Just this Tile

The story of Toby.

I was sitting outside during a Samu at a retreat in South Africa,
overlooking a hallway where Toby was ordered to sweep the floor.
He had started at the far end of the hallway.
Dirt was spread evenly over the floor tiles.
As Toby was sweeping forwards, he gathered more and more of the dirt.
As such, he was not merely sweeping the tile that he stood on:
he also swept the dust of all the tiles that he had cleaned before
and did not consider binning the excess dirt in between.
At the end, Toby had gathered the dust of the whole path.
It had taken him a lot of effort to take all that with him as he was sweeping forward.
At the very end, he put all the dust in a bucket and threw it away.
He was exhausted of all the work he had done.

The same goes for our lives:
We take all the dirt with us.
We do not only deal with current muck.
But also with everything we dealt with before.
We do not bin it in between.
At the end we have become exhausted.

So first tidy up the tile you’re standing on
And throw the dirt away before moving on to another.
That keeps life clear and simple.
It allows you to stay in the moment.

Just this Tile.

(Published with Toby’s permission)


The Dharma Centre Robertson, South Africa