When entering a Buddhist center . . . (Click image for video)


What we take for someone’s unwillingness to help

may just be their wish not to intrude. 

Or perhaps they are uncertain how best to help. 

Reticence to pitch in and help arises from a wide range of reasons.

Perhaps the one who needs help has a temper or an unyielding I-know-it-all air that discourages others from asking.

Many would like to help but hesitate over just how to do so.

Or possibly they’ve tried to in the past and were brushed off.

Or others doubted that they could and when they did help, their efforts were scoffed at and flaws highlighted.

Clearly, there are numerous reasons why people do not help. Therefore, jumping to the conclusion that people don’t want to help is just too simplistic. It will only land us in the wrong place. As we can see, it is very easy to mistake humble reluctance for obstinate disinclination. But we can change all that. A welcoming smile or a casual “Can you help me out here?” will get us the help we really do need and allow the other person to practice giving.

A win for all involved.



Be careful with words . . . (Click image for video)


I resolve to refrain from ignorance. 

Instead, I will disciple myself and 

calm my mind so that I can act from wisdom. 

“Why?” It’s a common enough question, one we’ve asked ourselves numerous times. Examples: Why did I say what I did? Why did I do that? Why did I even have the thought to do so in the first place?

Because of our ignorance—our lack of knowing and understanding. Either we didn’t know better. (But we often do.) Or we haven’t yet grasped the harm we can inflict on others and ourselves when our careless behavior arises from what we’re feeling.

Sometimes emotions are helpful. For instance, when in danger, we experience fear and frantically cast about for a way to escape.

But much of the time, our emotions just get us into trouble. We cultivate to discipline ourselves. Doing so successfully, we no longer need to worry about or be embarrassed by what we just did. Our mind will begin to calm down. When it is tranquil, like still water, our wisdom will bubble up, and we will naturally do what is right.