gave his dharma to
To awaken one must
only pay attention to daily
the middle way. Continually
feeling gratitude and
in one's present existence
Three Marks of
(three basic truths about the condition of
Anicca (Sanskrit anitya) defined as "impermanence".
Dukkha (Sanskrit duhkha) defined as "suffering".
Anatta (Sanskrit anatman) defined as "egolessness".
"If you suffer, it is
not because things are
because you believe things are permanent.
Remaining aware of
impermanence you become compassionate and wise.
Impermanence is an instrument for
living, just remain aware of its nature of impermanence.
When you are thirsty, there is nothing wrong in
enjoying a glass of water.
In fact, to truly enjoy it, you have
to dwell in the present moment.
When a flower dies, we don't
cry. We know it is impermanent.
If we practice awareness of
impermanence, we suffer less and enjoy more.
we know things are impermanent, we
cherish them in the present
We know that our
loved ones are of an impermanent nature,
so we do our best to make them
happy now." - Thich Nhat Hanh
The first mark of existence,
impermanence, points to the simple reality that everything - every thought,
emotion, relationship, or situation - everything that has a beginning, also has
Nothing with a
beginning is permanent.
the search for happiness we pay little attention to impermanence.
Examining motivation we
hold on to what we adore and eject
what we abhor.
Like vs. dislike shifts how brain 'sees'
If our situation is acceptable
we typically feel secure and comfortable.
betrayed by relations or
understanding of Яeality itself when or if
things change in a manner we didn't want or expect.
We feel situational circumstances
are preventing us from being happy.
Every moment brings
arising thoughts and feelings
and then they fall
The simple truth is
that the only certainty
following gain is eventual loss.
The happiness or joy we expect to
experience in life cannot depend on holding onto material
gain if it is to be a true
sustainable everlasting gain.
True sustainable gain we need to find
Everyday emotional pain,
open heart wounds, is where
compassion is born.
In Sanskrit awakened compassion is
called Boddhicitta or Awakened Heart.
We age, we become sick, we die.
Pain is unavoidable.
When we refuse to embrace emotional
pain, we unwittingly screen
out a large range of emotional experiences that occur in the process of
A person who is truly
alive will feel sorrow
is so because of the amount of
unnecessary suffering produced by the
imperfection of social
arrangements and because of the
reality of existence.
beings are aware of the gap between
In this light we understand emotional pain
tend to believe that the opposite of feeling good is not feeling bad.
To keep ourselves from not
feeling bad we condition ourselves to not feel.
All we have to do is allow the
natural empathic response to fill the
"When we take a step on the green earth,
are aware that we are made of air, sunshine,
minerals, and water, that we are
a child of earth and sky,
linked to all other beings." - Thich Nhat Hanh
There is a moment to
moment recognition of egoic needs.
We perpetuate emotional suffering by
thinking we need to be a fixed entity.
Emotional suffering will persist as long as we
avoid at all costs the fear at the heart of it -
we may not be saved or protected and may
experiencing fear we attempt to
dismantle fear by con-vincing
ourselves fear is unjustified - we will be
terrified that they may be unable to
tolerate a reality that they have so very little control over -
the course of
two stages of
First stage of egolessness is characterized by recognition
of "the Observer" -
a recognition of emotional detachment
from passing thoughts and feelings.
Second stage of egolessness the
notion of "Observer"
is dropped as there is no longer to detach from
the face of the awesome power of what
We experience life "vividly" by
direct immersion in the process of living.
a practice of living based on direct and
tolerate a tremendous range of emotion, and ultimately we must.
This understanding marks the
transition from using spiritual
knowledge as a remedy emotional suffering to develope
the courage to experience life as it
When we imagine
what spiritual awakening must be like we tend to imagine
a dramatically relieving
what usually occurs is a humbling, a wearing down of the ego.
we acknowledge that we are in emotional pain and simultaneously acknowledge
that we are whole, we become
available to others and are able to meet them compassionately.
Great emotional pain creates
great tenderness leaving the ego peeled raw reminding us to let go of a need to
control things which are beyond control.
Great emotional pain is not
punishment for being bad.
This is a potent
opportunity to have hearts open up and
burn with fire.
we can tolerate more
emotional pain than we imagined possible
we find a previously unrealized
depth and breadth of being.
understanding: Understanding the Four Noble Truths.
Resolving to practice Buddhist
Abstaining from slander,
gossip, and all untrue speech.
Adherence to nonviolence (ahimsa).
Correct livelihood: Not engaging
in activity that violates life.
Correct mental attitude:
Bypassing combustible thoughts and
A clear sense of mental state
and bodily health.
Meditation to reach
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