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Buddhadharma : Winter 2009
buddhadharma: the practitioner’s quarterly winter 2 0 09 28 forth internal dialog, which of course can become external and lead to many unpleasant complications and dramas, can also simply be abandoned on the spot if one is willing to experience in a raw and direct way whatever sensations and feelings are present. If we simply feel what we feel—without judging or elaborating—the feelings and sensations come, stay for a moment, and then leave on their own. This is a natural process when we don’t interfere by engaging our conceptual mind. In this process we can directly observe this “who” that is interrupted. Naked observation, without commen- tary or analysis, is very powerful. In the presence of our naked observation, the structure of ego dissolves. It simply can- not remain if we are not feeding it with our conceptual mind. So what begins as a feeling of interruption, insult, or injury, instantly becomes a reminder to observe directly. As we observe, our reaction dis- solves, and what remains is openness. And there we rest, or abide. Even if this is only a glimpse of openness, perhaps lasting for only thirty seconds, it is the foundation upon which to build one’s dharma prac- tice. Remember, the space that opens up is the source of all positive qualities, which do not have to be coerced or forced but are naturally and increasingly available as we become more familiar with open awareness. We have so many challenges in life that can become opportunities to let go and open. In this way, irritation itself becomes the doorway to the inner pure space of our natural mind, the mind of all the buddhas. narayan liebenson grady: Shining the light of awareness on self-absorption, impatience, and short-temperedness is the first step in letting them go. In a way, we should thank people who interrupt and annoy us because they are inter- rupting our self-absorption as well. As Thai monk Ajahn Chah said, we must become aware of how weighty our bur- dens are before we are able to put them down. Developing sensitivity to inner suffering, and the consequences of this suffering for others, helps us realize that VISIT THE SHAMBHALA SUN ONLINE STORE www.shambhalasun.com PROCEEDS ENABLE US TO PRINT ON ENVIRONMENTALLY RESPONSIBLE PAPER SHAMBHALA SUN FOUNDATION An independent, nonprofit corporation. Publishers of the Shambhala Sun and Buddhadharma: The Practitioner’s Quarterly. Enjoy our growing collection of dharma art captured in beautiful archival quality giclée prints. Taken from the pages of the magazines the gallery includes pieces by well- known teachers, artists and contributors such as Thich Nhat Hahn, Chögyam Trungpa, Kaz Tanahashi and cartoonist David Sipress. Give more of the Art You Love for Less WINTER SALE! Enjoy savings of up to 35% on our expanded collection www.shambhalasun.com