Sunday, November 30, 2008

Calm is his mind...


Calm is his mind,
calm his speech
& his deed:
one who's released through right knowing*,
pacified, such.


-Dhammapada

*The right knowing is the same as The Right View (Samma Ditthi), the first step in
the Noble Eightfold Pathway

Friday, November 28, 2008

"Just as a dog, tied by a leash to a post...


"Just as a dog, tied by a leash to a post or stake, keeps running around and circling around that very post or stake; in the same way, an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person — who has no regard for noble ones, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma; who has no regard for people of integrity, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma — assumes form to be the self, or the self as possessing form, or form as in the self, or the self as in form.

"He assumes feeling to be the self...
"He assumes perception to be the self...
"He assumes (mental) fabrications to be the self...
"He assumes consciousness to be the self, or the self as possessing consciousness, or consciousness as in the self, or the self as in consciousness.

"He keeps running around and circling around that very form... that very feeling... that very perception... those very fabrications... that very consciousness. He is not set loose from form, not set loose from feeling... from perception... from fabrications... not set loose from consciousness. He is not set loose from birth, aging, & death; from sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs. He is not set loose
, I tell you, from suffering & stress.

Gaddula Sutta
The Leash

Thursday, November 27, 2008

It is a sticky business !



Suffering arises when the mind becomes too "sticky" to the sensory "foods" (five sensors and their respective stimuli). The practice of Insight meditation will help us to "let go" of these "foods" with ease. The contemplation of the three characteristics (impermanence, suffering and non-self) is the key to it's success.

I guess that is why it is called "Crazy Glue" (Crazy=delusion)!
craving is "the glue"

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Monday, November 24, 2008

Time runs out fast...be heedful


"Monks, suppose there were four strong archers — well-trained, practiced, & drilled — standing in the four directions, and a man were to come along saying, 'I will catch & bring down the arrows let fly by these four strong archers — well-trained, practiced, & drilled — before they have fallen to the ground.' What do you think? Would that be enough to call him a swift man, endowed with the foremost speed?"


"Even if he were to catch & bring down the arrows let fly by one archer — well-trained, practiced, & drilled — before they fell to the ground, lord, that would be enough to call him a swift man, endowed with the foremost speed, to say nothing of four such archers."


"Faster than the speed of that man, monks, is the speed of the sun & moon. Faster than the speed of that man, faster than the speed of the sun & moon, is the speed of the devas who rush ahead of the sun & moon. Faster than the speed of that man, faster than the speed of the sun & moon, faster than the speed of the devas who rush ahead of the sun & moon, the force of one's life span comes to an end.


Thus you should train yourselves: 'We will live heedfully.' That's how you should train yourselves."

Sunday, November 23, 2008

As a mountain of rock is unmoving...


As a mountain of rock is unmoving,
firmly established,
so a monk,
with the ending of delusion,
like a mountain,
doesn't quake.


Thag 14.1
Revata's Farewell

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Like fish in the mouth of a trap...


Blinded by sensuality
covered by the net,
veiled with the veil of craving,
bound by the bond of heedlessness,
like fish in the mouth of a trap,
they go to aging & death,
like a suckling calf to its mother.

Kamesu Satta Sutta
Attached to Sensual Pleasures

Thursday, November 20, 2008

House-builder, you're seen!


Through the round of many births I roamed
without reward,
without rest,
seeking the house-builder.
Painful is birth
again & again.

House-builder, you're seen!
You will not build a house again.
All your rafters broken,
the ridge pole dismantled,
immersed in dismantling, the mind
has attained to the end of craving.
Jaravagga
Aging

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A man was being carried along by the flow of a river...


"Suppose a man was being carried along by the flow of a river, lovely & alluring. And then another man with good eyesight, standing on the bank, on seeing him would say: 'My good man, even though you are being carried along by the flow of a river, lovely & alluring, further down from here is a pool with waves & whirlpools, with monsters & demons. On reaching that pool you will suffer death or death-like pain.' Then the first man, on hearing the words of the second man, would make an effort with his hands & feet to go against the flow.

The meaning is this: the flow of the river stands for craving. Lovely & alluring stands for the six internal sense-media. The pool further down stands for the five lower fetters. The waves stand for anger & distress. The whirlpools stand for the five strings of sensuality. The monsters & demons stand for the opposite sex. Against the flow stands for renunciation. Making an effort with hands & feet stands for the arousing of persistence. The man with good eyesight standing on the bank stands for the Tathagata, worthy & rightly self-awakened."

Even if it's with pain,
you should abandon
sensual desires
if you aspire
to future safety from bondage.
Alert,
with a mind well-released,
touch release now here,
now there.
An attainer-of-wisdom,
having fulfilled the holy life,
is said to have gone
to the end of the world, gone
beyond.

Iti 4.10; Iti 114

The wandering solitary sage...


The wandering solitary sage,

uncomplacent, unshaken by praise or blame.

Unstartled, like a lion at sounds.

Unsnared, like the wind in a net.

Unsmeared, like a lotus in water.

Leader of others,

by others unled: The enlightened call him a sage.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

There lived a large herd of deer...


"Suppose, monks, that in a forested wilderness there were a large low-lying marsh, in dependence on which there lived a large herd of deer; and a certain man were to appear, not desiring their benefit, not desiring their welfare, not desiring their rest from bondage. He would close off the safe, restful path that led to their rapture, and would open up a false path, set out a male decoy, place a female decoy, and thus the large herd of deer, at a later time, would fall into ruin & disaster. Then suppose that a certain man were to appear to that same large herd of deer, desiring their benefit, desiring their welfare, desiring their rest from bondage. He would open up the safe, restful path that led to their rapture, would close off the false path, take away the male decoy, destroy the female decoy, and thus the large herd of deer, at a later time, would come into growth, increase, & abundance.

"I have given this simile in order to convey a meaning. The meaning is this: 'The large, low-lying marsh' is a term for sensual pleasures. 'The large herd of deer' is a term for beings. 'The man not desiring their benefit, not desiring their welfare, not desiring their rest from bondage' is a term for Mara, the Evil One. 'The false path' is a term for the eightfold wrong path, i.e., wrong view, wrong resolve, wrong speech, wrong action, wrong livelihood, wrong effort, wrong mindfulness, & wrong concentration. 'The male decoy' is a term for passion & delight. 'The female decoy' is a term for ignorance. 'The man desiring their benefit, desiring their welfare, desiring their rest from bondage' is a term for the Tathagata, the Worthy One, the Rightly Self-awakened One. 'The safe, restful path that led to their rapture' is a term for the noble eightfold path, i.e., right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, & right concentration.

Dvedhavitakka Sutta
Two Sorts of Thinking

Monday, November 17, 2008

Still sustained thoughts...as rain would, a cloud of dust


Three skillful thoughts*
should be thought,
three unskillful thoughts
rejected.


Whoever stills sustained thoughts
— as rain would, a cloud of dust —
through an awareness with thinking stilled,
attains right here
the state
of peace.
Iti 3.38; Iti 82

*Skillful thoughts
1.Renunciation
2.Non-ill-will
3. Harmlessness
Related Sutta:

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Whoever takes a rod...


Whoever takes a rod
to harm living beings desiring ease,
when he himself is looking for ease,
will meet with no ease after death.

Whoever doesn't take a rod
to harm living beings desiring ease,
when he himself is looking for ease,
will meet with ease after death.

Dhammapada -Dandavagga -The Rod

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Just as when two or three drops of water fall onto an iron pan heated all day...


Just as when two or three drops of water fall onto an iron pan heated all day: Slow is the falling of the drops of water, but they quickly vanish & disappear.
In the same way, there is the case where a certain person is practicing for the abandoning & relinquishing of acquisitions. As he is practicing for the abandoning & relinquishing of acquisitions, then — from time to time, owing to lapses in mindfulness — he is assailed by memories & resolves associated with acquisitions. Slow is the arising of his mindfulness, but then he quickly abandons [those memories & resolves], destroys them, dispels them, & wipes them out of existence.

Latukikopama Sutta
The Quail Simile

As a water bead on a lotus leaf...



As a water bead on a lotus leaf,



as water on a red lily,

does not adhere,

so the sage does not adhere to the seen,

the heard,

or the sensed.

Jara Sutta
Old Age

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Meaningless is your perception...


Like a mural you've seen,
painted on a wall,
smeared with yellow orpiment,
there your vision has been distorted,
meaningless is your perception of a human being.
Like an evaporated mirage,
like a tree of gold in a dream,
like a magic show in the midst of a crowd — you run blind after what is unreal.

Thig 14.1
Subha Jivakambavanika
Subha and the Libertine

A man falls sick...



"Now suppose that a man falls sick — in pain and seriously ill. He does not enjoy his meals, and there is no strength in his body. As time passes, he eventually recovers from that sickness. He enjoys his meals and there is strength in his body. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, I was sick... Now I am recovered from that sickness. I enjoy my meals and there is strength in my body.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.

"Suppose that a man, taking a loan, invests it in his business affairs. His business affairs succeed. He repays his old debts and there is extra left over for maintaining his wife. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, taking a loan, I invested it in my business affairs. Now my business affairs have succeeded. I have repaid my old debts and there is extra left over for maintaining my wife.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.

"Now suppose that a man is bound in prison. As time passes, he eventually is released from that bondage, safe and sound, with no loss of property. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, I was bound in prison. Now I am released from that bondage, safe and sound, with no loss of my property.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.


"Now suppose that a man is a slave, subject to others, not subject to himself, unable to go where he likes. As time passes, he eventually is released from that slavery, subject to himself, not subject to others, freed, able to go where he likes. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, I was a slave... Now I am released from that slavery, subject to myself, not subject to others, freed, able to go where I like.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.

"Now suppose that a man, carrying money and goods, is traveling by a road through desolate country. As time passes, he eventually emerges from that desolate country, safe and sound, with no loss of property. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, carrying money and goods, I was traveling by a road through desolate country. Now I have emerged from that desolate country, safe and sound, with no loss of my property.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.


"In the same way, when these five hindrances* are not abandoned in himself, the monk regards it as a sickness, a debt, a prison, slavery, a road through desolate country. But when these five hindrances are abandoned in himself, he regards it as good health, free from debt , release from prison, freedom, a place of security. Seeing that they have been abandoned within him, he becomes glad. Glad, he becomes enraptured. Enraptured, his body grows tranquil. His body tranquil, he is sensitive to pleasure. Feeling pleasure, his mind becomes concentrated.

Samaññaphala Sutta
The Fruits of the Contemplative Life



*The Five Hindrances:
1. sensual desire or covetousness (kamacchanda)
2. Ill-will (byapada)
3. Sloth and torpor (thina-middha)
4. Restlessness and remorse (uddhacca-kukkucca)
5. Sceptical doubt (vicikiccha).