Sayings of a modern mystic who was down-on-his-luck
(more about the Yogi)

"It's better to sit on your ass..."

"It's better to sit on your ass than run in the wrong direction"


Another time, a woman came who said she had quit drinking and smoking. She was no longer going to bars, and had stopped seeing "the wrong kind of men."

At the same time, she just couldn't get motivated to do "spiritual stuff."

"Don't worry about it," the Yogi said. "It'll come to you. For now, though, it's better to sit on your ass than run in the wrong direction"


Many of the moral codes of the great religions focus on "Thou shalt not," with the emphasis on what we should stop doing. The Buddhist precepts, also, teach that we should "refrain from" killing, stealing, etc.

So the first step in spiritual development is to stop doing harmful things. Replacing them with positive things is the next step.

This is implicit in the simplest "moral code" ever, the Buddha's elegant statement:

Avoid evil.

Do good.

Purify the heart.

Perhaps it's best to try it in that order.

☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼


1. What do you think of the Yogi's advice? Should he urge the woman to do more?

2. Had you heard this statement of the Buddha's moral code before? How does it strike you?

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