Diane Eshin Rizzetto

‘Someone said to me recently, “The longer I practice, the more I realize the impossibility of keeping my vows.” I responded, “Wonderful. Your vows are working. Hold on to your vows.” I’ve seen the word vow defined as “an engine that drives human aspiration, advancement, and accomplishment,” and this is certainly the case, but the function of a vow is also to support us in a basic contradiction, which is that we can never fulfill our vows completely. This contradiction, however, is not an obstacle but rather a path, a gateway for us to meet life with an open heart and clear seeing.’ (Deep Hope)

If I had a dollar for every time I could use the phrase ‘this contradiction, however, is not an obstacle but rather a path’ in a teaching conversation, I expect I could keep myself comfortably supplied with coffee for a while…

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