In the midst of the strict discipline and impeccable training of the monastery, Ajahn Chah had a great laugh and playful spirit. He reminded us that the sole task of Buddhism is to help people be happy and free, develop their heart’s resources, and open them to what’s true. From surrender, seeing clearly, and learning how to deal with the mind in a balanced way, “you yourself can become a buddha.” To know Ajahn Chah over many hears brought great joy into my life. His spirit of freedom and simplicity was contagious. His maturity and delight in the dharma brought all he touched closer to liberation. He said, “When Thai people come to me and only ask for amulets, clay buddhas, or blessing rituals, they insult themselves. Now you have come t ask me questions. You want somebody outside to teach you the dharma. You insult yourself, too, because the truths discovered by the Buddha are already in your heart. There is a One Who Knows within you who already understands and is free. If you can turn toward this ever present awareness and rest in it, then everything will become simple. Over the years you can deepen your freedom in many ways. Use your natural awareness to see how all things come and go. Let go and live with love and wisdom. Don’t be lazy. If you find yourself lazy, fearful, or timid, then work to strengthen the qualities that overcome it. With natural wisdom and compassion, the dharma will unfold by itself. If you truly dedicate yourself, you will come to the end of all doubts, you will be liberated. You will love in that place of silence, of oneness with the Buddha, with the dharma, with all things. Only you can do that.”
how is being ordinary a divine and true act of knowing?
inquiry for today~ what have you deadened in yourself today? what is needed here?
I have just three things to teach:
simplicity, patience, compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and in thoughts,
you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
you reconcile all beings in the world.
~Tao Te Ching