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Bhagavad Gita 8

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  • westwindwood2003
    38. Engage yourself in this battle where pain and pleasure, gain and loss, victory and defeat matter not. You incur no sin because all these pairs are
    Message 1 of 28 , Mar 30, 2008
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      38. Engage yourself in this battle where pain and pleasure, gain and
      loss, victory and defeat matter not. You incur no sin because all
      these pairs are released (let go of) in this battle for wisdom (right
      behavior).

      When you experience enlightenment, knowledge of how you should
      conduct your affairs is presented to you in meditation; you offer up
      the positive and negative feelings that have surfaced in meditation
      and ask for guidance. Your desire for a particular outcome is
      totally let go of and the insight of how you should proceed is given
      to you.

      39. Listen up Arjuna; taking up the yoke of Yoga means absolutely
      adhering to the Wisdom the yoga presents to you, and in doing so, the
      bondage of karma shall be removed.

      You will follow a wisdom not found in your own personality, something
      much better than your nature, and you will be changed for the better.

      40. In this most feeble of efforts there is no production of
      unfortunate results, even with uneven application, this duty protects
      against great fear.

      It has been a while since I started meditation, but I remember.
      Meditation was such a feeble tentative effort because of my karma, my
      condition. However, I was urged to continue by a wise person, and a
      tiny start was all it took; it was a beginning with good results. I
      did have great fear because I was so out of my comfort zone; having
      what I thought was control of my destiny (hah, what an illusion that
      is with all the self induced pain). So I worked on cultivating the
      relationship (I was uneven in the application because I LIKED the
      familiarity of my nature) with that Wisdom I had found, and with the
      procedure of doing meditation came calmness, the determination to do
      the right thing in giving up my karmic tendencies because life was
      better that way. The fear left soon on, but the propensities still
      persisted for many years and required much work.

      41. One pointed determination is the destiny of Arjuna (Oh the joy of
      the Kurus is he) because there is always a single answer for any
      specific problem. There is but one decision for a problem since he
      has taken to the spiritual battlefield. The mind not centered on the
      spiritual has much recourse, and multiple choices to resolve, but
      nothing becomes fixed as a solution.

      The wisdom in meditation is always consistent (you present the same
      problem again, and you get the same answer again), the answer hurts
      no one, and is really hard to do the new behavior to change the
      personality (and work out karma). The intellectual mind thinks of
      many solutions to a problem, which to choose? The emotional mind can
      be in chaos with all the feelings that surface, but the feelings come
      to one point with enough meditation, and then come the offering up of
      the issue to receive the wisdom on how to proceed.
    • westwindwood2003
      ... battlefield ... a ... he ... archery ... then ... other, ... Lots ... to ... in ... really ... enjoyment ... part ... family ... this ... to ... right ...
      Message 2 of 28 , Apr 6, 2008
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        --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "westwindwood2003"
        <westwindwood2003@...> wrote:
        >
        > Chapter I
        > The Bhagavad Gita, which I shall call the Gita hereafter has been
        > called the Bible of India. The setting of the Gita is a
        battlefield
        > where Sri Krishna has promised to help both sides. There are two
        > choices; one side gets the wherewithal of earthly endeavors while
        > Krishna offers to place his unarmed self on the other side. Arjuna
        > is first and chooses Krishna, and Duryodhana is relieved because he
        > gets all the resources of the world. So, the armies gather on the
        > field where previous religious sacrifices have made the battlefield
        a
        > spiritual place. When Duryodhana sees the army Arjuna is part of,
        he
        > notes strong warriors, but states he also has the same on his side
        > and so states to his preceptor, a Brahman who has also taught
        archery
        > to some of those in the army associated with Arjuna. Duryodhana
        then
        > goes on to brag about how huge his army is and how meager the
        other,
        > but uses words that can also mean huge and disorganized, thrown
        > together willy-nilly, compared to compact and well disciplined.
        Lots
        > of horn blowing commences on both sides, then Arjuna asks Krishna
        to
        > place the war chariot between the armies so that he can have a look
        > at the enemy and then sees relatives on both sides. Arjuna falters
        in
        > his resolution to fight. The Gita is allegorical so Arjuna is
        really
        > faced with going for the spiritual approach to life and he has to
        > decide. The spiritual against the human condition with its
        enjoyment
        > and pleasures and all his relatives in the army of Duryodhana as
        part
        > of that human condition is the choice. Arjuna thinks it would be a
        > sin to slay these miscreants, but the next few verses go on to say
        > how nasty these folks really are and how impiety would corrupt
        family
        > life if they were allowed to win. Overwhelmed with sorrow for the
        > coming fight, Arjuna puts down his weapons.
        >
        > Chapter II
        > Arjuna is overcome with compassion, distress and tears; and needs
        > help. The Lord now speaks for the first time in the Gita and at
        this
        > point the real Gita proper is initiated with a statement of the
        > fundamental message: Arjuna, do not be without strength and yield
        to
        > weakness of the heart. Stand up oh scorcher of foes. So Arjuna
        says:
        > Lord who is slayer of foes, how can I attack the people in the
        > opposition who are worthy of worship, one who is verily the
        > embodiment of chastity and self denial, and the other a man of
        right
        > conduct who was my teacher? Wealth and desires of this world would
        > be tainted with blood. Which is best I do not know, they
        conquering
        > us or we them. After slaying them we should not care to live.
        With
        > nature overpowered by taint of pity, with mind in confusion about
        > duty, decisively say what I should do as I am your disciple and You
        > my refuge. This is significant because before this Arjuna was
        > concerned about pleasant things, learning, wealth, culture, wives,
        > progeny, kingdom. Now, he has reoriented to want what is good and
        > this is a prerequisite for enlightenment. Arjuna says: Nothing I
        see
        > would remove grief that dries up my senses, even if I have the most
        > prosperous kingdom and dominion over the celestials.
        >
        > Now a minister to the king whose army is fighting against the army
        > Arjuna is in has the temporary ability to tell all of the foregoing
        > to the king even though remote from the battlefield. The minister
        now
        > goes on to describe Arjuna as not wanting to fight; however, Arjuna
        > is one who can control the need for sleep, and this signifies he
        has
        > some level of attainment with matters of meditation, and therefore
        he
        > is bound to make the correct choice. Arjuna is unlikely to call
        off
        > the war although the king wishes he would do so.
        >
        > Hrishikesa (Krishna) smiles and now speaks the words to the
        > despondent one between the two armies.
        >
        > Those who should not be grieved for, you have grieved for, although
        > you have words of wisdom. For the dead, the living, the wise
        grieve
        > not. Here Arjuna does not possess the first characteristic of a
        > Yogi, the integration of thought, speech and action and he is
        warned
        > about loosing yoga. Bodies come and go, but the Atman exists both
        > past and future. The soul in this body experiences childhood, youth
        > and old age, then moves to another body. The enlightened know this
        > and death is OK.
        >
        > (Chapter II to be continued later)
        >
      • westwindwood2003
        A little background first. Prakriti or the phenomenal universe is delineated in the Vedic teaching. The Vedas identify the phenomenal universe so completely
        Message 3 of 28 , Jun 3, 2008
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          A little background first. Prakriti or the phenomenal universe is
          delineated in the Vedic teaching. The Vedas identify the phenomenal
          universe so completely that the phenomenal and Vedas are considered
          the same essence. The three Gunas are Sattva, Rajas and Tamas and
          constitute the Vedas. Sattva is an illumination shining forth from
          the individual through knowledge, Rajas characteristics are greed and
          selfish activities and Tamas inactivity, delusion, recklessness and
          darkness. The three Gunas compete with each other, create unbalance,
          and cause the propagation of the phenomenal universe.

          What does one then do? The Key is Yoga. In other words, do your
          meditation, offer up the work that is yours, perform the prescribed
          duty revealed to you and do not desire results one way or the other,
          just do the requested action found in meditation. In this way you
          will not be a producer of karma. The Gita states:

          45. Deal with the three attributes, the Vedas. Be without these three
          attributes Oh Arjuna, free from the pairs of opposites, ever remaining
          in the Sattva (goodness) free from (the thought of) material
          acquisition and preservation, established in the self.


          46. In this work, the only right thing for you is not desire the
          fruits of your effort. Also at any time, do not let this not wanting
          fruits of action be the motive because in not having your attachment
          you would let there be an inaction.

          Yoga eventually takes a person beyond the three Gunas so that even
          Sattva eventually fades as all is worked out.

          48. Steadfast in yoga, perform attachment abandonment, Oh Dhananjaya,
          in success and failure be the same as yoga is called having an
          evenness of mind.

          However, this can only be attained by meditation. It is not attained
          by act of willpower as the goings on are the doings of the Lord
          speaking within and the one who meditates is in the position of a
          willing servant. Just do it.
        • westwindwood2003
          49. Action not directed by yoga is by far most inferior. Oh Dhananjaya, the self-seekers, those taking advantage of opportunities without regard for the
          Message 4 of 28 , Jun 5, 2008
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            49. Action not directed by yoga is by far most
            inferior. Oh Dhananjaya, the self-seekers,
            those taking advantage of opportunities without
            regard for the consequences, have a wretched
            existence.

            The unaware person lives their life seeking
            pleasure, trying to get head. Perhaps something
            happens, some calamity or maybe it is just a
            realization that life is not right. There is
            religion to turn to, religious works and teachers.
            Ultimately though, there is the complete giving
            over to God, a total offering up of what one is
            striving for spiritually and seeking guidance in
            deep meditation, a discovery through yoga of
            the path to resolution of it all.

            50. With meditation comes a calmness of mind,
            tranquility. Also, there is wisdom that comes
            showing the actions, the feelings even, that
            needs to be acted upon to grow. There is
            perfection in this life following this path.
            Devote yourself to yoga. Good and evil deeds,
            how do I know which is which? Pursuing
            either should eventually cease. But, it will take
            decades to evolve through it all because it is
            hard to change ones personality.

            Intellectually we have a feeling for what is
            right and wrong, but this is action not directed
            by yoga and is inferior. For instance, I may
            help someone and that seems right to me;
            however, I might be keeping that person from
            discovering the path because they may not
            realize life needs working on. If I do not help
            them when I easily can do so, that might seem
            wrong. The answer to the proper action is
            revealed in meditation.

            51. The wise, those who meditate, let go of the
            desire, lets answers come when no ego
            intervenes, discerns proper action and go
            beyond evil, eventually evolving into the nature
            that frees them from being bound to birthing
            again.
          • westwindwood2003
            What happens to a yogi? These are active and passive. The following is passive because it just happens without effort. 51. When understanding from your
            Message 5 of 28 , Jun 6, 2008
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              What happens to a yogi? These are active
              and passive. The following is passive
              because it just happens without effort.

              51. When understanding from your practice
              comes, intellectual delusion is bypassed.
              You are indifferent to what others said in the
              past and what you shall hear in the future.

              This just happens automatically because of
              the immediate (in this very instant)
              Guidance. That Guidance is all there is; the
              intellect is inactive.

              52. Your intellect analyzes what others say
              and you can be confused by the many
              options. The yogi; however, can stand
              immovable in the Self with steady
              understanding of the course of action
              needed.
            • medit8ionsociety
              ... Yo Westwindwood, This and the previous Gita posting are, as usual, very great pointings. I like the term Guidance (with the capital G) as we often see
              Message 6 of 28 , Jun 7, 2008
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                "westwindwood2003" <westwindwood2003@...> wrote:
                >
                > What happens to a yogi? These are active
                > and passive. The following is passive
                > because it just happens without effort.
                >
                > 51. When understanding from your practice
                > comes, intellectual delusion is bypassed.
                > You are indifferent to what others said in the
                > past and what you shall hear in the future.
                >
                > This just happens automatically because of
                > the immediate (in this very instant)
                > Guidance. That Guidance is all there is; the
                > intellect is inactive.
                >
                > 52. Your intellect analyzes what others say
                > and you can be confused by the many
                > options. The yogi; however, can stand
                > immovable in the Self with steady
                > understanding of the course of action
                > needed.
                >
                Yo Westwindwood,
                This and the previous Gita posting are,
                as usual, very great pointings. I like
                the term Guidance (with the capital G) as
                we often see "Grace" used similarly, but
                with the term Guidance we also get the
                concept that a definitive understanding
                takes place that transcends the mind's usual
                "it could be like this, or it could be
                like that" tendency. This allows the "Thy
                will be done" reality to take us over (and
                inner) and we then automatically let events
                of our life proceed as they may without
                any inner chattering that commonly brings
                us negativity (takes our peace away). And
                of course, we all are "Yogi's" in spite of
                whatever masks cover this true identity.
                So these wise teaching apply to all of us.
                Thanks again for sharing.
                Peace and blessings,
                Bob
              • westwindwood2003
                I cannot take very much credit. The book I am using gives a word for word translation from the Sanskrit. The word order takes a little getting used to and
                Message 7 of 28 , Jun 7, 2008
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                  I cannot take very much credit. The book I am using gives a word for
                  word translation from the Sanskrit. The word order takes a little
                  getting used to and sometimes the English words that are chosen by the
                  author have several definitions and the author sometime uses the more
                  obscure definition, so I find I have to use a dictionary some to get
                  the real meaning. What I then do is try and relate that word for word
                  English translation to my own meditation experience so that I can
                  express that translation in a way that is more understandable I hope.
                  What I find wonderful about the Gita is here are these words that in
                  a condensed kind of way outlines the spiritual experience, like
                  lecture notes that a teacher can expand on. Since I meditate myself,
                  I feel that I can do the subject some justice, but I sometimes wonder
                  if there might be better words than the ones I use.
                  --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, medit8ionsociety .

                  > Yo Westwindwood,
                  > This and the previous Gita posting are,
                  > as usual, very great pointings. I like
                  > the term Guidance (with the capital G) as
                  > we often see "Grace" used similarly, but
                  > with the term Guidance we also get the
                  > concept that a definitive understanding
                  > takes place that transcends the mind's usual
                  > "it could be like this, or it could be
                  > like that" tendency. This allows the "Thy
                  > will be done" reality to take us over (and
                  > inner) and we then automatically let events
                  > of our life proceed as they may without
                  > any inner chattering that commonly brings
                  > us negativity (takes our peace away). And
                  > of course, we all are "Yogi's" in spite of
                  > whatever masks cover this true identity.
                  > So these wise teaching apply to all of us.
                  > Thanks again for sharing.
                  > Peace and blessings,
                  > Bob
                  >
                • suman sk
                  Thanks for continued posting on the wisdom of Geeta. I read it everyday and find a wonderful insight into the true learning. It is a science in itself but only
                  Message 8 of 28 , Jun 8, 2008
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                    Thanks for continued posting on the wisdom of Geeta.

                    I read it everyday and find a wonderful insight into the true learning.

                    It is a science in itself but only for the beleiver.

                    Om and God bless all of us

                     

                    Surendra K



                    --- On Sat, 6/7/08, westwindwood2003 <westwindwood2003@...> wrote:

                    From: westwindwood2003 <westwindwood2003@...>
                    Subject: [Meditation Society of America] Re: Bhagavad Gita 12
                    To: meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com
                    Date: Saturday, June 7, 2008, 11:53 PM

                    I cannot take very much credit. The book I am using gives a word for
                    word translation from the Sanskrit. The word order takes a little
                    getting used to and sometimes the English words that are chosen by the
                    author have several definitions and the author sometime uses the more
                    obscure definition, so I find I have to use a dictionary some to get
                    the real meaning. What I then do is try and relate that word for word
                    English translation to my own meditation experience so that I can
                    express that translation in a way that is more understandable I hope.
                    What I find wonderful about the Gita is here are these words that in
                    a condensed kind of way outlines the spiritual experience, like
                    lecture notes that a teacher can expand on. Since I meditate myself,
                    I feel that I can do the subject some justice, but I sometimes wonder
                    if there might be better words than the ones I use.
                    --- In meditationsocietyof america@yahoogro ups.com, medit8ionsociety .

                    > Yo Westwindwood,
                    > This and the previous Gita posting are,
                    > as usual, very great pointings. I like
                    > the term Guidance (with the capital G) as
                    > we often see "Grace" used similarly, but
                    > with the term Guidance we also get the
                    > concept that a definitive understanding
                    > takes place that transcends the mind's usual
                    > "it could be like this, or it could be
                    > like that" tendency. This allows the "Thy
                    > will be done" reality to take us over (and
                    > inner) and we then automatically let events
                    > of our life proceed as they may without
                    > any inner chattering that commonly brings
                    > us negativity (takes our peace away). And
                    > of course, we all are "Yogi's" in spite of
                    > whatever masks cover this true identity.
                    > So these wise teaching apply to all of us.
                    > Thanks again for sharing.
                    > Peace and blessings,
                    > Bob
                    >


                  • WestWindWood
                    54. Arjuna asks a question about the qualities (steady of disposition, consistent in vision) of a sage, (who has merged with the Creator, the nature of that
                    Message 9 of 28 , Jun 9, 2008
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                      54. Arjuna asks a question about the
                      qualities (steady of disposition,
                      consistent in vision) of a sage, (who
                      has merged with the Creator, the
                      nature of that which underlies all
                      existence). 

                      The sage, merged into the Creator
                      beyond the normal conscious state,
                      we could say in deep meditation,
                      experiences the qualities of the
                      Creator.  The sage has, over may
                      years of evolution, taken these
                      experiences and incorporated in him,
                      through proper action and behavior,
                      the qualities of the Creator so that
                      the sage became Self. 

                      This seems like A LOT OF HARD
                      WORK! But in reality, it is just a
                      giving up of all those qualities of
                      personality that are not of the divine
                      nature.  It seems an agony at the
                      time, but is nothing looking back,
                      and why was that I clung to so
                      important anyway, but it was.


                      55. Sri Bhagavan (Krishna) said:
                      All desires of the mind (of ones very
                      heart) are cast off, Oh Partha, by
                      becoming the Self by working with
                      the Self in steady wisdom.

                      Contact with the Self in meditation
                      brings a steady wisdom, Oh what to
                      do about my present situation and
                      how am I going to work this out,
                      God's will be done, and so it goes
                      with an answer coming to me so that
                      I become more the Self by practicing
                      proper behavior and letting the Self
                      emerge in place of the misguided
                      personality that I have begun with.



                      56. The mind is unshaken in
                      adversity, and in pleasure, there is no
                      latching onto and wanting to retain. 
                      Free from attachment, fear and anger
                      is the sage poised in wisdom.

                      The wisdom found in meditation
                      allows the sage these characteristics. 
                      This is just something that happens,
                      a symptom, not something that the
                      sage tries to grasp and become, it just
                      happens because one meditates.


                    • aideenmck
                      Belated thanks for these posts helping us to understand the Bhagavad Gita, about which I was almost totally ignorant. Recently, I ve been reading Ram Dass s
                      Message 10 of 28 , Jun 11, 2008
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                        Belated thanks for these posts helping us to understand the Bhagavad
                        Gita, about which I was almost totally ignorant. Recently, I've been
                        reading Ram Dass's "Paths to God: Living the Bhagavad Gita" - it,
                        too, is a revelation. Also reading Rumi's poetry, the Coleman Barks
                        translation. And meeting Theravadin monks, listening to their dharma
                        talks. Sometimes I feel as if I'm perceiving everything for the
                        first time. (Where have I been?)
                        Aideen

                        --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, WestWindWood
                        <westwindwood2003@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > 54. Arjuna asks a question about the
                        > qualities (steady of disposition,
                        > consistent in vision) of a sage, (who
                        > has merged with the Creator, the
                        > nature of that which underlies all
                        > existence).
                        >
                        > The sage, merged into the Creator
                        > beyond the normal conscious state,
                        > we could say in deep meditation,
                        > experiences the qualities of the
                        > Creator. The sage has, over may
                        > years of evolution, taken these
                        > experiences and incorporated in him,
                        > through proper action and behavior,
                        > the qualities of the Creator so that
                        > the sage became Self.
                        >
                        > This seems like A LOT OF HARD
                        > WORK! But in reality, it is just a
                        > giving up of all those qualities of
                        > personality that are not of the divine
                        > nature. It seems an agony at the
                        > time, but is nothing looking back,
                        > and why was that I clung to so
                        > important anyway, but it was.
                        >
                        >
                        > 55. Sri Bhagavan (Krishna) said:
                        > All desires of the mind (of ones very
                        > heart) are cast off, Oh Partha, by
                        > becoming the Self by working with
                        > the Self in steady wisdom.
                        >
                        > Contact with the Self in meditation
                        > brings a steady wisdom, Oh what to
                        > do about my present situation and
                        > how am I going to work this out,
                        > God's will be done, and so it goes
                        > with an answer coming to me so that
                        > I become more the Self by practicing
                        > proper behavior and letting the Self
                        > emerge in place of the misguided
                        > personality that I have begun with.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > 56. The mind is unshaken in
                        > adversity, and in pleasure, there is no
                        > latching onto and wanting to retain.
                        > Free from attachment, fear and anger
                        > is the sage poised in wisdom.
                        >
                        > The wisdom found in meditation
                        > allows the sage these characteristics.
                        > This is just something that happens,
                        > a symptom, not something that the
                        > sage tries to grasp and become, it just
                        > happens because one meditates.
                        >
                      • westwindwood2003
                        I do not know Sanskrit and so I know that I am not going to always get a translation correct. If I do make a mistake, I do not feel that I am causing any harm
                        Message 11 of 28 , Jun 14, 2008
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                          I do not know Sanskrit and so I know
                          that I am not going to always get a
                          translation correct. If I do make a
                          mistake, I do not feel that I am
                          causing any harm because I just wind
                          up commenting on a different aspect
                          of meditation than what the Gita is
                          referring to at that point. However,
                          if I do get it wrong on a particular
                          passage, I would like to hear about it
                          if someone knows I am wrong
                          because I might miss some facet of
                          meditation that I might not touch on
                          later that is important.

                          57. Life's many experiences evoke
                          thoughts and feelings. However,
                          rejoicing in the good and hatred of
                          the bad is not in the personality of
                          the person who dwells, resides, in
                          Wisdom.

                          Being with that Wisdom, the one on
                          the path feels the situation is not
                          defined as good or bad, but God's
                          will, and so petitions for the
                          Knowledge of right behavior to deal
                          wisely in the circumstance.

                          58. A tortoise withdraws head and
                          limbs when disturbed, and a Yogi,
                          when confronted with an attractive
                          sight or painful scene reflexively
                          pulls in to contemplate the situation
                          knowing a moment's reflection
                          brings Wisdom.

                          59. Seeing an object of desire, a
                          person remains abstinent upon
                          leaving the longing behind. Even a
                          hint of the desirable reaction drops
                          away from the person who perceives
                          the Supreme.
                        • westwindwood2003
                          60. The wise person strives for perfection; turbulent situations though, the chaos of the day, violently carries away the mind. OK, so don t hesitate to
                          Message 12 of 28 , Jun 18, 2008
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                            60. The wise person strives for
                            perfection; turbulent situations
                            though, the chaos of the day,
                            violently carries away the mind.

                            OK, so don't hesitate to meditate!

                            61. The yogi controls the chaos of
                            the day, these thoughts restrained
                            and joined together. Focus on God
                            and the yogi's thoughts are settled.

                            The turbulent thoughts of the yogi
                            are allowed to surface in meditation,
                            and the calming effect of the
                            meditation experience affects a
                            change in the mind (this just happens
                            without any attempt at control). With
                            the calming, the focus can them be
                            brought to God, who then brings
                            wisdom allowing the thoughts to be
                            settled.

                            62. Objects of the senses, (what
                            causes the turbulent thoughts of a
                            person) cause strong attachment
                            because a person has the propensity
                            for that particular object of the
                            senses. From this attachment comes
                            desire and from desire a kind of
                            anger, of that is mine,
                            possessiveness.

                            Attachment caused by their own
                            personality, or perhaps we could say
                            from their previous karma gives
                            material to work on in meditation.

                            63. From anger comes delusion and
                            from this delusion comes a forgetting
                            of facts (memory of what really
                            happened or how things are), and
                            this loss of reason with impetuous
                            behavior, results in death.

                            Why am I thinking of a motorcycle
                            going 110 mph on a windy country
                            road? Actually, this could be most
                            anything and usually results in a visit
                            from a police officer, or at best
                            recognition of out of control feelings
                            that need to be worked on in
                            meditation.
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