George Atherton (@notrehta) May 05, 2015
the four noble truths are four in one: “one truth, indivisible”;
dukkha, the first noble truth, is inseparable from the fourth: a call to practice
dukkha is a call to practice*
dukkha: a call to let go of wanting
wanting anything is wanting something to be or not to be;
it’s wanting what is – reality – to be other than it is
wanting anything is dukkha;
wanting nothing is nirvana
dukkha: a call to let go of minding
dukkha and nirvana coexist:
dukkha is minding,
nirvana is not minding
want no more than to be;
do no more than it takes to be
on the eightfold path
not minding what happens
to be on the eightfold path
not minding what happens
“Do you want to know what my secret is?” Jiddu Krishnamurti said. theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2… “You see, I don’t mind what happens.”—
George Atherton (@notrehta) May 11, 2015
dukkha: a call to practice self-inquiry*
Who grows old? Who gets sick? Who then dies? I do? Who am I?
to want anything – to want something to be or not to be – is dukkha
Who is experiencing dukkha? I am? Who am I?
wanting anything is a cue to ask:
Who wants this? I do? Who am I?
- Asking who you are helps you see beyond the mind
- The mind sees what is as what is you and what is not you
- You cannot exist without what is not you. How then is this not you?
- Beyond the mind you are not what you are thought to be. No one is
beyond the mind nothing is unchanging
- Beyond the mind nothing is as it is thought to be
- Anyone or anything exists as such only in the mind
- Only in the mind is there anything apart from the whole
- Nothing is caused other than by the whole
“All that a guru can tell you is, ‘My dear sir, you are quite mistaken about yourself. You are not the person you think yourself to be.’”—
George Atherton (@notrehta) September 09, 2013
dukkha: a call to not see yourself as a being
dukkha is personal, nirvana is not;
nirvana is beyond the mind,
and beyond the mind there is no person;
a person is a mental construct
that you are is clear, what you are is not;
you are not a being; you are being aware of being
you are not what you are thought to be; you are not what you are said to be;
these are mental constructs, social conventions used in thought and speech
anything or anyone is no more than a construct, a convention;
in reality nothing is unchanging; no one is
dukkha: a call to go beyond the mind
wanting anything is dukkha,
but nothing is unchanging,
so when wants are met they change,
and this is dukkha
go beyond the mind
and realize nirvana
is wanting nothing
live and let live
do no harm
just be and let be
do nothing but this
do no more than it takes to be
on the eightfold path
karuna, mudita, and upekkha*
may none want more than this:
that none want more than this
Self-inquiry is an open secret: hidden in plain sight, available anywhere at no charge, invisible everywhere because there is no money in it and no upside to it for hierarchy of any kind, religious or secular.
Self-inquiry is a spiritual practice you can turn to at any time. ehi passiko
Who is aware of dukkha arising? I am? Who am I?
from Donald Kuspit:
Looking at the colors in Albrecht Dürer’s The Great Piece of Turf (1503), a watercolor and gouache heightened with white, one cannot help but be astonished at the freshness of the colors and the boldness of the image. Made 510 years ago—ten years longer than Dürer said the colors of the Heller Altarpiece would last—the work seems to have outlasted time. Described by Christof Metzger as – [along with the Young Hare (1502)] – “among the greatest masterpieces of draftsmanship in existence,” it might also be described as among the greatest masterpieces of painting in existence, considering that gouache is a technique of painting. The watercolors are opaque, but glisten with light and shadow, making some of the details seem transparent. Indeed, so delicate is the handling that the leaves that flank the turf on the left and the strands of grass that grow on its right seem oddly translucent. It is as though one were looking into nature as well as at it.
This reading by Jacob Needleman of The Dhammapada is set to start with his afterword
nothing does not change :: nothing is not dukkha :: nothing depends on nothing
Think of dukkha as the potential for “all types of suffering, anguish, and angst” arising from the absence of what is wanted or the presence of what is not wanted. It follows also from not seeing (ignorance of) the other two marks of existence: anicca=impermanence and anatta=not-self.
Life is dukkha. And dukkha happens. Or not. It need not, of course.
Both formerly and now, it is only dukkha that I describe, and the cessation of dukkha.
—Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha
“The great and beautiful secret of meditation practice is this: you can experience dukkha with equanimity.” —Zoketsu Norman Fischer
spoiler alert: to want anything is the cause of suffering; once needs are met, wants serve a self that exists only in the mind; to go beyond the mind is to let go of this imagined self and its needless wants
It takes practice, though, to want nothing.
It is you who must make the effort. The masters only point the way.
want nothing other than that all be well and want nothing …
disclaimer: this is merely the view from here; your view may differ
The whole is all being, all that is, all that is happening now – including the being thought of as you – and all of it nothing but change.
note: this post is an updated credo
Any being anyone is aware of – and this includes every human being – is the whole manifesting itself.
As for dukkha, it ranges from low-grade unease to full-on torment and depends on what else is going on in the mind. Beyond the mind there is no dukkha.
Reality, the whole of what is, includes the mind, of course. The whole comprises the known – a mental construct – and the unknown.
And the unknown includes the unknowable: what is beyond the mind.
Beyond the mind nothing does not change.
Only in the mind is there permanence.
Beyond the mind you are not who you are thought to be. No one is.
Only in the mind is anyone who they are thought to be.
Beyond the mind nothing is what it is thought to be.
Only in the mind is anything what it is thought to be.
Nothing is other than the whole. The whole is all being, all that is, all that is happening now – including the being thought of as you – and all of it nothing but change.
Nothing is unchanging. Nothing is an entity. Nothing is independent. Nothing is itself. Nothing is as it seems. Nothing is as it is said to be. Nothing is done by any being.
Other than the whole.
Except in the mind.
* * *
Only in the mind are there entities with attributes. They are abstractions, characters in a story of the world as it is imagined to be.
The thing is, reality is not a story. It’s the whole of what is happening now, causing – and caused by – the whole of what is happening now: eternal renewal.
Any being anyone is aware of – and this includes every human being – is the whole manifesting itself. Any being – any aspect of reality – that any being is aware of is nothing other than the whole made manifest … by the whole.
* * *
There is nothing other than the whole – no being other than the whole – that is the cause of anything. It is pointless to judge anything or any living being for what it seems to be or do. It is pointless to judge people for what they may think or say. Whatever is happening is an effect of and has an effect on the whole. Nothing is done by any being other than the whole. Except in the mind.
Judging anyone or anything is pointless. May it be seen to be so.
- nothing does not change
- nothing is other than the whole
- no being is other than the whole
- any being is an effect of and affects the whole
- nothing is done other than by the whole
Judging nothing lets you love everything. And judging no one lets you love everyone.
Being well – simply being aware of being – is nothing more than noticing and letting go of what is being sensed in body and mind. This is noticing and letting go without making sense, so to speak, of what is being sensed; without, in other words, telling ourselves a story about it.
Be well. Want nothing.
disclaimer: a credo is a point of view; the above is the view from here now
We seem possessed with wanting more when in reality we want nothing. The issue is not what are we to do but how are we to be. Wanting more means doing more, and doing more means consuming – using up, destroying – more of what lets us all live. So we have to focus less on doing, more on being. But how?
Practice nisarga yoga and do only what lets you be and let be; live and let live; love and let love.
See that only in the mind can there be an entity or a separate being; that beyond the mind nothing is an entity and no one is a separate being.
Open up to all that is – beyond the mind – and want nothing.