May 14 is sacred to the memory of Gautama Buddha. Millions pay him homage. Picture after picture is drawn in the Books of this mighty Teacher of the East. One picture is especially dear to me. The teacher sits in the forest, yet not cut off from communication with men and women. They come to him from far and near. They come to listen to him, to gaze at the calm beauty of his face and take with them some strength for work in the world. A mother tells her little boy to be quiet as they approach him: “Hush! Make no noise! The Buddha is speaking holy words!”
And the holy words of the Master have but one dominating idea, the peace of life cometh through self-renunciation. “Save by renouncing,” says the Teacher, “no safety can I see for living things.”
A farmer who has lost fourteen oxen sees him in the forest seated cross-legged and with a wondrous beauty and calm on his face. The farmer says: “It is good to be like this man: he loses no oxen! And for him there never comes at dawn a man chiding him for debts saying: “Come pay! Come pay!” Therefore, a happy man is he!” Happy indeed, for he, the Buddha has found the secret in non-possession: he walked the way of self-renunciation.