The mind never ‘stops’…We have all the same sensations even while sleeping and dreaming – we hear, we touch, we see, we feel, we smell…and sometimes the sensations are even stronger while dreaming.
When we wake up in the morning all exhausted despite having slept, it is because our minds have been so agitated during sleep. We need to train our mind so that we can have more peace and clarity in our lives.
There are 3 basic ways of training the mind in Buddhist cultivation:
1. Hearing, reading, studying
2. Contemplating (least understood and least practiced)
3. Meditating (resting the attention, after settling the body, breath & mind)
Our objective is what the great teacher Vasubandu called creating a “Revolution at the Base” .
And to be able to do that we first need to replace the karmic tendencies (formations) that make us react in ways we don’t often wish to…
4. Steps to contemplation:
1. Pick a teaching, and ask yourself what this teaching really means to you?
2. Apply the teaching to an event in your past, and contemplate how things would be different had you put this teaching into practice then…
3. Ask yourself how this teaching can inform your action in the present?
4. Pick something that will happen in the near future (like meeting a co-worker that is challenging at work for example), and contemplate how this teaching can help you deal with this person differently?
Love & Light!