Re: Literary Perfection
Don't recall that passage, but here's my favorite from the same book.
O Sensei believed, according to the Way of Kannagara, that the individual creates his or her own heaven or hell right here on this earth. I am reminded of an old Japanese folk-tale of an adventurous young man who wanted to know the difference between heaven and hell. He first looked upon hell and saw many people seated at a long table filled with the finest foods. But everyone had gaunt faces weak, crying in despair. A closer look revealed that their hands had only two fingers formed into the shape of hashi, Japanese chopsticks, four feet long. Although they could pick up the food, their fingers were so long that they could not get in into their mouths. In frustration they were turning their tools into weapons, fighting selfishly among themselves for the food they could not eat. Then he looked upon heaven. He saw the same long table with the same beautifully prepared food and the same long fingers. But everyone was laughing and smiling at the others. Their cheeks were full and glowing with health. There was no fighting, for they picked up the food and, extending it to the other side of the table, fed each other. What is the difference between heaven and hell? Consciousness, compassion, and cooperation.