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Response to "How to Truly Lose a True Friend"

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  • NamoAmituofo
    ... Response to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheDailyEnlightenment/message/555 ... Response to How to Truly Lose a True Friend K (TDE reader) : I find it
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 31, 2007
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      Response to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheDailyEnlightenment/message/555
      Response to "How to Truly Lose a True Friend"

      K (TDE reader) : I find it very difficult to tell friends/family what I think even if I feel that they may be on "the wrong track." I live in a non-Buddhist circle and the majority of my friends and family have no relationship with Buddhism. 

      S (Shi'an) : I think the first thing to do is to be there for them, to express concern, before sharing Buddhism with them. Sometimes, labels can be left out first. Only when they are more receptive, you can reveal that you have been sharing Buddhism with them all along.
      K: Having tried to tell what I think, it has often backfired especially from my family. 

      S: If you think that you have tried your best, it is good to take a break. It does take two hands to clap. As long as you have tried your best, it is up to them. But don't give up. Try to look for other means to help, but don't pressurise yourself. (See the article on not giving up in previous newsletter at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheDailyEnlightenment/message/556)

      K: I had lost complete confidence in saying what I think because of the pain I feel by their reactions. 

      S: Try not to take it too personally. As Shantideva said, if it is the nature of fire to burn, so, a fire "burning" oneself is nothing personal.

      K: Some people just donĀ“t want to look into themselves. It is then easier to shout back at the other person.  

      S: Unfortunately so...

      K: I have no right in forcing them to look into themselves. Is it not a part of life to learn from your own experiences?

      S: Yes. What we can do is share lessons of we have learnt ourselves.

      K: My own Buddhist practice helps me a lot now as I understand and see how family and friends suffer. I try to be honest and truthful without upsetting them and I am getting better at that. 

      S: It's great that you are getting better at that :-]

      K: But my mother is convinced I am being brainwashed and cannot understand how she can have a daughter like me, who is so different from the rest of the family.

      S: Most importantly is to show her that Buddhism has made you a kinder and wiser person. The parts that she are disagreeable with at the moment you can try to explain in good time. It might be wise to tone down the parts she is disagreeable with too - for the time being. (But this does not mean letting Buddhist principles down.)

      K: I may disagree with friends and family but that does not mean that I am necessarily right, neither are they always right when they try to correct me. 

      S: Good point!

      K: Family and friends may not have your best interests at heart when they tell you "truthful" things. They very often have their own agendas. 

      S: Yes, others' intentions for telling the truth might not be good. But even so, it is good to know the truth.
      May the blessings of the Triple Gem be with you always. May you be well and happy always. Amituofo.

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