Thursday, June 6, 2013

Buddha and Walking the Path Alone

Who will save you?

Who will see that you reach your dreams and achieve your greatest desires?

Who will see that you become the person you are - in every way - meant to become?

Most people don't consider such questions. They don't spend time thinking of them or worrying about them. And though they may never spend any great time in consideration of these questions, they surely assume an answer to them, and most assuredly live by that answer.

And that answer affects them every day - how they act, who they are, who they become.

To the great many of humanity - whether they admit it or not - the answer is this: the responsibility lies in someone else.

Few do admit it of course. But their actions speak loud enough. And their voices do as well, when life becomes difficult, and obstacles obstruct the way. And when they retreat inside their head - when their fears take hold and their hope wanes - their thoughts confirm it.

"It's not my fault."

"Everyone hurt me."

"They will see me through."

And so when they don't learn enough at school, they blame their teachers. When they struggle too much in whatever endeavor, they blame the circumstances. When they fail at whatever goal, they blame the conditions.

When they see clearly and painfully that they are indeed far less than they hoped, and far worse than they imagined, they pray to be saved - to God they place their faith in, or to the nature they place their trust in.

"Justice will be done."

"These wrongs will be righted."

"The universe will correct this and I'll be made into what I dream."

This is, of course, the natural reaction in some respect. It's the normal reaction. But it isn't right, of course.

The Buddha once wrote the following about this very thing:

"No one saves us but ourselves. No one can, and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path."

There are no shortcuts on the long journey to become our best self; the journey that never ends, that never relents, that never comes easy. It would not improve you if it did not challenge you. It would not challenge you if it did not, at times, seemingly break you.

But help does not come anywhere but yourself. It is only you can overcome this most difficult challenge. In the endurance of the challenge is the defeat of it.

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