WISDOM (PAÑÑA) – RIGHT Attitude (2)
◉ FIRST, CHECK YOUR ATTITUDE| Shwe Oo Min Dhammasukha Tawya 2014 Vassa Interviews File: R05_0005 (9:52-12:04)
Intellectually, you know the way to practice: relax, accept, no expectation; but in reality, the mind wants to be in a good state. What you need to watch is what is really happening now. You need to know that craving is present; then you watch the craving first. Not try to make it disappear, but to learn about your craving first. If you don’t understand the nature of craving very well, somehow, it will interrupt your meditation.
When you prepare yourself for a sit, first, check your attitude. Just like when you get into your car to drive, you don’t immediately drive off without checking the condition of the car. So, you shouldn’t be in a hurry to meditate.
Sit and check your attitude first – what is really happening in the mind? If craving is present, then you start by using craving as a meditation object.
◉ WATCHING WITH RIGHT ATTITUDE| Kalaw Retreat 2016 Day 5 Dhamma Discussion Group A File: 20160401 (42:00-42:11)
If you have learnt and understood how to practice from one experience, it’s the same for all other objects. The principle is the same, the way to watch is the same – have right attitude and watch.
◉ RIGHT ATTITUDE TOWARDS DECAY AND DEATH| Switzerland Retreat D4 Group Interview 20160528 (1:09:33-1:11:50)
Always remember that, when there are sensations in the body, keep an eye on how the mind is feeling towards them. Because as we get older, the body is not going to get better; it will decay, but we can keep the mind in good shape.
So, we want to prepare the mind to face this decaying body with the right attitude and prepare for death.
If we see even our bodily pains, aches and all that as nature as well, it is freeing for the mind; we will feel ready to die, to face death peacefully. Otherwise, when the mind is not prepared, we will resist death and be in turmoil.
So, it is important to learn to view that everything that happens in the mind and body in a wise perspective – to see it as a process and phenomenon and not that it is bad; it’s just a natural process.
◉ REASONABLE THINKING THROUGH AWARENESS AND WISDOM| Kalaw Retreat 2016 Day 8 Dhamma Discussion Group D File: 20160404 (5:45-7:23)
In meditation, we try to change our mind quality first. Before, we try to solve problems with anger, craving and anxiety. Defilement is pushing, leading. Now we try to change the mind state first. We calm down with samadhi and wisdom and then we face the problem.
Therefore, watch your feelings first, then come back to thinking.
It is the same with our life – we must face our problems with wisdom; this is the best way to face problems. But many times, we don’t do that – we face problems with defilements, and as a result, they get worse and worse.
So, in life, when we need to think, it’s best that we calm down first; then, with awareness, samadhi and wisdom, we can think in a reasonable and beneficial way, a better way.
◉ NEVER STOP LEARNING| Shwe Oo Min Dhammasukha Tawya: Vietnamese Group Interview 28 July 2015 (38:40-41:20)
Sayadaw U Tejaniya's new understanding in 2015: “Before I thought I understood much; but it was nothing.”
Sometimes when I understand this way – I enjoy this; enjoy means I understand how much relief I get. I still have craving, but the intensity is very different from before.
Last year, I didn’t understand this much; now more understanding appears. My understanding for many years previously and my understanding now are very different. I thought I understood a lot previously, but it’s nothing compared to now – now, there’s more understanding.
Why is samsara so strong, so sticky? This is because of the intensity of craving defilement. If defilements become less and less, then the stickiness is also less and less. And your samsara stops when there is no craving any more. That’s why the Buddha said: No lobha is nibbana. So, try, try, and try. Me too!
◉ WHEN WISDOM LEADS| Shwe Oo Min Dhammasukha Tawya: Malaysian Interviews 12 December 2015
[Yogi's note: An insight into how Tejaniya Sayadaw practices]
Sometimes I check my mind: if my mind is not day dreaming or forgetful, awareness is already there. Day dreaming or forgetting the present moment – if the mind is not doing these two things, awareness is already there. So, I’m just checking like this in my practice, not trying to be aware.
Now my practice is a bit funny. Sometimes I’m more aware of seeing and hearing. First I ask: Who is seeing? I notice seeing happening and I ask: Who is seeing? Always ‘I’ is there; I’m seeing. I continue watching, watching and then ‘I’ is gone. What arises is seeing is happening, seeing is nature, and hearing is happening. So, I’m just asking; that’s all in the practice. Just ask: Who is seeing? That’s it. Then the meditation is working by itself; I’m not meditating.
That’s why it’s called wisdom practice – now wisdom is leading awareness; we’re practicing with right view and right thought, not trying to be aware.
I’m just checking and thinking about the process; that’s all. In daily life when I practiced in the market, the surrounding was so busy but my mind was very calm. It didn’t affect me at all because I already knew that it was happening and I was not thinking about the object. I’m fully aware inside and am only interested in the process.
◉ WISDOM SAVES A LIFE| Kalaw Retreat 2016 Day 4 Dhamma Discussion Group D File: 20160331 (1:07:17-1:08:26)
My situation is like this – if I didn’t meditate, I would have been finished. It was a dead end; so, I had to do it. That helped me to continue to practice. If I didn’t meditate, I would either have gone crazy or committed suicide. So, at that time, I needed to practice.
At that time, I only knew that whenever I practiced I would find relief from suffering. I had no choice.
At first I practiced because I wanted to be free from suffering (due to depression); that was it. After that, when everything was okay, the mind became more interested; and then I became a monk because I wanted to know deeper.
◉ BEING SICK IS A GOOD TIME FOR LEARNING| Kalaw Retreat 2016 Day 4 Dhamma Discussion Group D File: 20160331 (36:05-37:15)
Meditators and non-meditators react differently when they are sick. Long time meditators when they are sick, the mind calms down, more aware, don’t think too much; the mind is more passive. Non-meditators become angry when they are sick, and then the mind exaggerates the anger.
Thinking the right way – it is not personal, it is nature, it is a physical process, it is a mental process, it becomes nature - then the mind becomes more interested.
If you think ‘I’ – ‘I’m sick, my body is sick, my mind is sick’ – then anger comes and the mind becomes more messy.
When you’re sick, it is a good time to learn about this process, how the mind reacts to this object.
◉ UNDERSTANDING THE MIND LANGUAGE| Shwe Oo Min Dhammasukha Tawya: Malaysian Interviews 2015 16 Dec. (7:50-11:50)
I’m always interested in what the mind says.
Check how the mind thinks when it labels an experience; whenever you give the experience a name, check. What gives it a name? Wasting versus learning, can you see the different views? If understanding gives the experience a name (e.g. learning), then there is no problem. If defilement gives it a name (e.g. wasting) and the mind believes in it, then it becomes a problem.
Whenever you say something, the mind already has an idea; that’s why you can talk. We need to know what idea that is. Beyond the words, what nature is talking? In Burmese there’s a saying: Behind the speech there’s Dhamma or nature. That’s why you should check what kind of nature is talking.
Whenever we talk about greed, aversion and delusion, we already think negatively about them; we think that they are no good. When you understand that they are also nature, then the mind will not react negatively to the defilements. That is wisdom; otherwise there will be more defilements.
◉ DO NOT RELY TOO MUCH ON THE TEACHER| Kalaw Retreat 2016 Day 3 Dhamma Discussion Group A File: 20160330 (1:09:56-1:11:40)
It’s more important for you to build up your meditative strength; how to use right attitude and apply what you have learnt in your meditation. You must do it yourself. If you rely too much on the teacher, you cannot build up your strength.
You need to think about the practice – what attitude, what I teach you and what you’ve read. Think back before you start to meditate. If you apply your thinking, then energy is coming. So you prepare how to practice.
Before you do anything, you think about how to do it, right? You sit and think about how to practice. What is the object? What is awareness? What is right attitude?
Think for yourself and try – think and try, think and try, think and try. That’s the way we’re practicing. Do like this.
You need to apply yourself and build up your strength. Your meditation shouldn’t be good only when I come; the teacher cannot be close to you all the time.