Everything grows in its own way

Everything grows in its own way (from TAN22: Then and Now (class) 00:57:37.20 - 01:0:45.20)

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What makes bodhicitta--awakening mind--so wonderful is that when it actually becomes our intention in life, then as we were discussing a couple of weeks ago, there is an inexhaustible fountain or font, of goodness that comes from that. And an inexhaustible energy that comes from it. But, yes, one encounters many difficulties in the way but it gives you a way of meeting all of those difficulties.

This isn’t everybody’s spiritual path. What's very important--this came out of a conversation I was having today--we have to be very, very careful with the Tibetan tradition because it sets out a path so clearly. And we can say, "Okay this is the path," and many of us feel a connection with it and want to follow it. But one of the things I've come to appreciate about teaching is no system actually works. Sooner or later, if you're in a teaching position, you're going to have to adapt whatever process or procedure you have for teaching, to the needs of an individual because everybody's different. If you're teaching something that's relatively straightforward for a short period of time you may be able to get everybody through just a, b, c. But teaching and learning are primarily about growing, not being processed. And everything grows in its own way. You plant two seeds of exactly the same plant, like say a tree, and they will branch in different places. You can't get them to branch in the same way. One will branch and the branch will go to the right and one will go to the left or straight ahead, or something like that.

So I've come to the conclusion that if you have a system, you can only use it for a certain period of time with people and how long you can use it is going to vary on those particular people. For some they can follow that system for a longer period of time, for others for a shorter. But at some point, they're going to have to make it their own and figure out their own relationship with it.