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Friday, December 23, 2011

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The passage you quote is inspiring.

Speaking for myself, these days I am more inclined to hope that the human spirit (which is, after all, a part of the Great Spirit) will endure than to have any hopes for temporal increases in peace, justice, prosperity, and psychosocial wellbeing on a large scale. Maybe these things will happen, and maybe not. The words of Bhante Gunaratana in his book Mindfulness in Plain English speak to me:

>>We are just beginning to realize that we have overdeveloped the material aspect of existence at the expense of the deeper emotional and spiritual aspect, and we are paying the price for that error. It is one thing to talk about degeneration of moral and spiritual fiber in America today, and another thing to do something about it.

The place to start is within ourselves. Look carefully inside, truly and objectively, and each of us will see moments when "I am the punk" and "I am the crazy". We will learn to see those moments, see them clearly, cleanly and without condemnation, and we will be on our way up and out of being so.

You can't make radical changes in the pattern of your life until you begin to see yourself exactly as you are now. As soon as you do that, changes flow naturally. You don't have to force or struggle or obey rules dictated to you by some authority. You just change. It is automatic. But arriving at the initial insight is quite a task. You've got to see who you are and how you are, without illusion, judgement or resistance of any kind. You've got to see your own place in society and your function as a social being. You've got to see your duties and obligations to your fellow human beings, and above all, your responsibility to yourself as an individual living with other individuals. And you've got to see all of that clearly and as a unit, a single gestalt of interrelationship. It sounds complex, but it often occurs in a single instant. Mental culture through meditation is without rival in helping you achieve this sort of understanding and serene happiness.<<

and another passage: there is "...another whole perspective, a completely different way to look at the universe. It is a level of functioning where the mind does not try to freeze time, where we do not grasp onto our experience as it flows by, where we do not try to block things out and ignore them. It is a level of experience beyond good and bad, beyond pleasure and pain. It is a lovely way to perceive the world, and it is a learnable skill. It is not easy, but is learnable."

The whole book in PDF format, 1.33 MB - http://tinyurl.com/7okqjw8

"Mindfulness in Plain English" a chapter at a time http://www.vipassana.com/meditation/mindfulness_in_plain_english.php

May all potentially sentient beings be well, happy, and at peace.

Wow, far out, man.

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