THE MIDDLE PATH
Let me tell you about the
Dressing in rough and dirty garments, letting your hair grow
matted, abstaining from eating any meat or fish, does not clean the one who
is deluded. Mortifying the flesh through excessive hardship does not lead to
a triumph over the senses. All self-inflicted suffering is useless as long as
the feeling of self dominant.
You should lose your involvement with
yourself and then eat and drink naturally,
according to the needs of your
body. Attachment to your appetites - whether you
deprive or indulge - can
lead to slavery, but satifying the needs of daily life is not wrong. Indeed,
to keep a body in good health is a duty, for otherwise the mind will not stay
strong and clear.
This is the middle path.
From "Discourse II"
Edited by Anne Bancroft, The Pocket Buddha.