Children and White-haired Men

bai_juyiBai Juyi (772-846 CE) was an important poet and government officer during the Tang Dynasty in China. He once asked a Buddhist monk for the most essential Dharma instruction, and the monk replied by quoting the Buddha’s summary teaching, “Avoid harm. Do good. Purify the mind.” 

Bai Juyi was not impressed, “Every child of three years knows these words. What I want to know is the most profound and fundamental teaching of the Buddha.” The monk replied, “Every child of three years knows these words, but white-haired men of eighty still fail to put them into practice.”

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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4 Responses to Children and White-haired Men

  1. MindMindful says:

    Reblogged this on MindMindful and commented:
    Good point:)

  2. Mark says:

    Without understanding the history, I worry about how Bai Juyi felt receiving that particular message and what resulted–did what the monk say, at that moment, make any difference in Bai Juyi as far as we know of the history…..?

  3. talesfromthelou says:

    Reblogged this on Zen Flash.

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