What I Wish for my Students

I wish that after many years of training a student in the dharma, from the outside they will appear unsophisticated, uneducated and maybe a little simple. On looking at them you wouldn’t get the impression that they were anything special; they would be humble and easy going. But inside they would be rich in learning and knowledge, their view would be high and their practice advanced.

Concentrating on making things look good from the outside – in the clothes one wears, on the seat one takes, by the airs one carries, by the hints of being learned we drop – is not the way of dharma. And anyway, those with any sense quickly see through these facades, even if they were initially dazzled.

Whereas those who are in actual fact learned and practised, but humble and simple in demeanour, cannot be kept down. Just as the flowers of spring cannot resist rising to the warmth and glow of the sun, while all who encounter them are slowly soothed and captivated by their presence.

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