Author Topic: The Happiness of Fish  (Read 17071 times)

negra orquida

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Re: The Happiness of Fish
« Reply #15 on: April 24, 2012, 04:45:23 PM »
In fact, the story is about the play of words.

I'm not so sure if the story is so simple as that... Moreover this story is originally in (the old form of) Chinese, so it is likely that some essence of the story has been lost in translation.  In any case, this is another perception again based on what we read ;)

For those who don't know, Zhuangzi was not just any other scholar, he was a very famous Chinese philosopher who greatly influenced the development of Chinese Buddhism, especially Zen.

Here is another famous story of Zhuangzi... Which I can't figure out what he's trying to say :p Perhaps it is about "we" are our mind and not our body?

Once Zhuangzi dreamt he was a butterfly, a butterfly flitting and fluttering around, happy with himself and doing as he pleased. He didn't know he was Zhuangzi. Suddenly he woke up and there he was, solid and unmistakable Zhuangzi. But he didn't know if he was Zhuangzi who had dreamt he was a butterfly, or a butterfly dreaming he was Zhuangzi. Between Zhuangzi and a butterfly there must be some distinction! This is called the Transformation of Things.


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Re: The Happiness of Fish
« Reply #16 on: April 26, 2012, 08:32:05 AM »
Ummm... i will say this is about our perception which come from our awareness, compassion to observe things happen surround us base on our experience.

A few years ago, i went to Nepal with a group of friend. I was in a car next to one of my friend, the car drove through a small road which we saw local nepalese stay in their house and we saw many of nepalese were sitting and chatting in front of their house. Suddenly my friend said 'Ayoh! poor thing!, they must be very suffer to stay in this condition' i quite surprise as i didn't have any feeling or thought about that as i saw they had a happy face and eyes even they are poor as i feel that not only material that bring us happiness but my friend base on material so since they are poor and don't have money, nice clothes, nice house so they are suffer.

See, 2 persons see same thing but can have different feeling and thought.


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Re: The Happiness of Fish
« Reply #17 on: April 26, 2012, 08:59:16 AM »
When we perceive an object, we will always form an opinion thereon based on our past experiences or knowledge that we have had on that object.  We are quick to jump to conclusion on the outset what we thought was the real nature of that phenomena or object.  Our minds are impure and obscured by our karma. We are completely deceived by what we perceived as true or correct.  In actual fact we are completely mistaken or wrong about our perception of the phenomena and objects around us. It is therefore advisable to have an open and analytical mind when we deal with any situation that we have encountered.   Things or events that we perceived may not be what it appears to be. Everyone would have different understanding and interpretation of this story.

If we further develop and purify our mind, we become wiser and see things clearly. Eventually we want to have the omniscient mind of a Buddha who is all knowing and perceive things perfectly, clearly and correctly.


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Re: The Happiness of Fish
« Reply #18 on: April 27, 2012, 11:54:29 AM »
We were taught since we were little to think and judge certain things or situation in order for us to make decisions to avoid danger or simply decide to sit down and have a cup of coffee. So its only natural for us to judge. We are so good at it, at times we don't even realized we have make certain decision already before even find out what had actually happened.

Another example is two friends decided to go for a drink after a long day. Both of them haven't seen each other for a while actually so that night they decide to go out and sit at the bar. So they sat down and didn't converse that much but will cheers with each other whenever one of them decided to a sip or two. Are they enjoying themselves? or are they simply bored with each other?
What kind of impression will they make to the people in that pub? Various i believed....


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Re: The Happiness of Fish
« Reply #19 on: April 28, 2012, 03:09:14 AM »
How well we perceive the feelings and happiness of others depends upon our awareness and compassion for others. That's what I think this little story means to me. We are constantly enraptured by our own pleasures and sufferings that we often don't even notice what makes others around us suffer. Just practicing awareness towards others around us can be an excellent practice to increase our compassion towards others. It helps us to develop means and wisdom to help others.

Dear Big Uncle,

I like your sharing on this little story, in fact this little story is a very famous in Chinese History.

To me, this little story is about karma - how we are responsible to our own actions that will come back to us eventually. Both of the men in this little story do not know exactly how fish feel because they simply NOT THE FISH. Just the same - we dont know exactly how the other person (no matter how close we are) feel and because we are different individual who is going thru samsara due to our karma. 

I appreciate your sharing, and it is the very core of Buddhism that we should constantly be aware of people around us, how they feel and more importantly what we can do to help them in any way we possibly could.

Thank you again for sharing
Down with the BAN!!!


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Re: The Happiness of Fish
« Reply #20 on: April 29, 2012, 10:03:05 AM »
I used to say this quite a lot to my friends as well as sometimes to my self. I relate to some situation most times so that people can understand it better. By placing our self in someone shoe is the best way to get the answer across. We may not be the dog or fish but when we place our self in their shoes you will have a better answer then.

I used to think like that. But I realised that even with all our sincerity to be in the person's shoe, we will never be able to relate because all of us think differently and have different minds. We will react differently while being in the same shoe.

I've learnt not to judge. It's tough to not judge but we must develop self control if we really care for the person. They feel what they feel and think what they think. The best is to just listen and accept them regardless. Then skilfully encourage them to learn the dharma so that they can find the solutions themselves.