Reading Your Prescription Will Not Cure Your Disease

Like when you listen to dharma teachings and you have instructions and a book and you put the book on the bookshelf and don’t try to practice it. It’s not the fault of the dharma, it’s not the fault of the teacher. You’re not taking medicine. People always do that. They go to teaching and then say, ‘it’s not working with me.’  They put book on the bookshelf and never try to practice it. Reading and practice are different. Shantideva said:

“Reading your prescription will not cure your disease…”

It is important to see practicing dharma as curing illness. Like treatment. Otherwise dharma becomes like a holy book. It’s not like that! Like, you have a holy book, then show the holy book, and then devils run away. Right? Don’t think that way. Like a holy book can cure everything. No, it’s not like that. It’s holy. It’s a book. But it doesn’t work that way.

So you have to read the instructions you should practice. Meaning, you’ve tried to change your mind.

~Demo Rinpoche, Jewel Heart Ann Arbor, 2018 Lam Rim Session 4


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