Sunday, September 03, 2006

What Shantideva says       [Buddhist mini-pep-talk]

A month or two ago, I picked up a couple volumes of Tibetan Buddhist teaching-verse, but haven't taken time to give them a proper look. They were among remaindered books one finds in a green cart on 11th Street NW (between D and E Streets), in front of Chapters -- A Literary Bookstore. My occasional purchases from the remaindered books at Chapters have dated back pretty much through my 15-year tenure as a Washingtonian.

The dream surfacing of a (vague) "Tibetan reference" provoked me to flip thru one of the volumes at hand: Essence of Refined Gold -- instructive verse by the Third Dalai Lama, with commentary by the present Dalai Lama. The latter includes this passage I happened to flip to:
Shantideva wrote, "Even flies, mosquitoes and other insects will win peerless enlightenment when they make spiritual effort in some future life. Why should I -- who am born as a human and have the human capacity of a differentiating awareness able to discern skillful from unskillful ways -- not be able to attain it?"
Shantideva: chap worth quoting.


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