How To Truly Know Anyone

The fool assumes quickly.
The wise observes slowly.

– Shantishila

The nature of the human mind is unpredictable. As Pessa has observed and the Buddha endorsed in his reply that the mind’s involved and tangled behaviour is difficult to understand viewing it superficially. The Buddha was addressing king Pasenadi Kosala and remarked:

[1] It is by dealing with a person that his virtuousness should be known.
[2] It is by association that we person’s integrity should be known.
[3] It is in times of trouble that a person’s fortitude should be known.
[4] It is by conversing with him that a person’s wisdom is to be known.

At the end of all these assertions, he emphasised the difficulty of arriving at a conclusive decision about those qualities by saying: ‘It is also known after a long time; not by one who gives a passing thought or no thought at all; by a wise man, not by a fool.’

The Buddha’s Technique and Practice of Counselling as Depicted in the Pali Canon
Jenny Quek

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