dharma talk

  • Tricycle Community 5 comments

    A More Complete Attention Paid Member

    AdviceA young friend once came to me seeking advice. He had been to India, where he met a guru who had become very important to him. Now my young friend wanted to bring his father to that crowded, hot city, halfway around the world, to meet the guru. I thought about it for a moment, and then said to him, “You know, I don’t think it’s a very good idea. That particular city in India is very unpleasant. The food will be foreign, he may well get sick, and there will be annoying bugs. Besides, I myself found the scene around the guru kind of strange, and your father might well be repulsed by it. He may then dismiss all spiritual endeavor, which would be a terrible outcome. My suggestion is, don’t do it.” More »
  • Tricycle Community 6 comments

    Mindfulness and Concentration Paid Member

                            Vipassana meditation is something of a mental balancing act. You are going to be cultivating two separate qualities of the mind-mindfulness and concentration. Ideally, these two work together as a team. They pull in tandem, so to speak. Therefore it is important to cultivate them side by side and in a balanced manner. If one of the factors is strengthened at the expense of the other, the balance of the mind is lost and meditation becomes impossible. More »
  • Tricycle Community 18 comments

    A Glob of Tar Paid Member

    Even though we practice, we continue to fall for pleasant feelings. Feelings are illusory on many levels. We don't realize that they're changeable and unreliable. Instead of offering pleasure, they offer us nothing but stress—yet we're still addicted to them. This business of feeling is a very subtle matter. Please try to contemplate it carefully, this latching onto feelings of pleasure, pain, or equanimity. And you have to experiment with pain more than you may want to. When there are feelings of physical pain or mental distress, the mind will struggle because it doesn't like pain. But when pain turns to pleasure the mind likes it and is content with it. So it keeps on playing with feeling even though, as we've already said, feeling is inconstant, stressful, and not really ours. But the mind doesn't see this. More »
  • Being Natural Paid Member

    Let it go and be spontaneous,Experience no going or staying. Accord with your nature, unite with the Way, Wander at ease, without vexation.     More »
  • Tricycle Community 2 comments

    Disconnect the Dots Paid Member

    THE PAINTING WAS GEORGE SEURAT’S Neo-impressionist work A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte, his famous scene of Parisians in a waterside park. As my eye scanned the canvas, jumping from boats to people to clouds, it caught on a tree. Here were no seamless bands of color, no blended patches of tint as in so many other paintings. The tree was made up of countless specks—a smattering of separate orange, yellow, and blue dots. The boats on the water, the people on the lawn, their faces and clothes—all were a sprinkling of motes, as if the canvas had been caught out in a rain of paint. More »
  • Tricycle Community 2 comments

    Basic Insight Meditation Instructions Paid Member

    Sit on the floor, legs crossed. (If this is uncomfortable you can sit in a chair. Those who are ill may do this exercise lying down.) Close your eyes or leave them open. Focus your attention on a spot on the abdomen along the body’s vertical midline.As the abdomen expands during respiration, watch the movement with your mind, from beginning to end. When it contracts, do the same. Continue watching the abdominal motions, one after another, keeping your attention in the immediate present moment.Rather than focusing on the breath or the abdomen’s shape, observe the motion itself, experienced as a tactile sensation of pressure. Breathe naturally and follow the movements lightly, keeping your mind on the surface of the abdomen. You don’t have to concentrate too hard. If you have difficulty perceiving the movements, put your hands on your stomach. More »