Tuesday, December 8, 2009

1. Having Few Desires

"Not extensively seeking objects of desire not yet attained is called having few desires.

"Buddha said, 'You monks should know that people with many desires seek to gain a lot, and therefore their afflictions are also many. Those with few desires have no seeking and no craving, so they don't have this problem. You should cultivate having few desires even for this reason alone, to say nothing of the fact that having few desires can produce virtues. People with few desires are free from flattery and deviousness whereby they might seek to curry people's favor, and they also are not under the compulsion of their senses. Those who act with few desires are calm, without worry or fear. Whatever the situation, there is more than enough -- there is never insufficiency. Those who have few desires have nirvana.' "

(From "The Eight Awarenesses of Great People," translated by Thomas Cleary in "Shobogenzo: Zen essays by Dogen.")

(Photo: Edison, New Jersey.)


  1. I love this and aspire to it. I think it perfectly describes you. (And that's not just flattery!)

    Definitely words to live by.

  2. Hi Steve, I just started following you thanks to our friend, mouse. Love your blog and love, love, love your photographs. I'm in the same industry as you, so I also know about the layoffs. My company laid off 18 good souls the week before it happened to you. I have survived for now, but they have until January to complete this latest layoff project so who knows. I am happy you have a cushion, I totally get the insecurity, but hey, I have a feeling you will write a bestseller! Good luck to you. Is it callous to say, Enjoy?

    And I too aspire to having few desires. Easier said than done, but as they say, disappointment is merely expectation, unmet. Thanks for the reminder.

  3. The antidote to capitalism perhaps?

  4. Steve I'm planning to post something about this, this weekend. it will now take longer as i have to think about it more [thanks for that! :-)]
    and i shall link here....

  5. Buddah is so wise in his simplicity.