There are so many versions of this fable, all delivering the same message; that we must not hold onto what isn’t ours, not what has passed.
A head monk and student were once traveling together down a muddy road. Heavy rain was still falling. Coming around a bend, they met a lovely girl in a silk kimono and sash, unable to cross the intersection.
“Come on, girl,” said the monk at once. Lifting her in his arms, he carried her over the mud.
The student, shocked, did not speak again until that night when they reached a lodging temple. Then he no longer could restrain himself. “We monks can’t be near females,” he told the head monk, “especially not young and lovely ones. It is dangerous. Why did you do that?”
“I left the girl there,” said the monk. “Are you still carrying her?”
Sent with love,