Misinterpretation - Poem by chandra thiagarajan
A sage saw from his abode
Two men intently discussing
With one another in just sign mode
And one suddenly the other punching.
The first man raised one finger
The other raised two fingers
The first, in consequence, closed his fingers
In a fist cupping all his fingers.
The second man gave a blow
And hit at both his eyes
While the first was aghast at the show
Of his attack in a trice.
The sage though illuminated
Couldn’t understand their huffs
And asked the first man who was affected
To explain the reason for their fisticuffs.
He said “I indicated, that The Buddha is one
For which the other showed two fingers
Denoting that Buddha and his teachings are two –not one-
In the form of a fist I closed my fingers
To connote that Buddha and his teachings
Are all included in the world as the fingers closed
For which the other man gave this smashing—
I don’t know why he thus opposed”!
The sage asked the second man
As to why he smashed his eyes
To which he replied-“that man
Showed one finger, indicating I had one eye
For which I raised two fingers
To show he had two eyes
But he showed his fist with closed fingers
That he’d punch me with no compromise.
So I smashed him with a blow
And ruined both his eyes
For his daring mean act so low
To threaten me with despise”.
For one and the same act
With no perception of the underlying thought
How different people react
And misinterpret distraught! !
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