Monkeys are superior to men in this: when a monkey looks into a mirror, he sees a monkey.
Metaphysics is not reality. . . . Metaphysics is a restaurant where they give you a thirty-thousand-page menu and no food.
Don’t think, but look.
The apple tree never asks the beech how he shall grow, nor the lion, the horse, how he shall take his prey.
If God didn’t want man to hunt, he wouldn’t have given us plaid shirts.
Time . . . is not a great healer. It is an indifferent and perfunctory one. Sometimes it does not heal at all. And sometimes when it seems to, no healing has been necessary.
One must be deeply aware of the impermanence of the world. This realization is not achieved by some temporary method of contemplation. It is not creating something out of nothing and then thinking about it. Impermanence is a fact before our eyes. Do not wait for the teachings from others, the words of the scriptures, and for the principles of enlightenment. We are born in the morning and we die in the evening; the man we saw yesterday is no longer with us today.
The dead carry with them to the grave in their clutched hands only that which they have given away.
One must stop before one has finished.
It is only possible to live happily ever after on a day-to-day basis.
Because human consciousness must involve both pleasure and pain, to strive for pleasure to the exclusion of pain is, in effect, to strive for the loss of consciousness.
We speak of amnesia as if it were unusual.
After the last rains left the sky and remained on the ground — clear sky, earth wet and mirrorlike — the greatest clarity of life . . . left a sky of its own in the soul and a freshness of its own in the heart. Like it or not, we are slaves of the hour and its colors and forms, subjects of the sky and the earth. Even that part of us that burrows deepest into itself, disdaining its surroundings, does not burrow along the same paths when it rains as when the sky is clear.
Your eyes. It’s a day’s work looking into them.
Sorrows cannot all be explained away. . . . In a life truly lived, grief and loss accumulate like possessions.
The hardest years in life are those between ten and seventy.
Christianity teaches that we should love our enemies, but fails to outline the steps required to evolve that capacity; it forgets that loving our enemies is the end point, not the beginning point, of spiritual practice.
When he’s late for dinner, I know he’s either having an affair or is lying dead on the street. I always hope it’s the street.
Penetrating so many secrets, we cease to believe in the unknowable. But there it sits, nevertheless, calmly licking its chops.
I think we are responsible for the universe, but that doesn’t mean we decide anything.