The Enemy Within

201_largeI read this the other morning. Seems like an important message for our times. Working on the violence within ourselves is the best place to start.

One who conquers himself is greater than another who conquers a thousand times a thousand men on the battlefield. [Dhammapada, 103]

As long as we attack others under the foolish belief that the enemy is outside, we can never be victorious. The real enemy is within all of us. This is the enemy we have to face with courage and then defeat. Gird yourself up to fight, the Buddha would say; the battle is already joined! Don’t try to run away. The enemy is all that is base in us, all that is greedy, and separate. This is the real enemy, who hides within and deceives us by warning, “Look out! The enemy is waiting for you outside.” – Eknath Easwaran, Essence of the Dhammapada (Nilgiri Press, 2013, p. 93)

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