A statue of Ajahn Chah: His teachings are not so lifeless!
"Where is the Buddha? We may think the Buddha has been and gone, but the Buddha is the Dhamma, the Truth. Some people like to say, “Oh, if I was born in the time of the Buddha I would go to Nibbana.” Here, stupid people talk like this. The Buddha is still here. The Buddha is truth. Regardless of whoever is born or dies, the truth is still here. The truth never departs from the world, it’s there all the time. Whether a Buddha is born or not, whether someone knows it or not, the truth is still there."
(Ajahn Chah, The Teachings of Ajahn Chah, p.160)
Today is Ajahn Chah Day, the anniversary of the passing away in 1992 of the the great Thai monk Ajahn Chah. The above quotation is particularly appropriate here as we can substitute the words 'the Buddha' with 'Ajahn Chah,' and the meaning is still the same. For, in the person and teaching of Ajahn Chah, the Dhamma (Sanskrit: Dharma, 'Truth') was embodied, as attested to by his many followers that knew him when he was alive. Indeed, it has been claimed that Ajahn Chah had realized Nibbana (Sanskrit: Nirvana), and was enlightened. Whether this is so or not, his teachings still inspire countless people all over the world, and it is with this in mind that we can take a moment to reflect on the his words above.
The above quotation is taken from a free pdf book that can be downloaded here: The Teachings of Ajahn Chah