Friday, April 5, 2019

Ajahn Chah: Who's meditating but karma?

Ajahn Chah, Ajahn Mun via Ven. Sujato; Ellie Askew, Crystal Q. (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
Who am I when I meditate? Am I that one or that one or that one? (Ariana Grande)
I have the power to change my karma? Yes!
When our mind is in line with the Dharma [the ultimate truth], there is no one who is diligent and there is no one who is lazy.

It’s a matter of how the mind is conditioned. The practice of insight (vipassana meditation) keeps flowing automatically without laziness or diligence. It’s a state that is self-sustaining, fueled by its own energy.

Once the mind has these characteristics, it means one no longer has to be "the doer" in the practice. We could say that it’s as if we have finished all the work we have been doing and the only thing left is for us to leave things to themselves and watch over the mind.

We don’t have to be someone who is doing something anymore. There is still mental activity occurring:

We experience pleasant and unpleasant sense contact according to our karmic accumulations -- but we see it as "just that much" [like a handful of grass trimmings] and are letting go of attachment to the sense of self (ego) the whole time.

"Karmic accumulations"?
They should be like us -- right, chief, my homey? - Not necessarily, cuzz.
(Ajahn Mun) The traits that people have carried over from the past -- their store of karma -- differ in being skillful, unskillful, or neutral.

Their potential as people follows along with their traits, that is to say, higher than what they currently are, lower, or on a par.

Some people have developed a high potential to be skillful (wholesome), but if they associate with fools, their potential will develop into that of a fool.

Some people are weak in terms of their potential, but if they associate with sages, their potential improves and they become sages, too.

Some people associate with friends who are neither skillful nor unskillful, who lead them neither up nor down, so their potential stays at a mediocre level.

For this reason, we should associate with sages and wise people so as to raise the level of our potential progressively higher and higher, step by step.

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