age: 42
gender: male

What can be done, or not done, to win back the heart of the one I love?
(I have been told that we would and would not reunite,
I have been told that we would and we would not divorce,
I have been told that she has and has not been faithful,
and I have all but given up on what or who to believe.)

kristo answers...

There is a story in the life of the Buddha concerning a woman and her dead infant.
Her grief was such that she would not / could not let go of the corpse.
Her neighbors and relatives simply could not convince her to allow for a funeral.
One of them suggested that she ask the Buddha for a miracle, as he happened to be nearby at the time.
When she went to him and asked to have her child restored to life he said yes...on one condition...
she must go to her village and ask for a few grains of mustard seed from a house where no one has ever died.
Happily, she ran back to the village.
Of course, everyone she asked was happy to donate mustard seeds; but, the village being particularly ancient, no one could say that death had never visited their house.
She finally returned to the Buddha and asked to become a follower.

The important part of the story, as it relates to the querent, concerns the idea of becoming a follower.
We are all divided.
We follow our beliefs and we follow our hormones...
but we don't know how to follow our own Buddha nature...
what Buddha called Dhamma (or Dharma), and what Lao Tzu called the Tao.
Beliefs are a dime a dozen.
People kill and have been killed in the name of belief...
and great sums of money have been collected and distributed and charged and donated and spent, all in the name of belief...
but what is belief in the face of our own experience?

Zen...which is the child of Buddhism and Taoism...essentially means the ability to see our own true nature.
Once seen, there is no longer any such thing as following or belief.
All questions and all answers vanish.
Winning and losing vanish.

It has been said that the Buddha experienced enlightenment (i.e. saw / experienced his own true nature) only when he finally just gave up believing and following. are right on the cusp.


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