For all of us Monks: Celebrate!

For all of us Monks: Celebrate! Let’s Enjoy this Fun Story with Wise Advice on Perfection from Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Perfection can be found not far away – even in this rose that grows in our garden.

Truth hidden in Humor & Brilliant Saint-Exupery Quote

A young monk arrives at the monastery. He is assigned to helping the other monks in copying the old canons and laws of the church by hand.

He notices, however, that all of the monks are copying from copies, not from the original manuscript. So, the new monk goes to the head Abbot to question this, pointing out that if someone made even a small error in the first copy, it would never be picked up! In fact, that error would be continued in all of the subsequent copies.

The head monk,says,’We have been copying from the copies for centuries, but you make a good point, my son.’

He goes down into the dark caves underneath the monastery where the original manuscripts are held as archives in a locked vault that hasn’t been opened for hundreds of years.

Hours go by and nobody sees the old Abbot.

So, the young monk gets worried and goes down to look for him.

He sees him banging his head against the wall and wailing.
‘We missed the R ! We missed the R !We missed the R !’
His forehead is all bloody and bruised and he is sobbing sobbing uncontrollably. The young monk asks the old abbot, ‘What’s wrong, father?’

With A choking voice, the old abbot replies, ‘The word was…


The sincere hope is that everyone sees what is sahaj in the story – that includes the truth and the hope and the humor – and one can realize that the message is universal and it applies specially to this category of people: the Seekers.

In our keen desire to “do what is right” we might often become artificial and we end-up excluding Life from our life. Thanks to my friend George that emailed me the above story. And I just remembered this amazing quote from Antoine de Saint-Exupery, a writer I love (make sure you read The Little Prince – definitely is not only a children’s book):

“In anything at all, PERFECTION is finally attained not when there is no longer anything to add, but when there is no longer anything to take away.” Antoine de Saint -Exupery

So, dear friends, let’s not remove anything that was built-in, specially the “R” from the word that is so important in the essential sahaj sentence: “Let’s celebRate Life by becoming the Spirit!”


(click!) Answers from The Joy Giving Association to: What is Life for?! What kills Joy?!

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This Post Has 25 Comments

  1. annika

    good story 😉

  2. Elke Wirth

    Thank you, Ioana! I never new anything from Saint-Exupery other than The Little Prince, which I love. What a humorous and deep soul!
    I love this cartoon!


  3. armaity

    What a wonderful story ! How often human beings think anything to do with spirituality and religion has to be serious and funless, whereas it is just the opposite— full of joy and humour celebrating life itself.

  4. Nardina Néopatra

    Hi Ioana,

    This cartoon is hilarious yet sad for the old monk and his predecessors who spent their whole lives making big sacrifices and suffering needlessly, when the essence of the Divine is Love, Peace, Hope and Joy in all its myriad of forms. Quite an eye opener for 2010!

    Thanks to you and George.

  5. A.K.Jha

    Thanks for sharing good message.

  6. Rabi Ghosh

    That is why it is said in English to take special care of ‘p”q’ and ‘r’in life. also it speaks to take care on dotting the ‘i’ s and crossing the ‘t’s. But ‘Sahaja’ is so sahaja. The essence itself is pivotal on message of ‘love’ and foundation is ‘truth’. So enjoy…whatever and enjoy the good sense of humors , it adds grace to our lives . Don’t get into the mess it says. Just be simple, soft and sweet as this story is. It is humorous and tickles quite a bit of smile from our dried lips.Our body,mind and Spirit at times needs a big laugh or even smiles all the while to make us more charming and attractive and be away from drab and poor sense of projection.
    Thank you Ioana . You made my day. I will laugh again whenever I remember this cartoon.Because the essence is fantastic.

  7. adrian

    I am reminded once again that… “all there is to know will be revealed, when we have nothing left to let go off”… that is what it means to be realized or awake… so our humour, smiles and laughter are already there to be enjoyed; just let go what isn’t necessary… like the word… “celebate”… because we didn’t REMEMBER the “r”.

    1. adrian


  8. Avi

    So Fantastic 🙂

  9. C L Patel

    Generally we do not laugh without any fun but when we see something going wrong and we know that it is wrong and we watch others doing wrong and we are helpless to correct then we laugh and also feel pity.

    In TV i saw many A gurus making fool of his followers by singing dancing and lecturing about God.And they are also enjoying all the fun of their gurus.

    i could not stop laughing myself but at the sometime i felt sad that where are they going? The gurus are deceiving themselves as well so many innocent followers to ultimately go nowhere.

    i prayed to God. O lord! give them wisdom to enjoy the Truth of Sahaja and not to lose the precious life in false pursuit.
    We have to colorize our cloth and make it spotlessly shining white.
    Let us celebrate our spirit and make the whole world celebrate too.

  10. Ruthvick

    I recently learnt something nice from an 80s talk that is totally relevant. Chastity is NOT about asceticism, Chastity is respecting the self, the being. Just clarified so many things!

    1. Ioana

      Love that movie indeed 🙂 ; yes that’s on the same page with this article

    2. Ioana

      yes, that subject facinated me as well because it is so easily misunderstood and put into a box. There is also a talk on the Lord of Yoga quite powerful, with connections to left aspect of Vishuddhi chakra as well the root chakra.. That’s the word: Fascinating!

      1. anjali

        Dear ioana. Just off the top of your head any idea exactly which talk it is? I would really like to absorb it.
        Thanks love. Anjali

  11. Ayesha nadeem

    I love this and realy want CELEBRATE life and knowing myself better

  12. Shashidhar

    Good one Iona, we R enlightened!

    In the same vein, suggest the movie ‘Sister Act’ (Whoopie Goldberg)…

  13. Elsie

    Great to see humour in a religious setting. I enjoyed this cartoon.

  14. Debbie

    Very cute with a good message – who says that humour cannot exist in spirituality!

    Lots of love always.

  15. Chandra Sekhar

    Eye opener for many of us who may be still carrying ritualism, fanaticism and “I’ ism.

    1. adrian kraayeveld

      Interesting thought Chandra…

      These words…
      Ritualism, fanaticism…!!!
      They have meanings…
      And ways of being interpreted…
      Understandings and assumptions…
      And otherwise…

      Would make for an interesting collective conversation…
      To clarify the “I isms”… as you say…

      So here is my question…

      Did Jesus set himself up to be ritualized or was he simply a story teller who was showing us a truely human Way to Be?

  16. Elsie Kuly

    Antoine de Saint-Exupery defined perfection well. The cartoon adds humour in a religious setting

  17. Sahaj

    Mere copy n paste will not help in assent as it’s not a cult but a living science. Loved the story carried a message with humour. Thanks for sharing.

  18. Kruti

    Loved the post. Humourous, but so true.

  19. NITI

    Very hilarious article with the very subtle message that R should not be missing from our lives because of some error and just because we are copying that error by simply blindly coping them withouth knowing the truth,which is our trueself. Thanks Ioana

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