Respect for All Paths

Look at the Wheel of Dharma. There is a central hub, from which spokes run outward to the rim, and beyond.

The distance between two adjoining spokes is greatest at the rim, and progressively becomes smaller as the spokes join at the central hub.

So it is with the Dharma. When we are neophytes (at the rim), the distance between ‘our’ school and another appears greatest. As we progress along the path, the distance grows smaller, and at the hub we realize that there is no distance at all.

Interestingly, the distance between the hub-point and the rim-point on the same spoke is greater than the distance between two adjoining spokes. And so it is with practitioners. An advanced practitioner and a neophyte of the same school are farther apart (in understanding and realization) than neophytes of different schools.

I’m not proposing eclecticism (and neither did the Rime Masters). Jumping from spoke to spoke is both dangerous and inefficient. We each must travel our own path, and not another’s. But we must respect all paths, even if we do not have any affinity for them.

The Omniscient Dolpopa taught us:
The Jonangpa do not take sides –especially not our own side.”

About Tashi Nyima

I am a Dharma student, and aspire to be a companion on the path. I trust that these texts can offer a general approach and basic tools for practicing the Buddha's way to enlightenment. ||| Soy un estudiante del Dharma, y aspiro a ser un compañero en el sendero. Espero que estos textos ofrezcan a algunos un mapa general y herramientas básicas para la práctica del sendero a la iluminación que nos ofrece el Buda.
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1 Response to Respect for All Paths

  1. Brad Waters says:

    Your final statement is so beautiful: “We each must travel our own path, and not another’s. But we must respect all paths, even if we do not have any affinity for them.” Thank you!

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