Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Insight meditation with Ajahn Chah

Ajahn Chah (ajahnchah.org) via Ven. Sujato, Ellie Askew; Dhr. Seven (ed.), Wisdom Quarterly
Ancient carving of the Buddha doing intensive sitting and walking meditation, Thailand.
Serenity's a start. Insight is the culmination.
Tranquility (samatha) is stillness that lasts only for a little while. But that stillness is the foundation for insight (vipassana).

Insight is clear-seeing, understanding more clearly than you ever have before. Insight is not simply stillness.

The stillness of tranquility is like running away from noise to a wilderness free of noise. If, for example, you have many children, you run away to a wilderness free of children. When you don’t see children or hear their noise, that is stillness.

But that kind of stillness is like having a dirty wound, stitching it up, and covering it with a bandage until it looks like it’s healed when actually it has an infection inside.

The way to serenity and insight is letting go.
When that infection flares up and ruptures, you cut it open, re-stitch it, place medicine in it, then that wound really heals over.

When there’s still infection inside a clean looking wound, nothing is really healed. That’s tranquility.

With insight, however, the infection is removed so the wound can actually heal from the inside. We don’t stitch it and cover it up with a bandage.

We wait until it’s infection-free then we can rest assured that it not only looks healed but is healed. When the inside is good, it won’t flare up with infection. It’s really healed. That’s insight meditation.

No comments: