Broad-Mindedness

The breadth of the Buddha’s mind is boundless. It can accept everything in the world without prejudice. If one wishes to achieve greatness, he or she must be broad-minded, always accepting the views of others in their minds. However, in this strange world of ours, success is no longer measured by the broadness of a person’s mind. One often seems the incapable become rich, the talented denied opportunities, the broad-minded unable to succeed, while the narrow-minded prosper.

It is indeed a very strange world where a broad-minded person cannot fulfill their ambition to do good things for the people, while selfish individuals can worm their way into seats of power. It seems like a joke that hardworking people live on barren lands while lazy people live in places rich with natural resources. Throughout human history, we have seen people like Confucius and Mencius who had the will to do things for the good of society, but lacked the opportunity to do so. While they waited for their chance to benefit all of the world’s people, they nurtured their own virtue in solitude. But nature has its way of balancing out the world. People who live in deserts enjoy an abundance of oil supplies. Those who live on islands can use resources from the ocean. Perhaps this is why people who are broad-minded seem to need fewer opportunities!

A person who is broad-minded can tolerate those who are cruel and without virtues. Conversely, a person who is narrow-minded can never accept those who are open-minded. Therefore, a person of great breadth is often in a position that is both disadvantageous and unfavorable. He or she sometimes becomes the target of unfounded jealousy and animosity. It is such a shame that our society cannot always protect those who are strong of virtue and resolved to better the world.

Today, many employers lack the foresight to properly recognize the abilities of their employees. These employees in turn refuse to work for an incompetent person. It is not uncommon to have a CEO who is less educated than his or her managers, or a manager who is less capable than his or her highly skilled professional staff. It is rare to find a person who has both good fortune and wisdom.

The saying, “The more righteous a person is, the more obstacles he or she will encounter,” describes a world in which scoundrels and miscreants have run rampant. Since the beginning of time, there has been a war between good and evil, endangering people and leaving them in a pitiful state. They have somehow managed to survive chaos and disorder, waiting for a wise and benevolent to appear.

This is why we should place our livelihood in the hands of those who will listen to us and are concerned with our happiness and welfare. If we could find a leader who is open-minded and tolerant, we would be truly blessed with the best of fortune.