PureInsight | August 22, 2007
[PureInsight.org] In our daily
life, if we have no principles or ideas to follow, we are likely to be
influenced by our surroundings and give in to our desires. Thus we may
live a hundred years and still not be able to recognize our true self.
We may look strong from outside, but our inner world is very brittle.
Wise men all have their own opinions, so in an adverse environment,
they can uphold justice and conscience. During the journey of life,
they follow their principles and never give up their noble spirits.
The renowned philosopher Baruch de Spinoza believed that the soul
of a real wise man will not be disturbed. It follows the unchanging
nature and knows itself, divine beings, and things in the universe. It
lives forever and enjoys being truly content. Three hundred years ago,
the famous architect Christopher Laiyien was authorized to design the
British Fuzhou City Hall. After he applied his engineering knowledge
and years of experience, he skillfully designed a ceiling supported by
one pillar only. A year later, when the governmental officials
inspected the hall, they raised doubts about it and ordered him to add
a few more pillars.
Laiyien had confidence that one pillar was enough to ensure the safety
of the hall. However, his stubbornness infuriated the officials and he
almost ended up being taking to court. At that time he was facing a
dilemma: If he insisted on keeping to his idea, the city government
surely would find someone else to change or redesign the hall. If he
revised his design, he would violate his principles. In order to
follow his principles, he spent a considerable amount of time and made
a wise decision. He added four more pillar in the hall, but for show
only: none of them touched the ceiling. However, no one could
notice that they served only as decorative pieces.
No one discovered this secret for more than 300 years. A few years ago,
the city government was ready to renovate the city hall. They
discovered the four extra pillars. The news spread near and
far. Architects and tourists from all over the world came
to visit, so the city hall has turned into a tourist center. The
tourists did not come to appreciate Laiyien's ability, but his strength
of adhering to his principles under tremendous pressure instead. From
that stand point, it is truly magnificent if one can maintain a noble
spirit no matter how much pressure there is.
The same rule applies here. If one wants to maintain one's noble
character, one must uphold the innocence and purity in one's heart
while living in the mundane world. One's true self can really live if
one can maintain one's principles untouched under pressure. To be able
to maintain one's noble spirit is truly being responsible to one's life.