1,001 Pearls of Buddhist Wisdom
Chronicle, 2006 (2006)
Reviewed by Hilary Williamson
his stocking stuffer sized book, written by the vice-president of Britain's Buddhist society, offers an introduction to Buddhism via
pearls of wisdom
in the form of
sayings, stories, teachings, and beliefs
. Its quotations range from ancient sources such as the Dhammapada to relatively modern thinkers like Einstein, Molière, Darwin and Tagore. Information is organized under:
Life and teachings of the Buddha
Skills for life
(cultivation of awareness of mind and body);
Mind and heart
(awareness in greater depth);
Finding the path
(the Buddha's way);
Planet and cosmos
(time and the physical universe); and
The global family
(harmony between nations).
ere are some
that spoke strongly to me. The Diamond sutra teaches: '
Thus shall you think of all this fleeting world: a bubble in a stream, a flash of lightning in a summer cloud, a flickering lamp, a phantom, and a dream.
' Lao Tzu told us that '
Only those who know when enough is enough can ever have enough.
' There's wisdom in the Japanese proverb, '
Fall seven times, stand up eight
'; the Malayan saying, '
One can pay back the loan of gold, but one dies forever in debt to those who are kind
'; the Tibetan teaching, '
Thou shalt not let thy senses make a playground of thy heart and mind
'; and this from the Talmud - '
He who adds not to his learning, diminishes it.
hief Seattle's words seem especially relevant to today's world: '
Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together.
' Pearls of wisdom indeed - we all can learn from them.
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