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The original text is in Chinese. I translated this into English to share with you. It is very simple, yet holds a much deeper meaning. A very easy thing to understand, but also a very easy thing to forget. The original text can be found here.
This is an empty bottle.
If you pour the water in, then the bottle contains water.
But if you put trash in the bottle, then the bottle is full of trash.
What is man?
Man is not particularly anything.
Man is a mere empty bottle.
You are like this bottle.
Whatever you do, good or bad, fills up the bottle.
If your heart is filled with kindness, passion, sincerity, and thankfulness, then the bottle, which represents your life, will be filled with sunshine.
If you are facing many conflicts, you should try to find your shortcomings and remedy them.
The faults of others will disappear with your endurance.
If your life has other people in it, you will have more empathy.
You will not just put yourself first.
You will not just do things for yourself only.
You will let others feel your warmth.
If you care about other people, they will do likewise.
Moreover, you will receive more than you give.
If you enlarge your heart, you will not be affected by gossip, fighting, and greed.
Nor will the on and off promotion and demotion of the world affect you.
It will not block your wise eye.
You will feel like nothing bothers you.
You can be calm, and enjoy the beauty of life.
Otherwise, your heart is filled with the seed of hatred.
This seed will only grow, and bud, and blossom into a flower.
Consequently, you will be consumed with hate.
Then, you hurt yourself first.
If your heart is filled with jealousy, manipulation, and greed, then you can never get out of this narrow mindset.
You will only complain to the heavens and the earth in your single-track mind.
Your friends will decrease in numbers.
In the end, you will be alone.
If your heart is filled with your career, your stocks, and your houses, you have no choice but to struggle to run your journey in this material world.
Even though all those things will keep appearing in your heart, you have to chase them endlessly until you have lost your spiritual being.
The material things are not brought into us in this world, nor are they taken with us.
In the end, we may depart from this world with regret, empty handed.
Your fate and success are not determined by your appearance or your height.
It’s up to what you have in your heart.
If your heart is filled with beauty, your life will be beautiful.
If your heart is content with health, then you will have good health.
If your heart is filled with beauty, then it shows in your outer appearance.
If your heart is filled with energy, then your body is also filled with energy.
If your heart is filled with joy or happiness, then your life will be filled with joy and happiness.
If your heart is filled with confidence, then your life will be the same thing.
In the realm of life and the future of life, people always see a fog.
Actually, it is in front of you and it is up to you.
Destiny comes from the heart.
If it is in your heart, your appearance and destiny will reflect what is in your heart.
We are all like an empty bottle. Whatever is in your heart is what you will receive.
CNN recently published a short documentary about two elderly Chinese men, Jia Haixia and Jia Wenqi.
Haixia lost his eyesight sixteen years ago and Wenqi had both arms amputated as a child.
In 2001, the two friends decided to plant trees in a nearby forest, which had become a wasteland.
The friends help one another through their individual difficulties.
Haixia rolls up Wenqui’s pants as they prepare to cross the river, and Wenqui carries Haixia on his back.
The men use the branches they cut down as saplings, saving money by not buying new seeds.
Wenqui holds the bucket with his toes while Haixia plants the saplings.
From 2002 to today, over tens of thousands of trees have been planted, transforming the wasteland into 50 acres of greenery. Haixia says, “I am his hands. He is my eyes.”
Two old people say do not cut down a tree; it should be left to future generations.
CNN has covered the two friends’ journey in transforming what was once a barren wasteland to a beautiful forest.
Unfortunately, the forest the pair had worked so hard to build for over a decade flooded and was destroyed in July. However, Mother Nature cannot stop the pair. This obstacle has only made them stronger, as their testimony is full of heart.
Lauren Levy of Popsugar recently published an article documenting the kindness of humanity. It always gives me a lot of energy to read an article about the act of kindness. Whenever you witness an act of kindness, it is something truly special. This is a story that gives me warmth, and reminds me that we are all on this earth together and interconnected. We all need to help one another, especially with all the chaos in the world right now. May this article serve as a torch to rekindle the love in your heart. The article can be found here.
“After Tawny Nelson’s car broke down at night in the pouring rain with her four young daughters crying in the back, countless people just drove by as she begged for help.
The single mother of four explained that things had been rough since her partner left — her vehicle was in such bad shape that she only drove if absolutely necessary and her cell phone was disconnected. She and her children desperately needed groceries so they made a quick trip to the store. However, one of her girls accidentally left a light on in the car and they returned to a completely drained battery. “I must have asked more than twenty people in the course of two hours for a jump,” she wrote to Frank Somerville, which he shared on his Facebook page. “They all ignored me. Not even a no. [They] just acted like I didn’t exist.”
As her newborn screamed, her 2-year-old cried from hunger, and her 9-year-old desperately tried to help, Tawny described that she started to break down herself. “I was bawling and felt like the worst Mom ever,” she recalled.
At that moment, a 74-year-old man with a bad limp knocked on the window. He handed her a plate of food and bottles of water for her family and let her know that a tow truck was on its way and that his wife was going to drive them home. The next day, the gentleman returned to her house with a mechanic and they made multiple repairs to her car.
After the kind stranger left, Tawny asked the mechanic if she could set up a payment plan, but he informed her that the man had already taken care of the bill.
“He said that the only payment the older man wanted was for me to never give up and keep being an amazing mom,” Tawny wrote. “I’ve never cried so hard in my life. Things had been absolutely awful, more so than I care to explain, and without knowing us or our situation this kind man helped us in ways he will never know.”
Tawny is grateful to the man for restoring her faith in humanity when she says she was falling apart. And while she knows that she can never repay him — he wouldn’t even take a hug — she hopes to one day do for another what he did for her.”
I would like to share with you this heartfelt story. I am sure it will brighten your day, just as it brightens mine.
The original article can be found here.
When a family was seated at his table, this waiter had no idea what they had just been through.
The young waiter had no knowledge that they had just left the hospital, where baby Ellee had spent time enduring tests. He didn’t know that her mom, Dallas French, had barely slept over the past month. All he could see was a hungry baby whose mom accidentally spilled the bottle she was trying to make to soothe her daughter’s tears — and that was enough.
Instead of showing frustration at the commotion, this kind server at Olive Garden immediately took action. Ignoring the messy spill that took place just as he served their food, the waiter sat to feed Dallas’s little girl so that the exasperated mom could have a chance to eat her own food. Although she didn’t catch his name, Dallas shared a powerful photo of the man, along with the touching story, on Facebook.
“He fed her, I ate my salad and bread sticks, and that milk on the floor got cleaned up after we left because he just understood!” Dallas wrote. “He didn’t even know what we had went through that day and showed us love and understanding — not irritated that I had made a mess and my baby was screaming . . . “
This man could sense exactly what her family needed and was kind enough to assist in any and every way he could.
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In the Song dynasty, there lived a famous author, inventor, and statesman, Su Tung-po (Su Shi). He was respected for his essays and calligraphy art and was good friends with a monk. They often gathered to discuss Buddhist works, as Su respected the monk’s opinion. One day, Su wrote what he thought was an excellent poem. Proud of himself, he sent a messenger to the monk’s temple and asked for comments on the poem. It read, “I bow to the greatest Buddha and receive the baptism of this light. I am as peaceful as Buddha on the lotus flower – so calm and so steady. Nothing can move me at all, not even the eight winds.”
There are “eight winds” in Buddhism: prosperity, decline, disgrace, honor, praise, censure, suffering and pleasure. Su thought his poem stated that he was immune to the eight winds. In reality, the monk felt he tried to boast of his accomplishments and compare himself to Buddha. After reading the poem, the monk laughed. He wrote to Su the Chinese equivalent of “BS.”
Su thought the monk would praise him for what he wrote. Instead, when he opened his correspondence, he became furious. He made his way over to the temple to yell at the monk. When he went to the Jin San Temple where the monk resided, the door was locked. A piece of paper hung on the door, and it read, “8 winds would not have blown you here. But the BS brought you here.”
Jin San Temple news.takungpao.com.hk
It is easy to think that we have already achieved understanding, as Su Shi believed. However, had he attained it, he would not have been swayed to express his grievances with the monk.