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Would The Buddha Really Have Said “When You Love A Flower, You Water It Daily”?

by Anura Guruge


buddha

I saw this on Facebook Friday, December 16, 2016.


As soon as I saw this it struck me, immediately and viscerally, as incongruous.

Why?

I really don’t remember hearing much about the Buddha, i.e., Gautama Buddha, talking about love! That is true and in my youth I was very immersed in Buddhism and would have remembered if ‘love’ was a major plank of the Buddha’s teaching.

Got me thinking. Gautama Buddha and love! Hhhhmmmm.

This was a man who walked away from his newly born son, supposedly his only child, without a backward glance or any regrets — within 24 hours of the son being born! This was a man who walked away from his doting wife. Why? Because he fretted that life was misery. I only started seeing this aspect of the Buddha over the last 15 – 20 years. I do not see him as what you would call an affectionate person.

Then there is his WHOLE thing about ATTACHMENTS. Love is the ultimate form of attachment.

And then on further reflection I realized that it is very unlikely that the Buddha would have said: “When You Love A Flower, You Water It Daily”.

Three reasons.

  1. This would have created an attachment to a ‘thing’, i.e., the flower, that by nature would soon die. That was anathema to the Buddha. So, that was strike one.
  2. The Buddha was BIG into flowers — as ‘things’ that should be used when meditating, and doing so by focusing on how a fresh, beautiful flower would soon die, wither away and become unsightly. Strike two.
  3. The Buddha would have known that you don’t water a flower per se, and that any amount of watering would not permit it to last ‘that long’. Strike three.

I could be wrong. But, this does not sound like a saying from the Buddha. Enlighten me IF I am wrong. I am all ears.

Thanks. Merry Christmas.


Related Posts:
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by Anura Guruge