In the West, we say “thank you.” In India, the expression is offensive. Buddhism enjoins us not to thank our benefactors. And “please”? The saying of it produces a weak and queasy sound.
A good listener does not think while another talks. He practices noble silence.
No one wins an argument. An argument is one mental/emotional structure bashing against another. There may be noise, excitement, even victory, but there will be no peace. The chief blessing of the natural world is that it has no opinions. It is perfectly capable of taking defensive measures, as it is doing right now, but it has no opinions. It will not argue with humans.
Graduating students are routinely told they can be anything they want to be. This is misleading. I cannot want to be virtuous, to be honest, to have integrity, to live, love and die with my whole heart. Wanting is suffering. This three-word simplicity is one of the Four Noble Truths.
Whatever you can dream, you can achieve. Also not true. The more present we are, the fewer dreams we entertain. Dreams are left-overs.
We are spittle factories. We talk too much. More words count less. We know that; we long for the gleaming economy of right speech. But first we must know that breaking Babel will be very difficult—harder than quitting cigarettes or weed, harder than losing weight, harder than anything we’ve ever done. We ought not to attempt it unless our goal is our God, before whom there are no other gods, the only and absolute focus of our deathless devotion.