Buddha walks up to a hot dog stand. “What’ll it be?” the vendor asks. Buddha says “One with everything,” and slides over a ten-dollar bill. Vendor hands Buddha a hot dog but no change. “Where’s my change?” Buddha asks. Vendor says, “Change must come from within.”
Which reminds me of a true story:
When I first got into martial arts I was a sponge for everything the master said. One Saturday when the studio was slow and there weren’t many people around, he pulled me aside and asked me into his office. I was ecstatic. Surely I was about to receive an incredible nugget of wisdom, some secret teaching. I stood there in his small, cramped office quivering with anticipation. He went behind his desk, opened the drawer, and reached inside. What was he about to show me? An ancient artifact? An arcane diagram or obscure book of wisdom? Was he going to ask me to snatch a pebble from his hand?
What happened next is etched in my mind forever. He pulled a ten-dollar bill out of the desk and handed it to me. “Here,” he said. “You go Fuddrucker. Small hot dog, no fries. Okay?”
It turned out that my Taekwondo master, despite his broken English, wasn’t the Asian stereotype I thought he was. He was just a very intelligent, skilled, dedicated and hard-working man who wanted some lunch.
I, on the other hand, was an idiot.
Allow situations to teach you, no matter how mundane, unexpected, funny or downright peculiar they may be. Pay attention and you may learn something.