Compassion With an Umbrella

A Western Buddhist woman was in India, studying with her teacher. She was riding with another woman friend in a rickshaw-like carriage, when they were attacked by a man on the street. In the end, the attacker only succeeded in frightening the women, but the Buddhist woman was quite upset by the event and told her teacher so. She asked him what she should have done - what would have been the appropriate, Buddhist response.

The teacher said very simply, "You should have very mindfully and with great compassion whacked the attacker over the head with your umbrella."

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Comments (6)

  1. Bettymom

    I see. It’s all in your state of mind.

    February 16, 2017
    1. Munkyman

      & it is, sometimes the world leaves you no option, but self defense… as a Buddhist it’s your duty to look for the other options when they are present & to take what the world gives you as it aught be handled.

      February 16, 2017
      1. noahbody

        LOL! Yep.

        February 16, 2017
    2. noahbody


      February 16, 2017
  2. notthinking

    The attacker was lucky they were not Shaolin. There were many Samurai who practiced Rinzai Zen but few who were drawn to the Buddhist ways.

    This also reminds me of a story that I heard once. A Buddhist Monk was sitting in the park meditating when a rather disheveled-looking man who smelled horrible came over and sat next to him. After several minutes, the Monk stood and moved to a bench several meters away near a flower pot. One of his students walking to the market saw him do this and asked his teacher why he had moved away from the man? Did he not accept the present moment as it was? Did he have no compassion for the man? The Monk, his teacher said, “Sure, I have compassion for all. I accepted the moment as it was, I did not complain, I merely made an observation about my present moment and preferred the smell of roses.”

    February 16, 2017
    1. noahbody


      February 17, 2017