I reached enlightenment by crushing a rat

I reached enlightenment by crushing a rat

If somebody asked am I religious at all, I would look down and shamefully admit I am a very bad Christian. The last time I confessed was in another country, about a sin which bored the priest to tears. Ever since then, I have avoided religious practice like a bad disease in a Turkish harem. I did not expect, however, that enlightenment would come from the strangest source, and it brought me to a whole other religion too.

It was a very cold Saturday morning in a sleepy city of overworked Asians, in a backwater of a country belongs to the poorest lands in the world. I received an ultimatum from a girl, so naturally I picked the time when she would be weakest and most vulnerable to my retaliation. Grudgingly, but with the knowledge of a predictable victory for males, I was driving on the street at 6AM through the fog.

The sound of the rat that got crushed underneath the wheels of my motorbike was something foreign. Well of course it would be strange, I was not in the business of crushing rats or any other type of rodents.  So when I heard a sound similar to a tire getting punctured by a very long nail, I instinctively look back to see a mess of gore on the street, with recognizable traits of a lowly street rat.

Right that moment, the smell of the rat’s entrails filled my helmet and suffocated my nose. I kept telling myself that there was no way the smell could enter my helmet so fast since all I did was just running over it. But the smell was there, like the perfume of a cheap Parisian prostitute in a shady brothel down some alleys. It was disgusting, needless to say, but as you can already tell, such a smell was just a figment of my imagination. The air was just fine, just the gruesome death of the rat that is leaving my mind scrambled.

And I reached enlightenment. I mean, isn’t this what that dude Buddha talked about? The death of one single living thing that has absolutely no connection to your life whatsoever could have an immense effect on you because in a way, all things are equal. The smell of the rat did not bother anymore; I embraced it with love and open heart.

I got chewed out from the girl for being a hippy later on in the meeting. But hey what does it matter? I reached enlightenment by crushing a rat.

Author: Viet Nguyen

I thought what I had do was, I had pretend I was one of those Deaf Mutes

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