Lost in Quotation
Artwork by Tricycle editors.

Many people who don’t know much about old Buddhist texts often know one passage from the Pali canon: the part of the Kalama Sutta(Anguttara Nikaya 3.65) stating that old texts can’t be trusted.

Quotes from this passage come in many shapes and sizes. Some of them are short sound bites, like the message that was rubber-stamped on the envelope of a letter I once received:

Follow your own sense of right and wrong.
—The Buddha

There’s also the desktop wallpaper:

Believe nothing, no matter who said it, not even if I said it, if it doesn’t fit in with your own reason and common sense.
—The Buddha

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