Posted by A Single Thread on March 2, 2017
Take up the method for yourself and find out for yourself. What is the method? Begin by looking within, looking at the internal states. Use the mind to study the mind within. The tool needed to turn within is attention.
Attention to the nature of what shows up is your royal light.
Everyone has the ability to bring light upon a subject whether it is outside in the concrete world of the body and things or in the mind where mental formations, impulses, names and forms, perceptions and consciousness exist. We can know what we are thinking, feeling, naming, forming, perceiving and so forth with this royal light.
We do it all the time.
If asked, what are your thoughts about the US presidential election, we bring our attention to what we are thinking and decide whether to say something or not. We gather names, forms, impulses, perceptions and mental formations and bring it to light within. We form an opinion, We form a view. We take a stand. And so forth….we do this over and over again forming a habit, a pattern, a persona. Something we think exists. We identify with it and attach value to it.
We look at the external world in the same way. See for yourself. Don’t you look out and form an object into a person or a dog, give it a name, form a mental picture and perceive whatever it is by looking with attention, with light. We do. We gather a name, a form, restrain or release an impulse, perceive whatever it is and a feeling follows and on and on it goes. We look and find a mood, a feeling, thought, a picture….and on and on.
We do this all the time. Both looking out and looking in.
The method begins with turning the light of looking inward. This turning within requires attention and concentration.
What do we find when we turn within. The simplest answer is: mental formations. We begin to find out the workings of the mind through using the mind as the object and subject of the mind. Mind studies the mind objects. And reflects on what is seen and studies the nature of the seen.
We begin by concentrating the mind. It does not matter whether you are a Buddhist, a Christian, a Sufi….all human beings are able to reflect on the mind. It requires you find out for yourself — direct experience of who you are — not putting another head above your own — but you are only able to do this through the practice of the dwelling mind. The practice of the dwelling mind is developed. We have the tools but we need to use them well.
We begin with the body. We begin by looking at and noticing whether the body and mind are one or are they two. Is the mind separate from the body? Is the body separate from the mind? Who owns the body?
When you realize the inconstancy of the body, the dust to dust nature of the body you are given a way to let go of the body. To forget about the body….whether it is old or young, sick or well, fat or thin, male or female….the body is inconstant. It keeps changing doesn’t it? There’s no clinging to it because of its nature….it keeps shifting and slipping away back to dust. Once you see and know this firsthand, forget the body. Drop it as a concern. It is like everything else in this world, stress-filled and inconstant. We never actually beat illness, we may get relief, a small reprieve….but it won’t last. It can’t.
The nature of the body is dust and to dust it will go. Can you cling to dust? Count on it? Rely on it?
Find out for yourself by studying the mind, the body and what is actually happening.
The dwelling mind does not latch on, cling to or grab what comes into the mind as a “me.” It studies the nature of what comes up and relinquishes attachment. Below is a link to a beginning practice with the body which is especially helpful when you are ill.
Go, be in private, turn your attention inward….study the nature of what shines forth. The nature of a thing will tell you the nature of everything.
Practice with the Body