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Buddhadharma : Spring 2006
buddhadharma| 47 |spring 2006 depiction of affetti (emotions) and moti mentali (motions of the mind). Suddenly, the figures lived, because they showed emotion. It’s unlikely that as practitioners we would want to get rid of some- thing so central to life as a person’s passion, or even their indignation. Clearly, we have a conun- drum. If the kleshas are not dealt with, there is no progress on the path, and yet if a practitioner tries too hard to rid themselves of klesha – to cre- ate a superhuman klesha-free being – ultimately, they are frustrated. They are, as the great teacher Marpa said, “throwing their mind in the river,” running away from the very thing that will allow them to find who they are. So, what is the interplay between kleshas and genuine, human realization; how do we eliminate, transform, or transcend our human foibles and become even more fully hu- man at the same time? Our panelists explore the relationship between realization and defilement, based on their own experiences, and their experi- ences with their teachers and students. — Barry Boyce Maras Attack! by Mike Holmes buddhAdhArmA: In this discussion, we would like to explore the nature of our defilements and how we deal with them through meditation practice. Are the kleshas utterly removed, are they lessened, or are they transformed in some way? What does progress on the path look like when viewed in terms of our defilements? To start with, perhaps we could talk about what people expect will happen to their defilements when they undertake the practice of meditation. blAnche hArtmAn: Most of the people I meet come to meditation because they are experiencing a lot of pain and confusion, which of course arises from their karmic activity. So in the beginning they need to see what’s happening before they can start to relinquish any of it. They need to see how com- pletely unruly their mind is. It takes a while before they can effect any reduction in the disturbances. When I encountered Suzuki Roshi, I saw my habits clearly for the first time. He seemed a lot more settled than I was, which made me think I could learn a lot from him about what to do about Photos:(left)sallyClough;(right):barbarawenger