Posts Tagged ‘A Path with Heart

17
Mar
09

You in the front row, sit down and watch the show

stage_curtains

When we take the one seat on our meditation cushion we become our own monastery.

We create the compassionate space that allows for the arising of all things: sorrows, loneliness, shame, desire, regret, frustration, happiness.

Spiritual transformation is a profound process that doesn’t happen by accident. We need a repeated discipline, a genuine training, in order to let go of our old habits of mind and to find and sustain a new way of seeing. To mature on the spiritual path we need to commit ourselves in a systematic way. My teacher Achaan Chah described this commitment as “taking the one seat.” He said,

“Just go into the room and put one chair in the center. Take the seat in the center of the room, open the doors and the windows and see who comes to visit.

You will witness all kinds of scenes and actors, all kinds of temptations and stories, everything imaginable.

Your only job is to stay in your seat.

You will see it all arise and pass, and out of this, wisdom and understanding will come.”

~ Jack Kornfield,  A Path with Heart

21
Jan
09

does the ringing in my head mean i’m calling myself to prayer?

There are certain themes that reoccur (not just recently – but over long periods of my life):

One theme is the unfamiliar perspective of non-judgement – “not already knowing” the answer – when something is presented to me.

One is about being a compassionate and kind container to hold uncomfortable thoughts and emotions as they arise.

One is how I touch the Witness behind the ego – the greater self who watches the “John” as he  plays at life.

Yeah, these replay themselves a lot in my life.
I like how Jack writes about these things – enjoy . . .

“Mindfulness is a directed attention to what is actually here before we have all our judgments and ideas about what is right and wrong and what is good and bad.  Mindfulness means paying attention and seeing things clearly without reaction.

From there we can respond in wise ways rather than be caught in our habitual patterns.”When we take the one seat on our meditation cushion we become our own monastery. We create the compassionate space that allows for the arising of all things: sorrows, loneliness, shame, desire, regret, frustration, happiness.

Spiritual transformation is a profound process that doesn’t happen by accident. We need a repeated discipline, a genuine training, in order to let go of our old habits of mind and to find and sustain a new way of seeing.

To mature on the spiritual path we need to commit ourselves in a systematic way. My teacher Achaan Chah described this commitment as “taking the one seat.” He said,”Just go into the room and put one chair in the center. Take the seat in the center of the room, open the doors and the windows and see who comes to visit. You will witness all kinds of scenes and actors, all kinds of temptations and stories, everything imaginable. Your only job is to stay in your seat. You will see it all arise and pass, and out of this, wisdom and understanding will come.”

–Jack Kornfield, A Path with Heart

14
Dec
08

Dirty Dawg

baddog

From, –Jack Kornfield,  A Path with Heart
(Jack basically says it all, no need for much comment, so throw me a bone – I’m a novice at sitting)

For some, [the] task of coming back a thousand or ten thousand times in meditation may seem boring or even of questionable importance. But how many times have we gone away from the reality of our life?–perhaps a million or ten million times! If we wish to awaken, we have to find our way back here with our full being, our full attention. . .

In this way, meditation is very much like training a puppy. You put the puppy down and say, “Stay.” Does the puppy listen? It gets up and runs away. You sit the puppy back down again. “Stay.” And the puppy runs away over and over again. Sometimes the puppy jumps up, runs over and pees in the corner, or makes some other mess. Our minds are much the same as the puppy, only they create even bigger messes. In training the mind, or the puppy, we have to start over and over again.

19
Nov
08

What’s that about “Keeping your enemies closer”?

So I’m reading today’s Tricycle quote and have a total brain fart.  I mean I go completely blank after reading the word “equanimity”.  If I am paying attention, this going blank usually means something – whether it’s that I need more sleep, I’m over worked, or that the essence of the the word is speaking to my unconscious mind.  Doesn’t matter, point is – it’s about paying attention, a little mindfulness – make time for more sleep or cut back on work or look deeper into the meaning of the word.

(BTW, here’s the on-line definition of the word: equa·nim·ity (ek′wə nim′ə tē, ē′kwə-) noun, the quality of remaining calm and undisturbed; evenness of mind or temper; composure Etymology: L aequanimitas < aequanimis < aequus, even, plain + animus, the mind: see animal.)

After reading the passage again it was definitely the latter.  Here’s the passage; you can read why it spoke to me after, if you’re interested.

The near enemies are qualities that arise in the mind and masquerade as genuine spiritual realization, when in fact they are only an imitation, serving to separate us from true feeling rather than connecting us to it. . . .

The near enemy of loving-kindness is attachment. . . . At first, attachment may feel like love, but as it grows it becomes more clearly the opposite, characterized by clinging, controlling and fear.

The near enemy of compassion is pity, and this also separates us. Pity feels sorry for “that poor person over here,” as if he were somehow different from us. . . .

The near enemy of sympathetic joy (the joy in the happiness of others) is comparison, which looks to see if we have more of, the same as, or less than another. . . .

The near enemy of equanimity is indifference. True equanimity is balance in the midst of experience, whereas indifference is withdrawal and not caring, based on fear. . . .

If we do not recognize and understand the near enemies, they will deaden our spiritual practice. The compartments they make cannot shield us for long from the pain and unpredictability of life, but they will surely stifle the joy and open connectedness of true relationships.

– Jack Kornfield, A Path with Heart

Yeah, this touched a nerve.  You see I  haven’t always been good at confrontation.  It throws me at times, takes me out of my center (I mean have you met my dad? lmao).  So I can be avoidant.  I can fight a good fight.  I can usually win an argument.  My desire however, is to really be at peace –  while remaining in – and continuing with – the conflict (whether the conflict is with myself or projected onto another). And I gotta say, I’ve come far along in this journey.
I have also seen this trait in many self proclaimed “peace loving” spiritual teachers.  They claim equanimity but are really just conflict-avoidant (and because I also have tendencies in this direction, these teachers tend to really get on my nerves and push my buttons. In other words, they bug the shit outta me, lol). What’s funny is I can handle the narcissistic grandiose spiritual teacher who  will usually never avoid conflict. Cause with them, what you see it what you get.
This is much more deceptive; it is a masquerade. It is the near enemy to spiritual growth.

Well, now that I’ve analyzed it, haha – maybe I can sit with it.  Chances are  indifference is disguised as equanimity somewhere in my life.  I’m just not sure where yet, I don’t see it . . . but I bet my friends can tell me; I usually keep them close  *wink*




Live'n Aloha on Maui.
Lately just posting pics, artwork, vids, & music with just a headline (less seems to be more).
Into Wilber, Beck, Zen Stuffs, Spiritual Concepts, Philosophy and Humor (kinda geeky humor).
Currently attempting to strengthen my meditation skills (this has been a 20 yr process).
Thanks for stopp'n by and please leave a comment. Poz or Neg, all comments welcome.
"I don't like Spam" (said with a British accent)

June 2017
M T W T F S S
« Jul    
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930  

Pages