Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Dhammapada 1:7

The one who lives for sensation,
Indulgent in eating,
Lazy, and lacking in energy,
The tempter Mara* breaks,
Just as the wind breaks a frail tree.

Buddha is telling us how to spend our time feeding the sensations in life will bring about nothing good. The tempter Mara is just a personification of all temptations and passions. When we feed our passions we give strength to Mara and remove strength from ourselves.

Spending our free time devoted to our passions means less time for us to spend attaining enlightenment. The more we want and need the more we want and need. It is a cycle that spirals out of control and leads to suffering.

This suffering weakens us and gives strength to Mara, just as a wind breaks a frail tree.

"The less I have the more I gain" Wherever I may roam - Metallica.

*Mara: In Buddhist scriptures Mara is a metaphor for the temptations or passions personified, being neither male or female; hence the name of "tempter"

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