Two monks were
making a pilgrimage to venerate the relics of a great Saint. During the
course of their journey, they came to a river where they met a
beautiful young woman -- an apparently worldly creature, dressed in
expensive finery and with her hair done up in the latest fashion. She
was afraid of the current and afraid of ruining her lovely clothing, so
asked the brothers if they might carry her across the river.
The younger and more exacting of the brothers was offended at the very
idea and turned away with an attitude of disgust. The older brother
didn't hesitate, and quickly picked the woman up on his shoulders,
carried her across the river, and set her down on the other side. She
thanked him and went on her way, and the brother waded back through the
The monks resumed their walk, the older one in perfect equanimity and
enjoying the beautiful countryside, while the younger one grew more and
more brooding and distracted, so much so that he could keep his silence
no longer and suddenly burst out, "Brother, we are taught to avoid
contact with women, and there you were, not just touching a woman, but carrying
her on your shoulders!"
The older monk looked at the younger with a loving, pitiful smile and
said, "Brother, I set her down on the other side of the river; you are
still carrying her."
called together the multitudes unto him, He said to them: Hear ye and
understand. Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man: but
what cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.
Then came His disciples, and said to Him: Dost thou know that the
Pharisees, when they heard this word, were scandalized? But He
answering them, said: Every plant which My heavenly Father hath not
planted, shall be rooted up. Let them alone: they are blind, and
leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both will fall
into the pit.
And Peter answering, said to Him: Expound to us this parable.
But He said: Are you also yet without understanding? Do you not
understand, that whatsoever entereth into the mouth, goeth into the
belly, and is cast out into the privy? But the things which proceed out
of the mouth, come forth from the heart, and those things defile a man.
For from the heart come forth evil thoughts, murders, adulteries,
fornications, thefts, false testimonies, blasphemies. These are the
things that defile a man. But to eat with unwashed hands doth not
defile a man.
Woe to you
scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites; because you tithe mint, and anise,
and cummin, and have left the weightier things of the law; judgment,
and mercy, and faith. These things you ought to have done, and not to
leave those undone. Blind guides, who strain out a gnat, and swallow a
Woe to you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites; because you make clean
the outside of the cup and of the dish, but within you are full of
rapine and uncleanness. Thou blind Pharisee, first make clean the
inside of the cup and of the dish, that the outside may become clean.
Woe to you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites; because you are like to
whited sepulchres, which outwardly appear to men beautiful, but within
are full of dead men's bones, and of all filthiness. So you also
outwardly indeed appear to men just; but inwardly you are full of
hypocrisy and iniquity.