Manual for cultivation to good student

From:Voice of Longquan     Author:Voice of Longquan     Time:2017-08-16 21:22:27
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Teacher is important in a mentoring relationship, but the role of student is even more so. What determines how much and how well a student can learn from teacher is their faith, devotion, eagerness, and attentiveness when learning, and how diligently they practice what they have learned.

Q: Master, how do I understand "cause and effect" and "impermanence"? If everything has causes and effects, how can it be impermanent?  

A: The passage from cause to effect is exactly the manifestation of "impermanence". If things are permanent, there would be no changes, and cause would not take effect. Impermanence is not the same as being irregular, sporadic, or random.


Q: Prostrate to Venerable Master! I am wondering if we should listen to no more than one Master’s teaching, engage in long-time learning and practice of no more than one Buddhist tradition. In other words, is it right that "one master will lead you to the right path; more masters will lead you to confusion"? I’m grateful for your patience and time. 

A: First of all, watching a teacher’s lecture online is different from learning as one of his students; likewise, listening to a master's lecture is not the same as relying upon him as a mentor. Teacher is important in a mentoring relationship, but the role of student is even more so. What determines how much and how well a student can learn from teacher is their faith, devotion, eagerness, and attentiveness when learning, and how diligently they practice what they have learned. Most mentees in a mentoring relationship attach much importance to the mentor and forget to examine whether they are qualified students. If we are not qualified students, relying on many mentors does more harm than good – we would make comparisons between the masters and just listen to the teachings that cater to our habitual tendency. In that case, it will only bring us more self-attachment and afflictions. 


Q: Greetings Master! My kid attended entrance exam to middle school today. We were happy about his completion of elementary school, before we learned that many of his schoolmates were accepted by key middle schools and he could only go to an average school. Now I feel very bad -- blaming myself for not having tried my best to help my child to achieve his potential and blaming my kid for not having worked hard enough. I know that my complaint do no good to my kid or me, but I just cannot help it. Please give me guidance. 

A: Many afflictions arise from comparing yourself with others. 


Q: Ven. Master, How do you view competition?

A: Competition is competing with ourselves at the end. It will deviate us from the original goal of competition if we think about defeating the competitors only rather than working out for self-improvement.

Editor:Bella Liu
Tags:impermanence,relying on teachers, competition

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