Living with the cobra
20th January 2017| The New Indian Express
Regard all activities of the mind—those you like and even those you dislike— the way you would regard a cobra, says Ajahn Chah, a Buddhist monk trained in the Thai Forest Tradition. What does he mean?
The snake inside you
If we don’t interfere with a cobra, it usually goes its own way. Even though the snake is poisonous, as long as we don’t go near it or take hold of it, the serpent doesn’t bite us. The cobra does what a cobra is meant to do. And so it is with our thoughts and desires. The moods that we like are poisonous; the moods we dislike are also poisonous, he explains. So we should not grab onto them
Lost in thought
Thoughts, desires and urges prevent our minds from being free. To attain freedom, it is necessary to try to maintain mindfulness throughout the day. Whenever a thought—a mere image or a wisp of language in the mind—arises, notice it as soon it arises. And keep doing it. If you ever find yourselves lost in thought, don’t berate yourself. Just be mindful of the thought and notice what happens to it
Don’t preach, practice
The teachings of the Buddha and others are not teachings to be just listened to, or simply absorbed on an intellectual level, Ajahn Chah explains. The teachings will make sense only if we practice them regularly
Craving the pleasures of the senses, you suffer attachment. Disdaining them, you learn detachment. But if you desire nothing, and disdain nothing, neither attachment nor detachment bind you. If you desire the world, you may try to renounce it in order to escape sorrow. Instead, renounce desire! Then you will be free of sorrow. And the world will not trouble you Ashtavakra Gita.