Zen Talk: A Quote by Buddha about the Wise

“As a solid boulder does not shake in the wind, the wise are not moved by censure or praise.”

This saying by Buddha lets us meditate on our inner conviction and resolve, as well as our understanding of ourselves, lives and accomplishments.

Now, do I think that we should never feel pride when complemented or never let criticism help us rethink our actions or work? No, not necessarily. Censure and praise can act as important buffers in guiding us towards better things or higher qualities of work, wishing to achieve more praise the next time or improving ourselves for fear of chastisement.

Personally, when it comes to constructive criticism I listen with open ears because only through editing, for example, does a piece of writing improve. As the Buddha expresses, though, that criticism shouldn’t be taken personally or to heart or let it move us as people, but only affect the quality of our work.

Buddha makes us realize that accolades and criticism should not ultimately make us feel bad (or too good) about ourselves or be dwelled upon excessively. They are there to be taken or left as appropriate and not to turn our worlds upside down as many people allow both praise and censorious remarks to do.

What does this Buddha quote make you think about? What are your thoughts about letting praise and censure affect you? Have you ever had an experience where such remarks affected you in a particularly noteworthy way?

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