Monday, July 25, 2005

Featured Exquisite Mind webpage: principles

25 July 2005 --

I continue with the project of updating selected web pages. I will present a segment from the page, and encourage you to delve into the heart of the website to explore these pages on your own. I am starting with the explore mindfulness section. The themes reflected in these pages are a daily preoccupation. Impermanence, for instance, is in our face all of the time. I was doing some meditation/psychotherapy training recently on Saturday. There was a band playing in the beautiful afternoon sun in City Hall Park, just across the street from the Studio. The bass-line and the drums were a very present part of the experience. Initial this was met as a distraction, "how can I meditate with that noise?" But we can encourage ourselves to grow in the moment to make ourselves more spacious -- to expand the definition of ourselves to include the music coming from outside. If we can relinquish the agenda, we sidestep resistance.

According to the Buddha, there are three main principles that get us into trouble. The first is annicca or impermanence. When we don't understand impermanence we get suffering or dukkha. One way to think about the suffering arising around impermanence is that we have an attachment to things remaining as they are. The ultimate such attachment is our self-identity. Annata or no-self speaks to the idea that the self as we know it and experience it is something of an illusion. In other words, there is no solid and permanent self. I like to think of the self as a collection of stories and our apparent solidity comes from the repetition of these stories thousands of times each day. Read more ...

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