Deeply opening to the impact of the characteristics of human existence; anicca, anatta and dukkha, supports us to grow in wisdom and brings intimacy and aliveness to our being. From the silence of being flows the essential radiant qualities of mind and heart; love, compassion, joy and equanimity. Our unfolding is held and nurtured by the supporting containers of awakening practice; sila, samadhi and panna.
As has been said, the self is a ghost that appears to exist only because it is not investigated. In this talk we explore some of the ways that we perceive experience inaccurately and create a view of lasting self. We also mention the advice of Achaan Buddhadasa to generate a contentment with emptiness.
Through a greater self understanding brought about through mindfulness, we can live in alignment with anicca, dukka and anatta. Becoming aligned in the New Paradigm allows our frustrations with life to cease arising.
Although metta practice can seem dualistic (me sending love to others) it is really an anatta practice that reveals the selfless nature of reality. The love that connects us isn't owned by anyone.
This talk includes two guided meditations: 1) metta towards self and 2) seeing ourselves as part of a lineage of benefactors-the love and caring we receive from others passing through us to those we care about and support.
The teaching of Anatta (not self) points to the fact that from the perspective of ultimate reality we are not separate entities to whom life happens. All the people in our life who’ve inspired and impacted us live through us even after they are gone. And we in turn impact the lives of many others and live through them. This talk includes a guided practice to understand anatta from this perspective—that the love we’ve received from others and pass on doesn’t belong to any of us.
James dedicated this talk to his father Arnold, who would have been 93 today; it begins with a moving reminiscence of their relationship.