“We have to balance the need in society for a strong functioning ego with the tendency for it to become selfish and narrow. The basic practice of uncorrected mind in zazen sitting meditation does not mean we do not have responsibility to tame the ego. We need ways to remind ourselves that short-range, immediate desires and gratifications are not, in the long run, in our real self-interest—practically, materially, psychologically, or spiritually. We need some strictness with ourselves, otherwise we’ll eat too may cookies or something worse!”

—Richard Baker in For a Future to Be Possible: Commentaries on the Five Wonderful Precepts, p. 155

“We have to bal…

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