Norman Allan
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Kusalo's Old Lady

Ajahn Kusalo is a Buddhist monk in the "Thai Forrest" Theravadan tradition, and what a joy I found it to be in his company, to listen to him. A quiet laughter punctuates his speech and thoughts. He told a story I thought worth repeating…

Kusalo is from the antipodes, and his aged mother is in a Senior's Home in Australia. A while ago, during the general election, a candidate came to the Home soliciting the elderly resident's votes. He was talking to Kusalo's mum and another old lady and he perceived that old lady didn't seem to understand what he was doing there. "Do you know who I am?" he asked.
     She reached out and touched his arm in reassurance. "No, Dear," she said, "but if you ask at the reception, they may be able to help you."

CODA: and I did repeat this story. Told it to many people, and on several occations was told by some that they had heard the story before, variations on it. My God. The Buddhist say only speak that which passes the three gates: is it true, is it kind, is it useful.

I approached Ajahn Viadhamma about Kusalo's apparent untruth (that this happened to his mother).
"Oh, that Kusalo," said Ajahn V.