Mary’s Review of 1/10/2014

After managing to survive a couple of gremlin attacks(- late access to the café, and then computer playing up,) we started considering how we are all searching for happiness & trying to avoid suffering. We heard that the only reliable way is to find inner contentment, because material wealth and physical comfort are unreliable and expensive. We spent more time meditating, allowing our minds to settle using the breath as our focus, so that we can start to find this inner peace & contentment. Everyone agreed that practising at home would be time well spent, whether using the advised posture of sitting upright and relaxed, or the riskier lying down and relaxed!
Noticing how we are spending our time looking for happiness, and our efforts to avoid suffering can be interesting. We are hardwired to act in this way, so no judgement is necessary, just to notice.
We’ll see next week how we’ve all got on. Also we will be exploring a bit more about our mind, and what the Buddha discovered.

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2 Responses to Mary’s Review of 1/10/2014

  1. Nick says:

    Thank you Mary. I have been thinking about what Rinpoche said about the things that bring happiness eg love, compassion, generosity and the things that don’t eg consumerism, material wealth. It seemed that many or maybe everyone even in the room agreed with this. I wonder if Tibetans find it easier to know this and to live it out, maybe because the way of life is related to basic needs in a community and family life and is perhaps largely uncluttered with high tech, luxuries etc and maybe the educational system and family life emphasise this approach from an early age. In the UK I seem to be assaulted by a stream of advertising and cultural competitiveness to acquire stuff. I was brought up by parents who were sensible people but who were also very interested in having a comfortable material wealth and these desires certainly infected me. Although I know that in theory buying a new gadget is not going to bring long term happiness it is extremely difficult to resist wanting it. Worse, I find, is the attachment I get to ideas, which sometimes I am reluctant to let go of, even though I know, in theory, that I cannot know if they are good or not.

  2. mary says:

    Thanks, Nick, for your musings on last week’s teachings. I agree, that nomadic life allows for less gathering of “things”. Advertising in the west seems to be grounded in making us discontent, & we need to be able to discern the message with wisdom. We are not being told that we cannot have things, but to acknowledge that they do not bring ultimate happiness. We can discuss how to loosen this attachment tonight. I have a couple of passages from Tsoknyi Rinpoche ( Minjur Rinpoche’s brother) which may help.
    As for attachment to ideas, the teachings suggest keeping an open mind, not being stuck in concepts, so that our inner wisdom has a chance to manifest.

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