Joe, Anthony has inspired me, and I have changed my mind. I have decided to answer you, but only to correct your assumptions and misconceptions. I won't argue with you. I have nothing to defend or prove.
When I said: "The farmer scatters seed, he doesn't make it grow. The seed would grow no matter who scatters it, or even if it's just scattered by the wind." You took me literally. What I meant is: My neighbor would be just as "helped" if Bill! or Anthony or you helped her - the cats would be just as "fed" if Bill! or Anthony or you fed them - the work at the library would be just as "done" if Bill! or Anthony or you did it. I don't labor under the same illusions and concepts as you do. I don't think or believe my actions of helping, feeding, and working are liberating anyone, or bringing anyone peace, or somehow helping the world. I do these things because I can. I'm no bodhisattva, and I'm no zen master, I'm no Mother Theresa. I'm me. I do what I do, usually and mostly because I want to. I said "Trying to change others is like trying to cover the earth with leather to protect your feet from stones and thorns. It is much easier to put on shoes." You then said: THis is meant to bring peace to a being who goes through the world affected by everyone else. If you want to be happy and you go about it by changing every one else you will fail, so change your self. However Trying to help others, not merely to control your own upset caused by others, is not found in this saying. It was intended to help a person that always blames others for their own unhappiness. Well, all I can say is, I would prefer you not tell me what things mean to me. I can interpret things for myself just fine, thank you. What that statement means to me is that there will always be people in the world who do distasteful, cruel, and awful things; lying, cheating, stealing, raping, and killing. These are the stones and thorns. Putting on shoes means doing what I can to protect myself. Then I am in a position to help others. I think trying to stop these things is a waste of energy - and NO this doesn't mean I somehow "approve" of lying and cheating and stealing and raping and killing. It means I think my energy is better spent in protecting myself as best I can and trying to help the people who are victims of these things. I said, "Don't draw another's bow, don't ride another's horse, don't mind another's business. Mind your own business. --Dahui" Again misapplied. When someone is being raped, don't help. When someone asks for help tell them it is their business. When a seial rapist is captured, let him go. When an addict is suffering don't offer help. Where is the balance in this? This is not at all what I meant, and I don't like the inflammatory and accusational tone of your statement. Of course I would try to help a rape victim. Of course I would try to help someone who asks me for help. Of course I don't think serial rapists should be let go. Of course I think addicts should be helped. You were being critical of other people's zen, that is what I meant. You don't know the individualities and idiosyncrasies of someone else's bow, or horse, or zen or beingness! No one can judge someone else's zen! No. Not even you! Artie ================================= FROM: Over the hills and far away. . . The way to do is be. Lao Tzu