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@Kerome said:> It seems to indicate that a great deal of peace of mind, and perhaps a large part of the cessation of suffering, is to be found in non judgment - not attaching to love or hate. Intuitively I feel this must be true, that a lot of the trouble is in the mind's attempts to categorise things as good-bad, loved-hated.
I reckon that equanimity is a result of insight, not something you can decide to do. But insight seems to involve a high degree of discernment, initially the ability to recognise the reactions of craving and aversion as they arise.
@Snakeskin said:> Are (A) ancient, metaphysical beliefs or modern, secular views on the one hand and (B) ethical and contemplative practices on the other really mutually exclusive? If so, from where does that bias favoring practice over the “ribbons and bows of belief” come? Isn’t it a sneaky, little view?
I think that the "bias" favouring practice is sensible and pragmatic because it means we are less likely to get bogged down in the "thicket of views", forever speculating and opinionating but not really seeing. This "bias" is also supported by the suttas.
There is a current thread about the sankharas ( fabrications ). It's worth noting that views and beliefs are also fabrications, therefore they are transient, conditional and empty.
I think practice is more than a process of developing more wholesome "habits", which is basically what Right Effort entails. There is also the important activity of developing insight into what fabrications are, and how they shape our experience of the world and our behaviour. Also seeing that fabrications are transient, conditional and empty, not to be taken too seriously...although they can send us bananas!
"Now suppose that a man desiring heartwood, in quest of heartwood, seeking heartwood, were to go into a forest carrying a sharp ax. There he would see a large banana tree: straight, young, of enormous height. He would cut it at the root and, having cut it at the root, would chop off the top. Having chopped off the top, he would peel away the outer skin. Peeling away the outer skin, he wouldn't even find sapwood, to say nothing of heartwood. Then a man with good eyesight would see it, observe it, & appropriately examine it. To him — seeing it, observing it, & appropriately examining it — it would appear empty, void, without substance: for what substance would there be in a banana tree? In the same way, a monk sees, observes, & appropriately examines any fabrications that are past, future, or present; internal or external; blatant or subtle; common or sublime; far or near. To him — seeing them, observing them, & appropriately examining them — they would appear empty, void, without substance: for what substance would there be in fabrications?"
What have you found motivates you to make the effort when it comes to Dharma practice ?
Curiosity! There is always more to discover.