East Meets West I
East Meets West Poster

Pathways of Buddhist Thought, London 1971, p. 18,19

Even Balancing of Five Faculties

Nanamoli Thera

But the Buddha, in his teaching of the Truths, stresses the even balancing of five faculties. They are those of faith, energy, mindfulness, concentration and understanding. While mindfulness can never be overdone, the others, if one-sidedly overdeveloped or repressed, may distort the character and outlook, and spiritual health that resides in their even balancing. Faith alone is blind credulity and gambles against disappointment. Over-exerted energy agitates and distracts. Too much concentration tends to sleep and quietism, while understanding unsupported by the others degenerates into craftiness and cunning. When all are being properly managed, faith functions as confidence in the ability of others to resist opposition and to reach their fulfillment in liberation from suffering.