Published Friday, 13 September 2019
Strength of patience
is the might of noble beings;
they can be shackled,
endure verbal abuse and beatings,
We are perhaps already familiar with outer forms of strength; it is also worth training ourselves to recognize inner forms of strength. In this Dhammapada verse the Buddha calls patience the might of the noble ones. The willingness to bear with things, especially when they feel unbearable, is a powerful form of self-protection. It is not the way other people behave that disturbs us; it is how our own untrained hearts react which causes problems. It is resentment and fear that really trouble us, not that which we see and hear taking place. Those who have the ability to remain centred and alert, even when feeling tempted to react, don’t become disturbed. When they do act there is a better chance their contribution will lead to harmony and not merely to intensify the disturbance.