Relentless pursuit of happiness

By ISHWAR PATI, The Statesman, Nov 20, 2005

NEW DELHI, India -- There’s this little story of a place somewhere at the end of the earth that was finally “discovered” by the nosey Americans. 

They are, as you know, forever on the lookout for research topics – from the spread of AIDS in Africa to the mating habits of the migratory Siberian cranes. Only the hint of a “kinky” subject to arouse their interest and they will pour their hard-earned (!) money into it with zeal.

When one American heard of the legendary “laziness” of this tribe in a far corner of India, he promptly took a flight and landed there. His aim was to minutely study their characteristics and prepare a project report on how to counter their lethargy, so that they would not be “left behind” on the road to development. 

After a series of rides by taxis and buses and jeeps on user-hostile roads, the American landed at a small village around noon. Most of the menfolk had gone to the fields and the women were too shy to come out of their huts to talk to a white stranger. 

Walking around with his interpreter, the American found a young man sleeping under a tree by the side of a large pond, enjoying the cool breeze.

“What are you doing?” asked the American, excited to discover a real specimen of laziness so soon, though inwardly he was peeved that a young fellow was wasting his prime time for work in being lazy.

“Can’t you see for yourself? I’m dozing,” retorted the young man, peeved that his siesta was being so unceremoniously disturbed.

“Yes, but what do you do for a living?” the American asked via the interpreter.

“I catch fish,” said the man, indicating towards the pond.

“How many did you catch today?”

“Two really big ones” he replied with a smile.

“What did you do with them?”

“I sold them in the market”.

“Then, why are you not catching fish now? You could easily catch two more.”

It was the turn of the young fisherman to look baffled. “What for?” he asked.

“You can sell them too and make more money.”

“What for?” repeated the lazy fellow.

“Well, you could buy some fishing gear.”

“What for?”

“To catch more fish, obviously.”

“What for?”

“Why, to multiply your money, you fool!”

“What for?”

“So that you can afford a bike, a mobile, a TV – even a pucca house.”

“What for?”

“Damn it, to be happy of course!” the irritated American burst out.

“I am happy as I am,” calmly answered the specimen of laziness, taking out his flute to blow a few notes. “Why do I need to go to all that trouble for something that I already have in plenty?”

The American came away chastened from his latest research project. But it’s doubtful whether he found any takers for the results of his study in his own great land – the land that swears by its citizens’ inalienable right to “pursuit of happiness”.

We Need Your Help to Train the
Buddhist AI Chat Bot
(Neural Omniscient Robotic-Being for Buddhist Understanding)

For Malaysians who wants to donate in MYR, please use the following account:

Account Name: Bodhi Vision
Account No:. 2122 00000 44661
Bank: RHB
Note: Please indicate your name in the payment slip. Thank you.

Dear Friends in the Dharma,

We seek your generous support to help us train NORBU, the word's first Buddhist AI Chat Bot.

Here are some ways you can contribute to this noble cause:

One-time Donation or Loan: A single contribution, regardless of its size, will go a long way in helping us reach our goal and make the Buddhist LLM a beacon of wisdom for all.

How will your donation / loan be used? Download the NORBU White Paper for details.

For Malaysians who wants to donate in MYR, please use the following account:

Account Name: Bodhi Vision
Account No:. 2122 00000 44661
Bank: RHB
Note: Please indicate your purpose of payment (loan or donation) in the payment slip. Thank you.

Once payment is banked in, please send the payment slip via email to: Your donation/loan will be published and publicly acknowledged on the Buddhist Channel.

Spread the Word: Share this initiative with your friends, family and fellow Dharma enthusiasts. Join "Friends of Norbu" at: Together, we can build a stronger community and create a positive impact on a global scale.

Volunteer: If you possess expertise in AI, natural language processing, Dharma knowledge in terms of Buddhist sutras in various languages or related fields, and wish to lend your skills, please contact us. Your knowledge and passion could be invaluable to our project's success.

Your support is part of a collective effort to preserve and disseminate the profound teachings of Buddhism. By contributing to the NORBU, you become a "virtual Bodhisattva" to make Buddhist wisdom more accessible to seekers worldwide.

Thank you for helping to make NORBU a wise and compassionate Buddhist Chatbot!

May you be blessed with inner peace and wisdom,

With deepest gratitude,

Kooi F. Lim
On behalf of The Buddhist Channel Team

Note: To date, we have received the following contributions for NORBU:
US$ 75 from Gary Gach (Loan)
US$ 50 from Chong Sim Keong
MYR 300 from Wilson Tee
MYR 500 from Lim Yan Pok
MYR 50 from Oon Yeoh
MYR 200 from Ooi Poh Tin
MYR 300 from Lai Swee Pin
MYR 100 from Ong Hooi Sian
MYR 1,000 from Fam Sin Nin
MYR 500 from Oh teik Bin
MYR 300 from Yeoh Ai Guat
MYR 300 from Yong Lily
MYR 50 from Bandar Utama Buddhist Society
MYR 1,000 from Chiam Swee Ann
MYR 1,000 from Lye Veei Chiew
MYR 1,000 from Por Yong Tong
MYR 80 from Lee Wai Yee
MYR 500 from Pek Chee Hen
MYR 300 from Hor Tuck Loon
MYR 1,000 from Wise Payments Malaysia Sdn Bhd
MYR 200 from Teo Yen Hua
MYR 500 from Ng Wee Keat
MYR 10,000 from Chang Quai Hung, Jackie (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from K. C. Lim & Agnes (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from Juin & Jooky Tan (Loan)
MYR 100 from Poh Boon Fong (on behalf of SXI Buddhist Students Society)
MYR 10,000 from Fam Shan-Shan (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from John Fam (Loan)
MYR 500 from Phang Cheng Kar
MYR 100 from Lee Suat Yee
MYR 500 from Teo Chwee Hoon (on behalf of Lai Siow Kee)
MYR 200 from Mak Yuen Chau

We express our deep gratitude for the support and generosity.

If you have any enquiries, please write to: