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Ven. Ayya Khema - equanimity

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  • Sharon
    Insight into the flux and flow of all phenomena, including ourselves, brings the understanding that there s nothing in the world worth keeping, worth holding
    Message 1 of 12 , May 6, 2009
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      "Insight into the flux and flow of all phenomena, including
      ourselves, brings the understanding that there's nothing in the world
      worth keeping, worth holding onto. Insight releases one from that
      resistance to other people's viewpoints which can make life so
      immensely difficult. Other people have other viewpoints. The only
      answer to that is: 'May they live long and happily.' Attachment to
      one's viewpoint only shows that one hasn't yet grasped impermanence.
      When one sees constant change in everything, so that one can never
      really say 'I am this', then a first breakthrough into depth
      perception happens."

      ~ Ayya Khema, "Being Nobody, Going Nowhere: Meditations on the
      Buddhist Path", Wisdom Publications, 1987

      May this be of benefit
    • shar_63
      If you have ever read Don Quixote, you will remember that he was fighting windmills. Don Quixote believed himself to be a great warrior. He thought that every
      Message 2 of 12 , Dec 23, 2009
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        "If you have ever read Don Quixote, you will remember that he was
        fighting windmills. Don Quixote believed himself to be a great
        warrior. He thought that every windmill he came across was an enemy
        and battled with it. That is exactly what we do within our hearts
        and that is why this story has such an everlasting appeal. It tells
        us about ourselves. . .

        "What does it really mean to fight windmills? It means fighting
        nothing important or real, just imaginary enemies and battles--
        trifling matters that we build into something solid and formidable.
        We say, 'I can't stand that,' and we start fighting; 'I don't like
        him,' and a battle ensues; 'I feel so unhappy,' and an inner war
        rages. We hardly ever know what we are so unhappy about. The
        weather? Food? People? Work? Leisure? The country? Anything at
        all will do. . . Few of us come to see that the windmills we tilt
        against are imaginary, that they will vanish if we do not endow them
        with strength and importance, that we can open our hearts without
        fear and gently, gradually let go of our preconceived notions and
        opinions, our views and ideas, our habits and reactions. When all
        that fades away, what do we have left? A large, open space that we
        can fill with whatever we like. If we are wise, we will fill it with
        love, compassion, and equanimity. Then there is nothing left to
        fight."

        ~ Ayya Khema, "Be an Island: The Buddhist Practice of Inner Peace"
        Wisdom Publications, 1999, chapter entitled "Harmonious Living"


        May this be of benefit.
      • shar_63
        The Buddha mentioned [the eight worldly dharmas - pleasure and pain, gain and loss, praise and blame, fame and disrepute] as a pathway towards equanimity.
        Message 3 of 12 , Apr 21, 2010
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          "The Buddha mentioned [the eight worldly dharmas - pleasure and pain,
          gain and loss, praise and blame, fame and disrepute] as a pathway
          towards equanimity. Equanimity is the highest of all emotions. It's
          one of the seven factors of enlightenment, and we certainly will only
          get it in its complete form if there has been enlightenment. But,
          just as with the defilements we can work on them; we can also work on
          equanimity. These eight give us an excellent opportunity to work on
          our inner equanimity, which not only means not to get irate when
          there is blame, but also not to get all excited when there is
          praise. It means both. And not to get all upset when there is loss,
          but not to get really high when there is gain. They are just
          happening. We perfect this path toward equanimity, and they are very
          worthwhile remembering because of that, because we all confront all
          of them alternately in our lives again and again and again. And if
          we haven't learned that there is a pathway to equanimity we will
          respond to them in the old familiar way. I like it; I don't like
          it. This one I'll have, this one I want to get rid of. As long as
          we do that, we are guaranteed to be caught in samsara, the round of
          birth and death, which actually means the round of duality."

          ~ Ayya Khema, online lecture

          (Originally found at http://watthai.net/sounds.htm)
        • shar_63
          The Buddha mentioned [the eight worldly dharmas - pleasure and pain, gain and loss, praise and blame, fame and disrepute] as a pathway towards equanimity.
          Message 4 of 12 , Jul 7, 2010
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            "The Buddha mentioned [the eight worldly dharmas - pleasure and pain,
            gain and loss, praise and blame, fame and disrepute] as a pathway
            towards equanimity. Equanimity is the highest of all emotions. It's
            one of the seven factors of enlightenment, and we certainly will only
            get it in its complete form if there has been enlightenment. But,
            just as with the defilements we can work on them; we can also work on
            equanimity. These eight give us an excellent opportunity to work on
            our inner equanimity, which not only means not to get irate when
            there is blame, but also not to get all excited when there is
            praise. It means both. And not to get all upset when there is loss,
            but not to get really high when there is gain. They are just
            happening. We perfect this path toward equanimity, and they are very
            worthwhile remembering because of that, because we all confront all
            of them alternately in our lives again and again and again. And if
            we haven't learned that there is a pathway to equanimity we will
            respond to them in the old familiar way. I like it; I don't like
            it. This one I'll have, this one I want to get rid of. As long as
            we do that, we are guaranteed to be caught in samsara, the round of
            birth and death, which actually means the round of duality."

            ~ Ayya Khema, online lecture
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