Cultivation is Like Rowing a Boat Upriver...
Updated: Jul 6, 2021
Cultivation is like rowing a boat upriver: unless we keep rowing steadily, we’ll end up adrift.
Sporadic cultivation does not provide us as much benefit as cultivating daily.
Few of us would disagree with that.
But trying to squeeze one more task into our already hectic week is, at the very least, daunting. Plus, the time we make for chanting would be so brief. How could it benefit us?
And so we decide to set aside time to chant and study on weekends. But even if we manage to follow our weekend only schedule, the benefits will not prove as significant as those from daily learning and practice.
First, we would not have the calming effects that chanting regularly brings or the empowerment to gradually master our thoughts rather than be enslaved by them.
Second, cultivation includes applying the teachings in everything we do, not just while sitting
in meditation or reading. Regular teachings even brief ones help us remain focused.
Thus by cultivating daily, instead of finding ourselves continually adrift, we will steadily progress.
— Our Daily Practice, Venerable Wuling