Courage: Three Obstacles and Four Devils

You should not have the slightest fear in your heart. It is lack of courage that prevents one from attaining Buddhahood, although one may have professed faith in the Lotus Sutra many times since innumerable kalpas ago.

There is definitely something extraordinary in the ebb and flow of the tide, the rising and setting of the moon, and the way in which summer, autumn, winter, and spring give way to each other. Something uncommon also occurs when an ordinary person attains Buddhahood. At such a time, the three obstacles and four devils will invariably appear, and the wise will rejoice while the foolish will retreat.- The Three Obstacles and Four Devils, WND1 page 637

Q. Why will the wise rejoice?

A. Because it’s a confirmation of the principle that bad things happen at the least expected moment!  Attaining Buddhahood is often (erroneously) seen as a good thing and that like climbing Mount Everest, there is no higher place to go.  Surely, you might think, nothing bad can happen to that Buddhist now?  But it’s precisely because of this that the Buddha is tested by circumstance.  Why?  We don’t know – but we observe that it always happens.

There’s no need to have a reason
There’s no need to wonder why
It’s a part of me that tells you
Oh, don’t you ever, don’t ever say die
Never, never, never say die again

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