MeditationMeditation for PeaceThe Roads That Lead to RuinIf a person earns a lot but drinks alcohol, it is like having a leak in your vessel.Many young recent graduates are usually diligent and focused when they start their first jobs. Some days they even work overtime with the hope of getting a big salary at the end of the month. However, after working many years, instead of an improved financial situation, they have amassed debt. They end up living paycheck to paycheck even though they worked so hard. How do some people manage to squander their own wealth?Many people who see their friends struggling financially do not know what to say since money is a delicate subject to raise with anyone. Although concerned, they do not know how to help.I myself encountered this problem and felt the hopelessness. This experience prompted me to go through my notes on the teachings of Luang Phaw.Luang Phaw said that when he was about 30 years old and not yet ordained, he himself was in financial straits. Although he was making a good salary, he still spent more them he was earning. Unable to rectify the situation, he sought his mother’s help. She was able to help him financially. She said to him, “Son, it is not important how much money you earn, it is how much you save. In this world, many people earn a loth but have little or nothing left. At the same time, there are many who earn less but have saved more.”She continued, “Earning a lot but having little left is like using a bamboo basket to collect water. When the basket is submerged it is filled with water, but once you life the basket up you will have a wet basket and no water.“However, earning a little but have a lot saved is like using a coconut shell or a bowl to collect water. Although a small vessel, it will carry your water safely.”If a person earns a lot but drinks alcohol, it is like having a leak in your vessel. If you gamble, even when you know you should not, it is yet another kind of leak. Going out to socialize at a bar, or club or to places that you should not go, are also forms of a leak. All of these “laks” can be called Apayamukha, or roads Which Lead to ruin.We have learned about the roads leading to ruin numerous times, but we have never implemented the principles to avoid them into our daily lives. When we suffer, we blame society or someone else.Luang Phaw received a lot of sound advice from his mother that day and was able to change his behavior. He became more prudent with his money and remained out of debt.Luaqng Phaw first entered the temple when a friend invited him to go meditate. At that time, he was involved in a conflict with his boss. The night before going to the temple, he drank heavily, and the next morning he was hung over. When he reached the temple his friends asked him to join in the robe offering ceremony, the merit from which would help him at work.The conflict with his boss was in still fresh in his mind and feeling a little hung over, he retorted, “Merit! I can’t see it helping anyone. I perform merits regularly, but I still have problems with my boss.”Khun Yay (Khun Yay Ajahn Ubasika Chandra Khonnokyoong) heard about this conversation and asked Luang Phaw to meet with her. She said, “Son, you mentioned that merits cannot help with anything? In a year, how much merit do you perform?’Luang Phaw replied, “I donate 100 or 200 baht a month, so in one year that is 2,000 or 2500 baht.”If you gamble, even when you know you should not, it is yet another kind of leak.Khun Yay folded her hands together and said, “Very good, please continue doing that.” He thought that their conversation was over, but Khun Yay continued asking questions.“Son, do you smoke?”“Yes, I smoke?”“How much do you spend on cigarettes each year?”Back then Luang Phaw smoked cigarettes that cost six baht per pack and smoked about l pack to 2 packs a day. He answered, “About 3,000 or 4,000 bajt a Year.”Khun Yay continued asking, “Do you drink?”“Yes, I drink.”“How much do you spend a year drinking alcohol with your friends?”“Khun Yay, if you multiplied the amount of money spent on cigarettes two or three times, it would equal about 12,000 baht for alcohol.”“Do you go to clubs with your friends?”“Yes, I do.”“How much do you spend in a year going out to clubs?”“I guess about two or three times the amount spent on liquor.”“Son, you contribute about 2,000 to 2,500 baht every year to making merit, but at the same time you spend 100,000 baht towards smoking, drinking, and going to clubs. Yet, you complain that merit is not helping you. If you died right now and didn’t go to hell, you could consider yourself lucky. You received degrees from a Thai university and abroad, yet you can’t figure out your own situation logically?”Once he received the stern reprimand from Khun Yay, he recovered from the hangover and sat there quietly for a while.Luang Phaw said, “That moment was the push that helped me to quit drinking. Although Khun Yay only spoke a few words, she made me want to come home and smash all the liquor bottles I had. From that moment on, I have never touched alcohol again.”Once he stopped drinking, he urged his friends to stop too. He told them, “When birthdays come around, we usually think about liquor instead of our mothers. This time, when it is our birthdays we should go thank our mothers and show our gratitude for giving birth to us instead of wasting our money drinking with friends.”Luang Phaw continues, “If we do not hurry to get off the roads leading to ruin we will be like a thorn to society. We will fall deeper into debt and attract only bad associates.“If we quit drinking, smoking, and gambling, our immoral peers will disappear. Good people will wish to befriend us. Social deterioration will decrease. And our own finances will be more secure.“I decided not to drink alcohol and smoke, but to go to the temple and seriously study the Dhamma. I did not waste time trying to reduce my vices a little at a time, I cut them off immediately on that day.“If I did not have the people I respeetee most my mother amk Khun Yay, to point out my own faults to me, I would not be here addressing these concerns with everyone today. Go ask your friends if they have mounting debt because they’ve squandered their hard-earned money on?”To use ones’ money on Apayamukha is like buying problems into your own life. It will ruin not only your finances but eventually your career and your entire life. If you realize the foolishness of your behavior, you must seek to remedy it. Resolve to abandon Apayamukha completely today, for if you do not choose to help yourself, no one else will be able to help you either.
The Roads That Lead to Ruin
Many young recent graduates are usually diligent and focused when they start their first jobs. Some days they even work overtime with the hope of getting a big salary at the end of the monthDhamma Articles > Meditation Articles and Techniques > Meditation for Peace
[ Apr 12th, 2012 ] - [ : 10651 ]