25 Sep 2014
Since we finished the first cycle on the 4 immeasurables we moved on to a new dimension: The cultivation of great compassion. This is necessary due to the fact that it is difficult practicing equanimity when so many elements are just so uneven: You have physically attractive and unattractive people, smart and not so smart, funny and boring, some like you while others don’t, some are more virtuous and some less. So, if our physical appearance, our personality and our psyche is all there is, then we will face a hard time practicing equanimity. Thus, we need wisdom - wisdom of emptiness of self and all phenomena. It is the wisdom that really gets to the roots of the problem, which is delusion. While practicing equanimity in its basic form we can overcome aversion and attachment to a great degree, but we never get to the root (delusion). Apart from that, Alan explains the meaning of what Westerners often just perceive as “the Asian way to say hi”, that is having your palms pressed together and turned inward with your thumbs pressing against each other. This is to symbolize Buddha-nature that is at the center, the two thumbs symbolizing method and wisdom - and therefore, when you bow to someone and make this gesture, you bow to the Buddha-nature within that person.
Meditation starts at 43:28
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