an old monk, who had pursued the path of enlightenment all his life, one day found himself a single step away from his goal.  suddenly, the monk burst out laughing.  still laughing, he immediately turned around and went back home.  his friends didn’t understand his behavior, but were soon caught up in the monk’s contagious laughter.  the whole village began laughing hysterically until their sides hurt and their eyes welled up with tears.  it soon became clear that the old monk would die of laughter.  a young friend of the monk, realizing this, asked him, “why did you turn around just before reaching your life-long goal?”  with his last laughing breath, the old man replied, “who cares?  it was just enlightenment.”


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