Ajahn Chah 4
During one time refugees were pouring into Thailand from Laos and Cambodia. The charitable organizations who came out to help were many. This made some ordained Westerners think it was not right that Buddhist monks and nuns should just sit in the forest while other religious organizations were so actively participating in alleviating the plight of the refugees. So they approached Ajahn Chah to express their concern, and this is what he said, “Helping in refugee camps is good. It is indeed our natural human duty to each other. But going through our own madness so that we can lead others through, that’s the only cure. Anyone can go out and distribute clothes and pitch tents, but how many can come into the forest and sit to know their minds? As long as we don’t know how to ‘clothe’ and ‘feed’ people’s minds, there will always be a refugee problem somewhere in the world.”
This reflection by Ajahn Chah is from the book, No Ajahn Chah, pp. 204.