Truly Free

“Nirvana means extinction, the extinction of all notions and concepts, including the concepts of birth, death, being, nonbeing, coming, and going. Nirvana is the ultimate dimension of life, a state of coolness, peace, and joy. It is not a state to be attained after death. You can touch nirvana right now by breathing, walking, and drinking the tea in mindfulness.”

涅槃意味著寂滅,一切念頭和定義的寂滅,包括生死、存亡、來去等概念的寂滅。涅槃是生命的終極維度,一個清涼、安樂的境界,一個並非要等到離世才抵達的境界。只要你一心一意呼吸、行走、喝茶 …… 此時此刻你能立即抵達。

“If I could not find peace in the midst of difficulties, then I would never know real peace, and the kind of peace I might have in simpler times is meaningless.”


“Spirituality is not religion. It is a path for us to generate understanding and love, toward us and others. Having a spiritual dimension in our lives does not mean dwelling in a place of bliss outside this world; it means discovering ways to handle life’s difficulties and generate peace and joy right where we are.”


“Happiness is not possible unless we are free from craving, anger, despair, fear, jealousy … attachment and desire of all kinds. Such freedom is what nirvana really means. Freedom from longing and craving is an important practice. Just come back to the present moment, and touch the wonders of current life that are available. There are so many wholesome things that can make us joyous right now, such as the morning sunrise, the empty sky, the smoky mountains, the running rivers, and all these lovely beings around us.”


“When we first hear about emptiness, we feel a little frightened. But after practicing for a while, we see that things do exist, only in a different way than we’d thought. Emptiness is the Middle Way between existent and nonexistent. The beautiful flower does not become empty when it fades and dies. It is already empty, in its essence. Looking deeply, we see that the flower is made of non-flower elements – light, space, clouds, earth, and consciousness. It is empty of a separate, independent self … We have to learn to see ourselves in things that we thought were outside of ourselves, in order to dissolve false boundaries.”

當我們頭一回聽到”性空”這個詞時,我們感到有點兒不安。修行了一段時間之後,我們發現事物還是存在的,只是跟我們原先想像的不同而已。性空,是介於存在與不存在之間的一種狀態。且看那朵美麗花兒吧,它並不因凋零而變空。它的本性原本就是空的。仔細想一想,我們會發現一朵花是由種種”非花”元素構成的 ── 光、空氣、水、土,還有意識。花本身並無獨立存在的自我。我們必須學會把自己看成是大環境的一部分,才能瓦解那些虛妄的邊界。

“Why should I smile when there is no joy in me? The answer to that is: Smiling is a practice. There are over three hundred muscles in your face. When you are angry or fearful, these muscles tense up. The tension in these muscles creates a feeling of hardness. If we know how to breathe in and produce a smile, however, the tension will disappear – it is what I call ‘mouth yoga.’ Make smiling an exercise. Just breathe in and smile – the tension will disappear, and you will feel much better.”

我並不感到快樂,為什么還要微笑? 答案是這樣: 微笑是一種修行。你臉上有三百多塊肌肉,每當你生氣或擔憂,它們全繃得緊緊的。肌肉的張力因此製造了某種僵硬。當我們深吸一口氣,並綻開一個笑容時,所有的緊張都消失了 ── 我把這叫做”臉部瑜珈”。讓我們就把微笑當成練習吧,深吸一口氣,然後綻開一個笑意 ── 緊張馬上消失了,你感到愉快很多。

~ Thich Nhat Hanh (一行禪師) ~

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