Changing Perspective & Living Together

Below is a morning meditation that was given by Ahmek Director, Greg Alibisser, this past summer.

Summer Camp for Boys











Once an unhappy young man came to an old master and told that he had a very sad life and asked for a solution. The old Master instructed the unhappy young man to put a handful of salt in a glass of water and then to drink it.

“How does it taste?” – the Master asked.

“Terrible.” – spat the apprentice.

The Master chuckled and then asked the young man to take another handful of salt and put it in the lake. The two walked in silence to the nearby lake where the apprentice swirled his handful of salt into the lake.

The old man said, “Now drink from the lake.”

As the water dripped down the young man’s chin, the Master asked, “How does it taste?”

“Good!” – remarked the apprentice.

“Do you taste the salt?” – asked the Master.

“No.” – said the young man.

The Master sat beside this troubled young man, took his hands, and said, “The pain of life is pure salt; no more, no less. The amount of pain in life remains the same, exactly the same. But the amount we taste the ‘pain’ depends on the container we put it into. So when you are in pain, the only thing you can do is to enlarge your sense of things. Stop being a glass. Become a lake.”

The reality in this life is that we all have trials and challenges. For some people maybe those are physical, for others emotional, for others maybe we struggle with stress, homesickeness, relationships etc. The fact remains that each of us in life experiences suffering in some way or other – no one is exempt. But how we approach that “pain” is what makes the difference.

Don’t be that person who bottles up the negative and holds onto it, instead let go of what is negative in your life, let it disperse among what is positive and good in your life. If you are able to take a deep breath and release what troubles you, you will find that life becomes easier, if not a bit more palatable.

Sometimes we get wrapped up in our own lives, our own experiences and we forget to consider, to look outside of that and see how we impact others. We sometimes do things that impact others without even knowing it – ie taking seconds before everyone has had firsts; waking others up, disrupting peace.

We live in a community. Because of the tight quarters we have the potential to affect the experience of those around us. Consider the impact of your actions. Consider how the words and actions affect others.

When you consider others, everyone benefits.

Think about putting others first.