By Amaravati & Cittaviveka Buddhist Monasteries The Nun's Community
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Extra info for Awakening Presence
Instead, we need to focus our energy observing our own behaviour, our own mind, and our own self. His teaching points to a way of approaching and understanding the self which is not caught, not deluded, not agitated by what goes on in the mind. It is not grasping and, at the same time, it’s also not pushing away. It’s the Middle Way, which is another way of saying the enlightened way. Perhaps we want to think of nothing, to have no thoughts, just endless bliss and perfect peace. But this is also delusion, only a more subtle form.
They are endless. And I’ve found that those voices are completely merciless – the ones that are not about what’s going on here, but are about what ‘should’ be happening. Some years back, I had a week of solitary retreat and I was doing it in the nuns’ cottage. At Chithurst, the nuns live in a separate area – it’s about a ten-minute walk down hill from the rest of the monastery. On one of those days I wasn’t feeling so well but walked up to the main house at the meal time anyway. ’ So I asked permission not to and went back down again.
It was Ma¯ra telling me that if I give up that piece of chocolate, my world would collapse – an illustration of the power of the forces we have to deal with! La Grande Illusion 49 Our good fortune is knowing that the more we practise and gain insight into this experience of suffering, the more we become conﬁdent in observing our experiences as they really are – seeing them as impermanent (anicca), unsatisfactory (dukkha) and ‘not self ’ (anatta). Our identiﬁcation with suffering is very strong – we get sucked into it, and it’s really hard to pull ourselves out.
Awakening Presence by Amaravati & Cittaviveka Buddhist Monasteries The Nun's Community