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OSHO Online Library   »   The Books   »   The Dhammapada: The Way of the Buddha, Vol. 1
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Chapter 1: We Are What We Think

We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts.
With our thoughts we make the world.
Speak or act with an impure mind
and trouble will follow you
as the wheel follows the ox that draws the cart.

We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts.
With our thoughts we make the world.
Speak or act with a pure mind
and happiness will follow you
as your shadow, unshakable.

“Look how he abused me and beat me,
how he threw me down and robbed me.”
Live with such thoughts and you live in hate.

“Look how he abused me and beat me,
how he threw me down and robbed me.”
Abandon such thoughts, and live in love.

In this world
hate never yet dispelled hate.
Only love dispels hate.
This is the law,
ancient and inexhaustible.

You too shall pass away.
Knowing this, how can you quarrel?

How easily the wind overturns a frail tree.
Seek happiness in the senses,
indulge in food and sleep,
and you too will be uprooted.

The wind cannot overturn a mountain.
Temptation cannot touch the man
who is awake, strong and humble,
who masters himself and minds the law.

If a man’s thoughts are muddy,
if he is reckless and full of deceit,
how can he wear the yellow robe?

Whoever is master of his own nature,
bright, clear and true,
he may indeed wear the yellow robe.

My beloved bodhisattvas. Yes, that’s how I look at you. That’s how you have to start looking at yourselves. Bodhisattva means a buddha in essence, a buddha in seed, a buddha asleep, but with all the potential to be awake. In that sense everybody is a bodhisattva, but not everybody can be called a bodhisattva - only those who have started groping for the light, who have started longing for the dawn, in whose hearts the seed is no longer a seed but has become a sprout, has started growing.

You are bodhisattvas because of your longing to be conscious, to be alert, because of your quest for the truth. The truth is not far away, but there are very few fortunate ones in the world who long for it. It is not far away but it is arduous, it is hard to achieve. It is hard to achieve, not because of its nature, but because of our investment in lies.

We have invested for lives and lives in lies. Our investment is so much that the very idea of truth makes us frightened. We want to avoid it, we want to escape from the truth. Lies are beautiful escapes - convenient, comfortable dreams. But dreams are dreams. They can enchant you for the moment, they can enslave you for the moment, but only for the moment. And each dream is followed by tremendous frustration, and each desire is followed by deep failure.

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