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The Story Of Focus And Patience

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The Story Of Focus And Patience

An enthusiastic young Zen student came to Lord Buddha and asked, “Oh Lord Buddha, if I work hard, how soon will I find Zen?”

Buddha replied, “Ten years.”

“But, what if I work even harder and apply myself wholeheartedly?”

“Twenty years”, came the reply.

The student persisted, “But, what if I throw myself completely into my practice, immerse myself in it? How long would it take then?”

“Oh, thirty years!”

The student was crestfallen. “I don’t understand! Each time I say I will increase my efforts, you say it will take even longer for me to accomplish my goal. Why is that?”

Lord Buddha smiled and replied, “When you constantly worry about the goal, you can't focus on the path.

Focus on the effort, not on the reward at the end of it.”