Over coffee last week, Bob and I tried to remember the Biblical story about having a "log" in one's eye. Or a "mote." Or something. We couldn't remember.
So I looked it up (it's from Matthew 7.3):
Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?
Or how can you say to your brother, "Let me take the speck out of your eye," and behold, the log is in your own eye?
You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.
When I read this passage, I was reminded of the Great Bodhisattva Vow sometimes taken by those of us who practice in the Mahayana tradition:
Sentient beings are numberless; I vow to save them all.
We aspire to save all beings from suffering, but often experience confusion about our direction. Maybe this confusion arises from our refusal to work with the log that pierces our own eye.
Perhaps, with practice, we might see how the log distorts our view of the world. With more practice, we might remove it entirely. What then?
Photo by kqedquest