Once I was on a bus and the conductor turned the music on really loud. Some religious men pointed out to him that there was a monk on the bus and they repeatedly made signs to him to turn it off. They tried once or twice without result. He turned the music even louder. “Let him be.” I told the young men, “it does not matter. It keeps the drone tone to my chanting.”
Our goal should be to take all that comes our way and make the best out of it for the sake of the spiritual struggle in which we are engaged. We must strive to acquire inner tranquility and to this end even noise can become a good thing if it is met with the right thought. … When in the midst of noise, you manage to reach inner tranquility, you have achieved something of great value. If you cannot find tranquility in the midst of disturbance, you will not be tranquil even in the midst of tranquility. When inner tranquility comes to a man, everything inside him will be tranquil, and he will not be disturbed by anything. But if he requires external tranquility in order to find inner tranquility, then when he does find himself in such a place, he will want a cane to chase away the cicadas by day and the jackal by night, so that they will not bother him!