Sunday, January 31, 2016

How to "do nothing":

First, enter a state of meditation in which you are simply aware, and not trying to bias your experience in any particular way. Things just enter and leave awareness exactly as they are, with no push or pull from you.

Then, notice that in this state, you are still trying to bias your experience: toward being aware and not zoned out; present and not distracted. Find the source of this intention -- the "thing" that is preferring experience to be this way and not that. Now let go of that intention completely. And as you notice other subtle intentions arising, other inclinations to adjust experience in any way, completely abandon those as well. Of course, you cannot maintain the intention to abandon intention (as this is just another intention).

The feeling of being someone doing something (meditation) should be abandoned. The feeling itself may not go away immediately, and that's okay. The process that's continually recreating that sense should be repeatedly interrupted.

Ultimate gratitude

Normally when we practice gratitude, it's gratitude for something in particular. But we often overlook the most amazing reason for gratitude: the very capacity to experience anything at all, gratitude included.

It's hard to communicate just how profoundly wondrous this is. I'm not going to bother trying. But I will suggest that when trying to recognize or rekindle that astonishment, we often end up settling for a mere intellectual imitation of it. Something along the lines of "oh yeah, brains are amazing." We end up missing the miracle itself.

I don't know if it's possible to communicate how to abandon that conceptual simulacrum in favor of the "real thing," but I think the "do nothing" practice may help.

Especially if one alternates it with the advice given by Wu Hsin:

What is that by which 
You know that you exist and by which 
You perceive the body in the world? 
Is this not really the only question 
Needing to be answered? 
Investigate this exclusively.

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