Volunteer caretaker, pilgrim rest hut, Kochi. January 31, 2012
If we have been together since beginingless time,
Then we have all been each other’s companions,
Friends, enemies, mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, and children.
My enemy has been my friend — and my friend, my enemy.
Each of us owes an enormous debt, impossible to repay.
Our happiness is the bequest of a staggering chain of causality, the gift of the known,
But also the legacy of the unknown, the unnamed, and the unnameable.
Our happiness is the result of untold acts of kindness, generosity, sacrifice and care.
If this is so, as we know it is, then we owe everything to every other being,
And there are no enemies.
Pilgrim, Kochi Prefecture, Japan. February 2012.
If a man find a prudent companion who walks with him, is wise,
and lives soberly, he may walk with him, overcoming all dangers,
happy, but considerate.
If a man find no prudent companion who walks with him, is wise,
and lives soberly, let him walk alone, like a king who has left his
conquered country behind,–like an elephant in the forest.
It is better to live alone, there is no companionship with a
fool; let a man walk alone, let him commit no sin, with few wishes,
like an elephant in the forest.
— The Dhammapada, 23:328-330