Inspiring Quotes

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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Laurens
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Inspiring Quotes

Postby Laurens » Fri Dec 18, 2009 12:47 am

The idea for this topic is to post inspiring quotes from our favourite teachers, friends, or whoever - so long as they are inspiring for our practice. I think it would be useful (certainly for me anyway) to have a topic full of short, inspiring quotes to read through.

Ok I'll start:
"A man comes walking along a road. He is thirsty from his journey and craves a drink of water. He stops at the roadside and asks for a drink. The person with water says, "You can drink this water if you like; the colour is good, the smell is good, the taste is good, but if you drink it you will become ill. I must tell you this beforehand; it'll make you sick enough to die or nearly so." The thirsty man does not listen. He's as thirsty as a person who, because of an operation, has been denied water for seven days -- he's crying out for water! It's the same with a person thirsting after the senses. The Buddha taught that they are poisonous -- sights, sounds, smells, tastes, touch and mind objects are poison. They are dangerous traps. But this man is thirsty and doesn't listen. "Give me water, no matter how painful the consiquences, let me drink!" So he pours out a bit and swallows it. Finding it tasty, he drinks his fill and gets so sick he almost dies. He didn't listen because of his overpowering desire

That is how it is for a person caught in the pleasures of the senses. He drinks in sights, sounds, smells, tastes, touch, and mind objects -- they are very delicious! So he drinks without stopping, and there he remains, stuck fast until the day he dies."

- Ajahn Chah


That came from opening a 'Food for the Heart' at a random page! Sounds as good a place to start as any!
"For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."

Carl Sagan

alan
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby alan » Mon Dec 21, 2009 5:35 pm

I don't find this inspiring. First off, how thirsty is our man? If he came out of a desert and is near death anyway, perhaps he is beyond himself and won't listen to reason.
And is this (going beyond sensuality) an argument that can be made by reasoning alone? I'd say to get to that mental state you have to be really fed up with it all--see the pointless of it.

alan
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby alan » Mon Dec 21, 2009 5:39 pm

Here is something that inspires me. I'd like a taste of this!

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an10/an10.081.than.html

alan
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby alan » Mon Dec 21, 2009 5:42 pm

Didn't link. It's AN 10.81

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Dhammanando
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby Dhammanando » Mon Dec 21, 2009 6:06 pm

alan wrote:Didn't link.


It does now. You need to click the URL button to make the link clickable.

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Dhammanando
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Laurens
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby Laurens » Tue Dec 22, 2009 7:05 pm

alan wrote:I don't find this inspiring. First off, how thirsty is our man? If he came out of a desert and is near death anyway, perhaps he is beyond himself and won't listen to reason.
And is this (going beyond sensuality) an argument that can be made by reasoning alone? I'd say to get to that mental state you have to be really fed up with it all--see the pointless of it.


I don't think it implies that we can arrive beyond sensuality by reasoning - I don't see where you got that, for me that quote is about the sheer strength of desire, we have encountered the dhamma, and we are told that our desires lead to suffering, but we can't abandon it, just like the man can't resist taking a drink of poisoned water, even after being told that its poisonous. To me that says the opposite, that desire cannot be tackled with reason, because if it could, we would not drink the poisoned water after being told.
"For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."

Carl Sagan

alan
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby alan » Tue Dec 22, 2009 7:14 pm

He's been denied water for 7 days. He is not rational.

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cooran
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby cooran » Tue Dec 22, 2009 8:20 pm

Hello alan,

The story is a parable of what ordinary people are like with the incoming data from the sense doors. And WE (you and I and everyone) are the thirsty man.

The Buddha taught that they are poisonous -- sights, sounds, smells, tastes, touch and mind objects are poison. They are dangerous traps. But this man is thirsty and doesn't listen.


metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

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Laurens
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby Laurens » Tue Dec 22, 2009 10:27 pm

alan wrote:He's been denied water for 7 days. He is not rational.


Its not meant to be taken so literally.

And anyway people who are subject to craving are often irrational
"For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."

Carl Sagan

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bodom
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby bodom » Wed Dec 23, 2009 2:19 am

I would list all by Ajahn Chah but there would no room left!! Throw some Buddhadasa in there as well.

:anjali:
This is our foundation: to have sati, recollection, and sampajañña, self-awareness, whether standing, walking, sitting, or reclining. Whatever arises, just leave it be, don't cling to it. Be it like or dislike, happiness or suffering, doubt or certainty... Don't try to label everything, just know it. See that all the things that arise in the mind are simply sensations. They are transient. They arise, exist and cease. That's all there is to them, they have no self or being, they are neither ''us'' nor ''them.'' They are not worthy of clinging to, any of them. - Ajahn Chah

being5
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Re: Inspiring Quotes

Postby being5 » Wed Dec 23, 2009 6:03 am

Well, I like Chris' signature:

---The trouble is that you think you have time---



being5


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