Tag Archives: Buddhism

Make sure you get your ball back afterwards

一球入魂 i-.kkyuu.nyuu.kon Literally: one – sphere – enter / insert – soul Alternately: This phrase from the world of baseball refers to putting your full energy and focus into each action; specifically, putting everything you can into each throw of … Continue reading

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May it be a light to you in dark places

…when all other lights go out – JRRT, FotR 長者の万灯より貧者の一灯(Chouja no mantou yori hinja no ittou;“A pauper’s single light is greater than a rich man’s ten thousand.”) Definition: There is greater honor in a poor person sincerely giving what they … Continue reading

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The quick and the subtle

当意即妙 tou.i.soku.myou Literally: appropriate – mind / idea – instant – strange / delicate Alternately: Clever; quick-thinking. Able to handle a situation (appropriately!) as soon as it arises. Notes: This configuration is based on the Buddhist phrase 当位即妙. In this … Continue reading

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If you meet the Buddha on the road, eff him

Is the word “ineffable” a paradox? 不立文字 fu.ryuu.mon.ji Literally: non – stand – sentence – letter Alternately: The Buddhist observation that satori (“understanding,” specifically insight into the true nature of reality) is not something that can be written down or … Continue reading

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Just lions having fun!

And… gin? 獅子奮迅 shi.shi.fun.jin Literally: lion – child – vigorous – quick Alternately: Highly-energetic, even violent activity. Doing things in a furious, intense, or overwhelming way. Ferocious, or at least energetic, like a lion. Notes: This phrase apparently comes to … Continue reading

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If you want good fruit, sleep on it

果報は寝て待て (Kahou wa nete mate; “For good fortune, sleep, wait.”) Definition: Good fortune will come of its own accord, in its own time, so it’s best to prepare and patiently wait for it rather than fretting or trying to force … Continue reading

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Wild horses could, in fact, drag it out of me

意馬心猿 i.ba.shin.en Literally: mind – horse – heart – monkey Alternately: This Buddhist phrase expresses how it is difficult to control oneself and detach from the illusory material world because worldly desires, false beliefs, and mental pollution such as hatred … Continue reading

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You can lead a horse to sutras

縁なき衆生は度し難し (En naki shujou wa do shigatashi; “It’s hard for the Buddha to save those who do not know the Buddha”) Definition: People who don’t heed advice or warnings are very hard to help. Salvation is difficult for those who … Continue reading

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Leaves from the vine

愛別離苦 ai.betsu.ri.ku Literally: love – separate – detach – suffering Alternately: The pain of being separated from your loved ones. This is one of the “eight sufferings” of 四苦八苦. Notes: The separation in question is most often due to the … Continue reading

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Fishing for tsuris

四苦八苦 shi.ku.ha-.kku Literally: four – suffering – eight – suffering Alternately: Deep distress, terrible hardship, anguish, malaise. The very bad feels. Notes: You might think, as I did, that this phrase is nothing more than a doubling for effect, but … Continue reading

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