I would like to use Buddha’s learnings. (extracted from Popular Deities of Chinese Buddhism)
The Buddha asked a monk who was reciting a sutra:
‘How did you find it when the strings were too loose?
No sound is possible. was the reply.
How when the strings were too tight?
How when they were neither too tight nor too loose?
Every note sounds in its proper tone.’
In this sense the title of the post is referring to the middle
way path. This middle way path is left for interpretation because people have different notions of extremes. If you’re not sure which would be the middle way, consider what would be the extremes of your situations. Then consider the actions which would most likely not get you anywhere near the negative extreme. Also start to ask if the positive extreme is not deluded, if it’s healthy or if it’s actually what you want.
It’s known that most things are more enjoyable when done occasionally then say every day or several times a day. That is because with most of the things it starts to be a routine and new interesting things in contrast to routine interesting things are usually more appreciated. Staying off for a while – missing the activity, you build anticipation and that then leads to enjoying the next experience in a more full minded way.
Still this perspective can lead in another extreme. So many times when people try to stay away from an extreme, they tend to go to another extreme, it seams some people have binary consciousness, I guess it’s easier to identify extremes, specially negative ones, because these are most popularized (unfortunately).
“Middle Path” may be misunderstood as equivocal. In fact Buddhism is not as such. “Middle” means neutral, upright, and centered. It means to investigate and penetrate the core of life and all things with an upright, unbiased attitude. In order to solve a problem, we should position ourselves on neutral, upright and unbiased ground. We investigate the problem from various angles, analyze the findings, understand the truth thoroughly, and find a reasonable conclusion.
Update2. Actually do look at this possible positive extreme, you might find it is what you want, it’s healthy to want the best for your self and others thus this positive extreme is worth exploring to the maximum, that is probably where we all want to get, and we all deserve it. Do mind the delusion but mind it in a sense where you realize difficulties and get prepared, many or most things, like Rome, are not build in a day (or easily).
2 thoughts on “forget me nots ep.5 – find & mind the extremes”
It’s not about the middle way. It’s about the right way. Buddha and the monk are not telling you to go for the middle way, not what is tight nor loose.
I agree in the sense that ultimately, actually, what we’re looking for is “the right way”. But put into context, this being a “forget me not”, it’s meant for times when ‘the right way’ is unclear or one can easily disregard and go into one of the extremes where either the sutra’s chords make no sound, either they brake.
In this sense, the middle path is a way of choosing ‘the right way’ (or right path) in a (as much as each is able) full minded manner. My notice to the extremes being a relative manner – is meant to aid growth of consciousness about the diversity in the world which takes everything to a new level.
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