Here is the traveler, just new in Tokyo, jet-lagged, imposed upon, lost, gagging on the truth of his duality. Referring quickly to a copy of the Teaching of Buddha he found in his hotel on top of the Gideon Bible, the agonizing pilgrim finds the Dhammapada: A fool who thinks he is a fool is for that very reason a wise man. The fool who thinks that he is a wise man is called a fool indeed. And then, below that, our foolish-indeed traveler reads: Hard is birth as man, Hard is the life of mortals, Hard is the hearing of the Sublime Truth, Hard is the appearance of a Buddha.
Sensing a step toward enlightenment, the weary castaway reads on: Not to do any evil, To cultivate good, To purify one's mind,--this is the advice of the Buddhas.
But where to find the Buddhas? In the bright lights and big city that is Tokyo?
No, the sublimely foolish wandered finds the Buddhas in the temple. Lots of them. And then, later, in the company of fine friendships, takes another step toward---what? If it is the things we cling to that make us suffer, the traveler releases his jet lag, willingly, but clings to his friends a bit longer.
The cause of human suffering is undoubtedly found in the thirsts of the physical body and in the illusions of worldly passion. If these thirsts and illusions are traced to their source, they are found to be rooted in the intense desires of physical instincts.....