13 Sep 2011
Dharma talk: Meditative cultivation of Compassion and the Suffering of Change
On the “most wanted” list of mental afflictions is hatred. Craving/attachment is the #1 culprit in the suffering of change. Craving and attachment are always carried by a conceptual line (i.e. they are one step removed from reality). There is the sense of “If only……” (I had this or that, I would be happy). The object of desire seems static (it is an object), but everything is in flux. Arhats are free of suffering because they are free of attachment. They feel pain, but the experience is different because there is not grasping at “my body.” The pain just arises in space.
The two parts of Buddhist ethics are (1) doing no harm and (2) being of benefit. If we were all ethical, 95 percent of the blatant suffering in the world would vanish.
Shamatha is one level of Samadhi. You achieve a more balanced mind and have the experience of bliss, non-conceptuality, and luminosity (it is moment to moment, but the experience is there). These three qualities are how craving/attachment, delusion, and hostility are experienced from the view point of rigpa. We can get glimpses of this in shamatha which is designed to lead us along our authentic intention and actually has a chance of success.
There are three types of desires which can be expressed thus: “I want to feel good,” (pleasure), “I want to feel alive, alive, awake, excited,” and “I want to feel safe, unafraid, secure.”
However, if you get what you want, it will eventually erode and change (therefore, the suffering of change).
Our aspirations must be in the realm of possibility (e.g. to be free of unnecessary suffering via releasing attachment to the desire realm and to have a balanced mind; it is still not permanent and unchanging, but we can work in that direction). We will still have to experience natural catastrophes, sickness, old age, and death.
Meditation on Compassion and the Suffering of Change (46:27), beginning with ourselves and moving to those whom we care about and eventually further and further out.
Questions and Answers (71:10):
1. What are pointing out instructions?
2. When you are experience laxity and excitation at the same time, which do you tackle first?
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