using the arrow buttons.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Buddhadharma : Winter 2013
WINTER 2 0 1 3 BUDDHADHARMA: THE PRACTITIONER’S QUARTERLY 19 EMAIL YOUR QUESTIONS TO TEACHERS@THEBUDDHADHARMA.COM ZENKEI BLANCHE HARTMAN: Since you don’t say what sort of meditation you have been doing daily for years, it’s a little hard to respond, but if you are feeling “crazy and inhuman” when you miss a day, something is amiss. If you are practicing shamatha only, I can see how that could have some addictive qualities. The calming and con- centration of shamatha can become like an opiate if not bal- anced by vipashyana, which brings insight, clear seeing, and intuitive cognition of the three marks of existence—namely the impermanence, suffering, and egolessness of all physical and mental phenomena. The Buddha tried shamatha alone and found it did not really effect change, because when you get up, perhaps rested and at peace for a while, the unwhole- some mental and physical states inevitably come back. This may be happening with you. Is your practice balanced, with attention given both to calming and insight? Are you studying the precepts to clarify your ethical path? Do you have a relationship with a medi- tation teacher? Are you working with the contents of your mind or are you trying to suppress them? Are you open to experiencing painful cognitive and emotional states that may arise and dealing with them? Could it be that you are seeking solace more than awakening? And, most important (from a Mahayana view, at least): Is your practice first and foremost for the benefit, or liberation, of all beings? TENZIN WANGYAL RINPOCHE: Through meditation we can become more acutely aware of our own suffering and the suffering of others. Often we go through life lacking awareness about the state of confusion we are in, and when we become aware of this, we experience discomfort and pain. Things do not fit together in the way we expect; we may feel disconnected and awkward. The increased awareness that comes with medita- tion doesn’t produce pain but instead removes the anesthesia of our habitual patterns, or the false comfort that protected us from experiencing our disconnection directly. We may not feel this during meditation because we are present and connected to being present, and this connection is warm and lively; it is our true nature and the antidote for suffering. But as we move about in our life and in our relationships, we discon- nect from being present more easily. This disconnection is our fundamental pain. It is possible to find more support from your meditation practice. If you are willing, bring this feeling of being “crazy and inhuman” into your practice. When you are sitting on your cushion, first settle and feel connected to being pres- ent. I instruct my students to become aware of the stillness of the body. As you settle with this awareness, a sense of openness or spaciousness will naturally come. Trust this open- ness. Simply be. As you continue, become aware of the inner silence. If you are talking to yourself, draw your attention to the silence within. As you do, gradually you will cease to struggle and simply allow whatever you are experiencing. This ZENKEI BLANCHE HARTMAN is former abbot of the San Francisco Zen Center GESHE TENZIN WANGYAL RINPOCHE is a lineage holder of the Bön Dzogchen tradition of Tibet NARAYAN HELEN LIEBENSON is a guiding teacher at Cambridge Insight Meditation Center ASK THE TEACHERS I’ve been meditating every day for years, and now if I skip a day, I notice that I start to feel crazy and inhuman. It’s hard to believe that I spent so much of my life in this state before I took up my practice. Is it possible that meditation can become addictive, with withdrawal symptoms that make life harder than it would be for someone who doesn’t meditate at all? Q (LEFT–RIGHT):BARBARAWENGER,JANINEGULDENER,MARYLANG