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Do You find Dharma Practice Difficult ?

ShoshinShoshin No one in particularNowhere Special Veteran

I've been reading "Not Always So" (some of Shunryu Suzuki teachings that one of his students put together in book form after his death)...
When speaking of Dharma practice he says "It's not difficult at all. Everyone can do it, but to continue it is rather difficult"...

No doubt there are some lay practitioners who pick up their practice when a crises hits and when it passes they ease up or stop practicing altogether and the mind gradually begins to drift back into old habit patterns, habit patterns which are susceptible to the sticky/clingy bait traps Dukkha has on offer... The bait becomes hard to resist and difficult to let go of ...

Have you found this to be the case ?
Do you slip back into old habits once the crises has passed ?

Sabbe dhamma nalam abhinivesaya (Nothing whatsoever should be clung to)

Or do you make it a point to continue your practice no matter where the mind's at, eg, in wholesome and unwholesome times?

"It's easy to wear a smile and be pleasant when one's life flows along like some sweet song
But a person worthwhile is the one who can still wear a smile when things in their life go all wrong''
~Goenka~

Vastmindlobster

Comments

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited November 17

    If I find it difficult, it's because I make it difficult. Self-sabotage really is ridiculous.

    BunkslobsterShoshinadamcrossley
  • FeistyGibbletsFeistyGibblets New South Australia New

    @Shoshin said:

    Have you found this to be the case ?
    Do you slip back into old habits once the crises has passed ?

    At this point in my journey, I do find it difficult. Probably because I am still very new to it. Intellectually I understand that practise makes perfect and that like everything else in life, one should continue to practise regardless of what's going on around you. But then that driver cuts you off in traffic and it's all over red rover.

    But I'm trying.

    BunkslobsterShoshin
  • FosdickFosdick in its eye are mirrored far off mountains Alaska, USA Veteran

    @Shoshin

    Do you slip back into old habits once the crises has passed ? ..... Or do you make it a point to continue your practice no matter where the mind's at

    Both, most assuredly. Long established habit patterns will reassert themselves, never think otherwise. Expect this, watch it happen, and cut it short. In this context, never totally relax.

    It doesn't require a samsaran crisis either - it happens every time you believe you've made some progress on the path. Time and space twist back upon themselves, there you are back where you started. All in the mind. Twist the damned thing back the other direction ASAP.

    BunksShoshin
  • BunksBunks Veteran Australia Veteran

    Definitely fall back in to old habits.......although I think overall I have made some progress on the path of letting go over the last decade or so.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran Veteran
    edited November 18

    @FeistyGibblets said:
    At this point in my journey, I do find it difficult. Probably because I am still very new to it. Intellectually I understand that practise makes perfect and that like everything else in life, one should continue to practise regardless of what's going on around you. But then that driver cuts you off in traffic and it's all over red rover.

    But I'm trying.

    For the dharma noob and the veteran fan gal, the difficulties are different but very real.
    However the benefits for both and the Mid Way Marsh Mellows, are considerable. Perhaps subtle. Very real:

    • I am the disciplined
    • “Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Ye non-Buddhist Rumi
    • Dharma friends move us to reality. The whirled world, turns us silly ...
    • No Bodhi said it would be easy, just lead to ease, rest, awakening ... I'll join. Rejoin. Refocus.
    • As we gain in confidence/faith/understanding, we confirm. Path works. On track.

    Buddha. Dharma. Sangha. Joy to the World.

    Bunks
  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran
    edited November 18

    I don’t even see it see it as a falling-back... whenever I have managed to stay mindful, I take it as a bonus. Lately I have been staying mindful through some quite emotional moments so I consider this a good thing. It really confronts you with yourself. This kind of dharma practice I enjoy, it teaches me more about who I am, rather than who I think I am or who I would like to be.

    The daily meditation I have more difficulty with, I don’t always find the motivation for a regular sit. Dharma talks I haven’t listened to for a few months, sometimes I like to listen to Ajahn Amaro on his podcast but not regularly. I still visit various Buddhist forums every day and participate in the discussions, and sometimes take in a new sutra.

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