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Philosophy Funtime - The Two Monks and the Girl

..."A senior monk and a junior monk were traveling together. At one point, they came to a river with a strong current. As the monks were preparing to cross the river, they saw a very young and beautiful woman also attempting to cross. The young woman asked if they could help her.

The senior monk carried this woman on his shoulder, forded the river and let her down on the other bank. The junior monk was very upset, but said nothing.

They both were walking and senior monk noticed that his junior was suddenly silent and enquired “Is something the matter, you seem very upset?”

The junior monk replied, “As monks, we are not permitted a woman, how could you then carry that woman on your shoulders?”

The senior monk replied, “I set the woman down a long time ago at the bank. However, you seem to be carrying her still.”

Comments from source http://workingwithinsight.wordpress.com/2007/03/13/two-monks... :

The older monk, his mind free, saw the situation, responded to it, and continued to be present to the next step after letting the woman down.

The younger monk was bound by ideas, held on to them for hours, and, in doing so, missed the experiences of the next part of the journey.

additional comments from me

It is easier to get forgiveness than permission.

Finding an exception in the rulebook might be impossible. But getting forgiveness once a deed is done is much easier, as it is indeed the only rational thing to do. And this is because

People always decide to do what they feel is the right thing to do, with the information they have available to them at the time

No one ever decides to do what they think is the wrong thing to do, against their own self-interests. Every crime has a justification. Even suicide is rationalized as the 'best possible solution' to a problem.

This one's really going out on a limb, but,

Is there an objective standard of goodness and badness? Is following the rules 'good or bad' if they're 'bad' rules?

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This analogy leads to the conclusion that guilt is false...

This analogy leads to the conclusion that guilt is false.

It may well be.

How many of us carry our guilts around with us like wearing a 100 pound back-pack through life?

Isn't this Christ's message from the cross?

Thanks for that - another example of east and west meeting...

be they as far apart as the north is from the south.

Tweeting occasionally as himself @cudnoski on the twitter.