Tag Archives: gangtok

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The Buddhist notion of diligence is to delight in positive deeds. Its opposite, called le lo in Tibetan, has three aspects. Le lo is usually translated as “laziness,” though only its first aspect refers to laziness as we usually understand it.

The first aspect is not doing something because of indolence, even though we know that it is good and ought to be done.

The second aspect is faintheartedness. This comes about when we underestimate our qualities and abilities, thinking, “I’m so incompetent and weak. It would be good to do that, but I could never accomplish it.” Not having the confidence of thinking, “I can do it,” we end up doing nothing.

The third aspect refers to being very busy and seeming diligent, but wasting time and energy on meaningless activities that will not accomplish anything in the long run. When we do many things for no real purpose, we fail to focus on what is truly worthwhile and our path has no clear direction.

When we refrain from these three aspects of laziness, we are diligent.

— Ringu Tulku Rinpoche – Daring Steps Toward Fearlessness: The Three Vehicles of Buddhism

Self-Confidence and Diligence

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And what is it to work with love?
It is to weave the cloth with threads drawn from your heart,
even as if your beloved were to wear that cloth.
It is to build a house with affection,
even as if your beloved were to dwell in that house.
It is to sow seeds with tenderness and reap the harvest with joy,
even as if your beloved were to eat the fruit.
It is to charge all things you fashion with a breath of your own spirit,
And to know that all the blessed dead
are standing about you and watching.

[…]

Work is love made visible.
And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste,
it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple
and take alms of those who work with joy.
For if you bake bread with indifference,
you bake a bitter bread that feeds but half man’s hunger.
And if you grudge the crushing of the grapes,
your grudge distils a poison in the wine.
And if you sing though as angels,
and love not the singing,
you muffle man’s ears to the voices of the day and the voices of the night.

— Khalil Gibran – The Prophet – Work

Work is love made visible