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Ajahn Sumedho on lovingkindness

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  • sharon werner
    Metta, loving kindness, is an all-inclusive practice. Although liberation comes through letting go of our attachment to the conditioned world, if we
    Message 1 of 4 , Jul 2, 2013
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      "Metta, loving kindness, is an all-inclusive practice. Although
      liberation comes through letting go of our attachment to the
      conditioned world, if we concentrate on this alone we may develop an
      attitude which is excluding, almost annihilistic. The tendency will
      be to see conditions solely in terms of not being attached to them,
      or even trying to get rid of them. But with metta, we are relating to
      all conditioned experience with an attitude of kindness, accepting
      things as they are. Consider what this does to the mind as a practice.
      We contemplate all phenomena, all sentient beings, in terms of loving-
      kindness rather than in terms of which is best, which is worst, what
      we like, what we don't like.

      "Metta is non-discriminatory. It doesn't mean liking one thing rather
      than another, it isn't a question of singling out: "I love this
      person, I don't love that one." Ours is a highly critical society. We
      are brought up to emphasise what's wrong with ourselves, our family
      and friends, the government, the country, the world at large - and so
      we become very conscious of the negative. We see the fault in people
      or things and become obsessed with that, and are no longer able to
      see what's right about them. In practising metta, however, we
      deliberately avoid clinging to faults and weaknesses. We're not blind
      to them, we're not promoting them, rather we maintain an attitude of
      kindness and patience towards defects in ourselves and others."

      ~ Ajahn Sumedho, "Universal Loving Kindness" From Forest Sangha
      Newsletter, October 1997, Number 42

      The entire article can be read at:

      http://www.abhayagiri.org/index.php/main/article_print/215/


      May this be of benefit.
    • antony272b2
      Hi Sharon, I pasted a line with quotation marks into Google and found the new link below. With metta / Antony. ...
      Message 2 of 4 , Jul 3, 2013
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        Hi Sharon,

        I pasted a line with quotation marks into Google and found the new link below.

        With metta / Antony.

        --- In Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com, "sharon werner" <sharonwerner@...> wrote:
        >
        > "Metta, loving kindness, is an all-inclusive practice. Although
        > liberation comes through letting go of our attachment to the
        > conditioned world, if we concentrate on this alone we may develop an
        > attitude which is excluding, almost annihilistic. The tendency will
        > be to see conditions solely in terms of not being attached to them,
        > or even trying to get rid of them. But with metta, we are relating to
        > all conditioned experience with an attitude of kindness, accepting
        > things as they are. Consider what this does to the mind as a practice.
        > We contemplate all phenomena, all sentient beings, in terms of loving-
        > kindness rather than in terms of which is best, which is worst, what
        > we like, what we don't like.
        >
        > "Metta is non-discriminatory. It doesn't mean liking one thing rather
        > than another, it isn't a question of singling out: "I love this
        > person, I don't love that one." Ours is a highly critical society. We
        > are brought up to emphasise what's wrong with ourselves, our family
        > and friends, the government, the country, the world at large - and so
        > we become very conscious of the negative. We see the fault in people
        > or things and become obsessed with that, and are no longer able to
        > see what's right about them. In practising metta, however, we
        > deliberately avoid clinging to faults and weaknesses. We're not blind
        > to them, we're not promoting them, rather we maintain an attitude of
        > kindness and patience towards defects in ourselves and others."
        http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/42/loving.htm
        > ~ Ajahn Sumedho, "Universal Loving Kindness" From Forest Sangha
        > Newsletter, October 1997, Number 42
        >
        > The entire article can be read at:
        http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/42/loving.htm
        >
        >
        > May this be of benefit.
        >
      • sharon werner
        Thanks, Antony! :)
        Message 3 of 4 , Jul 3, 2013
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          Thanks, Antony! :)

          --- In Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com, "antony272b2" <antony272b@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hi Sharon,
          >
          > I pasted a line with quotation marks into Google and found the new link below.
          >
          > With metta / Antony.
          >
          > --- In Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com, "sharon werner" <sharonwerner@> wrote:
          > >
          > > "Metta, loving kindness, is an all-inclusive practice. Although
          > > liberation comes through letting go of our attachment to the
          > > conditioned world, if we concentrate on this alone we may develop an
          > > attitude which is excluding, almost annihilistic. The tendency will
          > > be to see conditions solely in terms of not being attached to them,
          > > or even trying to get rid of them. But with metta, we are relating to
          > > all conditioned experience with an attitude of kindness, accepting
          > > things as they are. Consider what this does to the mind as a practice.
          > > We contemplate all phenomena, all sentient beings, in terms of loving-
          > > kindness rather than in terms of which is best, which is worst, what
          > > we like, what we don't like.
          > >
          > > "Metta is non-discriminatory. It doesn't mean liking one thing rather
          > > than another, it isn't a question of singling out: "I love this
          > > person, I don't love that one." Ours is a highly critical society. We
          > > are brought up to emphasise what's wrong with ourselves, our family
          > > and friends, the government, the country, the world at large - and so
          > > we become very conscious of the negative. We see the fault in people
          > > or things and become obsessed with that, and are no longer able to
          > > see what's right about them. In practising metta, however, we
          > > deliberately avoid clinging to faults and weaknesses. We're not blind
          > > to them, we're not promoting them, rather we maintain an attitude of
          > > kindness and patience towards defects in ourselves and others."
          > http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/42/loving.htm
          > > ~ Ajahn Sumedho, "Universal Loving Kindness" From Forest Sangha
          > > Newsletter, October 1997, Number 42
          > >
          > > The entire article can be read at:
          > http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/42/loving.htm
          > >
          > >
          > > May this be of benefit.
          > >
          >
        • antony272b2
          We re here for the sake of true happiness. That s why the Buddha left his palace and went out into the wilderness. He wasn t satisfied with the happiness that
          Message 4 of 4 , Jul 3, 2013
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            "We're here for the sake of true happiness.

            That's why the Buddha left his palace and went out into the wilderness. He wasn't satisfied with the happiness that comes in normal, everyday life. He wanted a happiness that was dependable, a happiness really worth all the effort that would go into it. All kinds of happiness require effort in one way or another. The question is, "Is the effort worth it?" In terms of fabricated things, conditioned things, many times the answer is No. In fact, if you make any conditioned thing an end in and of itself, the effort isn't worth it, for ultimately it will leave you high and dry.

            Yet the Buddha realized that conditioned things have another side as well. Not only are they conditioned, they're also conditioning. In other words, as conditioned things they're dependent on other causes; they arise and fall in line with those causes' arising and falling away — sometimes immediately, sometimes over time. But then they themselves give rise to other things. The Buddha's major discovery was that even though certain things are conditioned — in other words the elements of the path are conditioned — they can lead to an opening to the Unconditioned. And this is what makes the path worthwhile, what gives hope to our lives.

            In Thai there's a term for the state of mind where all you can see is the bad side of conditioned things: Everything passes away, passes away, passes away, and everything starts seeming hopeless, pointless. It's called narrow equanimity, small minded equanimity. In other words, you get disenchanted with everything, but the disenchantment doesn't lead to the opening to the Deathless. You stay stuck there on the disenchanted side. If you stay stuck there, it's easy to get hopeless, apathetic, depressed.

            But the Buddha pointed out another side to conditioned things, too. A potential for true happiness lies here in the practice. We're fabricating conditioned things. Right View, Right Resolve, all the way down to Right Concentration: These are all conditioned things. They're the highest of all conditioned things. But even though they're the highest, you don't stop there. They're a path. They open up to something even bigger.

            So make sure that you look at life from both sides. In other words, you're focused on the drawbacks of taking conditioned things as your goal //so that you don't get complacent//. Sometimes it's easy: You get a nice, calm state in meditation, life around you seems pretty effortless, and it's very tempting — and this happens to many, many meditators — to say that this is fine enough right here. It's in cases like that that the Buddha points out all the drawbacks of conditioned things, all the drawbacks of conditioned happiness. Not only is a lot of effort wasted in creating that happiness, but sometimes in order to maintain it you also start doing things that go against the precepts, that go against the principles of morality, concentration, and discernment, so that your conditioned happiness causes suffering not only in passing away but also in leading to all kinds of bad things down the road. So you have to watch out. You can't be complacent.

            On the other side, the Buddha emphasizes the fact that heedfulness really does pay off. If everything were negative, then no matter how heedful or careful you might be then there'd be no chance for any true happiness. But skillful action does pay off. That's why heedfulness is so important. If you're careful, if you're circumspect, it'll make a big difference."
            http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/thanissaro/meditations2.html#single
            From: Single-minded Determination by Thanissaro Bhikkhu
            For Free Distribution, as a gift of Dhamma, from Access to Insight and Thanissaro Bhikkhu

            With metta / Antony.

            --- In Buddhaviharas@yahoogroups.com, "sharon werner" <sharonwerner@...> wrote:
            > > >
            > > > "Metta, loving kindness, is an all-inclusive practice. Although
            > > > liberation comes through letting go of our attachment to the
            > > > conditioned world, if we concentrate on this alone we may develop an
            > > > attitude which is excluding, almost annihilistic. The tendency will
            > > > be to see conditions solely in terms of not being attached to them,
            > > > or even trying to get rid of them. But with metta, we are relating to
            > > > all conditioned experience with an attitude of kindness, accepting
            > > > things as they are. Consider what this does to the mind as a practice.
            > > > We contemplate all phenomena, all sentient beings, in terms of loving-
            > > > kindness rather than in terms of which is best, which is worst, what
            > > > we like, what we don't like.
            > > >
            > > > "Metta is non-discriminatory. It doesn't mean liking one thing rather
            > > > than another, it isn't a question of singling out: "I love this
            > > > person, I don't love that one." Ours is a highly critical society. We
            > > > are brought up to emphasise what's wrong with ourselves, our family
            > > > and friends, the government, the country, the world at large - and so
            > > > we become very conscious of the negative. We see the fault in people
            > > > or things and become obsessed with that, and are no longer able to
            > > > see what's right about them. In practising metta, however, we
            > > > deliberately avoid clinging to faults and weaknesses. We're not blind
            > > > to them, we're not promoting them, rather we maintain an attitude of
            > > > kindness and patience towards defects in ourselves and others."
            > > http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/42/loving.htm
            > > > ~ Ajahn Sumedho, "Universal Loving Kindness" From Forest Sangha
            > > > Newsletter, October 1997, Number 42
            > > >
            > > > The entire article can be read at:
            > > http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/42/loving.htm
            > > >
            > > >
            > > > May this be of benefit.
            > > >
            > >
            >
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