Are you preoccupied with who you are and how you are perceived?

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“Do you ever stand that exposed, emptied of the facades of identity, without your roles, without identification with social status, utterly empty of concepts, not preoccupied with who you are and how you are perceived?


Inner solitude invites us to empty our minds of thoughts, reactions, and obstructive mental states like lust, aversion, restlessness, and doubt.

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Although the basic level of instruction for jhana practice is to simply set distractions and hindrances aside, mindfulness and understanding is necessary to set them aside skillfully.

Frantically batting thoughts and difficult mental states away as unwelcome intrusions while trying to rush into jhana won’t work.

You need to examine thoughts until their nature is unmistakably obvious. Then you will be able to sweep them aside easily and without denial.


It is imperative for the sincere meditator to unwaveringly witness the functions of desire, aversion, restlessness, and doubt, witness these forces arising—but without acting them out, without buying into them.

See them arise as empty thoughts, and see them pass just as quickly.

If they are not seen clearly, these mental states can obstruct progress in concentration.

Doubt can assail the mind with indecision, worry, or chronic judgment.

Unabated, the momentum of uncertainty can paralyze spiritual progress.

Yet doubt is nothing more than a thought.

Through examining the experience of doubt, you will come to understand doubt, rather than be consumed by it.

Doubt is a category of thought that you can definitively set aside.

The very instant you realize you are thinking you have an opportunity to affect the patterns of mind.

Thoughts of self can clutter attention with a plethora of diversified tales—preventing composure, stillness, and unification.

Concentration abandons this diffusing activity.

When you clearly perceive a thought, natural disinterest replaces identification with the stories.

As the mind calms, mental seclusion is established.”

From
Focused and Fearless
Shaila Catherine

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One response to this post.

  1. It is imperative for the sincere meditator to unwaveringly witness the functions of desire, aversion, restlessness, and doubt, witness these forces arising—but without acting them out, without buying into them.

    A great description of observation

    We are doing nothing, accomplishing nothing with out a goal

    We just are, present, without judgment or bias, aware and focused.

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