What helps you most? Which do you feel the most?
(Everyone shares their favourite philosophy.)
Arse-kicking: people don’t do it to themselves enough. Not making negative comments is one example I can work on.
Hold nothing, in relation to the first Eternal Dharma Truth that all the appearing form is constantly changing. When I’m experiencing suffering I’m creating a negative thing rather than letting it go. Suffering is not negative, it is not positive: it has no form. Take things lightly, don’t make it extreme or negative for yourself or others. Don’t be possessive; just let things go. For example, looking for a new apartment can be made a big deal. But I already have food and shelter and I should be content with that rather than greedy to find something else. Let it go.
The Four Eternal Hearts: kindness without ego, care without negative personal emotion, joy without stupidity, and freedom without greed. Buddhism teaches, as I understand it at the moment, that the main cause of suffering is my intention becoming thoughts, speaking, and action.
What I have learnt is that although my desire, passion, emotion, and thinking can change in infinite ways, I can follow them or not follow them. Sometimes it’s really easy to choose, other times it’s hard.
How do I deal with a stressful situation with a stressed person? Maybe I’m feeling anger and hate, awkward and scared or fearful – that nervousness builds up and I say and do stupid things; then it comes back even worse. I can lean back and make sure the next thing I do or say is within the Four Eternal Hearts. Does it stop suffering? Does it bring joy? Is there stupidity behind it? Is it possessive or greedy? If it is, I am best off doing nothing. If my intention is clear, if I am centred, then I will make fewer mistakes.
Live in the moment. What am I feeling right now?
Intention: the main cause can either come to possess something (greed, hate, or stupidity) or be curious and joyful to be aware. If something is not going right in your life, it’s only your fault. If you’re in a bad mood, or someone is doing something you don’t like, take responsibility for your own intention. No matter what is bad, you can go back and change it. Say you have a client who, from your angle, is not treating you the way you want. You can go and talk to them, you can treat them differently, or you can ignore it: you can do anything. It’s not them who are in control of how you feel about it.
Perspective and value are relative. Losing your job is bad, except to the man who just found out he has three months to live. Diamonds are valuable, except to a man dying of thirst in the desert. When you understand the true spiritual value of things, you feel content. Let it go. True freedom is not trying to get something; true freedom is when you don’t try to get anything. It’s very tricky.
Just be really happy with yourself. Have a pure, open heart and live in the present. Decide with good heart and good intention that you want to love life, love your life, love every life, and want to develop wisdom to make you clearly aware of everything, of all the angles. The perfect content feeling just explodes inside you, and makes you feel so much joy.
Every day say this to yourself: Every moment today I’m going to change myself to enjoy the present. I wake up, I watch the sun, I’m going to enjoy life today, I’m in a good mood and the day will be awesome.
Big deal: small deal. Small deal: no deal. No deal: joyful deal. I run out of time looking after my family, I get stressed about things I can’t change, and it feels like I don’t have any options. I’ll make it a big deal and it gets emotional. If I make it a small deal, it’s temporary. I can’t change everything outside it; I can only change me. Crying doesn’t help make it a small deal.
When I started I had a lot of bad habits, so all my life energy went in a lot of different ways. If this distance between my hands is my life, 30% is sleeping, 30% working, 20% showers, cleaning, eating, travelling, frustrations, and exercising… it leaves maybe 20% to do something of value. If you focus, you have a chance at reaching a high level. If you spend your time chasing a lot of different goals, then you don’t develop mastery in any of them: you will be left unsatisfied. socializing, for example – fake social parties, taking drugs – I analysed what was meaningful and had spiritual value, what was joy without stupidity, and tried to focus more on them.
Why do we bow? We don’t bow because the buddhas and bodhisattvas want us to; we bow out of respect, to limit our ego, and to become humble. Bowing is the first time I have felt that there is security in my life from something that wasn’t trying to get anything out of me. Straight away, I felt that I wanted to learn as much from Buddhism as I was able to. Most things on Earth just support your ego, “GO AND GET MORE, TRY HARDER!” Buddhism is the opposite: get rid of your ego and learn to be humble; with humility you are calmer, then you can observe and wisdom will grow. Most gurus support the ego, such as in “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne.
I had many masks to hold up to different people. I wasn’t being honest with who I truly was and it created sickness in me. Buddhism showed me how philosophy can change my life physically and mentally. I started to become more honest with my thoughts, actions, and emotions. Philosophy has to become part of your body.
Taking new journeys is important, learning new things. The destination is not important, the journey is. Enjoy the journey.
Philosophy is not just for you. You get to develop yourself and make yourself happier, which helps the people you live with, work with, your family, your friends, your relationships – everyone benefits!
Learning Spirits is about free will and that means you ask me to kick your arse. Actually, I want to help you improve. To be a student you have to get your arse kicked, to get 1% (a painless, symbolic whipping of the buttocks with a small bamboo stick at 1% power).
People are the main supporting cause. Surround yourself with happy, healthy, wise, caring, loving, joyful, free, kind people.
Awareness: Be aware of your body and any tension. Observe: take a step back from the situation and use logic.
There is nothing to get. Everything is inside you; there is a strong power inside you than there is outside. Bring out that potential.
Bad habits: don’t focus on them. Build the positive ones instead.