When we think of ourselves as inherently angry and ignorant, and we doubt our ability to achieve enlightenment, we are thinking that our true nature is permanently impure and defiled. But like the fingerprints on the wineglass, these emotions are not part of our true nature; we have only gathered pollutants from all sorts of unfavorable situations, such as associating with nonvirtuous people or not understanding the consequences of our actions. The primordial absence of defilements, the pure nature of the self, is often called buddhanature. Yet the defilements and the resulting emotions have been there for so long and have become so strong that they are our second nature, always shadowing us. It is not surprising that we think there is no hope.
Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
from the book What Makes You Not a Buddhist
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Further quotes from the book What Makes You Not a Buddhist:
- Today is the death of yesterday
- Clinging to our hopes and fears
- Primordial purity
- Where will they scatter my ashes
- A simple, scientific fact
- Being a Buddhist
- Our true nature is like a wineglass
- What is in the mind of a Buddhist
- Pride and pity
- Living fully
- Your own ignorance betrays you
- Shielding ourselves and others from the truth
- Not a buddha yet
- Like monkeys
- Appreciating the whole cycle of impermanence
- The spiritual path is a temporary solution
- Enlightened beings may seem insane
- I don’t give a damn
- What is life?