Last week I touched on the subject of techniques that help us to develop equanimity and there are many techniques of a similar kind that help us to loosen the grip of self-view, to see through our mistaken sense of permanence, and to understand dukkha. The Thai Forest lineage of Ajahn Chah is particularly rich … Continue reading Perhaps Perhaps Perhaps
My practice has brought me to the contemplation of mind states recently, which is one of the primary practices in the famous Satipatthana Sutta. The section on the investigation of the mind tells us to look for certain mind states, and in doing so I found a lot of useful insights into the nature of … Continue reading The Heart of Mind States
Getting a piece of music stuck in your head is a fairly common occurrence and largely unproblematic, but when you turn your mind to learning to meditate this background noise can suddenly turn into a serious distraction. Yet still this unwelcome pest can prove to be a useful guest as we learn how to deal … Continue reading Play it Again, and Again
You might recognise the title of this week’s blog as paraphrasing Franklin D. Roosevelt’s famous line that he delivered it in his presidential inauguration speech in 1933, in reference to the challenges facing America as the Great Depression reached its lowest point: “…the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror … Continue reading Fear of Fear Itself
We all have times when we wish we could find that magic 'off' switch that would instantly make our minds to go silent. Embodied practices of the kinds I've been talking about in previous weeks are not the silver bullet that we sometimes hope they could be; just trying to put all of your attention … Continue reading Four Types of Thoughts
You might not automatically think of Buddhism and quantum physics at the same time, but reading the book Wholeness and the Implicate Order by David Bohm had me doing just that. While the book seems to mostly be aiming to encourage science to use the evidence it already has about the interconnected and constantly changing … Continue reading Thought and Not Thought
Do you think you really pay attention to your thoughts? Do you ever listen to what your mind is actually saying to you? In my last post I was exploring different ways that we can loosen the grip of thinking on our minds and emotions. Ways like challenging your thoughts or recognising convenient fictions are … Continue reading Have You Heard Yourself Lately?