Once upon a time there were three old monks in ancient China. Their names are now lost to history. These three monks were called the “Three Laughing Monks.” These three always travelled together and were known for nothing but for their constant laughter. Normally they would enter a village or town and stand in the centre of the main square, and begin to laugh. Slowly but surely, their laughter spread throughout the community.
The residents of the community couldn’t help but laugh, forming a small laughing community. Eventually, the three elderly monks arrived at a village and spread their message of laughter as a prayer to the rest of China. The monks, who never spoke to anyone, were hailed as spiritual leaders and were highly respected by the Chinese community. Their teaching was to consider life as a great moment to laugh.
The three spiritual teachers were well known for spreading teachings about joy and happiness throughout China. However, tragedy struck when one of the old laughing monks passed away in a particular village. The other two laughing monks were observed by shocked villagers, who had abandoned their daily duties to see their reaction to the loss. The community expected the remaining laughing monks to display sadness or even cry at this sad moment.
Despite the sad occasion, the other two laughing monks continued to laugh. Some members of the community, who were believers in the practice of the laughing monks, asked them why they were not showing grief at this sad moment.
For the first time, the laughing monks responded to the question posed by the villagers. They explained that the deceased monk had actually made a bet with them over who would die first. He had even prepared a testament. According to tradition, the body of the deceased was supposed to be washed, cleansed, and clothed with clean clothes before being placed on the funeral pyre. However, the deceased laughing monk had requested that his clothes be left on when he died, as he had never allowed any of the filth of the world to reach him through his laughter.
When the pyre was lit and the fire ignited the robes the deceased monk was wearing, a display of fireworks in various colours suddenly erupted. The villagers and the remaining laughing monks were astonished and joined in the laughter.
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Life doesn’t always have to be so serious. In fact, it’s important to find joy and laughter in the midst of the challenges and hardships that we face. Don’t let hardships or challenges dampen your spirit, but instead try to find the humor and lightness in life. Remember that life is short and we should embrace every moment with positivity and laughter. Let the teachings of the laughing monks inspire you to find joy and happiness in all aspects of your life.