shamata

shamata

Okay, so the shamata. So first we develop the shamata. Whatever way. Some of you, those who are practising the Lamdre use the blue flower of whatever. Those who are Theravadin or Sarvakayana path holder breathing in and out. It doesn’t matter, really. Basically like a Zazen, Zen tradition. You just sit. Sit and sit and sit. And you concentrate on an object. That is all you do. It is an incredible method. Do you know why? Remember all this time we have been talking about impure perception. Do you know why you have this endless chain like impure perception. Remember we talked yesterday, we think about the beach. This beach relates to California. California beach relates to Hollywood. Hollywood relates to Jennifer Lopez. Jennifer Lopez relates to something else I don’t know. It goes on and on and on. Impure perception like a chain, endlessly. So strong, so solid, comes in our being just endlessly. Do you know why. Because you give them the chance to happen this way. You give them. You remember I was telling you, you sit in the living room for two minutes. You get bored, you search for remote control. Switch on the television. More impure perception. Of course, that’s really impure perception isn’t it. And then one impure perception is not enough. There is about fifty channel of impure perception. That is not enough you have to throw a party. And then remember all the way to the kinky stuff. All kinds of things we have, impure perception. And this is because we need to have impure perception almost. It is like we are addicted. We are addicted to impure perception. Even for one minute, we cannot sit still without some kind of injection of kind of entertainment. Songs or dance or a music or a television or a novel to read. And lastly, Dharma also. Dharma is also a bit of an entertainment. Because it sort of makes you feel that you have practiced at least. You know it is like how do you feel when you finish doing your sadhana. Just sort of such a big relieve. Isn’t it. This is why I do in the morning. If you do the sadhana in the evening my god the whole day you have to worry. So doing the sadhana is like do it and get done with it. And if you don’t do it, it is like that. We need constant injection of entertainment. And that is why they are coming, coming and getting you more and more obsessed. So, during the shamata, what do you do? You completely let go of them and all you are thinking about is some stupid blue flower. All the others when they come you just go back to the flower. By doing so, this chain of thoughts, this chain of impure perceptions are becoming – you know like as you are thinking, all thoughts come normally but this time all you think about is the blue flower or the breathing. Then, suddenly the impure perceptions they are shocked. They don’t know what to do with you. Because normally you are waiting there hungry opening your arms and mouth and you know, like not enough. But this time suddenly you are not paying attention to them. That’s it. Shamata mediation is basically an art of ignoring entertainment. An art to ignore the impure perception. As you only concentrate on the breathing or the blue flower all the rest, the impure perception they don’t know what to do. So for first few month they will really bother you with their bells and sounds, hey pay attention to us. Like a spoiled brat they like you to pay attention to them. Don’t care, all you look at is this blue flower. And then, impure perception slowly slowly give in. Then you know what to do with them. If you want two impure perceptions, you can have two. One of them if you want to dismiss by three o’clock you dismiss. So impure perception is under your control. And that’s what we call experiential perception. You understand. So that is just a very brief introduction to the shamata, we have no time.

The Three Levels of Perception, Singapore 2003

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