Flash Fiction:The Good Shepherd by Manatita. A Dedication to Smilealot
As far back as he could remember, Shaynani had always been a loving and wonderful child. His mother was beauty incarnate, and lived a life of service within; giving without. She never stopped praying. Shaynani gradually began to emulate his mother, and soon surpassed her in Love and longing for the One.
Yet his mind was restless. He had heard somewhere that, given the right circumstances and the right Spiritual Director, his Heart would be always full of ceaseless Joy. Yet he knew deep down, that something was essentially missing.
Two events eventually affected him and shaped his life. One day, while playing in the front yard of his parents’ house, he saw a man running after a young boy shouting:
“Thief! Thief! Stop! Stop! You forgot the diamond necklace!” Shaynani thought that this was an odd thing to say to a thief, and so he followed the man, who pretty soon caught up with the one who stole from him.
“O thief!” Said the man, with bated breath. “I know your circumstances. Your poor mother is starving, your sister is ill, and your father is not well, unable to work and lacks food. Please take this golden necklace.” The thief felt humbled, and began to cry. (Sob, sob).
“Old man,” he sighed. I cannot take your property. Please take them back.” And with this he began to empty his pockets and his vest, his bags … where ever he had jewellery hidden, which had been stolen from the old man.
Shaynani looked at all this and marvelled! It did not end there, for the old man, helping the thief to pick the jewels up, handed them to the boy, took him home to his parents, then invited them to dinner at his house. All this touched Shaynani deeply, and he felt a profound sense of Love in his Heart. He remembered a poem from his dear mother:
“A moment's truth
Can and shall make the world beautiful.
A moment's peace
Can and shall save the world.
A moment's love
Can and shall make the world perfect.” – Sri Chinmoy.
The next day, Shaynani was on his way home, when he saw what appeared to be a Holy man dressed in Habits, sitting in prayer and contemplation, on the banks of the river Neelee.
As Shaynani approached the man, he saw a scorpion moving along the banks towards him. The scorpion fell into the water, and quick as a flash, the Holy man came out of his prayer, picked it up, and put it on dry land. The scorpion stung him.
“Aauch!” Screamed the Holy man, and then went back to his prayer.
Once again the scorpion began to crawl along the river bank, and once more it fell into the water. The Holy man came out of his trance, and for the second time, he placed it on dry land. The scorpion, ever ungrateful, stung him yet a second time.
“Aauch!” Screamed the Holy man, returning to his prayerful Silence.
For the third time, the scorpion started his journey towards the river bank and, surprise, surprise, it fell into the water once again. This time Shaynani was watching keenly to see what the Holy man would do.
Yet again, he came out of his prayerful mode, picked up the scorpion gently, putting it on dry land. The scorpion stung him, one final time. Shaynani could take this no longer.
“You foolish man,” He said, addressing the Holy man. “Once, I could understand. Twice is unbearable. But three times!” He was now looking at the blood in the Holy man’s hands.
“Do you have a death-wish or something?”
The old man smiled, looked deep into the eyes and Heart of Shaynani, and spoke with much wisdom:
“Ah Ha! My beloved Disciple.” He said in a sweet, soft and melodious voice. “It is the nature of the scorpion to sting, and it is the nature of the Saint to Love. Just as the scorpion must follow its own nature, I, too, must follow mine.”
Shaynani looked at the Holy man, and this same feeling of Love he had felt before, began to envelop his Heart. Suddenly the old man felt familiar. From where, Shaynani did not know, but something about him, and indeed even Shaynani, began to change. As if reading Shaynani’s mind, the Holy man smiled and said:
“You saw me recently. For it was I who fed the boy and his parents in the form of an old man, and now I am feeding you, with inner Light and Bliss. This very day, I am accepting you as my disciple, for you are pure in Heart. Return home to your parents, and I shall visit you soon. All has been arranged.”
“Blessed are the pure in Heart, for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8 (KJV)
Shaynani felt his Heart leaped, and he was full of Joy and Delight. Dancing all the way to his parents’ home, the voice of the Saviour kept singing in his Soul:
“I am the good Shepherd. The good Shepherd giveth his life for the sheep …they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold and one Shepherd, and my father loves me, for I lay down my life, that I might take it up again …” John 10:11,16, 17 ..
He was now reborn, into a new and everlasting life.
-Manatita, The Lantern Carrier. Copyrighted. 15th October, 2015.
~ Awakening The Inner Light ~
The Good Shepherd
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My own inimitable embellishments from a very old spiritual story, of probably a few hundred years. Author unknown, but the words and style are all my own. So is the embellishments.
© 2015 manatita44
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