Lean into your Sangha. Especially if you feel safe there, if you have one or two good friends there (if not, work to establish some?).
I have had a roller coaster of a past year – intense massage school experience (you can go back read about in January – April 2018 posts), intense amount of practicing bodywork since May 2018 and less Dharma practice as a result.
It is amazing how we can attend the greatest teachers, get all the empowerments, read up on Dzogchen and Mahamudra, and yet, if in our daily lives we do not practice sound mindfulness and continuously practice moral ethics and discipline, then our practice won’t result in anything. That is my story… I have been so blessed, but if I only really practice once or twice a week – and really binge on Netflix, avoid my basic practices the rest of that week… then my intention of realizing Buddhahood soon will be for naught!
So that is what I am working on now. Cutting out all leaks in my container as it were – eliminating computer games, creating board games, excess Netflix shows, etc. I get so much benefit from sitting on my cushion even just 20 minutes / day – why do I resist it like the plague? And if I sit several 20 minute sessions / day, then legitimate, unconditional joy starts to arise. My monkey mind must be harnessed!
I attended a humble Dharma teaching tonight at Blue Mountain Dharma Group with Lama Gephel. He is a great teacher – modest, humble, yet humorous and spicy when appropriate. We each read a passage from HH the Dalai Lama’s commentary on Kamashila’s text in HHDL’s book, “Stages of Meditation.” And of course my passage mentioned the need for and the benefits of mastering calm abiding meditation! Of course it did!
It’s like the Tibetan yogi-saint Milarepa said to physician-meditation master Gampopa, his top student, “My highest teaching for you is to sit so much that you get callouses on your ass…” [I’m paraphrasing btw.]
I now know that that is beyond me (not to mention it sounds terribly uncomfortable!). But sitting for a total of 30 – 60 minutes a day? Doable. That is my intention! Go slow. Rest recover retreat.
Thanks for reading!