Published Friday, 07 December 2018
Silence does not denote profundity
if you are ignorant and untrained.
Like one holding scales,
a sage weighs things up,
wholesome and unwholesome,
and comes to know both the inner and outer worlds.
Therefore the sage is called wise.
Dhammapada v. 268-269
When we are faced with a quandary, when we simply don't know what to do, it is important that we actually know that we don’t know what to do. This sounds so obvious that it hardly bears mentioning. But if we slow down, if we really look closely at the momentum of our mental activity, how able are we to abide in an open-hearted, clear-headed awareness of the state of ‘not-knowing’? Isn’t it the case that for the most part we are caught up in the desire to feel sure? We love feeling certain and tend to push past feelings of uncertainty. Those who have well-developed awareness are able to consider many different aspects of a situation. They don’t merely react to uncertainty out of conditioned preference.