Fetch

“When you run after your thoughts, you are like a dog chasing a stick: every time a stick is thrown, you run after it. Instead, be like a lion who, rather than chasing after the stick, turns to face the thrower. One only throws a stick at a lion once.”—Milarepa

Source: Wildmind

This

Science is confounded by consciousness because it cannot be objectively observed.

The fundamental belief of this scientific materialism is that the whole of reality consists only of space-time and matter-energy, and their emergent properties. This implies that the only true causation is physical causation, that there are no nonphysical influences in the universe. When applied to human existence, this worldview implies that subjective experience is either physical—despite all evidence to the contrary—or doesn’t exist at all, which is simply insulting to our intelligence.”
—B. Alan Wallace

And this, from the same source:

Earlier materialists argued that there aren’t any such things as separate mental phenomena, because mental phenomena are identical with brain states. More recent materialists argue that there aren’t any such things as separate mental phenomena because they are not identical with brain states. I find this pattern very revealing, and what it reveals is an urge to get rid of mental phenomena at any cost.”
—John R. Searle

Mind itself is certainly not easy to observe, even subjectively, due to its tendency at the conscious end to hyper-actively glom on to absolutely everything. I think this is why a formal introduction to effortless meditation by someone who is an expert is almost always required. It is simply non-intuitive. But subjective observation makes scientists very nervous due to a rather dogmatic belief that the scientific method, as it is understood and practiced today, is the one and only true scientific method and is ironically immune to the process of evolution which is misunderstood to be a strictly biological process.

Here’s to common ground among all who seek to understand themselves, each other, and the universe. Onward, into the fog.

Confessional

“Why do we need to purify? Because our mind is full of rubbish. Have you noticed that your mind is full of all sorts of illogical thoughts, disturbing emotions, and obsessions? These afflictions are not the nature of the mind. They are like clouds covering the clear sky. They are temporary and can be removed. It is to our advantage to remove them. Why? We want to be happy and peaceful and to be free from suffering, and we want others to be so as well.”
—Ven. Thubten Chodron

Catholics and Buddhists both see the value and import of confession practice. What ever purification ritual you may adopt, consider carefully what you are doing and what you intend to accomplish.

Expose

Purification practice begins with recognizing our own past unskilled (un-virtuous) actions. We cannot confess what we have failed to recognize. Expose the faults first.

Confess

Once exposed, our faults must be owned. Don’t be casual or lazy and think going to confession once in a while will clean up your bad acts and reset the meter. Care must be taken if you think you can continue to thrash around without concern for consequences. Buddhist practice doubles down on the confessional very seriously and many times over. It is practiced daily, better yet hourly. Better make it by the minute, in fact.

Regret

A sense of regret seals the act of confession. We have not gotten away with anything.

Commit

Then we seal the seal with a commitment to avoiding non-virtuous acts in the future, and all with a sense that through the interdependent nature of all beings we do so to benefit everyone.

Shunryu Suzuki

“When you do something, you should burn yourself completely, like a good bonfire, leaving no trace of yourself.”

Patience is said to be a virtue because it is completely accepting of what is here and now. Impatience is that troubling desire to be elsewhere, or for a situation to be other than what it is, or for reality to other than reality. Impatience is looking ahead without skill and turning this moment into a conundrum. Likewise, looking back with longing and pride upon your accomplishment is equally unskillful. Everything is smeared with our precious fingerprints. Attachment is an active involvement with unreal mental constructs. Treating the unreal as real is bound to be problematic, no?

Memories collect automatically. We do not need to sort and categorize, treasure some or try to forget others. No need to build up a shrine for our little accomplishments. The memories will keep. We already have the panoramic view of the here and now. Don’t clutter it up.

(Later I will check back to see if anyone liked MY blog post. See?)

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