The Four Noble truths – Chap 24: Countless virtues

chap 24

Buddhism is just like a diamond with many sides. Each side has its spotless beauty. Buddhist practitioners must practice countless virtues to be the diamond. However, we first need to practice the three basic virtues so as to keep ourselves away from arising desire. Longing for awakening is the way leading us to false idea, selfishness. A story of the Buddha meeting some austere Bhiksus shows us how consistent our practice should be. We don’t need a short time to get result in practice, we only need to go the right way.

When meeting the Buddha, a Bhiksu asked Him:
“Dear Lokajyestha, when I will be enlightened?”
The Buddha said:
“You will be enlightened in three lives.”
The Bhiksu cried bitterly, saying:
“I have increasingly and persistently practiced but I can’t get enlightenment until next three lives.”

When the Buddha met another Bhiksu, he also asked the Buddha:
“Dear Lokajyestha, when I will get enlightenment.”
The Buddha asked him back:
“Do you see the leaves in that tree?”
“Yes. I see.”
“You will have gone as many lives as the leaves in that tree and you will be enlightened.” 
He asked the Buddha again:
“But, will I be enlightened?”
“Yes. You will. But it will take you very long time.”
He was so happy, worshipping the Buddha, and said:
“I am not afraid of long time. I’m only scared of going a wrong way that never guides me to the Enlightenment.”

Following the Buddha, we should be never hurried. If we are hurried, we would desire to get a good result in a short time, and it’s not good for our practice at all.

Talking about right and wrong is an important part of this chapter. If we can’t distinguish how they are, we can easily get a wrong way. There are many methods of practice in Buddhism. Every practitioner can practice any method depending his/her own conditioned causality. Therefore, we can’t think people who practice different method from that of we do are false. In fact, arrogance slightly exists deep inside people’s mind, so they are naturally to suppose themselves to be correct, and others to be wrong. Therefore, if we see others practicing another method, we should not prematurely think that they practice false doctrines before we know well what doctrines they are practicing. In addition, we need to value our practice to find fault and fix it. The true practitioners are the ones who know how to perfect themselves before they can evaluate others.

For example, a person said that: “I believe in the Law of Causality. So if I donate money, I will be rich as a result. I believe so.” Then another person wonders: “It’s not true. Sometimes the more you do donation, the poorer you are, if you donate money to wrong people.” The former disagrees and said: “You’re wrong. You’re practicing false doctrine, you’re defaming the Causality.”

We need to talk more about this point. If we donate money to a drunk or a drug addict, then this donation is completely wrong. We can never get good results. The two persons understand the Law of Causality in two ways and they’re in the two level of understanding. The latter understands the Law of Causality deeper than the former does. We cannot suppose people who have the lower level of understanding of the Law of Causality to practice false doctrines. They’re still on right way. They just haven’t yet deeper understood the Law of Causality.


Authorized by Thích Chân Quang

Source Facebook Buddha for World

The Four Noble truths - Chap 23: Three basic virtues
The Four Noble truths - Chap 25: The truth of Buddhism

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