The Real Study – Ajahn Chah

Bronze Buddha Portrait
THE REAL STUDY

“The eight factors of the Eightfold Path of the Buddha, the path of practice, are nothing other than this very body: two eyes, two ears, two nostrils, one tongue, and one body. This is the Path. And the mind is the one who follows the Path. Therefore both the study and the practice exist in our body, speech, and mind…” – Ajahn Chah

 

 


 

THE REAL STUDY

“The eight factors of the Eightfold Path of the Buddha, the path of practice, are nothing other than this very body: two eyes, two ears, two nostrils, one tongue, and one body. This is the Path. And the mind is the one who follows the Path. Therefore both the study and the practice exist in our body, speech, and mind…” – Ajahn Chah

 

“It’s not external study but internal study that counts. For the internal study you have to study these eyes, these ears, this nose, this tongue, this body, and this mind. This is the real study. The study of books is just external, and it’s really hard to ever finish it.

“When the eye sees form, what sort of thing happens? When ear, nose, and tongue experience sounds, smells, and tastes, what takes place? When the body and mind come into contact with tangible objects and mental states, what reactions take place? Are there still greed, aversion, and delusion there? Do we get lost in forms, sounds, smells, tastes, textures, and moods? This is the internal study. It has a point of completion.

Bronze Buddha Portrait

“The Buddha wanted us to study the scriptures, and then to give up unwholesome actions through body, speech and mind; to develop goodness in our deeds, speech and thoughts. The real worth of humankind will come to fruition through our deeds, speech, and thoughts. If we only talk, without acting accordingly, the practice is not yet complete. Or if we do good deeds but the mind is still not good, this is still incomplete. The Buddha taught to develop goodness in body, speech, and mind; to develop fine deeds, fine speech, and fine thoughts. This is the treasure of human life. The study and the practice must both be good.

“The eight factors of the Eightfold Path of the Buddha, the path of practice, are nothing other than this very body: two eyes, two ears, two nostrils, one tongue, and one body. This is the Path. And the mind is the one who follows the Path. Therefore both the study and the practice exist in our body, speech, and mind.

“Have you ever seen scriptures that teach about anything other than the body, speech, and mind? The scriptures only teach about this, nothing else. Defilements are born right here. If you know them, they die right here. If we study just this much, we can know everything.”

 

Text Source: Epilogue to ‘A Taste of Freedom’, by Ajahn Chah. Access to Insight (Legacy Edition), 30 November 2013.< http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai/chah/atasteof.html .>

Image: ‘Bronze Buddha Portrait’ by PJL 2014



 

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