Posts Tagged ‘mindfullness

14
Nov
08

3 thoughts re: the upheaval in the Financial World (a follow up to yesterday’s music video post)

Advice for the Dark Ages, a message to the American Buddhist Shambhala community. For the full text, go to the Shambhala site. ~ via Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche.

This is a very difficult time. The upheavals in the financial world are causing widespread distress, as are fears about climate change, intensified political polarization, and rising aggression. It is what the Shambhala Buddhist teachings call a “dark age.” We experience the darkness as confusion, unhappiness, and lack of purpose.

It was for times like these that the Buddha gave the teachings on enlightened society to King Dawa Sango, the first sovereign of Shambhala. At present, the truth of those teachings is clear. For a society to be
truly harmonious, it cannot be based on greed and anger. When we understand this, we see that what is happening around us is literally caused by the absence of Shambhala vision [compassion, meditation practice, aspiring to work toward peaceful, enlightened society].

Uplifting our minds and increasing our life-force energy begins with that vision. So I am asking all of you, as citizens of [enlightened society], to rise to this occasion.

First, take these precious teachings to heart and practice them. That includes meditating for a short period every day to stabilize your mind and generate compassion. Contemplate your unshakeable karmic connection to the lineage [of brave, decent peaceful warriors who practice meditation and study peace] and reflect on your nature as the profound, brilliant [basically good king or queen of your own world].

Second, see fear for what it is: a lack of trust in your genuine being, which naturally radiates compassion and kindness. Take the big view of what is most important in this and future lifetimes: to become stronger and more realized in order to help others. Take care of yourselves, but don’t hide behind the false security of self-protection. From the ground of basic goodness, open your heart and serve others.

Third, be generous. This is not a time to close down or hold on, but to offer from the natural well-spring of generosity. Be generous with those you love, but also with those you are tempted to blame or dislike. Be generous, too, within our mandala, which needs your support more than ever to proclaim the glory of Shambhala.

Practicing, serving, and giving: this is the path of the warrior bodhisattva. It is both transcendent and earthy. When we orient our minds this way, we are creating a sustainable environment. The wealth that it
generates is inexhaustible.

I love you and am with you as we tread this golden path together.

The Sakyong, Jamgon Mipham Rinpoche

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08
Nov
08

Living is easy with eyes closed, misunderstanding all you see

This is perhaps my favorite parable about life (better said, about “living”) about living each moment in the moment . . .

A Parable

Buddha told a parable in a sutra:

A man traveling across a field encountered a tiger. He fled, the tiger after him. Coming to a precipice, he caught hold of the root of a wild vine and swung himself down over the edge. The tiger sniffed at him from above. Trembling, the man looked down to where, far below, another tiger was waiting to eat him. Only the vine sustained him.

Two mice, one white and one black, little by little started to gnaw away the vine. The man saw a luscious strawberry near him. Grasping the vine with one hand, he plucked the strawberry with the other. How sweet it tasted!

–Paul Reps, Zen Flesh, Zen Bones

from Everyday Mind, edited by Jean Smith, a Tricycle book

07
Nov
08

Network of Causes

No man is an island and neither are his emotions.  I thought this was a great follow up to yesterday’s blog:

November 7, 2008
Tricycle’s Daily Dharma

A Complicated Network of Causes

The view of interdependence makes for a great openness of mind. In general, instead of realizing that what we experience arises from a complicated network of causes, we tend to attribute happiness or sadness, for example, to single, individual sources. But if this were so, as soon as we came into contact with what we consider to be good, we would automatically be happy, and conversely, in the case of bad things, invariably sad. The causes of joy and sorrow would be easy to identify and target. It would all be very simple, and there would be good reason for our anger and attachment. When, on the other hand, we consider that everything we experience results from a complex interplay of causes and conditions, we find that there is no single thing to desire or resent, and it is more difficult for the afflictions of attachment or anger to arise. In this way, the view of interdependence makes our mind more relaxed and open.

–The Dalai Lama, A Flash of Lightning in the Dark of Night

from Everyday Mind, edited by Jean Smith, a Tricycle book

06
Nov
08

My illusions

It is very common for me to over identify myself with my thoughts or feelings.  Like my thoughts are, oh so important and my current feelings are,  oh so real.  Ever do that?

The reality is everything changes.  My thoughts about issues change as I get more information, or as I process something, or with hindsight.  My feelings can change even faster depending on what song is playing on the radio, or if someone cuts me off on the highway, or if my niece gives me a hug.  It’s all Impermanence.

Remember, no matter what it is, “this too shall pass”.  (Our electoral process alone is a great example of that)

That’s where meditation is centering for me. It allows me to step back and observe (with a gentleness and kindness) what is going on in my head (without judgement) and also what I’m feeling at the moment (without over identification).
To paraphrase some of Wilber’s thoughts – it’s the big “I” observing the little “i”.  The Greater Self behind the self.

Now my habits often keep me in a “mindless” state rather than a “mindfull” presence.  But even just a few moments a day of reconnecting with the big “I” can not only change thoughts and feelings but can even change heart rate, blood pressure and sleep.  I’m not even talking about hours – just a few minutes of reconnecting. The biggest change over the years has been one of nonjudgement.  I don’t beat myself up for not meditating; I’m a lot kinder to myself.  I just make time to meditate again without spending a lot of energy on the “missed” meditation or mindful times.  (Genpo Roshi’s “Big Mind and Big Heart” helped  me evolve in this)

I also believe in clinical depression and medication (this is not a post about how quickly we tend to take a pill to solve a “feeling”, but  to say there is a “place” for science and meds).  If you take medication for a chemical imbalance, it can enhance the  “observing process” of meditation.  Often times it is too painful to observe without it.  Just don’t overidentify with your diagnosis, remember being say, “bipolar” is just a part of who you are – and all the more reason to not over identify with thoughts or feelings (which is common to that diagnosis).

Here is a quote from ~ Anthony de Mello, 20th century Jesuit priest
from Awareness.
It speaks of this over identification well:

“Don’t say, “I am depressed.” If you want to say, “It is depressed,” that’s all right. If you want to say that depression is there, that’s fine; if you want to say gloominess is there, that’s fine. But not: I am gloomy. You’re defining yourself in terms of the feeling. That’s your illusion; that’s your mistake. There is a depression there right now, but let it be, leave it alone. It will pass. Everything passes, everything. Your depressions and your thrills have nothing to do with happiness. Those are swings of the pendulum. If you seek kicks or thrills, get ready for depression. Do you want your drug? Get ready for the hangover. One end of the pendulum swings over to the other.”

Thanks for stopping by,
John

04
Nov
08

I looked: under the bed, in the pants I wore yesterday, even in the fridge

“If you can’t find the truth right where you are, where else do you think you will find it?”
Jack Kornfield

02
Nov
08

Being

An Awareness
An Awareness

I remember the morning I took this photo. Busy people rushing around. Yelling, running, occupied.  Lotus just “being”.  A transportation into the “now”.  A sharing in the moment.




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)

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