I am the student, not the teacher
I am not a Guru, a Buddha, nor sage or profit. I am nobody and no one that should be thought of as a teacher. Then again, I don’t think that we should listen to anyone else either, and that includes the Buddha.
Blasphemy you say? I don’t think so. For even the Buddha hesitated about trying to teach what he had realized when he attained enlightenment. And I think this is because he knew that words would be highly inadequate in conveying that which can only be realized through direct experience. Finally, he decided to teach only a small portion of what he had learned, in fact only two things. Suffering and the end of suffering.
But if we look at that teaching alone, I think that most of us can agree that it will not be learned by reading a book. Not by the Tripitaka, the Bible, or any other written or spoken word. If it were that easy, we would all be worry and trouble-free.
Does this mean that we should all be irreligious and just crossing our fingers that we stumble into happiness and enlightenment? Well if that were proven to be successful, we would probably be surrounded by so many bodhisattva‘s that there would likely be no cruelty or violence in the World. But we can easily see that this is not the case. So there must be a solution, a path, that makes sense. One that is wholesome and skillful, but free of dogma’s and doctrines. And this, my friends, I believe to be the path that the Buddha actually encouraged us to examine individually. Offering each one of us a myriad of examples and lessons, of which he instructed us to take what is useful and discard what is not. In other words, find the truth by our own direct experience. Through meditation, mindfulness and observation that is free of judgement, desire, delusion and clinging. Not any of which is because he said so, simply because it works!
All of this is not to say that we should not read or listen to wonderful talks by wise and Noble individuals, but to do so without bias or prejudice. With an open heart and mind, allowing ourselves to process all of it through our own direct experience and understanding. And if we do not do this, we only perpetuate misconceptions and an individualized ego view that further separates us from one another. And this, I’m quite sure, is not a path to peace.
Even this Blog has been an exercise in self observation and allowed me to become more of a student. One who learns much more from each of you than you likely learn from me. It is our sharing and connectedness that has taught me how deeply we touch each other from all corners of the globe. The compassion, the good intentions, and the loving-kindness are universally present. And thanks to you, I have experienced this for myself many times over. And who knows, perhaps everything I am saying right now is completely wrong and off base. Only you can determine that for yourself.
May you each live joyfully and in peace.
May you be well, happy and peaceful.