Thursday, June 25, 2009

Our inertial lives

Sawaki Roshi: A strange creature, the human being; groping in the dark with an intelligent look.
Human beings strive only to avoid boredom.

A lot of things in this world attract you. But once you do, or get them, they're worthless.
There are people who never find their own way in life.

Uchiyama Roshi: If I broach the subject of the essence of your life, you might feel as if some old, moldy clothes were being given to you. But when we reflect deeply on thge essence of our own lives, we will realize that this is not an old, moldy subject, but our lives as we live them are. Why? Because we get up sheerly through inertia, eat breakfast through inertia, encounter our aquaintences through inertia, watch televison through inertia, read magazines through inertia, and go to work through inertia. We spend most of our time this way.

How do we find our lives worth living at all? We are always running after one thing or another so that we don't have to consider this question. When we play mah-jong, we find the significance of life in winning a game. When we go to a department store, we find the significance of life in shopping. If we can't afford to buy things, we find the significance of life in imaginig that we could. When we watch baseball or sumo wrestling, we find the significance of life in hoping our favorite athletes will win. These activites are merely diversions. No matter how clamourous the times in which we live, we should sincerely reflect on the meaning of life.

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