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Stonepeace Old Archives Page 7 of 27

Good Soup

A: Oh the soup isn't very good.
B: Well it's good to me.
A: Actually it is good enough in itself- I just have to remove my prior expectation before my first taste of it. Let me taste it again... I think likewise, everything is good enough in itself.
B: What about evil? How can it be good?
A: Actually, I was wrong to use the word "good". Everything in itself is just as it is- but they become "good" or "bad" when we differentiate.
B: So evil is itself, not "good" or "bad"?
A: Yes, it's empty of any inherent fixed characteristics. The existence of our inner evil urges us to seek Enlightenment. So in that sense it can be "good" though usually seen as "bad."
B: But evil is "bad" as without it, there will be no need to seek Enlightenment.
A: What's so "bad" about seeking Enlightenment- when it is part of going beyond "good" and "bad"?

Experiencing the Second Hand First Hand

Maybe we should remove the hour and minute hand of the clock.
Maybe we should leave only the second hand there.
Maybe we will learn to let go of the hours and the minutes.
Maybe we will forget that there is past time to miss, future time to behold.
Maybe we will learn to live by the second.
Maybe we will realise how even this second continually slips away in the second.
Maybe we will realise how easily and surely the sands of time slip through every grasping hand.
Maybe we will feel more compelled to free ourselves of time.

(Inspired by the Diamond Sutra's teaching that the past, present and future mind cannot be grasped.)

Final Authority

In the end, you are your final authority as to what is the Truth. You use your own wisdom to decide whether something is true. Even the Buddha cannot convince the adament fool who chooses not to see. Thus, it is important to continually increase wisdom, and close the gaps of delusion. Where there is no wisdom, the weeds of delusion find space to grow, just as they grow in cracks of a pavement. Not closing of the gaps, delusion seeps in more and more, and there comes a point when you are taught the ultimate Truth and yet you see nothing of it. While no attained fruit of wisdom is ever lost, weeds can still overrun, covering it up till you clear them.

Become Sangha

The real goal of Buddhists
is not to simply worship the Triple Gem;
it is to become the Triple Gem-
to become a Buddha,
by being one with the Dharma,
by becoming the Sangha (Noble Ones with at least the first fruit of sainthood, sotapannaship).


Q: How do you know if the Buddha is Enlightened?

Answer 1: I don't. All I know is that I am not Enlightened, that I have not yet finished learning from Him about Enlightenment. What matters is that I am not Enlightened. When I become Enlightened, I will be able to tell you the answer.

Answer 2: As long as you ask this, you are not Enlightened. Be more Enlightened.

Don't Look Too Much Ahead

Leaving office with a colleague, I was walking along a long road leading to the bus-stop. The bus speeds by, and she laments missing it. I remarked, "Don't look ahead too much. There is no point if you can't rush for it in time. It's like chasing an impossible future, a carrot on a stick. Enjoy the walk now instead. Why subject yourself to disappointment?"

So What?

So what if the Buddha is not fully enlightened?
As long as He is the most enlightened person I know.

So what if the Buddha does not exists?
As long as the is the "realest" person I can emulate.

But of course,
the Buddha is fully enlightened, real.

Ultimately, we take refuge in our intrinsic Buddha-Nature,
nothing extraneous.

Monday, May 19, 2003
Bad Dreams

Q: I have bad dreams a lot. Please advise.
A: I recommend you to learn and practise Loving-Kindness (Metta) meditation. One of the benefits of practising Metta meditation is that it eliminates bad dreams or dreams totally. If there will be any dreams, they will be pleasant. This is because you your mind is soothed by the Loving-kindness you give yourself.
B: Bad dreams according to Chinese medicine is due to bad blood circulation.
A: Metta I think can stop bad blood circulation.
B: After practising, I hardly got dreams... just occasionally some weird ones.

Friday, May 16, 2003
About Dharma

The stuff I write I try my best to cater to everybody-
1. Those who know nuts about Dharma
2. Those who know some about Dharma
3. Those who know tons about Dharma

I always believe in this- Dharma should be E&E- Entertaining and Enlightening! Fun but serious. Practical but profound. JoinMailingList4LatestUpdates/Reply

Striking Lottery

4D- Name of a Singaporean lottery system whereby you win if you bought the right string of 4 Digits, ranging from 0000 to 9999.
When you don't strike 4D, you don't strike 4D. You either get a match or you don't. You don't "almost" strike it. Too often do I hear friends lamenting they "almost" struck 4D because they either missed by a digit or got the order of digits slightly wrong. Karma works in an exacting, not estimating way.

Original Nature

Some sages (not perfect) said our original nature is good, while some think it is evil. The real sage (the Buddha) teaches that our original nature is Buddha-nature- it is empty; it is emptiness itself.

The Middle Path of Communication

Without most of us somewhat more or less observing the Middle Path, everything falls apart, in terms of civilisation, communication... Here is an example how. For the number of languages there are in the world, there are more different accents for them. Yet for each accent, it should only deviate so much from the standard pronunciation before it becomes unintelligible to the people of the same language. Deviating too far, it literally becomes another language in its own right! If each of us speak with over-deviated accents, whether of the same language or another, verbal communication between any two people would be impossible. Globally, we have an international language- English. Likewise, we can only have so much arbitrary deviation so much before the world would fail to understand its citizens from other countries.
Relating to sutra translation and mantra pronunciation, the Middle Path too has to be observed. We have to keep checking against the original, to avoid the overriding of cultural slangs or pop culture. how much deviation is allowable? Because none of us really know, as none of us unenlightened ones can really tell, no deviation is better than any deviation. And minimised deviation is better than much deviation. But how much is little or much deviation? Once again, as none of us really know, let us do our best not to deviate at all. Do you choose to deviate by yourself, to join those who embrace and perpetuate deviation or to uphold and share the true? Without the upholders of the Truth and those who genuinely practise realising it, the Truth will cease to be "readily" available in our world.

Intent of the Sutras

Inspired by Bro.Vajiro Chia
The sutras are not for scholarly debate over its words. They are records of enlightened experience and how to attain them, and should be attempted in the conversion back to experience for verification. The more the words are argued over, the more one drifts away from the original intent of the sutras. Perhaps this is the divide between the overly theoretical scholars who lack sprititual practice and the overly practical practitioners who lack scriptural verification in their practice, deluding themselves to have attained what they have not.

Know-ing No-ing

There is no love, only loving.
There is no love to hold on,
treasure only the loving.
There is no life or death, only living and dying.
There is no life or death to hold on.
Relish then, only this moment...
in which you are living, dying and loving all at once.

Quality or Quantity?

I often see many fellow Buddhists holding on to strings of prayer beads (mala). They chant either out loud or silently. Sometimes I see the obvious lack of substantial mindfulness as they hold on the beads while attempting to multi-task other stuff. It makes me wonder whether their objective is to
1. "clock" a high quantitiy of chants (without regard for quality), or to
2. "clock" high quality chants (without regard for quantity), or to
3. "clock" a high quantity of high quality chants
I write this not to criticise the inefficacy of chanting the way many do. I only sincerely hope we all work towards point 2 or 3.


If you are calculative to the world,
the world will be calculative to you.
The world is a mirror.
The wise are generous and
not calculative about the good they do to others,
not calculative about the evil they receive from others,
only mindful and thankful of the slightest good others do for them,
only mindful and cautionary of the slightest evil they avoid doing to others.
But karma is calculative-
about everything you do,
even about your calculating-ness or lack of it.

A Tit for a Tat

The common man is
stingy to the stingy, generous to the generous,
hateful to the hateful, lovng to the loving...
but the wise is generous to all, loving to all.
The common man gives a tit for a "tat",
but the wise gives the best to all "tat" crap-
to touch, to transform...
out of compassion and wisdom.


In concentrating on the details,
do not forget the big picture.
Do not over-gloss on the matters throughout the day and
miss what is to be achieved at the end of the day.
Remember the details serve only to fulfil the big picture.
In concentrating on the big picture,
do not forget the details.
Do not over-gloss on what is to be achieved at the end of the day
and miss the matters throughout the day.
Remember the the big picture is fulfilled by the details.

Monday, May 12, 2003
Art of Art

The brilliance of the spiritual artist is in being able to see the special-ness in the common, to create the extraordinary from the normal, even if it means simply realising an enlightening truth about the mundane. You might think thus when you see art pieces, "Hey! I can do that!" Yes, maybe. But the difference is that you did not do it, much less conceive the idea of doing it, or even the mere possibility. And even if you did it, you might not have the unique vision or motice behind the work. Inspired works must be inspired to the artist- more so than inspiring to his audience. This is what differentiates the artist and the non-artist, the art-connoiseur and the non art-connoiseur.

Just for the Record

If it is not thoroughly forgettable, it could be totally memorable, and perhaps we should record it, if it is recordable. "Let's make a film out of it!" It is an insightful short story in itself! Alas! For it is impossible to film all the significant in our life? Not! For nothing is ever lost in the scheme of things, the journey of life. On your deathbed, your whole life flashes by- missing no detail. What will be the insight that sticks out as the key scene of your life? Tragicomedic? More tragic or more happy?

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