Published Wednesday, 28 May 2014
Like the bamboo which destroys itself as it bears fruit,
so fools harm themselves by holding to wrong views
and deriding those worthy ones
who live in harmony with the Way.
Dhammapada v. 164
It is easy to criticise weakness in others. It is hard to recognise and remedy faults within ourselves. On some level it can even feel good to elevate ourselves as we put others down, but such feelings cannot be trusted. ’One-upmanship’ is unlikely to contribute to harmony. Of course there are times when criticism is called for, but for it to be constructive we must have wholesome intention. To accurately know our intention means we probably should slow down a little, wait and listen inwardly before we speak.
With Mhe physical eye sees beauty on the level of form. The inner eye sees beauty on the level of spirit. The two don’t always coincide. A beautiful looking person might speak words that are devious and dishonest leading to harm. A challenging and frustrating experience might soften our hearts resulting in our renouncing hubris. Appreciating outer forms without becoming intoxicated takes skill.