Know Yourself, Be At Peace

ktadmin Post in A Zen Thing
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Meditation Point #120

One day Chuang-tzu and a friend were walking along a riverbank.
     “How delightfully the fishes are enjoying themselves in the water!” Chuang-tzu exclaimed.
    “You are not a fish,” his friend said. “How do you know whether or not the fishes are enjoying themselves?”
    “You are not me,” Chuang-tzu said. “How do you know that I do not know that the fishes are enjoying themselves?”
– – TAOIST MONDO

Why do we judge the world and those we know based on our perspective and understanding of the world? The message here is clear, be careful of what you assume to know and understand. In the Martial Arts I always teach people to do two things; never under estimate their opponent; and, to always try and see the situation from their opponents perspective. The former is just good advice. The later is more difficult but can often negate the need to fight, (the ultimate goal of the Martial Arts is NOT to fight). Often if we understand our opponent we can reason with them or at the very least empathize with them. This puts us on the higher ground and often calms our minds making us a more formidable opponent ourselves. No longer motivated by anger or rage we fight with the calm of justice and self-defense intent on only protecting ourselves not exacting our own revenge for the attack. In short understanding the world better helps us stay in control of ourselves, as Zen teaches us the only thing we can control.

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