Once upon a time in a land quite near—but to many, far, far away—there lived a little monk. He was a special little monk for he did not believe he was special. He believed he was just like you and me. He studied long and he studied hard, and in the end, he had a very simple message for all the people. He said, "Breathe and smile." The people said, "Could this be the message from the great master? It is too simple, much too simple." But the little monk looked out at the people and smiled a smile so full of love that the people agreed to try. They went to their village and when the bell of mindfulness was rung, the people stopped, breathed a refreshing breath, and noticed the beauty around them, and smiled. Sometimes they smiled at a person, and the smile was returned. Each person who saw a smile thought, "Oh, that smile is a reflection of me. I must be good. And soon the village was full of people who saw themselves as good and kind."
This is where the story begins.
Judy Shaper San Francisco, California