Learn to Count
When angry count to ten before you speak. If very angry, count to one hundred. – Thomas Jefferson
I love this.
It reminds me of the following exchange between The Buddha and a young man:
Young Man: Master how long will it take for me to achieve enlightenment?
Gautama Buddha: It all depends on you . . . .
Young Man: If I put in ten hours of meditation every day how long will it take?
Gautama Buddha: Maybe ten years
Young Man: What if I put in fifteen hours meditation?
Gautama Buddha: Maybe fifteen years.
Young Man; [getting irritated] What if I meditate for twenty hours?
Gautama Buddha: Maybe twenty five years.
The young man was almost infuriated.
Young Man: I cannot understand your logic – the more effort I put in, the more time it will take – this is ridiculous, Please explain.
Gautama Buddha: As long as you are fixated and obsessed about your goal you will not achieve it. Just do spiritual practice without one eye on the goal. Let events take their shape.