Thread: Others’ words can’t measure your practice

  1. #1

    Others’ words can’t measure your practice

    Others’ words can’t measure your practice

    by Ajahn Chah

    People may look at you and feel your way of life, your interest in Dhamma, makes no sense. Others may say that if you want to practise Dhamma, you ought to be ordained as a monk. Being ordained is not really the crucial point. It’s how you practise. As it’s said, one should be one’s own witness. Don’t take others as your witness. It means learning to trust yourself. Then there is no loss. People may think you are crazy, but never mind. They don’t know anything about Dhamma.

    Others’ words can’t measure your practice. And you don’t realize the Dhamma because of what others say. I mean the real Dhamma. The teachings others can give you are to show you the path, but that isn’t real knowledge. When people meet the Dhamma, they realise it specifically within themselves. So the Buddha said, ‘The Tathāgata is merely one who shows the way.’ When someone is ordained, I tell them, ‘Our responsibility is only this part: the reciting ācariya have done their chanting. I have given you the Going Forth and vows of ordination. Now our job is done. The rest is up to you, to do the practice correctly.’

    Teachings can be most profound, but those who listen may not understand. But never mind. Don’t be perplexed over profundity or lack of it. Just do the practice wholeheartedly and you can arrive at real understanding; it will bring you to the same place the teachings are talking about.

    Don’t rely on the perceptions of ordinary people.

    (Excerpt From ‘The Collected Teachings of Ajahn Chah’.)

    This reminds me of my late Tibetan teacher saying to me: "Don't take any notice of what other people say, just keep practising."

    Any thoughts?

  2. #2
    Forums Member mjaviem's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2021
    Just a thank you for this excerpt

  3. #3
    Forums Member Esho's Avatar
    Under the Bodhi Tree
    Thanks Aloka!

    I keep privately my practice. Some time ago, I decide to retire from people contact and relationships in a way that I become secluded, so there is no way to experience 'Others' words can't measure your practice' challenge. The only person with whom I share my practice is my mother and my family in law. They don't understand quite well but that's all. I really don't have the problem of 'Others' words...'

    Last edited by Esho; 17 Aug 21 at 08:52.

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