Before teaching others,
we should first cultivate ourselves.
Having some success in cultivation,
our behavior will precede our words.

Having discovered something new and intriguing, we usually can’t wait to tell others about our latest discovery. Take newly hearing about Buddhism for example. Wanting to share with others what we just learned is understandable. But if we cannot yet do something how can we explain it to others? If we do not yet find a lessening of our anger and a sense of calmness through the practice, how can we teach others to be more patient? If we speak of letting go of worry and fear but are often anxious, how can we convince others Buddhist practice will help them worry less? When we try to teach something before we can do it, others will resist us. Understandably so. When we have progressed in our cultivation, our behavior will reflect our growth. Others will view us as experienced and trustworthy. And we will be qualified to teach.

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