?” asked a lady of a young man at a cocktail party. “I am a paratrooper.” “It must be awful to be a parachute jumper, said the lady. “Well, it does have its scary moments.” “Tell me about your most terrible experience. “Well,” said the paratrooper, “I think it was the time when I came down on a lawn where there was a sign which read, KEEP OFF THE GRASS. 🙂
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@petergec
2 months ago
In a desert country trees were scarce and fruit was hard to come by. It was said that God wanted to make sure there was enough for everyone, so He appeared to a prophet and said, “This is my commandment to the whole people for now and for future generations: no one shall eat more than one fruit a day. Record this in the Holy Book. Anyone who transgresses this law will be considered to have sinned against God and against humanity.” The law was faithfully observed for centuries until scientists d
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@petergec
2 months ago
On a rocky seacoast where shipwrecks were frequent there was once a ramshackle little life-saving station. It was no more than a hut and there was only one boat, but the few people who manned the station were a devoted lot who kept constant watch over the sea and, with little regard for themselves and their safety, went fearlessly out in a storm if they had any evidence that there had been a shipwreck somewhere. Many lives were thus saved and the station became famous. As the fame of the statio
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@petergec
2 months ago
How spiritual organizations grow: A Guru was so impressed by the spiritual progress of his disciple that, judging he needed no further guidance, he left him on his own in a little hut on the banks of a river. Each morning after his ablutions the disciple would hang his loin-cloth out to dry. It was his only possession! One day he was dismayed to find it torn to shreds by rats. So he had to beg for another from the villagers. When the rats nibbled holes in this one too, he got himself a kitten.
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@petergec
2 months ago
Someone asked for the bishop’s imprimatur for a book for children that contained the parables of Jesus, a few simple illustrations and a few gospel sentences. Not a single word more. The imprimatur was given with the customary disclaimer: “The imprimatur does not necessarily imply that the bishop agrees with the opinions expressed in this book.” More organizational pitfalls! 🙂
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@petergec
2 months ago
A bishop was testing the suitability of a group of candidates for baptism. “By what sign will others know that you are Catholics?” he asked. There was no reply. Evidently no one had expected this question. The bishop repeated the question. Then he said it once again, this time making the Sign of the Cross to give the others a clue to the right answer. Suddenly one of the candidates got it, “Love” he said. The bishop was taken aback. He was about to say. “Wrong,” then checked himself in the nick
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@petergec
2 months ago
According to one story, when God created the world and glorified in its goodness, Satan shared his rapture, in his own way, of course, for as he contemplated marvel after marvel, he kept exclaiming, “How good it is! Let’s organize it!” “And take all the fun out of it!” Have you ever attempted to organize something like peace? The moment you do, You have power conflicts and group wars within the organization. The only way to have peace is to let it grow wild. 🙂
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@petergec
2 months ago
The preacher was more than ordinarily eloquent and everyone, but everyone, was moved to tears. Well, not everyone exactly, because there, in the front pew, sat a gentleman looking straight in front of him, quite unaffected by the sermon. At the end of the service, someone said to him, “You heard the sermon, didn’t you?” “Of course, I did,” said the stony gentleman. “I am not deaf.” “What did you think of it?” “I thought it so moving I could have cried.” “And why, may I ask, did you not cry?” “Be
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@petergec
2 months ago
A church or synagogue needs to raise money if it is to survive. Now there was once a Jewish synagogue where they did not pass the collection plate around as they do in Christian Churches. Their way of raising money was to sell tickets for reserved seats on Solemn Holy Days for that was when the congregation was the largest and the people most generous. On one such Holy Day a kid came to the synagogue in search of his father but the ushers wouldn’t let him in because he did not have a ticket. “Lo
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@petergec
2 months ago
A public sinner was excommunicated and forbidden entry to the church. He took his woes to God. “They won’t let me in. Lord, because I am a sinner.” “What are you complaining about?” said God. “They won’t let me in either!” 🙂
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@petergec
2 months ago
In his autobiography, Mahatma Gandhi tells how in his student days in South Africa he became deeply interested in the Bible, especially the Sermon on the Mount. He became convinced that Christianity was the answer to the caste system that had plagued India for centuries, and he seriously considered becoming a Christian. One day he went to a church to attend Mass and get instructions. He was stopped at the entrance and gently told that if he desired to attend Mass he was welcome to do so in a chu
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@petergec
2 months ago
Little boy: “Are you a Presbyterian?” Little girl: “No. We belong to a different abomination.” A hunter sent his dog after something that moved behind the trees. It chased out a fox and corralled it into a position where the hunter could shoot it. The dying fox said to the hound, “Were you never told that the fox is brother to the dog?” “I was, indeed,” said the dog. “But that’s for idealists and fools. For the practical-minded, brotherhood is created by identity of interests.” Said the Christ
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@petergec
2 months ago
In Belfast, Ireland, a Catholic priest, a Protestant minister and a Jewish rabbi were engaged in a heated theological discussion. Suddenly an Angel appeared in their midst and said to them, “God sends you his blessings. Make one wish for Peace and your wish will be fulfilled by the Almighty.” The minister said, “Let every Catholic disappear from our lovely island. Then peace will reign supreme.” The priest said, “Let there not be a single Protestant left on our sacred Irish soil. That will bring
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@petergec
2 months ago
Rabbi Abraham had lived an exemplary life. And when his time arrived, he left this world surrounded by the blessings of his congregation who had come to regard him as a saint and as the principal cause of all the blessings they had received from God. It was no different at the other end, for the angels came forward to welcome him with shouts of praise. Throughout the festivities the Rabbi seemed withdrawn and distressed. He kept his head in his hands and refused to be comforted. He was finally
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@petergec
2 months ago
When Sister asked the children in her class what they wanted to be when they grew up little Tommy said he wanted to be a pilot. Elsie said she wanted to be a doc- tor, Bobby to Sister’s great joy, said he wanted to become a priest. Then Mary stood up and declared she wanted to be a prostitute, “What was that again, Mary?” “When I grow up,” said Mary with the air of someone who knew exactly what she wanted, “I shall become a prostitute.” Sister was startled beyond words. Mary was immediately segr
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@petergec
2 months ago
A king dreamt that he saw a king in paradise and a priest in hell. He wondered how this could be then he heard a Voice say, “The king is in paradise because he respected priests. The priest is in hell because he compromised with kings.” 🙂
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@petergec
2 months ago
One night a fisherman stole into the grounds of a rich man and cast his net into a lake full of fish. The owner heard him and set his guards upon him. When he saw the crowd searching for him everywhere with lighted torches, the fisherman hastily smeared his body with ashes and sat under a tree, as is the custom with holy men in India. The owner and his guards could find no poacher, though they searched for a long time. All they found was a holy man covered with ashes sitting under a tree absorb
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@petergec
2 months ago
All the philosophers, divines and doctors of the law were assembled in court for the trial of Mullah Nasruddin. The accusation was a serious one; he had been going from town to town saying, “Your so-called religious leaders are ignorant and confused.” So he was charged with heresy, the penalty for which was death. “You may speak first,” said the Caliph. The Mullah was perfectly self-possessed. “Have paper and pens brought in,” he said, “and give them to the ten wisest men in this august assembl
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@petergec
2 months ago
An ancient philosopher, dead for many centuries, was told that his teachings were being misrepresented by his representatives. Being a compassionate and truth- loving individual, he managed, after much effort, to get the grace to come back to earth for a few days. it took him several days to convince his successors of his identity. Once that was established, they promptly lost all interest in what he had to say and begged him to disclose to them the secret for coming back to life from the grave
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@petergec
3 months ago
Said a preacher to a friend, “We have just had the greatest revival our church has experienced in many years.” “How many did you add to your church membership?’ “None. We lost five hundred.” Jesus would have applauded! Experience shows, alas, that our religious convictions bear as much relation to our personal holiness as a mart’s dinner jacket to his digestion.
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@petergec
3 months ago
When a million people follow you ask yourself where you have gone wrong. A Jewish author explains that Jews are not proselytizers. Rabbis are required to make three separate efforts to discourage prospective converts! Spirituality is for the elite. It will not compromise to become acceptable so it will not consort with the masses who want syrup, not medicine. Once, when large crowds were following Jesus, this is what he said to them; “Which of you would think of building a tower without firs
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@petergec
3 months ago
A Hindu Sage was having the Life of Jesus read to him. When he learned how Jesus was rejected by his people in Nazareth, he exclaimed, “A rabbi whose congregation does not want to drive him out of town isn’t a rabbi.” And when he heard how it was the priests who put Jesus to death, he said with a sigh, “It is hard for Satan to mislead the whole world, so he appoints prominent ecclesiastics in different parts of the globe.” The lament of a bishop: “Wherever Jesus went there was a revolution; whe
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@petergec
3 months ago
A Master was surprised to hear shouting and altercation going on in his courtyard. When he was told that one of his disciples was at the centre of it, he had the man sent for and asked what the cause of the din was. “There is a delegation of scholars that has come to visit you. I told them you do not waste your time on men whose heads are stuffed with books and thoughts but devoid of wisdom. These are the people who, in their conceit, create dogmas and divisions among people everywhere.” The M
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@petergec
3 months ago
The play was in progress at the village theatre when the curtain was suddenly lowered and the manager stepped before the audience. “Ladies and gentlemen,” he said, “it distresses me deeply to have to announce that the leading actor, our great and beloved mayor himself, has just had a fatal heart attack in his dressing room. We are therefore forced to stop the play.” On hearing this announcement a huge middle-aged woman in the front row stood up and shouted agitatedly: “Quick! Give him chicken
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@petergec
3 months ago
A group was enjoying the music at a Chinese restaurant. Suddenly a soloist struck up a vaguely familiar tune; everyone recognized the melody but no one could remember its name. So they beckoned to the splendidly-clad waiter and asked him to find out what the musician was playing. The waiter waddled across the floor, then returned with a look of triumph on his face and declared in a loud whisper, “Violin!” The scholar’s contribution to spirituality! 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
A parachutist jumped out of a plane on a windy day and was blown a hundred miles off course by a powerful gale. Then his parachute caught on a tree, so he hung there for hours in the middle of nowhere, shouting for help. Finally someone passed by. “How did you get up there on that tree?” he asked. The parachutist told him. Then asked, “Where am I?” “On a tree,” was the reply. “Hey! You must be a cleric!” The stranger was stunned. “Yes I am. How did you know?” “Because what you said is certainl
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@petergec
3 months ago
The poet Kabir says: What good is it if the scholar pores over words and points of this and that but his chest is not soaked dark with love? What good is it if the ascetic clothes himself in saffron robes but is colourless within? What good is it if you scrub your ethical behaviour till it shines, but there is no music inside? Disciple: What’s the difference between knowledge and enlightenment? Master: When you have knowledge you use a torch to show the way. When you are enlightened you become
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@petergec
3 months ago
A Guru promised a scholar a revelation of greater consequence than anything contained in the scriptures. When the scholar eagerly asked for it, the Guru said, “Go out into the rain and raise your head and arms heavenward. That will bring you the first revelation.” The next day the scholar came to report: “I followed your advice and water flowed down my neck-And I felt like a perfect fool.” “Well.” said the Guru, “for the first day that’s quite a revelation, isn’t it?” 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
Every day in the corner of a library in Japan an old monk was to be found sitting in peaceful meditation. “I never see you read the sutras.” said the librarian. “I never learnt to read.” replied the monk. “That’s a disgrace. A monk like you ought to be able to read. Shall I teach you?” “Yes. Tell me,” said the monk pointing to himself, “what is the meaning of this character?” Why light a torch when the sun shines in the heavens? Why water the ground when the rain pours down in torrents? 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
Child in geography class: “The benefit of longitude and latitude is that when you are drowning you can call out what longitude and latitude you are in and they will find you.” Because there is a word for wisdom people imagine they know what it is. But no one becomes an astronomer from understanding the meaning of the word “astronomy.” Just because, by blowing on the thermometer. You got it to register higher. You did not warm the room. 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
A seeker asked the Sufi Jalaluddin Rumi if the Koran was a good book to read. He replied, “You should rather ask yourself if you are in a state to profit from it.” A Christian mystic used to say of the Bible, “However useful a menu, it is not good for eating. “ 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
One of the most renowned sages in ancient India was Svetaketu. This is how he came by his wisdom: When he was no more than seven years of age he was sent by his father to study the Vedas. By dint of application and intelligence the lad outshone all his fellow students till in time he was considered the greatest living expert on the Scriptures-and this when he was barely past his youth. On his return home his father wished to test the ability of his son. This is the question he put him: “Have you
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@petergec
3 months ago
There was once a man who was very stupid. Each morning when he woke he had such a hard time finding his clothes that he almost feared to go to bed when he thought of the trouble he would have on walking. One night he got himself a pencil and pad and jotted down the exact name and location of each item of clothing as he undressed. Next morning he pulled out his pad and read, “pants”-there they were. He stepped into them. “Shirt”-there it was. He pulled it over his head. “Hat”-there it was. He sl
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@petergec
3 months ago
People feed on words, Hue by words, would fall apart without them. A beggar tugged at the sleeves of a passer-by and begged for money to buy a cup of coffee. This was his tale: “There was a time, sir, when I was a wealthy businessman just like you. I worked hard all day long. On my desk was the motto: THINK CREATIVELY, ACT DECISIVELY, LIVE DANGEROUSLY. That’s the motto I lived by- and money just kept pouring in. And then... and then... (the beggar’s frame shook with sobs)”... the cleaning woman
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@petergec
3 months ago
Words (and concepts) are indicators, not reflections, of reality. But, as the mystics of the East declare. When the Sage points to the moon all that the idiot sees is the finger!” A drunk was staggering across a bridge one night when he ran into a friend. The two of them leaned over the bridge and began chatting for a while. “What’s that down there?” asked the drunk suddenly. “That’s the moon,” said his friend. The drunk looked again, shook his head in disbelief and said, “Okay, okay. But h
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@petergec
3 months ago
“What a pretty baby you have there!” “This is nothing! You should see his photographs!” 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
The poet Awhadi of Herman was sitting on his porch one night, bent over a vessel. The Sufi Shams-e-Tabrizi happened to pass by. “What are you doing?” he asked the poet. “Contemplating the moon in a bowl of water,” was the reply. “Unless you have broken your neck, why don’t you look directly at the moon in the sky?” Words are inadequate reflections of reality. A man thought he knew what the Taj Mahal was because he was shown a piece of marble and told that the Taj was just a collection of pieces
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@petergec
3 months ago
A traveller was walking along the road one day when a man on horseback rushed by. There was an evil look in his eyes and blood on his hands. Minutes later a crowd of riders drew up and wanted to know if the traveller had seen someone with blood on his hands go by. They were in hot pursuit of him. “Who is he?” the traveller asked. “An evil-doer,” said the leader of the crowd. “And you pursue him in order to bring him to justice?’ “No,” said the leader, “we pursue him in order to show him the way.
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@petergec
3 months ago
A priest ordered his deacon to assemble ten men to chant prayers for the recovery of a sick man. When they had all come in, someone whispered into the ear of the priest, “There are some notorious thieves among those men.” “All the better,” said the priest. “When the Gates of Mercy are shut, these are the experts who will open them.” 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
A Sufi saint, on pilgrimage to Mecca, was delighted to see that there were barely any pilgrims at the holy shrine when he got there, so he was able to perform his devotions at leisure. Having completed the prescribed religious practices, he knelt down and touched his fore-head to the ground and said, “Allah! I have only one desire in life. Give me the grace of never offending you again.” When the All-Merciful heard this he laughed aloud and said, “That’s what they all ask for. But if I granted e
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@petergec
3 months ago
Pilot to passengers in mid-flight: “I regret to inform you we are in terrible trouble. Only God can save us now.” A passenger turned to a priest to ask what the pilot had said and got this reply: “He says there’s no hope!” 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
The old miser was overheard at his prayers: “If the Almighty, may His holy name be blessed forever, would give me a hundred thousand dollars, I would give ten thousand to the poor. I promise I would. And if the Almighty, may He be glorified forever, were not to trust me, let Him deduct the ten thousand in advance and just send me the balance.” 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
Mulla Nasruddin’s house was on fire, so he ran up to his roof for safety. There he was, precariously perched on the roof, when his friends gathered in the street below holding a stretched out blanket to him and shouting, “Jump, Mullah, jump!” “Oh no, I won’t,” said the Mullah. “I know you fellows. If I jump, you’ll pull the blanket away just to make a fool of me!” “Don’t be silly. Mullah. This isn’t a joke. This is serious. Jump!” “No,” said Nasruddin. “I don’t trust any of you. Lay that blank
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@petergec
3 months ago
An atheist fell off a cliff. As he tumbled downward he caught hold of the branch of a small tree. There he hung between heaven above and the rocks a thousand feet below, knowing he wasn’t going to be able to hold on much longer. Then an idea came to him. “God!” he shouted with all his might. Silence! No one responded. “God!” he shouted again. “If you exist, save me and I promise I shall believe in you and teach others to believe.” Silence again! Then he almost let go of the branch in shock as
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@petergec
3 months ago
Goldstein, aged ninety-two, had lived through pogroms in Poland, concentration camps in Germany and dozens of other persecutions against the Jews. “Oh, Lord!” he said, “Isn’t it true that we are your chosen people?” A heavenly voice replied. “Yes, Goldstein, the Jews are my chosen people.” “Well, then, isn’t it time you chose somebody else?” 🙂
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@petergec
3 months ago
A wealthy farmer burst into his home one day and cried out in an anguished voice, “Rebecca, there is a terrible story in town-the Messiah is here!” “What’s so terrible in that?” asked his wife. “I think it’s great. What are you so upset about?” “What am I so upset about?” the man exclaimed. “After all these years of sweat and toil we have finally found prosperity. We have a thousand head of cattle; our barns are full of grain and our trees laden with fruit. Now we will have to give it all away
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@petergec
3 months ago
Two brothers, one a bachelor, the other married, owned a farm whose fertile soil yielded an abundance of grain. Half the grain went to one brother and half to the other. All went well at first. Then, every now and then, the married man began to wake with a start from his sleep at night and think: “This isn’t fair. My brother isn’t married and he gets half the produce of the farm. Here I am with a wife and five kids, so I have all the security I need for my old age. But who will care for my poor
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@petergec
4 months ago
Tetsugen, a student of Zen, resolved on a mighty undertaking: the printing of seven thousand copies of the sutras which till then were available only in Chinese. He travelled the length and breath of Japan to collect funds for this project. Some wealthy people offered him as much as a hundred pieces of gold but mostly he received small coins from peasants. Tetsugen expressed equal gratitude to each donor regardless of the sum of money given. After ten long years of travel he finally collected
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@petergec
4 months ago
On a cold winter night a wandering ascetic asked for shelter in a temple. The poor man stood shivering there in the falling snow so the temple priest, reluctant though he was to let the man in, said. “Very well, you can stay but only for the night. This is a temple, not a hospice. In the morning you will have to go.” At dead of night the priest heard a strange crackling sound. He rushed to the temple and saw an incredible sight. There was the stranger warming himself at a fire he had lit in the
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@petergec
4 months ago
Dov Ber was an uncommon man. When people came into his presence they trembled. He was a Talmudic scholar of repute, inflexible, uncompressing in his doctrine. And he never laughed. He believed firmly in self-inflicted pain and was known to fast for days on end. Dov Ber’s austerities finally got the better of him. He fell seriously ill and there was nothing the doctors could do to cure him. As a final resort someone made a suggestion: “Why not seek the help of the Baal Shem Tov?” Dov Ber agr
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@petergec
4 months ago
The Kamakura Buddha was lodged in a temple until one day a mighty storm brought the temple down. Then for many years the massive statue stood exposed to sun and rain and wind and the changes of the weather. When a priest began to raise funds to rebuild the temple, the statue appeared to him in a dream and said, “That temple was a prison, not a home. Leave me exposed to the ravages of life. That’s where I belong.” 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
RELIGION Weary traveller: “Why in the name of heaven did they build the railway station three kilometres away from the village?” Helpful porter: “They must have thought it would be a good idea to have it near the trains, sir.” An ultra-modern station three kilometres away from the track is as much of an absurdity as a much frequented temple three centimetres away from life. 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
The old rabbi had become blind and could neither read nor look at the faces of those who came to visit him. A faith healer said to him, “Entrust yourself to my care and I will heal your blindness.” “There will be no need for that,” replied the rabbi. “I can see everything that I need to.” Not everyone whose eyes are dosed is asleep. And not everyone with open eyes can see. 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
A prisoner lived in solitary confinement for years. He saw and spoke to no one and his meals were served through an opening in the wall. One day an ant came into his cell. The man contemplated it in fascination as it crawled around the room. He held it in the palm of his hand the better to observe it, gave it a grain or two, and kept it under his tin cup at night. One day it suddenly struck him that it had taken him ten long years of solitary confinement to open his eyes to the loveliness of a
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@petergec
4 months ago
The Guru meditating in his Himalayan cave opened his eyes to discover an unexpected visitor sitting there before him-the abbot of a well-known monastery. “What is it you seek?” asked the Guru. The abbot recounted a tale of woe. At one time his monastery had been famous throughout the western world. Its cells were filled with young aspirants and its church resounded to the chant of its monks. But hard times had come on the monastery. People no longer flocked there to nourish their spirit, the s
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@petergec
4 months ago
A tramp stood in the office of a wealthy man asking for alms. The man rang for his secretary and said, “Do you see this poor, unfortunate man here? Observe how his toes stick out of his shoes, how frayed his trousers are, how tattered his coat. I am sure the man hasn’t had a shave, a shower or a decent meal in days. It breaks my heart to see people in this wretched condition-so, GET HIM OUT OF MY SIGHT AT ONCE!” A man with only stumps for arms and legs was begging by the roadside. I was so con
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@petergec
4 months ago
The priest of a fashionable parish had his ushers greet the people after Sunday service. His wife persuaded him to take on this task himself. “Wouldn’t it be awful If, after some years, you were not to know the members of your own parish?” she said. So the following Sunday the priest took up his post at the church door after service. The first one out of church was a woman in plain clothes, evidently a newcomer to the parish. “How do you do? I am very glad to have you here with us,” he said, o
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@petergec
4 months ago
A famous Viennese surgeon told his students that a surgeon needed two gifts: freedom from nausea and the power of observation. He then dipped a finger into some nauseating fluid and licked it, requesting each of the students to do the same. They steeled themselves to it and managed it without flinching. With a smile, the surgeon then said, “Gentlemen, I congratulate you on having passed the first test. But not, unfortunately, the second, for not one of you noticed that the finger I licked was
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@petergec
4 months ago
People would never sin if they were aware that each time they sin it is themselves they are damaging. Most people are in too much of torpor, alas, to have the slightest awareness of what they are doing to themselves. A drunkard was walking down a street with blisters in both of his ears. A friend asked him what had happened to cause the blisters. “My wife left her hot iron on, so when the phone rang I picked the iron up by mistake.” “Yes, but what about the other ear?” “The damned fool called
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@petergec
4 months ago
As he walked out of the room, the Master, who had seen the devil seated in a corner of the room. said. “You need not have worried Tempter. He was yours from the very first, you know.” Such is the fate of those who, in their search for God, are willing to shed everything except their notions of what God really is. 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
When the devil saw a seeker enter the house of a Master he determined to do everything in his power to turn him back from his quest for Truth. So he subjected the poor man to every possible temptation: wealth, lust, fame, power, prestige. But the seeker was far too experienced in spiritual matters and was able to fight off the temptations quite easily, so great was his longing for spirituality. When he got into the Master’s presence, he was somewhat taken aback to see the Master sitting on an
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@petergec
4 months ago
Grandpa and grandma had quarrelled and grandma was so angry she would not speak to her husband. The following day grandpa had forgotten all about the quarrel, but grandma continued to ignore him and still wouldn’t speak. Nothing grandpa did seemed to succeed in pulling her out of her sullen silence. Finally he started rummaging in cupboards and drawers. After this had gone on for a few minutes, grandma could stand it no longer. “What on earth are you looking for?” she demanded angrily. “Prais
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@petergec
4 months ago
“That’s a clever dog you have there,” said a man when he saw his friend playing cards with his dog. “Not as clever as he looks,” was the reply. “Every time he gets a good hand he wags his tail.” 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
A man took his new hunting dog out on a trial hunt. Presently he shot a duck that fell into the lake. The dog walked over the water, picked the duck up and brought it to his master. The man was flabbergasted! He shot another duck. Once again, while he rubbed his eyes in disbelief, the dog walked over the water and retrieved the duck. Hardly daring to believe what he had seen, he called his neighbour for a shoot the following day. Once again, each time he or his neighbour hit a bird the dog wou
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@petergec
4 months ago
A woman at a bank asked the cashier to cash a cheque for her. Citing company policy the cashier asked her for identification. The woman gasped. Finally, she managed to say, “But Jonathan, I’m your mother!” If you think this is funny, how come you fail yourself to recognize the messiah? 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
An oyster saw a loose pearl that had fallen into the crevice of a rock on the ocean bed. After great effort she managed to retrieve the pearl and place it just beside her on a leaf. She knew that humans searched for pearls and thought, “This pearl will tempt them, so they will take it and let me be.” When a pearl diver showed up, however, his eyes were conditioned to look for oysters and not for pearls resting on leaves. So he grabbed the oyster which did not happen to have a pearl and allowe
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@petergec
4 months ago
A cowboy was riding across the desert when he came upon an Indian lying on the road with his head and ear to the ground. “How yah doing, chief?” said the cowboy. “Big paleface with red hair driving dark green Mercedes-Benz with German shepherd dog inside and license plate number SDT965 going headed West.” “Gee chief, yah mean you hear all that just listening to the ground?” “I’m not listening to the ground. The SOB ran over me. 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
A man got into a bus and found himself sitting next to a youngster who was obviously a hippy. He was wearing only one shoe. “You’ve evidently lost a shoe, son.” “No man,” came the reply. “I found one.” It is evident to me; that does not mean it is true. 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
A woman in the grocery department of a super-market bent down to pick up some tomatoes. At that moment she felt a sharp pain shooting down her/back; she became immobilized and let out a shriek. A shopper standing next to her leaned over knowingly and said, “If you think tomatoes are bad, you should see the price of the fish!” is it Reality you are responding to or your assumptions about it? 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
Reality, mostly, is not what it is but what we have decided it is: A little old Jewish lady sits down in a plane next to a big Swede and keeps staring at him. Finally she turns to him and says, “Pardon me, are you Jewish?” He says, “No.” A few minutes later she turns to him again and says, “You can tell me, you know- you are Jewish, aren’t you?” He says, “Most certainly not.” She keeps studying him for some minutes, then says again, “I can tell you are Jewish.” In order to get rid of the anno
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@petergec
4 months ago
Many, many years ago, back in the Middle Ages, the Pope was urged by his advisors to banish the Jews from Rome. It was unseemly, they said that these people should be living unmolested in the very centre of Catholicism. An edict of eviction was drawn up and promulgated much to the dismay of the Jews who knew that wherever else they went they could only expect worse treatment than was meted out to them in Rome. So they pleaded with the Pope to reconsider the edict. The Pope, a fair- minded man, o
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@petergec
4 months ago
In the summer of 1946 the rumour of a famine swept through a province in a South American country. Actually the crops were growing well, and the weather was perfect for a bumper harvest. But on the strength of that rumour 20,000 small farmers abandoned their farms and fled to the cities. Because of their action the crops failed, thousands starved and the rumour about the famine proved true. 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
And more assumptions: A married couple was returning from the funeral of Uncle George who had lived with them for twenty years and had been such a nuisance that he almost succeeded in wrecking their marriage. “There is something I have to say to you, dear.” said the man. “If it hadn’t been for my love for you I wouldn’t have put up with your Uncle George for a single day.” “My Uncle George!” she exclaimed in horror. “I thought he was your Uncle George!” 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
Assumptions: A couple of hunters chartered a plane to fly them into forest territory. Two weeks later the pilot came to take them back. He took a look at the animals they had shot and said, “This plane won’t take more than one wild buffalo. You’ll have to leave the other behind.” “But last year the pilot let us take two in a plane this size,” the hunters protested. The pilot was doubtful, but finally he said, “Well, if you did it last year I guess we can do it again.” So the plane took off w
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@petergec
4 months ago
Three wise men set out on a journey for, even though they were considered wise in their own country, they were humble enough to hope that travel would broaden their minds. They had barely crossed into a neighboring country when they saw a skyscraper in the distance. What could this enormous object be, they asked themselves? The obvious answer would have been: go up and find out. But no, that might be too dangerous. Suppose it was something that exploded as one approached? It was altogether wise
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@petergec
4 months ago
A great religious persecution broke out in the land and the three Pillars of religion, Scripture, Worship and Charity appeared before God to express their fear that, if religion was stamped out, they would cease to exist. “Not to worry,” said the Lord. “I plan to send One to earth who is greater than all of you.” “By what name is this Great One called?” “Self-knowledge.” said God. “He will do greater things than any of you have done.” 🙂
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@petergec
4 months ago
Once upon a time there was a forest where the birds sang by day and the insects by night. Trees flourished, flowers bloomed and all manner of creatures roamed about in freedom. And all who entered there were led to Solitude which is the home of God who dwells in Nature’s silence and Nature’s beauty. But then the Age of Unconsciousness arrived when it became possible for people to construct buildings a thousand feet high and to destroy rivers and forests and mountains in a month. So houses of w
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@petergec
4 months ago
When the Master invited the Governor to practise meditation and the Governor said he was too busy, this is the reply he got: “You put me in mind of a man walking blind-folded into the jungle-and too busy to take the blindfold off.” When the Governor pleaded lack of time, the Master said, “It is a mistake to think that meditation cannot be practised for lack of time. The real cause is agitation of the mind.” 🙂 An efficiency expert was making his report to Henry Ford. “As you well see, sir, the
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@petergec
5 months ago
A monk was walking in the monastery grounds one day when he heard a bird sing. He listened, spellbound. It seemed to him that never before had he heard, but really heard, the song of a bird. When the singing stopped he returned to the monastery and discovered, to his dismay, that he was a stranger to his fellow monks, and they to him. It was only gradually that they and he discovered that he was returning after centuries. Because his listening was total, time had stopped and he had slipped into
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@petergec
5 months ago
There was once a woman who was religious and devout and filled with love for God. Each morning she would go to Church. And on her way children would call out to her, beggars would accost her, but so immersed was she in her devotions that she did not even see them. Now one day she walked down the street in her customary manner and arrived at the church just in time for service. She pushed the door, but it would not open. She pushed it again harder, and found the door was locked. Distressed at t
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@petergec
5 months ago
The Muslim mystic, Farid, was prevailed upon by his neighbours to go to the court in Delhi and obtain a favour from Akbar for the village. Farid walked into the court and found Akbar at his prayers: When the Emperor finally emerged, Farid asked. “What sort of prayer did you make?” “I prayed that the All-Merciful would bestow success and wealth and long life on me,” was the reply. Farid promptly turned his back on the Emperor and walked away, remarking, “I came to see an Emperor. What I find here
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@petergec
5 months ago
A man went to see a psychiatrist and said that every night he was visited by a twelve-foot dragon with three heads. He was a nervous wreck, could not sleep at all and was on the verge of total collapse. He had even thought of suicide. “I think I can help you,” said the psychiatrist, “but I must warn you that it will take a year or two and will cost three thousand dollars.” “Three thousand dollars!” the man exclaimed. “Forget it! I’ll just go home and make friends with it.” 🙂
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@petergec
5 months ago
A rabbi once asked a pupil what was bothering him. “My poverty,” was the reply. “So wretched is my condition that I can hardly study and pray.” “In this day and age,” said the rabbi, “the finest prayer and the finest study lie in accepting life exactly as you find it.” 🙂 On a bitterly cold day a rabbi and his disciples were huddled around a fire. One of the disciples echoing his master’s teachings, said, “On a freezing day like this I know exactly what to do!” “What?” asked the others. “Keep w
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@petergec
5 months ago
Once the Master was at prayer. The disciples came up to him and said, “Sir, teach us how to pray.” This is how he taught them.... Two men were once walking through a field when they saw an angry bull. Instantly they made for the nearest fence with the bull in hot pursuit. It soon became evident to them that they were not going to make it, so one man shouted to the other, “We’ve had it! Nothing can save us. Say a prayer. Quick!” The other shouted back, “I’ve never prayed in my life and I don’t h
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@petergec
5 months ago
The Moghul Emperor, Akbar, was one day out hunting in the forest. When it was time for evening prayer he dismounted, spread his mat on the earth and knelt to pray in the manner of devout Muslims everywhere. Now it was precisely at this time that a peasant woman, perturbed by the disappearance of her husband who had left home that morning and hadn’t returned, went rushing by, anxiously searching for her husband. In her preoccupation she did not notice the kneeling figure of the Emperor and tripp
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@petergec
5 months ago
An old man would sit motionless for hours on end in church. One day a priest asked him what God talked to him about. “God doesn’t talk. He just listens,” was his reply. “Well, then what do you talk to him about?” “I don’t talk either. I just listen.” The four stages of Prayer; I talk, you listen. You talk, I listen. Neither talks, both listen. Neither talks, neither listens: Silence 🙂 The Sufi Bayazid Bistami describes his progress in the art of prayer: “The first time I visited the Kaaba
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@petergec
5 months ago
A priest observed a woman sitting in the empty church with her head in her hands. An hour passed. Then two. Still she was there. Judging her to be a soul in distress, and eager to be of assistance, he went up to the woman and said. “Is there any way I can be of help?” “No, thank you. Father.” she said. “I’ve been getting all the help I need.” Until you interrupted! 🙂
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@petergec
5 months ago
So intolerable had Hitler’s persecution of the Jews become that two Jews decided to assassinate him. They mounted guard, their guns at the ready, at a spot by which they knew the Fuehrer was to pass. He was long in coming and a horrible thought occurred to Samuel. “Joshua.” he said, “say a prayer that nothing’s happened to the man!” 🙂 They had made it their custom to invite their pious aunt to go with them on their picnic each year. This year they forgot. When the invitation did come at the la
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@petergec
5 months ago
Of prayers and prayers: 🙂 Grandmother: “Do you say your prayers every night?” Grandson: “Oh, yes!” “And every morning?” “No. I’m not scared in the daytime.” 🙂 Pious old lady, after the war: “God was very good to us. We prayed and prayed, so all the bombs fell on the other side of the town!” 🙂
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@petergec
5 months ago
A pious old man prayed five times a day while his business partner never set foot in church. And now, on his eightieth birthday he prayed thus: “Oh Lord our God! Since I was a youth not a day have I allowed to pass without coming to church in the morning and saying my prayers at the five specified times. Not a single move, not one decision, important or trifling did I make without first invoking your Name. And now, in my old age, I have doubled my exercises of piety and pray to you ceaselessly,
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@petergec
5 months ago
One day Mulla Nasruddin saw the village schoolmaster leading a group of children towards the mosque. “What are you taking them there for?” he asked. “There is a drought in the land,” said the teacher, “and we trust that the cries of the innocent will move the heart of the Almighty.” “It isn’t the cries, whether innocent or criminal, that count,” said the Mulla, “but wisdom and awareness.” “How dare you make such a blasphemous statement in the presence of these children!” cried the teacher.
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@petergec
5 months ago
It’s no good having our prayers answered If they are not answered at the right time: In ancient India much store was set by the Vedic rites which were said to be so scientific in their application that when the sages prayed for rain there was never any drought. It is thus that a man set himself to pray, according to these rites, to the goddess of wealth, Lakshmi, begging her to make him rich. He prayed to no effect for ten long years, after which period of time, he suddenly saw the illusory na
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@petergec
5 months ago
An elderly woman who was an enthusiastic gardener declared that she had no faith whatsoever in predictions that some day scientists would learn to control the weather. According to her all that was needed to control the weather was prayer. Then one summer, while she was away on a foreign trip, a drought hit the land and wiped out her entire garden. She was so upset when she got back that she changed her religion. She should have changed her silly beliefs. 🙂
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@petergec
5 months ago
The village priest was a holy man so each time the people were in trouble they had recourse to him. He would then withdraw to a special place in the forest and say a special prayer. God would always hear his prayer and the village would be helped. When he died and the people were in trouble they had recourse lo his successor who was not a holy man but knew the secret of the special place in the forest and the special prayer. So he said. “Lord, you know I am not a holy man. But surely you are no
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@petergec
5 months ago
🙂
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@petergec
5 months ago
It is the custom among Catholics to confess their sins to a priest and receive absolution from him as a sign of God’s forgiveness. Now all too often there is the danger that penitents will use this as a sort of guarantee, a certificate that will protect them from divine retribution, thereby placing more trust in the absolution of the priest than in the mercy of God. This is what Perugini, an Italian painter of the Middle Ages, was tempted to do when he was dying. He decided that he would not go
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@petergec
5 months ago
A Hasidic tale: Late one evening a poor farmer on his way back from the market found himself without his prayer book. The wheel of his cart had come off right in the middle of the woods and it distressed him that this day should pass without his having said his prayers. So this is the prayer he made: “I have done something very foolish, Lord. I came away from home this morning without my prayer book and my memory is such that I cannot recite a single prayer without it. So this is what I am goin
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@petergec
5 months ago
A cobbler came to Rabbi Isaac of Ger and said. “Tell me what to do about my morning prayer. My customers are poor men who have only one pair of shoes. I pick up their shoes late in the evening and work on them most of the night; at dawn there is still work to be done if the men are to have their shoes ready before they go to work. Now my question is: What should I do about my morning prayer?” “What have you been doing till now?” the Rabbi asked. “Sometimes I rush through the prayer quickly and
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@petergec
5 months ago
From the Lives of the Desert Fathers: Abbot Lot came to Abbot Joseph and said, “Father, according to my capacity I keep my little rule and my little fast, my prayer, my meditation, my contemplative silence; and according as I am able I cleanse my heart of evil thoughts. Now what more should I do?’ The elder stood up in reply. He stretched out his hand to heaven and his fingers became fire ten lamps of fire. He said: “This: become totally changed into fire.” 🙂
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@petergec
5 months ago
After many years of labour an inventor discovered the art of making fire. He took his tools to the snow-clad northern regions and initiated a tribe into the art-and the advantages-of making fire. The people became so absorbed in this novelty that it did not occur to them to thank the inventor who one day quietly slipped away. Being one of those rare human beings endowed with greatness, he had no desire to be remembered or revered; all he sought was the satisfaction of knowing that someone had be
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@petergec
5 months ago
🙂 A Hasidic tale: The Jews of a small town in Russia were eagerly awaiting the arrival of a Rabbi. This was going to be a rare event so they spent a lot of time preparing the questions they were going to put to the holy man. When he finally arrived and they met with him in the town hall, he could sense the tension in the atmosphere as all prepared to listen to the answers he had for them. He said nothing at first; he just gazed into their eyes, and hummed a haunting melody. Soon everyone be
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@petergec
5 months ago
THE PRAYER OF THE FROG - PART ONE AUTHOR Anthony de Mello ... 🙂 When Brother Bruno was at prayer one night he was disturbed by the croaking of a bullfrog. All his attempts to disregard the sound were unsuccessful so he shouted from his window, “Quiet! I’m at my prayers.” Now Brother Bruno was a saint so his command was instantly obeyed. Every living creature held its voice so as to create a silence that would be favourable to prayer. But now another sound intruded on Bruno’s worshi
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