Via Venerable Wuling:

Whatever the situation,
adverse or favorable, remain balanced
in your Buddha-name chanting:
unwavering and determined.

Lurching first in one direction and then another, our mind, jolted from its clear and natural state, becomes distracted and agitated. This lamentable state is where we spend much, if not all, of our time. The mental state we seek is to remain steadfast and undisturbed. When praised, we do not become proud or disdainful. Hearing others criticize us, we do not feel offended or defensive. Finding things working out as hoped for, we do not attach or feel arrogant. Encountering situations not planned for, we do not worry or doubt the teachings. How can we attain such balance? Every time we notice a distraction—good or bad—we return to the Buddha-name. This returning is our practice. The more we practice, the more proficient we become, whether we’re participating in a sport or playing an instrument. Or chanting the Buddha’s name.

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