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Good or Bad is Really Up to You
There is a Chinese verse:
If the river is clear I’ll simply use its water to wash my hat;
If the river is muddy then I’ll get its water to wash my feet.
When Confucius heard of the verse, he told his students: “Did you hear? Man must accord with the river’s water. It’s really up to the river to decide which way to go independently of any outside influence.”
On this earth, it is man who holds the key to everything. It is man who looks down upon himself first before others can look down upon him. The family must embark upon self-destruction before others can destroy them. The country must decide to punish itself before others can punish it.
That is why the ancients said: “If the heavens create havoc we can still accumulate blessings and virtue to evade it, but if we create havoc ourselves then it is very difficult to get off easy.”
The Buddhists understand that the mind is the source of all the good and bad things that happen to us.
When the mind is inclined to goodness then good things happen to us. When our mind is evil then evil things will befall upon us. This is just the Law of Cause and Effect.
Moreover, the mind of those who have true wisdom is inclined to selfless goodness. Therefore even when bad things occur they can quickly change into auspicious things.
Let’s stop blaming others for our troubles. Instead, let’s work hard at getting rid of our own faults.
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