Search found 1619 matches

by dhammapal
Fri Feb 16, 2018 1:35 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

Question : When I observe my breath as given in the instructions, I have the sense that I’m controlling it. This doesn’t seem natural. What advice could you give me? Thanissaro Bhikkhu : The mind is always controlling the breath to one extent or another, but a lot of the control is sub-conscious. H...
by dhammapal
Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:51 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

And as you come to know the practice, come to know the Dhamma, you realize exactly how all-encompassing it is. Once these qualities are developed in the mind, they take care of all kinds of situations. Qualities of mindfulness, discernment, and concentration are basic to any skill, basic to our abi...
by dhammapal
Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:50 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

If you’re living a virtuous life, other people are not going to want to bother you. You’re creating a good environment around yourself in a lot of other ways as well. In addition, you’re creating a good environment inside, too: There’s a sense of self-esteem, of responsibility, and maturity that co...
by dhammapal
Wed Feb 14, 2018 2:00 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

They sometimes talk about getting stuck on concentration or becoming a concentration junkie, but those are cases where the concentration lacks the other elements of the path. Your understanding of why there's suffering in the world is skewed, or your understanding of why you're suffering is skewed....
by dhammapal
Sun Feb 11, 2018 4:04 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

So you have to use some independent thinking with your [meditation] technique. You can’t hope that the technique is going to do all the work for you. That’d be like putting your brain through a factory, like hot dog factories, where basically whatever gets put into the factory comes out hot dog, wh...
by dhammapal
Thu Feb 08, 2018 7:47 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

The word nibbida sometimes can be translated as disgust: the kind of disgust that comes not because things in and of themselves are disgusting, but simply because we were trying to feed on them. We haven’t really been paying careful attention to what we’ve been feeding on. We begin to see that the ...
by dhammapal
Wed Feb 07, 2018 5:51 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

The physical world may be made out of atoms, but the world of your experience is made out of little things like this — pleasures and pains. So use the techniques of the meditation to become more skillful in how you deal with the basic building blocks. Once the basic building blocks are well in hand...
by dhammapal
Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:20 pm
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

As you're focusing on the breath, put aside any sensual passions. There's the phrase in the description of jhana, "secluded from sensuality." Some people interpret that as meaning totally cut off from any input from the physical senses. Some interpret it as meaning secluded from sensual pleasures, ...
by dhammapal
Mon Feb 05, 2018 1:30 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

It would be very useful if Buddhist groups would openly part ways with the prevailing amoral tenor of our culture and let it be known in a kindly way that they value goodheartedness and restraint among their members. In doing so, they would provide a healthy environment for the full-scale adoption ...
by dhammapal
Sun Feb 04, 2018 5:40 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

There’re some areas with very clear dos-and-don’ts. For example, as the Buddha pointed out, killing is never skillful. Stealing is never skillful. Illicit sex is never skillful. Lying is never skillful. Divisive speech, coarse speech, idle chatter: There are a few cases in those three where you can...
by dhammapal
Sat Feb 03, 2018 3:42 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

You have these capabilities. And this confidence is what allows you to take on bigger and bigger enemies, and to admit that they’re there. This is an important part of looking into the mind. We see a desire, and often we’re afraid of really looking carefully at the desire, afraid of what’s behind i...
by dhammapal
Fri Feb 02, 2018 2:29 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

Those who demand immediate return for specific services and goods will always require a monetary system. Sincere Buddhist lay people, however, have the chance to play an amphibious role, engaging in the monetary economy in order to maintain their livelihood, and contributing to the economy of gifts...
by dhammapal
Tue Jan 30, 2018 5:00 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

If you think of goodwill as lovingkindness and you’re there like the mother protecting her only child, as some people believe that passage in the Karaniya Metta Sutta says, it becomes pretty oppressive — and very inflated. How are you going to go running around protecting everybody the way a mother...
by dhammapal
Sun Jan 28, 2018 5:15 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

So when the Dhamma requires that you give things up, remember that it's a tradeoff in giving up a lesser happiness for a greater one. You're giving up the habit of scattering your energy around in exchange for a better habit, one of focusing on the qualities of the mind that will see you through ev...
by dhammapal
Wed Jan 24, 2018 9:55 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

There’s no one meditation technique that’s going to do the work for you. That’s a common misunderstanding: that all that’s needed is to do as you’re told, and the meditation will do the work. All you have to do is put in the effort. But discernment doesn’t arise that way. Discernment comes from bei...
by dhammapal
Tue Jan 23, 2018 6:03 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

Question : When we think of the fact that so few people in the world meditate, does it put us in the position where we risk becoming elitist or proud? Thanissaro Bhikkhu : That thought is useful when you’re feeling very depressed about yourself. If you’re already feeling proud about yourself, then ...
by dhammapal
Mon Jan 22, 2018 12:26 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

The Buddha never said that life is suffering. He said there is suffering in life. That was his first noble truth. And he identified what that suffering is, but he went on to say that there is a cause for suffering that you can abandon, and there is a path to the end of suffering that you can develo...
by dhammapal
Sun Jan 21, 2018 12:33 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

Question : Why are we on Earth? Thanissaro Bhikkhu : Because we want to be. Each of us has different purposes for wanting to be here, and those purposes keep changing over time. You can look at that fact in a way that’s discouraging, but it can also be liberating: You can actually make up your mind...
by dhammapal
Sat Jan 20, 2018 7:27 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

For most of us renunciation seems to be a restriction — as when you're getting the mind to focus on the breath. Before you make up your mind to do that, the mind doesn't seem to be restricted, doesn't seem to have any violent wishes, or disorderliness or unruliness. But then all of a sudden, as soo...
by dhammapal
Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:06 am
Forum: General Theravāda discussion
Topic: The Quotable Thanissaro
Replies: 1422
Views: 126911

Re: The Quotable Thanissaro

The idea of creating meditation retreats came basically in the late 19th or early 20th century, the same time when the assembly line was invented, breaking jobs down into little tiny parts that you do repetitively. This approach to physical work was efficient and effective, so it became the model f...