|China Retreat 2018 File: 20180530 Q&A 7 (37:22-40:31)

Yogi: I have a chronic illness and it causes the mind to suffer. I would exercise to help the body and I know how to observe the aversion. What else should I do or know?

Sayadaw: Now you are already learning how to watch the reaction (mind) when an unpleasant object arises – when the body is uncomfortable, the mind resists and anger comes. When the awareness-wisdom gains strength, the body may be painful but the mind does not suffer. Then, you learn what to do to cure your body with a relaxed mind, not an angry mind.

The only thing is: yogis forget to be aware when things are going smoothly; when they’re sick, immediately suffering arises. So, when there’s no suffering, meditators also need to be awake and alert so that they don’t get attached. You need to be aware of this situation – that whenever there is no awareness, because wisdom is absent, craving is sure to be present. Unconsciously, the mind is already enjoying the experience – ‘Nice, good, everything is okay, nice, good.’

When bad things happen, anger, the opposite of craving, arises. They’re only alert and diligent when suffering comes. Unfortunately, as much as we enjoy, to the same degree we suffer when we fall ill or when things are not going our way. (We suffer a lot when we don’t get something we crave for a lot – we watch so that a small craving doesn't become a big craving.)

Therefore, we should be as diligent to be aware when the experience is pleasant – we have to be alert and awake all the time so that when bad situation comes, the mind is already ready.