Teachings with Bhante Sathi￼
August 6, 2018
You are your own worst enemy. Forgiving yourself.
Are there any questions or suggestions for discussion?
I have a question. A couple of years ago I think,
I asked you about the right to self-defense and one of the things you said was that most people needed to worry more. Could you talk a little about that?
Okay, I hope the question loud enough for everyone to hear. So, he is saying that a long time ago he asked me a question about self-defense and then I mentioned at that time we have to be more careful of yourself rather than self-defense from others; than from outside.
So, the question is, can you talk a little more about this.
Let’s try to understand this question is coming from a meditator. I mentioned this because as a meditator we are willing to open and we are willing to see what is there.
If I explain that a little more most of the time we have interpretations. We don’t interpret our experience or anything in your life based on your benefits or what will get you something else.
As an example, just think about your family, somebody in your family and your neighbors, had an argument. Immediately, you are going to stand on your family’s side. If there is any conflict between yours and another country. Russia
and any other country. Immediately you are going take the side of the United States of America. Not only that, you are going to listen to that question, or you are going to look at that situation from that bias angle. With that bias angle. So, there are so many ways we are taking sides.
If there is somebody who is having trouble in between your school and outside the school then you are going to stand
your school fellow right away.
What that means that’s about you That’s about you. How do you identify yourself? Once you place yourself somewhere
You are not open to see what is happening. As a meditator, you are training yourself to see, or you are training yourself to recognize things by going beyond your own self.
Without taking a side.
We are training to see things as they are.
As a simple example, you are not going to recognize your pain as my pain. You are going to recognize pain as a pain. Sound as sound. Not YOUR sound. Just as a sound. That is what it is. So, experience as experience.
If I go a little beyond just think, you can forget anything. Or, anybody else can forgive you. For what you have done.
Maybe everybody else has forgiven you. But, how about you. Can you forget what you have done? If something come to your mind do you have the ability to keep it outside? Sometimes, when something comes to your head, sometimes feelings or emotions come to your mind, you won’t be able to sleep.
Having something come to your mind. Maybe you cannot speak, or it doesn’t come to your mouth. Maybe anybody else can forgive you, but, you are having a difficult time of forgiving yourself. Therefore, as a meditator cultivate or develop mindfulness or develop a skill or skills to learn and train to forgive your own self.
And also, the meditator is trying to recognize you as an evolving person. That means you are being able to forgive you for your past. By knowing you are not the same person who was on this earth. I have been changed now.
So there you are learning to look at yourself as your younger sibling. Just think about you. You are not thinking the same way you used to think ten years ago. Or, maybe fifteen years ago some habit some way of thinking some interpretations have changed.
If somebody tried to judge you based on a comment you have made ten years ago. Do you agree to that judgment? Or, do you think that judgment is fair? To recognize you today?
That’s the reality. But, that is the reality that meditators are going to look and meditators are going to recognize.
Simply ask this question, Which you permanent or right you? The you who is here today? Or, the you who was here ten years ago? Or fifteen years ago? Or, twenty years ago? You who will be in the next ten years?
Which you is you?
You don’t have to go that far. Just think about your 24-hour cycle of emotions. Sometimes when you happen to have an
argument with your spouse or family member, or with your most difficult co-worker… You might be very angry at that very moment. Is that your permanent self? Sometimes we are really quiet. Sometimes you are excited. Laughing so loud. Which one are you? So, what is your safe identity?
Once you know, once you can recognize this nature of yourself then you know that there is no permanent self. Once you exactly know or agree with that wisdom or with that awareness, you can simply laugh at you. You can simply laugh at you with your every experience. For your every reaction.
Now, as a meditator, you will recognize what makes you become such a person. What makes you become such an angry person… What makes you become a happy person, or what makes you become such an excited person?
There you will see how those things are leading you by agreeing to something inside. Just simply think… When your grandkid say a certain word or when your spouse says the same word, or when your sibling say the same word or when your neighbor says the same word How do you respond?
I’m sure that on each occasion you respond to that word differently You would engage with various emotions. So, if you say my reaction is based on this word, that is wrong.
Or, if you say, my reaction is based on the situation. That is also wrong.
As a meditator, you will recognize your reaction is based on the way you are engaged in how you have engaged with this experience. The way how you have engaged is changing your reaction. That is where this meditator is learning not to engage.
Once, when you learn how to NOT engage with any of those things the outside world cannot control or cannot handle you anymore.
As long as you are engaging the outside world can handle you, or control your emotions. Reform yourself. Or, change your self-identity. Once when you learn how not to engage with those experiences your safe identity is slowly
begin to stabilize.
There you find a calm, stable, contained person. A happy person. Just think about when you are relaxed. Relaxed means
you are not engaging with so many things. Once you engage with fewer things, you become more relaxed. You become calm. That person is stable. What that means That means that once you are not engaging with something you find that your actual self as a calm self As a stable self. As a happy self. A relaxed self.
But, when you combine with so many other engagements, you lose stability, calmness, your joyfulness. All of those things you are losing, therefore, the meditator is learning to find that stable self, by practicing to not to engage with something outside. Not even with something inside.
You see the experience as it is. You can run away from anything But, you won’t be able to run away from yourself.
As I mentioned earlier, anyone else can forget you, can forget anything forgive you. But, you are having a difficult time to forgive yourself. and forget what has happened.
So, therefore, the meditator is practicing to find peace within them. Once you find peace within you have peace everywhere. You can apply that peace into anywhere you want. So, I hope I answered your question. But hope that might raise some other questions in some of your heads If any questions have been raised, please please present it. I’ll try my best to discuss it.
So, once the Buddha was talking about Mara. Mara means in Pali, the power of defilements. Buddha said, The final form of Mara is you. The final form of the Mara. It means that once you overcome all of the difficulties and challenges obstacles. Then, the last one you are supposed to face is yourself. That is the most difficult part. Think about it. You can forget about the entire world, But once you try to go to sleep, you have to deal with your mind. If you don’t have a calm self. If you self is not calm. You won’t be able to sleep. You end up by turning to one side and the other side on the bed. Maybe you have a difficult time to sleep up to midnight. And you say What should I do?
Okay, I think that then we can stop for today. Thank you very much for being here We will see you again the next time.