"My sense is that there is a very real problem among Western Buddhist practitioners.
We are attempting to practice meditation and to follow a spiritual path in a disembodied state, and our practice is therefore doomed to failure."
"As much as possible in everyday life, use awareness of the inner body (feeling sensations) to create space.
Whenever you inhabit your body in this way, it serves as an anchor for staying present in the Now."
“I said to my soul, be still and wait without hope, for hope would be hope for the wrong thing; wait without love, for love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith, but the faith and the love are all in the waiting. Wait without thought, for you are not ready for thought: So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing.”
Be Still - This is what we cultivate as the foundation for our practice. The steadiness of mind that does not move in reaction to changing experience.
It’s an important part of our practice. It doesn’t lend itself to our immediate control as the level of Samadhi in the mind waxes and wanes. Yet, if we are persistent and not thrown into doubt or despair during times of non-stillness, the mind will, over time, become steadier.
There is one thing that, when cultivated and regularly practiced, leads to deep spiritual intention, to peace, to mindfulness and clear comprehension, to vision and knowledge, to a happy life here and now, and to the culmination of wisdom and awakening.
And what is that one thing? It is mindfulness centered on the body.
Respecting Our Differences
Sangha starts to occur as sort of a group field in the sense of these things we have in common. Things we have in common, things we don’t have in common. Things we have in common is this kind of aspiration…
The aspiration body is not self, it’s beneath, beyond or behind our personalities so that kind of lives on. Then there is this other thing called person or personality. It’s not so easy to handle one of these. They are about individuation. Aspiration can be about what we have in common. Our individuality is unique. How do you get a group of individuals, who are individuals, who are separate, who are just what they are, to somehow resonate, bond and to…why, why bother?
Because it’s when we, in that sense of the individuals, seeing within each other the universal aspirations (everybody’s got their own window on it, you might say through that window, everybody’s perceiving the same room) because of that then we have a sense of commonality and individuality and some sort of commitment as to how we can operate around that.
That’s where the whole sense of the rules or boundaries or markers come in. It’s what’s going to help everyone of us maintain that sense of individuality as expression or as a window into this universal dharma, so that the individuality is respected, it’s understood, it’s known, it has a space, but it’s not going to run the show. There’s the balance.
Ajahn Sucitto (Theravadan Buddhist Monk)