The Man With Important Friends
Once upon a time there was a man who, when he left home every morning, would tell his two wives that he wouldn't be home for lunch or dinner. He had to meet with some important business friends, or some high-ranking government officials, and they would wine and dine him after the meeting. Every night he would come home full and drunk, and would brag about how great the banquet was, or about the important people he had met at dinner.
One day his wives were discussing his activities. "You know," one of them said, "We have heard so much from our husband about his important business friends, don't you think it strange that we have never seen any of them, and that they never visit him at home" The other wife agreed, and so they decided to secretly follow him the next day when he went out, and find out where he met his friends.
The next morning, as usual, the husband told his wives that he had to go out and meet his friends on some business, and off he went. His wives waited a minute, and then followed him, being careful so that he wouldn't see them.
They followed him as he went to the east side of the city. They were a little surprised to notice that not even one person greeted him. When he reached a gate in the city wall, he wandered around in front of the wineshop for a while, watching the people gambling.
He stayed there almost all morning, and then left the city. The wives were amazed to see their husband go the the cemetery. At the cemetery were groups of people who had come to bury their dead, and according to Chinese custom, partake of food and wine in honor of the dead.
The wives were even more surprised to see their husband join the beggars, and stand in line for handouts after the banquets. Now, they finally realized what their husband really meant when he talked about attending banquets with important, high-ranking people. They went home very sad and disappointed.
When the wives returned home they cried and cried. They finally realized just what kind of a man they had married. What kind of a life was this What kind of a future did they face Later that afternoon, their husband came home, drunk and with a full stomach. Again, he bragged about the important friend who had treated him to a fine meal in a fancy restaurant. He did not know that his wives knew his secret.
Friends, what do you think of this man In order to protect your dignity and pride, have your ever done something similar Is the face you show people the real you, or is it only a mask Sometimes, when you keep lying and cheating, you can get used to it, and not feel ashamed any more. Then you have a thick mask on your face, and you will never be able to get it off.
Dr. Yang has been involved in Chinese Gongfu since 1961 and has more than thirty years of instructional experience. Dr. Yang has published twenty-four books and twenty-eight videotapes on the martial arts and Qigong. Currently he is president of Yang's Oriental Arts Association, Boston, MA.