Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Result Will Be 180 Degrees Different Depending on Your Approach

Any religion refers to both the bright and dark sides of human nature. A poisonous snake is spoken of in Buddhist doctrine, and people keep that story in their minds. Buddha, however, did not necessarily deny the existence of the poisonous snake. Rather, Buddhism teaches people that they should manage and control the snake. The Zen sect of the religion says that everyone keeps one poisonous snake in his mind. He needs to control it. In order for him to control his snake, he needs to train himself. Religious principle can train him. There are some people who state that they do not have religion. From a religious viewpoint, they are saying that they drive cars without brakes. It is meaningful statement.

Here is another story about the snake. It is about Buddha himself.

In his younger days, as he was struggling to achieve enlightenment, Buddha traveled. One evening, when Buddha needed a place to sleep, he visited the home of a stranger. The owner of the home allowed Buddha to stay. However he brought Buddha to a tent in the back yard of his house instead of giving him a room inside the house. Buddha still thanked him and went into the tent. The owner of the house was a nasty person, however, and threw a poisonous snake into Buddha's tent. He wanted to surprise Buddha and see him run out of the tent.

After a while, when nothing happened inside Buddha's tent, the owner of the home wondered if Buddha had been bitten and killed by the snake. He went into the tent and found Buddha sitting in the tent, awake. Puzzled, he asked Buddha what had happened to the snake. Buddha pointed to the corner of his tent, to a bowl he carried with him. The owner looked into the bowl and found the poisonous snake sleeping inside!

Even a poisonous snake could not attack Buddha, who extended his love to it. If Buddha had been surprised and had tried to kill the snake, the snake would have attacked Buddha and bitten him. This is significant because we may experience a similar situation in our daily lives or in the world of business. If someone has an angry customer and responds to that customer with anger, the customer will surely become even angrier, and perhaps even violent! If we approach an angry customer with rhyme and reason, however, calmly explaining our own position and hope, the customer will listen to us, and the result will not be violent or devastating. We should remember that it is not others who make us angry or upset; it is we who make others angry or upset.

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