Context: Throughout this transcript, Bhante Vimalaramsi is the speaker unless otherwise indicated.


all right well bunty's here and he's

just getting his bearings there he is


i hope everybody is doing well and


fun smiling and laughing during the week

i've been thinking about what uh suta to

give today

but i haven't really decided yet

i think 44


this is the shorter discourse on


and answers


thus if i heard on one occasion the

blessed one was living at raja gaha

in the bamboo grove the squirrel's

sanctuary i could never figure out

why they would pick a place that had a


sanctuary because

they have a tendency

to climb on you and do all kinds of


while you're sitting and that can turn

into a troublesome sit


then the lay followers visakha

went to the bikuni down medina

was an arahat

after paying homage to her he sat down

at one side and asked

lady personality personality is said

what is called personality by the

blessed one

friend saka

these five aggregates affected by


by craving and clinging are called

personality by the blessed one that is

the material form aggregate affected by

craving and clinging

the feeling aggregate affected by


and cleaning

the perception aggregate affected by

craving and cleaning

the formations aggregate affected by


and clinging and the consciousness

aggregate affected by craving and


these five aggregates which may be

affected by craving and clinging

depending on the sharpness of your


at that time if it

the aggregate is affected by craving and

clinging that means you have

hindrances coming up when it's affected

by craving and cleaning


when it's unaffected by craving and

clinging that means that you're staying

on your objective meditation without

any distractions at all

when it's affected by craving and

cleaning that is what is called


saying good the lady the lay follower of


delighted and rejoiced in the bhikkhuni

damadina's words

then he asked her a further question

now the first question

is actually talking

about the first noble truth

okay in the second question

origin of personality origin of

personality is said what is called the

origin of personality by the blessed one

friend visakha it is craving

and that's why we have the six arms


that relieves craving so that you can

uh actually

purify your mind every time you use

the six r's

craving is accompanied by delight and


and delights and this and that

that's a partial description

of craving because there's

a version that's in that mix too

aversion dislike things like that

trying to push away things

that you don't want to be there

that is craving for sensual pleasures

craving for being and craving for


this is called the origin of personality

by the blessed one

lady cessation of personality

cessation of personality is said

what is called the cessation of

personality by the blessed one now this

is the third noble truth

friend visakha it is the remainderless

fading away in cessation

the giving up relinquishing letting go

relaxing and rejecting

of that same gravity

again this is why the six r's are so

important you recognize

you release release

is an important thing for you to


when a hindrance comes up

release it by not keeping your attention

on it

as soon as you notice that you're

getting involved in something

you are feeding that hindrance


the more you feed it the bigger it gets

even the slightest bit of curiosity


what was that what is that that's that's

happening right now

if you keep your attention on it


you are feeding it and you're causing


a lot more suffering

so it's important for you to recognize


as soon as you

see that hindrance you have to

let it be by itself and relax

the relaxed step lets go

of the craving

if you stay with that


then the craving is still there

you haven't let go of it anything really

so it's important for you to understand


that you need to

let it be by itself and relax

as you relax you will

notice that your mind is clear your mind

is very observant

and your mind is pure at that time

then you bring up your smile

the smile is super important

it doesn't get mentioned much in the way

of the sutas

but i've found through my own practice

of many years

that with the smile

become mine becomes lighter

if you do different kinds of meditation

and you don't have that smile your mind

has a tendency to get

more and more serious

and that causes more and more


then you come back to your objective

meditation which can be any

number of things any one of the jhanas

or arupa jonas


you're able to stay with that for longer

and longer

periods of time

there's one suita

that sorry would go out and he would sit

in meditation

all day and when he came back

ananda would look at them and they would

say your features are very bright

radiating very

light uh

mind that shows through the face

now i just got through giving retreat

and because i could see you

that i i could see that your face is


lighter and lighter which tells me

that you're doing it right

you're doing the meditation correctly

so it's important to understand

that you stay with your objective


for as long as you possibly can without

any disturbance

the more you smile the sharper your


becomes the easier it is

to recognize when your mind starts to

get heavy


it's important for you to

have a light mind while you're


if you start getting serious

the radiance in your mind starts



your mind has a tendency to get more and


heavy and serious

and this causes all kinds of problems

so the more you can

smile have fun with your meditation

not be serious with it

play it like it's a game

laugh with yourself when you get caught

and the way to overcome a lot of fear

and anxiety is

by having a light mind and

relaxing into it

and smiling with it and laughing

with it

lady the way leading to the cessation

of personality now this is the fourth

noble truth

the way leading to the cessation of


is said what is the way

leading to the cessation of person for

personality by by said by the blessed


what is the way the way

is practicing right effort which is the


hours that

is the path

and we'll get into more of that in just

a minute

friend visakha it is just this noble

eightfold path

that is now this talks about write this

and write that and i don't like that so

much because it

kind of paints the world into black and


and there's a lot of grays

so i prefer to use the word harmonious

that's the positive

gentle way of looking at the eightfold


now i'm in the book it says right view

i call it harmonious perspective

what does that mean harmonious



having the view that is impersonal

seeing things as part of a process

rather than taking

your thoughts and feelings personally

when you change your view when you start

seeing things in an impersonal way

you start developing more and more



enchant disenchantment with things

you start developing more and more


to things that means that you let go of

your emotional upsets much more quickly

more easily

so right view harmonious perspective

is the very start of the eightfold path

and it is important this is one of the

most important

aspects of

the buddha's teaching

and that is how you get to

become more and more free more and more

open with

your thinking and this is how

you start developing a sense of humor

about what's occurring

now this sounds odd because

almost all of the other

types of meditation people have a


to get

they can have joy and bliss

while they're in the sitting but with

their daily activities there's no real

change in their personality

with this twim this kind of

meditation it develops this meditation

so that you have more and more

equanimity more balance

in your life the things that used to get


upset now they don't upset you so much

so it's a real interesting phenomenon

that starts to happen and you wind up


happy a lot of the time

i have people that are writing to me

that did a

did a retreat two three four years ago

and they write they haven't done a

retreat since

but they thanked me for

teaching them how

this impersonal nature

is so important and they are happy

a lot of the time life still has its ups

and downs

you can't get away from that that's what

it's like that's what it is to be a

human being

going through these things

but it depends on your change of


and the change of perspective always


from seeing the impersonal nature of

everything it becomes very clear

that this is super important

the next part of the eightfold path

now in the first editions of bhikkhu


he called it right thought and then the

last i think

two editions is change right thought to

write intention

which i don't really care for very much

i call this fold of the eightfold path

i call it harmonious

imaging now we all hold images

of what we want to see happen

and as we get more clear

with our imaging these things start to


more and more automatically

now what is it what kind of image do you


about yourself do you think of yourself

as being happy uplifted

fun person is that the kind of image you

hold to yourself

well most people don't hold that image

of themselves so they're not that way

very often

it's a real good thing

to consciously

at having an image that you would like

to see

happen an image that i have for myself

is that i'm very prosperous

and i have maybe 10 000

students and that's what i would call

prosperous it doesn't necessarily have

to do

with your financial


your financial situation

thank you

so being prosperous

when i first started coming we came back


asia and i started going around

the united states and i took

bus rides from the east west coast to

the east coast

and people thought that i was absolutely

crazy why don't you fly

well i wanted to see what the united

states was

i was in asia for 12 years

what's happening with people in the

united states i didn't know

i wanted to see

and taking the bus in this country

is high luxury compared to

buses in asia

so i was perfectly comfortable i mean i

had a seat that i could lean back and go

to sleep

so that was no problem

and i got to experience people

from all different parts of the united


now even then i was considering myself

and considering the kind of image that i

wanted to be

and i wanted to be prosperous in

this country

now as i was traveling across country

there would be strangers that would walk

up to me and say i'd like to have my

picture taken with you

that never happened in asia

although i had my picture taken many

tens of thousands of times

but it wasn't with a stranger it was

always with somebody that i knew they

wanted to have a picture with me


and then i would start talking to them

and they say

why are you dressed like this

and i said i'm a buddhist monk

and they had no idea what i was talking


so i was i would talk with them about

the ups and downs of life and how to

have more and more balance in that

and some of them really got it some of

them didn't

but that's the way it is

some people are super interested in some

people only only partially



i got to see and overcome

my culture shock

but even after being here for 20 more

than 20 years

in this country i still have culture


because for the last 10 years or so

i've been going to asia during the

winter time

and i still had had my my asian

understanding of things

but every time i came back to america it

takes me a little while to adjust

and that's being prosperous too that's


that's teaching yourself

and liking


being prosperous means not

beating myself up because i made a


not criticizing myself

by developing a sense of humor by myself

that's all part of being prosperous

i know people in this country that they


an image of always being poor

and as a result they're always poor

so it's it's pretty amazing

to see

the importance of holding a positive

image about yourself and reminding

yourself that you are that way

you hold an image of being kind

and you will be kind

you hold an image of

being generous and you will be


so it's important for you to pick a

mental state an image that you want to

live up to

you hold an image of being intelligent

and you will be intelligent your

intuition will start to kick in more and

we'll talk

more about intuition in a bit

the next fold of the eightfold path

the kuboti calls it right

speech i call it

harmonious communication

and harmonious communication means not

only when you communicate to

other people in a kind way

but being

kind to yourself

i spend a lot of time with people that


reminding them to be kind to themselves

to be accepting of themselves

yes we all make mistakes

and it's okay to make a mistake as long

as you don't do it over and over

again so you don't want to be beating

yourself up

because you don't like an outcome or the


something happen

it's important for you to let that be

and forgive yourself for making the


just don't do it again

that's how you train yourself to let go

of old habits

and develop new habits that are

peaceful calm

and lead to happiness

not only in you but

to everyone around you

harmonious communication is very very


so the more you

hold that image of being

kind not only to yourself but everyone

around you

of holding an image

of keeping a precepts without breaking


and liking yourself because of that

you do that when you keep the precepts

for a period of time

then it's real interesting

that your intuition becomes more

easily recognizable

your intuition will tell you

um sometimes don't walk across the

street right now

so you look more carefully and see yeah

that's a good thing

your intuition can be getting in touch

with someone else and talking with them

follow your intuition your intuition

all right let's say the keeping of the


helps to quiet the thoughts in your mind

and your intuition is a quiet little


that's always right if you follow your


you'll have all kinds of wonderful

things happening to you

and this is harmonious communication

now the next fold of the eightfold path

the kubota calls it right action i call


harmonious movement

don't be jerking your mind around and

trying to control your thoughts

be more mindful be more

alert as to what is actually happening

now the the next

part of the eightfold path is

the kubota calls it right livelihood and

they give a definition in the books

don't kill living beings

don't don't sell poisons to kill other


and live in a

happy uplifted way

don't steal anything don't take what's

not given

and all of these different parts of


but i call this harmonious


if you hold the image of

being generous and kind and helpful to

other people

if you hold that image you're living a

right livelihood

now i've told this story i've probably a


times that a lady came to me in in


complaining about having nightmares

and i asked her why why are you having


and she said i don't know but they seem

to happen right after i go to the movies

so i ask her what kind of movies do you


see oh i go to horror

and movies said well don't do that

what are you putting in front of your


that's part of right livelihood putting

things in front of your mind

that naturally lead towards the


scaring to yourself to death because

it's in a movie

is not a pleasant feeling to me

it's a painful feeling and it causes all

kinds of problems

so don't do that but she said but i love


i love to be scared like that it gives

me a high rush

and i said fine well don't come to me

about your nightmares

one of the advantages of doing the


is you don't have quite

as many dreams i have

almost no dreams that i can remember

i'm sure i have some

but i don't wake up afraid because of a


ever and i attribute that

to the practice that i do

so right livelihood is being

careful about the things you put

in front of yourself

be careful

uh reading the newspaper with nonsense

is that or watching the news on


it doesn't lead to your happiness or the

happiness of people around you

it leads to wrong kinds of communication

and where people argue a lot

oh i like this person i don't like that


i had a lady that read five newspapers a


and she was always depressed

and the only colors

that she was wearing was like being in

in london you have grays you have blacks

you have white

you have some browns but

no real colors like the color behind me

look at the yellow

isn't that wonderful

so i told her first

you have to stop reading the newspapers

and stop watching the news

anything that's important you will hear

about it

from somebody else you don't need to

read about it and make your mind unhappy


things aren't going the way you want

them to go

so be careful with your lifestyle

and lifestyle also includes the five


the closer you keep your precepts

the more magical life turn turns out to


you can have have something pop into

your mind oh it'd be nice to see

this and all of a sudden it appears

and that is because of the purity of

keeping the precepts

now there's nobody that's going to stand

over you with a lightning rod

and zap you if you break a precept

but you're going to do that to yourself

you're going to zap

yourself with guilty feeling

so it's a real interesting thing

that the closer you come to having

perfect precepts the purer

your mind becomes and

the faster you progress in meditation

now what's the cause of hindrances


breaking a precept in the past

and when you first start doing the


don't you have a lot of hindrances

coming up

because your past action has caused

this guilty feeling to arise

and now you use the six hours and purify


and then the hindrances don't come up so


and they're easier to recognize and see

so it's a real important thing

to develop a healthy

lifestyle for yourself

and that leads to a lot of smiles that

leads to a lot of happiness that leads

to a light mind

now the next

fold of the eightfold path bhikkhu

buddhi calls it right

effort sometimes he calls it right


i call it harmonious practice

when your mind is in balance you're able

to use the six r's whenever there's


and you will be able to develop a mind

that has

quiet spots for a period of time

excuse me

harmonious effort harmonious


is the eightfold path

and you practice the eightfold path

every time you use that

the six r's

because you're purifying your mind

and you're letting go of old

hard feelings old

embarrassments because you made a


old attachments and that's what

attachments are

they are sometime in the past you broke

a precept and you feel guilty about it

you feel remorse because of it

if everybody in

whatever country you're in

practice the six hours there would be

no need for mental

hospitals if everybody

practiced purifying their mind

it would be a prosperous society

there wouldn't be


there wouldn't be problems

i saw a movie one time that everybody in

this one village

was completely honest

with whatever whatever they did or

whatever they said

and this one guy decided he was going to

challenge that

so he went into a bank and he

he told them that he wanted money

and he lied about it but they gave him

the money anyway

because they didn't recognize

that he was lying because everybody

tells the truth

it's kind of a cute little movie and how

he saw the error of his ways

don't remember the name of it right off

but it is definitely a worthwhile movie

to watch

so every time you use the 6rs

you are experiencing a mundane


you're taking the heat out of your mind

and making everything cool

now it's kind of interesting because

even back in the 50s to late 50s when

the beatniks were popular they would say

things were cool

and i never really considered what a

wonderful word that is

when something is cool it's not going to

burn you

when something is cool it's on the

wholesome site

so being cool even though it's an

expression that's still used today

very few people really think about it

oh that's cool well that

a lot of times they mean that it's some


of uh

activity that's nice

that's cool to do that

do you want to go to the ballpark yeah

that's cool

i have time for that

there is a

talk giving given by um

adrian buddhadasa he was a thai monk

very famous thai monk in thailand

now i did have an opportunity to spend

time with him

his english wasn't great he had very

little understanding of english

but i had a great time with him

and i one day i asked him if he would

teach me the brahma viara's

loving kindness compassion joy and


and he said he doesn't know that

although he practices it he didn't

feel like he was qualified to teach it

he was very much into mindfulness of


and the only problem that

i saw with the kind of practice he was

talking about

was the lack of

recognizing craving and letting it go

but it was really a great experience

hanging out with him

he's thinking single-handedly changed

the thai

culture away

from monks just doing

magic stuff

to actually getting back to the buddha's


and he was quite revolutionary at that


so it was good to hang out with him i i


enjoyed it he would give a diamond talk

and he had a rooster that was his pet

and the rooster would always when he sat

down at this one spot the rooster saw

him and he would jump up in the in

on his leg and during the

dock uh buddha dasa would

would feed him pieces of corn

it was really quite quite wonderful


the next fold of the eightfold path


buddy calls it right mindfulness

which is a word that's very little


and i call it harmonious observation

and the definition i give to mindfulness

a lot of people don't understand it

because it's about directly about the


and a lot of people have made up their


own definitions of what mindfulness

is and they call it just simply

awareness but it's more than that

mindfulness is remembering to observe

how mind's attention moves from one

thing to another

no your mind just doesn't all of a


jump from one thing

to another it is part of a process

when you use your mindfulness correctly

when you

observe how this process works

one you stop taking things so personally

it gets back to the first step of the

eightfold path

you stop taking it so personally


you have a tendency to develop

more balance in your mind when you see


as a process instead of taking

them personally

when you take somebody something


it means that you're caught in craving

you have craving arise

you have that i don't like it mine or i

like it

whatever it happens to be

but your mindfulness is not sharp enough

to recognize that

as soon as it starts occurring

so the closer you can

observe how mind's attention is

moving from one thing to another you'll

be able to catch it more quickly

when you first start doing your


your mind is wobbling and

running all over the place your mind is

like there's no control

to it but as you get deeper and deeper

excuse me i get something caught in my


wow that's better

but as you're able to notice more and


you'll notice that your mind is not

flip-flopping like this

as you go deeper it gets so that your

mind is vibrating

when you get into the fourth genre your

mind vibrates

and then as you go deeper the vibration

becomes more

and more subtle until you get to

neither perception or non-perception

where you can't tell

sometimes there's a perception of

something that

arises but it's so subtle

you don't see it

so when you get into that state

before coming out of that state

it's good for you to reflect on

what happened during that sitting

and you'll notice that there are some

things that will arise

that you didn't really notice it wasn't

very clear

because mind is so subtle

and uh

when you notice whatever it is that


then use the six ours

and let it be by itself and relax

and just let go and go on to

whatever else comes up

it only takes a couple of minutes after



after you're done with the meditation

right before you get up

just reflect on what happened while you

were in

that state

so the next fold of the eightfold path

is what bhikkhu bodhi calls right

concentration which really causes a lot

of confusion

and i call it a harmonious

collectiveness what's the difference

between a concentrated mind

and a collected mind

a collected mind

is very alert

your mind is very composed

and your mind can be quite still

on your object of meditation

a concentrated mind is

a mind that when you get to a certain

depth in your practice

the force of the concentration

suppresses hindrances from

coming up so the concentration

goes actually deeper

and with no hindrances arising of course

you have a type

of pure mind but

that goes away as you lose your


see the the stixxar's it teaches you

how to recognize different things

and how to take care of these different


even during your daily activities

so your mind can be very composed very


ease your mind can be quiet

even during your daily activities

i've given a few talks about the

importance of

making a determination to go into a

genre and try to stay in that jhana for

the entire day

so you can experience joy you can


happiness you can experience equanimity

while you're living your life

this is the importance of the book that

i wrote

called life is meditation meditation

is life

too many people have the idea that you


meditate when you are



but that's only a small part of the


you need to be able to meditate all day

and if you are able to stay in a jhana

all day your mind has been pure

for that period of time

and with a pure mind comes all kinds of

mystical magical kinds of things

occurring for you

sometimes i can think about something or

about someone

and they call on the phone

or they they get in touch with me one

way or another

and that's just because i had a thought

about them

and who wish them well of course

so i got through the eightfold path

with the suta

but i'm seeing that we're running out of



why don't we

um see if we have any questions

hello everybody you guys that were doing

a retreat with me do you have any



hello can you hear me barely oh okay

hold on

your volume is very low let me bring the

microphone a little closer is this


that's a bit better yeah okay um

i have two questions for you today bunty


uh one question is um you talked about


imaging um

can you talk a little bit more about how

to sort of

uh make that a practice or like you know

decide what your image is and

sort of is that something you verbalize

how do you

you take a good quality that you like

and think about

it often notice how you

see that quality in other people and

appreciate them


okay sounds uh

that's something to work with

um what what's the other question you

had so my other question is um

you know often it's about the the

mahaparinibana suta

um uh about you know the buddha's uh

paranabana um i've often wondered when i

read that suta you know there's a part

in the suto where

um the buddha is telling ananda that

get get closer to your mic i'm having

real trouble

hearing you yeah

you know let me let me uh let me adjust

my microphone situation and i'll

i'll pop in again for a question

well try just try to speak a little bit


see if that helps uh how is this here

there that's great all right um so my

question is

uh in the dignikaya about the the

parinabana suta

right um i've often wondered you know

when the buddha is

talking to ananda and sort of suggesting

that he could

stay alive for you know maybe hundreds

or thousands of more years

um that that's a misinterpretation

he would have been able to stay for

another 40 years

oh 40 okay yeah um

i guess my question is why does he leave

that up to

whether or not ananda you know

understands what he's saying

um i've always thought that was kind of


well he was a close confidant

what can i say i mean he he wanted


oh okay so he was asking for an opinion

right ah okay

okay never really thought that way okay

thank you


leviana how are you doing

me yeah

i'm i'm actually better okay

you still feel like you need to continue

on with your forgiveness

yes your face looks a lot lighter today

than it was yesterday so that makes me


it helps yeah it helped yeah okay

do you have any questions or anything

um basically for how long should i

continue with the forgiveness i mean

it's the same until

relief comes but it's an ongoing process

i guess well

i did it for two years it's up to you

you'll get to a place where your mind

says well i don't need to do this


and when that happens just go back to

the loving kindness meditation

okay okay patience

leads to nibana i will remember that

okay thank you okay

i have a question okay

um during the retreat you made some very


uh comments around that use of intuition

right and i i thought that might be

good to hear a little more but also to

share that into the wider group as well

well i was gonna do that next week but


trusting your intuition when you run


a hindrance and it's really troublesome


it seems to last for a long time

ask yourself why is this happening

what's the cause of this

i i'll give you an example that happened

to me

um i was working at a meditation center

the teacher asked me to sit with this

other man

so he wouldn't be alone and do do the


and i was restless now

at the meditation center i was kind of

the handyman

making to doing things and fixing things

and like that

and i'm not prone to restlessness i'm

more prone to sloth and torpor that's

just my personality type

and here i am feeling restless

so i ask myself this is weird

why is this happening

and then i went back to doing the

meditation the way i was taught

and a short time later

my intuition said

you're spending too much time thinking

about the things that need to be done

okay i was spending i was not on my

object of meditation as much as i needed

to be

and that's why i was restless as soon as

i saw

that then

i went oh yeah that's really true

so i stayed on my object of meditation

which was the breathing at the time


and my mind settled down and i didn't

have so much

problem with restlessness

one of the things that happens for


is they have an idea

of the way they want things to occur

they had a good sitting so they want

another good city

that simple longing that simple desire

to have that arise causes your mind to

have restlessness in it

so it's real important for you

to ask yourself what is the cause and


for this arising why is it arising

why is this restlessness here

and your mind will come back and say


you you're trying too hard you have to

back off

you have to soften your mind whatever

the question is it will give you an

answer that will help solve

that question your intuition is

always right it's just that you have to

pay attention to it


and i'll talk more about that next week

any other question yes thank you bonsai

for your talk

um you're welcome i have a question

about if someone is able to stay in

jhana throughout the day

with their daily activities do they

still need to sit

to practice

well see the thing with the meditation

you need to sit and have that quiet

time the time for yourself so you can

actually go deeper

so i want to say

yes you need to sit

because you you don't need to sit for

maybe as long

but it's still a nice thing to do

to be able to be in that genre and

you'll find that

you become much more efficient with your

job when you don't have

these distractions coming in and pulling

you away you're staying

with that joyful happy feeling

and the answers from your intuition

become very clear

so you're working on something and

there's it's kind of a problem at home

well you're not going to have your mind

distracted going home

because it was a problem now you're

going to be staying

with what you're doing in your job

with a happy mind

okay thank you okay

any other question

may i have a question please yes please

thank you bunte i i have a questions


to remember observing my movement

from one object to the other

how we do it at the same time when we


in the object of meditations no

you just pay attention to one thing at a


if you're staying with your object of

meditation you're not going to have the


when your mindfulness is good

only when your mind gets distracted

that's when you need the mindfulness to

be able to observe

what happened first what happened after


when you start seeing the pattern of how


things arise you'll recognize them more

and more


and that is particularly useful

with when when you're sitting

with the higher kinds of genres the

arupa genres

but when our mindfulness is not sharpie


then we normally forgot about that

and you realize only when you get


pretty long well that means your

mindfulness isn't sharp and you got


so don't criticize yourself for that

just start again

see that it's real important for you to


play life like it's a game

and you have fun with it instead of

uh getting into your disappointment and


because you you made a mistake

and that's all it is so

forgive yourself for making the mistake

and continue on

but do it with the light mind with a fun


okay yes

thank you okay

how's it going now

all right

any other question hi ponte

yes um thank you for your talk always

welcome um

so we have in in our meditation group we

after your accommodation um

like some six or eight weeks back to

start reading from the sutas we have

started doing that

um with the machaka



good um is there any like

for kind of for this beginning stage

is there any other like show there's


135 about karma

135 and how it works yeah


the another one that

it can be a beginner meditation

or not is one one one

sounds like a good number yeah one by

one as they occur

okay that's for the

is that for the jhanas or yeah

it goes through all the dramas but that

can be for beginners

as well as people that are practicing

and they're they're

moving along or it can be it for

advanced people


i made up a list one time and i put all

i put beginner intermediate

and advanced and i had that suta in each

one and i got

criticized for it but they didn't

understand but

it's okay no problem

but there's there's some real fun sutas

uh suit to number 64. i can't remember

the name of it

so to number 62 the advice to

rahula i use that one a lot

i would do it with here but it takes a

lot it takes about an hour

and a half to an hour 45 minutes to go

through it

so we would probably split it up in

several sessions

well i tried to do that but i

seem like i don't go back to it after

i've already done

part of it

but everybody that did the retreat

all had great benefit from the

meditation and i'm quite happy with

finding out that i can give a retreat

on this

and have people be successful

that that really makes me happy

so we'll be doing more of those in the


we might even be doing one one retreat


just forgiveness and every every

uh we'll give

a lot more dhamma talks on the

forgiveness itself

thank you yeah

anything else yes

uh hi bonte uh thank you for the talk


uh i have two questions both are about


um so the first one is quite a simple


uh so the question is uh the words that

are used to describe

the janas and the sutas and in

particular i'm

right now i'm looking at the aryaparis

the words are generally rapture and


so those are i don't like those words

i call i call it

i call it joy

and happiness right

they describe more clearly what is being

experienced in the suit

mixed up with um

other words that get real confusion

so i try to stay away that it's kind of

a christian word

so i i stay away from that as much as i


i guess the only reason i ask this is

because um

i have felt this physical uh i felt


sensations of pleasure through through

meditation which are

quite strong right so i so i

i don't know if that's what is referred

to by the word rapture but it sounds

quite a strange word to use in

in this context yeah it is i i


prefer joy right

uh the the the funny thing is i i don't

i wouldn't say that i've

felt uh any great degree of mental joy

uh i i feel uh feelings if you feel


in your body and light in your mind

and there's a happy kind of excited


that is joy

i see i guess i was just expecting

something more intense

uh some euphoric happiness or

something like that that can happen

there's different degrees i see that

makes sense

and and they they occur when conditions

are right for them to occur they occur

on their own you can't sit around

and wait for this rapture or this

ecstatic feeling to occur

because that's the very thing that stops

it from occurring

but you'll have you'll have different

kinds of joys

i mean the awakening factor of

joy is different than the the

lower jhana feeling of joy

so yeah

and quite often in the talks i i will


five different kinds of joy right

right right uh

thanks for that pante uh so one other uh

question and this is um i guess kind of


um so i i have started to think

of jhanas as periods in which

uh craving is either subdued um

there is no craving in jannah here there

is no disturbance

right so um in the

in the aganas it talks about

uh you know beings who are mind made

uh and who experience joy spontaneously

um uh so

um so when i when i think of and then


they then get exposed to craving and

then they start to

build more and more gross bodies uh

until they're finally born as uh

tangible beings

uh in physical realms so

so when i uh think of okay

um i i'll let you respond to that before

before saying anything else well the

heavenly realms are very much

different from the uh

human realm

the human realm is more coarse

body right

the heavenly realms they have to

find some kind of some source of energy

they have to eat every day

and what happens in the devaloka

in all of the deva locas is that they're

all of a sudden they're manifest some

grapes so they just start munching on

the grapes

and sometimes that a being will say i

don't want to be in this realm

anymore i want to go on

so they stop eating and when they stop

eating they die from the deva loca

and then reborn wherever they're going

to be reborn

that's what the buddha did so he didn't

spend a whole long time in

in the deva realms

in the brahma realms

it's not a physical kind of food it

is joy experiencing

joy that gives them

the energy to continue on and when you

go to the brahmana realms you

you go for quite long periods of time

and it is a happy

i have some students that that go and

visit these realms and they talk with

the people that are

uh in in the brahmalokas

see what what they can do what where

they can go and visit and all of this

kind of thing is

quite uh an interesting

experience i i can imagine

uh so is that the same joy that is felt

in a jhana

would you say that it's the same


well depends on what's happening in your

what kind of joy arises

okay okay but okay

so uh i'm sorry i don't mean to

interrupt you please go ahead that's

that's okay

that's okay it's it's the

the first two genres that have joy in it

that's uplifting joy

where you feel light in your mind and

light in your body and you have a lot of


because you feel like you're starting to



now if you go

into the arupa-janas

and you experience mudita which is

the uh all-pervading kind of joy

this is the awakening factor of joy

it doesn't have excitement in it but it

has a good

happy feeling and you feel very uplifted

but the avrupajana it's

a rupa because there is no rupa there is


body this is strictly a mental realm

and when i'm teaching

a retreat somebody will tell me that

they have

oh i have a pain in my back when i'm in


this higher realm and i say well that's


interesting because you don't have a

body it is mental

right the first verse of the dhammapada

mind is a forerunner of all states

okay so if you have a pain in your

body that means your mindfulness is not

very good

and you're paying attention to that pain

and wanting to control it


and when you look up the definition

means name but it's mentality

and materiality the mentality


it has to do with feeling

perception and things like that

and the materiality

is the

other things that are happening in the

body they manifest

through the different uh


air earth

water fire

but his mind is the is

the creator of that

all of that mind is the forerunner of


does that make things more clear or

clouded up

um i think it helps okay um

uh but i said i've read some

uh i i read a book by uh lee brazington

i believe

uh where he he talks about a method for

entering the first

jhana which involves um

getting into what he calls access


right and and then focusing on some kind

of pleasant feeling which is that which

then amplifies itself uh can you comment

on that

i can comment on it saying that there is

no relaxed step so they're still craving

in a person's mind

not while they're in the jhana

but when they come out of the jhana they

haven't purified their mind at all

he's a friend of mine okay

we've had discussions about this sort of


in his book he wrote about

some of the dangers of doing one pointed


and he said something to the effect of

well there's maybe

three people in a thousand

that don't benefit and they actually

hurt themselves

by doing concentration in the wrong way

that doesn't happen when you're

doing what i'm showing you

doesn't happen

actually in india

one of my teachers over there

they ran across a man that had

not alzheimer's uh had uh

yeah the kind that uh

what's the name of that


well he had a mental disease let's put

it that way

and he was told that he was going to be

like that for the rest of his life

autism and that that's one of the things

and the other is the other kind of

mental disease that's

i can't think of the name of it right

now it doesn't matter

anyway he could not sit in meditation

for 10 minutes without moving

and the my teacher

worked with him for a little while and

he got so that he could sit for 10


and now he is up to being able to sit

for 25 minutes without moving

and he got so excited because his mind

became more peaceful and calm

that he went to the


the classes that they have and he

started teaching them how to do


so there are a lot of things that can be

healed through meditation but there's no

100 percent guarantee

i mentioned one time that there was a


that she was

just about dead from cancer

and i went to see her she couldn't even

get out of bed

she was really really suffering a lot

and she asked what she could do

so that her mind would be more peaceful

and i gave her

forgiveness meditation

she really took it to heart and i told

her that she had to spend time with her

family forgiving them for not

understanding or causing pain or

whatever it was

well i just met her two years ago

she her life extended seven years

because of the meditation and doing it

in the

in the right way

and she was really really

happy to see me

because she visited me in the hospital

because i had a

hernia that had to get taken care of

and she was ecstatic with how well

the meditation worked

so it's not going to be for everybody

you might

overcome this or that kind of

mental problem or physical problem

but it's up to you you are your own


and you're the one that's in charge so


if you run across something you want to

try it well it's up to you

it's your life the things that lead

raising then teaches

i don't teach i teach a different way

that doesn't mean he's wrong and i'm


it just means that it's different

so one of the problems with meditation

groups is

they start saying that my way is the

only way

and it's not true

your your way might work to a degree

it depends what do you

want to have

as the end result of the meditation

now the end result of the meditation for

me is always


and having a

happier life

it's always that

now some people they just want to have

deep concentration

fine they can do that

it doesn't make them wrong it just they


have the same end result that i'm

interested in

that's all so there's no

conflict but an awful lot of different

meditation practices

they like the conflict and they aren't


practicing what the buddha is talking


so don't argue about meditation

ever okay

and don't try to convince the somebody

else that they're not doing it correctly

but there's still an awful lot of things

that you have in common

with that person because

they're looking to let go of suffering


and that's if you give each other a

little hint

they can take them or not take them it's

up to them

and it's okay


anybody else have a question

yes hi how are you yes thank you very

much for the talk

and i've been uh taking like uh uh

online retreats as

once in december and uh with kean uh

with tom oscar and now i'm taking one

with a thousand which is actually

very helping on many ways already but

still like as you have mentioned tapping

back to

like as a starter that we will probably


hindrances coming up when we are doing

our practices

right so um i do experience

like hindrance that is very obviously


happening to me um during my first day

um in this particular retreat that i'm

having with

four days five days now so it's a lot of

resonance but you are talking about like


uh like trying to see it and see what is

the causes of it

should we be looking at like how it

happened or should we be just on your

objective meditation

as much as you can your mind gets

distracted use the six

hours and then come back yeah it's such

a meditation it carries on

sorry of restlessness is trying

too hard putting in too much energy

too much effort soften your

mind turn it into a game stop being

serious with it it's only an

entrance it's not even yours you didn't

ask it to come up

right so play with it

have a lighter mind and the restlessness

will disappear on its own

yes that's what i was saying why so we

should actually do not need to

contemplate and run trying to understand


no okay if the restlessness is really


then you ask yourself why is this

happening right now

and you will get an answer from your


so you can choose the right times for


to ask your questions but just ask a


one time come back to your

object of meditation see what your

intuition says

your intuition will tell you generally

with restlessness

you're pushing you're trying to control

a little bit too much

you've got to back off a little bit

soften your mind now

remember it's

real important that you have

fun when you do the meditation

and you laugh with yourself for getting


and you smile with yourself

okay these are important aspects of the


yes yes you have mentioned and so is


um it was just that at that very


like uh like day and a

scenario is that there is a tinge of

fear it was the restless

over continually on the after the

sitting which i was trying to understand

which actually i see how it was there

like it was a things that was um

i i self-inflicted for a very long time

of my life that i can see how it happens

but it still was like that touched


hold of you and know the way to get

overcome the fear


oh i'm afraid i don't want to laugh well

that's funny in itself

okay what does laughter do

laughter changes your perspective

from i am afraid to

it's only this feeling it's only this


it's not mine so it takes it from

this is really happening and i am afraid

to it's only fear well do you want to

carry this fear around with you

no you're not crazy

let it go

yeah it was um it was later that was

uh explained that by the thousand it was

like who is that one who is in that fear

like that that figure the reflection of

of the why i have to get yeah why is


yes exactly that is

that happens a lot in asia there's

black magic and all kinds of weird

things that

people can get caught up in and when you

develop your sense of humor

about it it's not going to trouble you


exactly yes thank you

i can see that sometimes it does happen

but most of the time

it's still like you the eye is so caught

in there

like um yeah

but thank you very much yeah it has been

so helpful with you and all your

like students that is all along that now

is teaching me which is so good

right yes i'm so grateful here really

yeah i'm looking forward to my march

sitting with you

okay yeah i look forward to it too

isn't it fun to see somebody go from

a fierce thing to a happy state

is wonderful that's the magic

of the buddha's teaching it really is

brandon yeah

one question um you mentioned about

dream later um earlier

does the beam has got any significance

in buddhist teaching like if you dream

about a monk or buddha talking to you or

anything like that

doesn't have any teachings

if you have a dream and it has monks

in it that is a very very

wholesome uh

happy kind of dream

if you have dreams that frighten you

a dream is a state in between deep sleep

and awake and

you can change your dreams if they're


by radiating loving kindness into the


that takes away the fear and the anxiety

and the frustration and all of those

kind of things

so i know that there's a lot of

different work

that's been done with um

with dreams and controlling

what's happening in the dream i had a

friend that was working with his dreams

and he thought you know

i can jump over a building in my dream

and there's no problem

i wonder if i don't put any

limit on the dream

so i'm going to jump and just jump as

high as i can go

and he did that and he was going

up so fast that it woke him up


so what about the dreams that have got

some um

like teaching values like if you see a


there are some prophetic dreams i mean

even even in the sukkahs there's

uh a king that he had what 15 dreams

something like that

and he went to the buddha and the buddha

interpreted the dreams

of things that were going to be

happening in the future

okay so it can be

it can be prophetic i don't put a whole

lot of stock

into telling the future by dreams

but you have to interpret as as you

see fit okay

i can uh email uh david and

if we can show you that that would be

great see what is your interpretation of


well i'm not really into interpretation

very much i have had dreams of

my teacher who died

like 10 years ago or so

i've had dreams of talking with him

and i woke up exceptionally happy

i've had dreams of radiating loving

kindness to all beings

while i was asleep and waking up

just with a really clear uplift in mind

but it does i don't have any dreams

they just don't occur so much

that i remember anyway right

okay now just uh if you see a monk or a

buddha asking a question

and kind of like that well that i would

say that was wholesome

be careful of the answer though


okay so it can point to a direction

it can okay but

how often does that happen i don't know

rarely yeah yes so you have to be

careful with it

okay thanks okay

something to share with you i had a

dream about you

you were in my dream it was like a big

theater one of those old-fashioned

things and you were in the

upper level upper like a box office you


no i don't know maybe it's not called

boxer like the upper stage and i was

trying to get your attention

trying to pass you a message and that's

all so i i'm going to write to you what

i was

trying to say okay i will ask david to

pass my letter to you


i'll tell you an experience that i had

i just moved to this big monastery

in kuala lumpur is the largest monastery

in kuala lumpur

and i started teaching meditation then

and there was a period of time

that it was about two weeks

that absolute strangers would walk up to

me and

say i had a dream about you

and this happened oh it must have been a

dozen times

complete strangers walking up and i

dreamt about you

so i went to one of the uh

old senior monks and i

told him about it and i said what does

this mean

and he just shook his head and he said

they must be having nightmares

and they stopped right after that

did make me laugh i gotta say

also if i may share to the earlier

person who spoke about dreams


the tibetan second buddha i believe it

was called

talked about enlightenment through

dreams because when we are awake like

right now as i speak i'm actually

not awake but in my deep sleep it's

actually then when i don't have

it's that it's actually then we don't

have ego

and that's when we are awake now if we


navigate our dream to find

something something that's the part i

don't know that's where we can find


it's called dream yoga similar to lucid


heard of that but i'm not really

convinced of it

oh please share your opinion well

my opinion is that the actual nibana

is a letting go a cooling down


you don't have a lot of insights into


you don't have a lot of understanding of

letting go

craving and seeing

what the craving actually is

so i i have my doubts as to whether

that's a real thing or not

i'm not saying it's not but i have my

my personal doubts about whether that's

true or not

well could it be part of the eighth

genre because

when you're in the eight genre basically

no no

it's a quiet mind the eighth drama is a

quiet mind you don't

if if that would come up during the

eighth drama

you wouldn't be in the drama anymore

that's a disturbance no what i'm saying

is that

quit dreaming in a sleep interpreted as

especially well not always that but

these happy or wholesome

dreams could it be similar to the genres

or you have to

no it's different it's not the same

because in the age genre you're not

really aware of the environment around

you and

very much not in the consciousness of

the moment

well you are in the consciousness you're

watching mind

right there is awareness there

nibana there is no consciousness though

there's no

uh knowing whether you're in that genre

or not

where you don't know where you are even

you don't even recognize that you're

in it because there's nothing to

recognize it

right so

monty if i may echo what you said

if i may echo what you said and correct

me if i'm wrong

when we are in jannah we are not

dreaming because we are meditating

right we are not dreaming when we are in

china right because that's not

sleeping that's not dreaming if it's

dreaming then you're not


so you're not going to be in geno when

you're dreaming

because drama leads to a quieter and


mind where there's nothing arising

and dreaming is actually an active kind

of movement of mind's attention

okay okay thanks

anybody else

well it's been real fun today so i hope


all benefited

and i'll see you next week

be welcome

thank you thank you

may suffering ones be suffering free and

the fear structure is be

may the grieving shed all grief and may

all beings find relief

may all beings share this merit that

we've just acquired

for the acquisition of all kinds of


may beings inhabiting space and earth

devas and nagas the mighty power share

this merit of ours may they

long protect the buddha's dispensation


thank you thank you david okay

thank you thank you david thank you

hi everyone okay thank you everyone