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The Daily Enlightenment
 Quote: Resistance

No water pressure, no swim.
No land friction, no walk.
No air resistance, no flight.

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 Realisation: The Double Insurance Of The Buddha's Teachings


To learn who rules over you,
simply find out who
you are not supposed to criticise.

- Source uncertain

At a Buddhist bookshop, I encountered a customer who asked what is a particularly unique feature (among many others) about the Buddha’s teachings. I replied that it is against dogmatic following of scriptures without question. He next asked where this teaching was found, to which I pointed to the Kalama Sutta. Yes, a Buddhist scripture! For a moment, he thought he caught me contradicting what I just said. Well, the teaching that ‘we should not simply adhere blindly to scriptures’ also implies that we should not adhere blindly to this teaching itself, by also questioning if it makes sense!

But of course, it always makes great sense to intelligently question, both this and all other scriptures (Buddhist or not). This is the foolproof double insurance of the Kalama Sutta! This charter of free enquiry is a self-insured teaching that insures all Buddhist teachings, and against other possibly false teachings! The Buddha never commanded blind acceptance of his words. He is so confident of his teachings that he actively invites all to test them rationally and practically. Historically, he seems to be the only spiritual teacher of a major world religion who teaches this way.

I wished I had added this piece of advice… If you are on a time-limited quest for truth, which is this life itself, and come across countless schools of thought, each of which claims to be the only true path, except one which confidently and openly welcomes you to doubt and question it, which school of thought would you learn from first? The answer if obvious. You should choose the exceptional one as the quest for truth begins with free enquiry, not blind faith. Paradoxically, the charter of free enquiry makes the Buddha’s teachings much easier to cultivate proper faith in!

It is impossible to truly negatively criticise
those open to receiving negative criticism
for resolving it with compassion and wisdom.

- Stonepeace
| Get Books

Related Articles:

The Twin Criteria For Rejection & Acceptance
How Do We Recognise The Wise?
Kalama Sutta

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 Excerpt: The Cruel Fowler


What you do makes an offering
of generosity to others,
you are also making an offering
of merits to yourself.

- Stonepeace | Get Books

“Reverend sir (the Buddha), how did it happen that such a monk (Tissa), having the supporting tendencies to attain arahantship, came to have a diseased body? Why did his bones disintegrate? Through what deed in a former birth did he obtain the dispositions requisite for the attainment of arahantship?” – “Monks, all these things happened solely because of deeds he committed in a previous existence.” – “But, reverend sir, what did he do?” – “Well then, monks, listen.

In the dispensation of the Buddha Kassapa, Tissa was a fowler. He used to catch birds in large number, and most of these he served to royalty. Most of those he did not give to royalty he used to sell. Fearing that if he killed and kept the birds he did not sell, they would rot, and desiring to prevent his captive birds from taking flight, he used to break their leg-bones and wing-bones and lay them aside, piling them in a heap. On the following day he would sell them…

One day, when well-flavoured food had been cooked for him, a monk who was an arahant stopped at the door of his house on his round for alms. When Tissa saw the elder, he made his mind serene and thought, “I have killed and eaten many living creatures. A noble elder stands at my door, and an abundance of well-flavoured food is in my house. I will therefore give him alms.” So he took the monk’s bowl and filled it, and having given him well-flavoured food, saluted the monk respectfully and said: “Reverend sir, may I obtain the highest fruit of the Dhamma you have seen.” Said the elder in his words of rejoicing, “So be it.” (End of Story of the Past.) “Monks, it was through the meritorious deed Tissa then did that this fruit accrued to him. It was because he broke the bones of birds that his body became diseased and his bones disintegrated. It was because he gave well-flavoured food to the arahant that he attained arahantship.”

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A Treasury Of Buddhist Stories From The Dhammapada Commentary
Translated By E.W. Burlingame
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393: Drama
394: Expectation
395: Already Done
396: Easiness
397: Guarantee

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