Monday, January 7, 2019

Thai forest tradition teachings

Ajahn Chah, Ajahn Thate via Ven. Sujato; Ellie, Dhr. Seven (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
O, great Awakened One, why do we suffer, and what can we do to bring it to an end?
My advice is to not let yourself get wrapped up in doubts and questions. Let them go and directly attend to whatever you are experiencing. Don’t make a big deal out of any physical pleasure or pain that comes into experience.

When you sit in meditation and start to feel tired or uncomfortable, adjust your position. Endure as much as you can, and then move. Don’t overdo it. Develop a lot of mindfulness -- that’s the point.

Do your walking meditation and sitting meditation as much as you can. The aim is to be developing mindfulness as much as you can, knowing things fully. That’s enough.

Another famous master from the Thai forest tradition, Ajahn Thate, said: The true aim in developing concentration and absorption is to gather one's mental energies and make them steady and strong in a single point.

This then forms the basis for the knowledge and discernment (wisdom) capable of gaining true insight into all conditions of nature and eliminating all that is detrimental and defiling from the heart.

Thus, stillness of mind is developed not simply for other external purposes, such as the various fields of science. Instead, it's meant specifically for use in cleansing the heart of such defilements as the Five Hindrances.

But when you have practiced to the point of proficiency, you can use your stillness of mind in any way you like, as long as that use isn't detrimental to yourself or to others.

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