Pain and suffering

“When you get hurt, say, by an arrow, that is pain. The arrow hitting your arm, it hurts. Pain. However, there is a second arrow, which is your reaction to the arrow, the getting angry, the planning revenge, that is beyond pain, that is suffering.”

– Old Buddhist saying, based on teachings in the Sallatha Sutta.

Deep Listening

There is a Boddhisattva, whose name is Avalokitesvara, in Vietnamise we call her Quan The Âm, in Chinese, Quan Yin. It means: ‘Listening deeply to the sound of the cries of the world’. And listening deeply is the practice of mindfullness. But if you are full of pain, full of anxiety, full of projections, and especially full of prejudices, full of ideas and notions, it may be very difficult for you to practice deep listening. You are too full. And that is why to practice in order for you to have space, to have freedom within, to have some joy within is very important for deep listening. Avalokitesvara, Quan Yin, she practices deep listening to herself, and to the world, outside. She practices touching with her ears.

– Thich Nhat Hanh, Linji School, Thien (Zen).