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Welcome to my Blog!

Thursday 4 November 2010

Nostradamus and the Acquisition of Wisdom

‘How long have you been with me now, Chavigny?’ Nostradamus said to Jean, with an expectant eye.
‘Ten years or thereabouts.’
‘How many hurdles did Dorat place in your way when you said you wanted to be my pupil?’ he said, setting the box down.
‘It took me near a year to convince him and then he gave me no letters of introduction.’
‘That’s right, and you made the two month journey south to my home and arrived empty handed at my door. What did I tell you then?’
‘That if I intended to become a student of the mystic arts I would have to be prepared to do those tasks you set me.’
He nodded.
‘But in all this time there have been no tasks and no instruction! Only menial jobs have you set me that any fool might be capable of doing!’
‘Really?’ he raised one bushy brow, ‘Do you think so? Have I told you the story of Antonius?’
‘Antonius was a teacher. A simple man named Paul arrived at his door one day, much like you, and said he wanted to be his pupil. Antonius accepted him and caused him year after year do such menial tasks as seemed to have no reason. For instance he had him carry water from one place to another in perforated buckets, he asked him carry rocks up a hill and had him roll them back down again on the other side. He had him stitch and unstitch clothes. This he did year after year! Why? Because the simple man Paul who had come to him, in the process of these tasks, year after year, underwent a tremendous deepening of his soul.'
'By doing menial tasks he deepened his soul?'
'Oh you are still a fool Chavigny, for you do not know how gratitude even for menial tasks, reverence for the master who sets them and devotion which becomes a habit in the soul is what changes a man -  a thousand books will not do the same! You see, that is how Paul the Simpleton became Paul the Wise. '

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