Buddhism Basics page 08


– link to next page is at bottom of this page –

The 5 Paths




This is the simplest, and the hardest part of life.

Each of us is on a path, whether we realize it or not.

Buddhism seeks to enlighten us as to what our PATH is.

Most people are in college because they don’t have a path in life.

However, by even unintentionally participating in a Path, we become that path.

If you graduate college with a degree in medicine, you will have committed yourself to being a doctor, even if you wanted to be a lawyer. Our decisions are mostly based upon need and obligations. You will become obligated to your path.

Most people don’t realize what path they are on, or just willingly accept it out of convenience or circumstance.

Buddhism seeks to make each person LOOK AT YOUR CURRENT PATH.

Before you can decide what you want to do, look at what you’re doing. This may sound easy, but I’ve been teaching people to look at their selves for over a dozen years and even the most anxious students have difficult mental blocks somewhere. We naturally defend our survival, and we naturally defend our identity.

Be forewarned, you will fight against yourself sometimes, naturally. Your self-protective instincts will defend even what you know is wrong sometimes. Like the cigarette smoker who wants to quit smoking, there are biological defenses that protect your current actions. Mostly we rationalize with logics that our mind willingly accepts.

This willingness to believe what we would have trouble convincing someone else of is the first barrier of mental defenses Buddhism will attack.

Yes, attack. It is up to you to be the winner or the loser. Do you want to hide behind your false-beliefs and “win.” Or do you want to abandon something that has worked well for you but is holding you back from growing, developing, or maturing.

You need to redefine “winning” and “losing” since losing something immature is winning…although it may not feel like it.

Remember, training is a Path. More than something you do, training defines your Path in life. A life without any exercise would end up in a different place than a path with exercise in it.

Training, whether medical school or weight lifting, will affect your future, somehow.

The Chinese believed that a well-developed person would study and learn THE THREE PERFECTIONS of calligraphy, art, and poetry. By studying these disciplines while pursuing any other career, the Chinese found that a person would be better at their chosen profession.

So training is more than just focusing on one skill. A well-rounded person includes well-rounded training, for a well-rounded life.

Chinese Signature CHOP of Master Zhen Shen-Lang
Buddha Zhen Shen-Lang
“Spirit Wolf of Truth”
Patriarch of Shaolin Zen