thus have i heard

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    The Mindfulness Wedge Paid Member

    Mindfulness is the thin edge of a wedge that, if inserted deeply enough into our minds, will open them to wisdom. Whether or not this actually happens, however, depends on various causes and conditions. Some say the process is natural and inevitable, that once the practice of mindfulness is taken up its power of transformation is inexorable. This can sound similar to the monkeys-and-typewriters theory, though, and indeed there is usually a footnote in small print invoking countless lifetimes over multiple aeons. Most others acknowledge that mindfulness is a tool whose effectiveness requires such things as right view, diligent practice, long-term retreats, the guidance of a good teacher, a strong ethical base, and a karmic, if not genetic, predisposition for spiritual progress. More »
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    Keep It Simple Paid Member

    The human mind has a tendency to make everything it takes up more complicated and elaborate than it needs to be. You may have noticed this. The Buddhists even have a word for it, papanca, which means something like mental proliferation. Meditation moves us in the other direction. It is an attempt to remove, piece by piece, layer by layer, all of the baroque ornamentation with which we embellish our world of constructed experience. Underneath all the drama, the restlessness, the hopes and fears, behind the narratives we weave about ourselves, and even before we’ve thought of ourselves as ourselves, lies a simple, unadorned awareness. It’s not even a thing—just an event that happens, a little burst of knowing, deep in the center of it all. More »
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    Pleasure and Pain Paid Member

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    This Moment Is Unique Paid Member

    The unique thing about each person’s lived experience is, well, its uniqueness. Because everything is changing all the time, every single thing that happens is new. The entire universe is in a fresh configuration every moment. There may be patterns that repeat, but no two sets of phenomena are exactly the same, ever. More »
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    Ten Billion Moments Paid Member

    If you go to a quiet place and sit down—crossing your legs, keeping your back straight, and maybe closing your eyes—and you then pay very close attention to what is actually happening, you will notice episodes of experience arising and passing away, flowing one after another in a rushing stream of consciousness. Welcome to the real world.  More »
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    Bait and Switch Paid Member

    One of the many controversies growing up around the notion of mindfulness is whether or not one can be mindful of unwholesome states, such as anger or hatred. On one hand there is the view that one can be mindful of anything, and that it is precisely by becoming mindful of unwholesome states that one is able to abide in such states without having to judge them, suppress them, or act on them. On the other hand there is the view that since mindfulness is a wholesome state and anger and hatred are unwholesome states, and since one cannot experience two such opposite states in the same mind-moment, it follows that what appears to be mindfulness of unwholesome states is actually the rapid modulation between one and the other—moments of mindfulness and moments of anger, for example. More »