It was early morning as he continued his journey along the road. In the near distance he could make out a now familiar sight. It was a crossroads. Four signposts stood indicating the four cardinal directions, North, East, South and West. Next to each signpost was a table with many books on it. Next to each table were two chairs, one in front and one behind. On the chair behind each table sat an elderly-looking man, poring over one of the books on his table.
As he got closer to the crossroads he noticed one more thing. Right in the centre was a small island of grass and on that island sat a small child quietly watching the clouds pass overhead. He paid little attention to the child and walked briskly over to the first signpost. He took a seat opposite the scholarly gentleman and began to ask him questions. He took his time. He wanted to be sure. Then eventually he stood up and moved to the next table, where he once again began the questioning.
When he had visited all four tables it was decision time. On this occasion he had little doubt. He would be heading west.
Months passed. His journey continued. He came to many crossroads. Every time he did his best to ensure he was making the right decision.
Years passed. He grew weary both mentally and physically. Surely he must arrive soon. It couldn't be much further. He had worked so hard to choose the right way.
But still every time he saw something in the distance, it turned out to be yet another crossroads.
Finally he could take no more. Arriving at yet another crossroads he was totally exhausted and had to stop. Taking off his back-pack he stumbled towards the grass at the centre and half fell to the ground. Next to him was a small girl. He looked directly into her eyes. They seemed dazzling, mesmeric. With a warm smile the girl turned her eyes towards the sky, inviting him to follow with his own eyes.
As he did so he laughed out loud to himself. He felt an immense sense of relief. He looked up at the old men sat at the four tables surrounding them. Each looked down their noses at him with a stern frown which made him laugh even more. He recalled many tough decisions and laughed even more. The girl caught his eye once more and raised one eyebrow.
Together they laughed until sunset.
"People of this world are deluded. They're always longing for something - always, in a word, seeking." Bodhidharma
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