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John Taylor

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June 1st, 2006

(no subject) [Jun. 1st, 2006|11:28 pm]
John Taylor
The Giver Should Be Thankful

While Seisetsu was the master of Engaku in Kamakura he required larger quarters, since those in which he was teaching were overcrowded. Umezu Seibei, a merchant of Edo, decided to donate five hundred pieces of gold called ryo toward the construction of a more commodious school. This money he brought to the teacher.

Seisetsu said: "All right. I will take it."

Umezu gave Seisetsu the sack of gold, but he was dissatisfied with the attitude of the teacher. One might live a whole year on three ryo, and the merchant had not even been thanked for five hundred.

"In that sack are five hundred ryo," hinted Umezu.

"You told me that before," replied Seisetsu.

"Even if I am a wealthy merchant, five hundred ryo is a lot of money," said Umezu.

"Do you want me to thank you for it?" asked Seisetsu.

"You ought to," replied Uzemu.

Why should I?" inquired Seisetsu. "The giver should be thankful."
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(no subject) [Jun. 1st, 2006|11:30 pm]
John Taylor
[mood |A faded elemental]
[music |None]

There are many things in my life that I am grateful for, and one thing lately in particular. This thing has changed me, has blessed me, has molded me, has refined me. Without this thing, I would be less complete, I would be less. Simply less. And this thing I have, it is something that will never leave me. It is a gift. And I will honor it with everything that I am. I will guard the ideals this thing stood for. I will live in respect of this one thing, in awe of the change it has left in my life.

What does it mean to do honor to something? To respect, or to be grateful for something? To property, to a person, to an ideal, to a location, or memory. I am grateful, I am blessed with what I have.

It is for this reason that I do my best to help others. This is how I honor something, how I respect it. I've been given so much. I appreciate what I have, although I need reminders at times. I always hope that others value what they have, and try to remind them to remember those things they are blessed with, the things we all take for granted. Clean air. Shelter. Food. Cars. Education. Safety. Peace. Despite having all these things, we think we're entitled to more, always more. In this lust for gaining more, we simply do not make do with the things we already have. We gain status and privilege and responsibility and rights without realizing and without earning it, but we're indignant if we lose something we think we deserve.

Even if I ever lose everything that I have, I have still had those good things in my life. I've had my family, my friends, my experiences, my dreams, my ambitions, my loves, my possessions. For one moment in my life, I had them. The memory lives on and these memories have made me into a person that will look back with reverence at my past. It is these things in my life that cause me to want to make the present and the future that much better, to share some of what I've enjoyed already; that because I was so blessed, I can endure just one more moment of hardship or tackle one more challenge. I've had my reward already.

This is why I will never give up.
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