11

You absolutely can recognize it in yourself. Not only can, you definitely should put effort in doing so -- it makes a huge difference in one's practice (from my own experience being a student). Spiritual Materialism, (or we could call it Spiritual Accumulation or Spiritual Aggrandizement or Spiritual Indulging) is a tendency of samsaric mind to use ...


7

Both quotes you cite come from the Chan/Zen tradition. It is very typical for Chan to emphasize "transmission beyond scripture" and "silent illumination". Not all of Buddhism is like that though. Gautama Buddha for example spoke about Dharma for 40 years. Tibetan Buddhists wrote hundreds of volumes about Madhyamaka, Tantra and Lam Rim (Stages of the Path). ...


3

The instruction to do "one thing at a time" is implied by the Buddha's praise of Sāriputta's practice, which was intense, deep and accomplished methodically one by one: MN111:1.6: The Buddha said this: “Sāriputta is astute, mendicants. He has great wisdom, widespread wisdom, laughing wisdom, swift wisdom, sharp wisdom, and penetrating wisdom. For a ...


3

The "meditating on death" sounds like it's meant to be a meditation on impermanence, and on the unattractiveness of the body (i.e. an antidote to lust); as well as on the "just seeing" and so on that may be an antithesis to a excessive mental fabrication. But there may be another aspect to it (beware this is something I've been thinking about myself, and is ...


2

If a teaching seems contradictory it is probably because teachers of Dharma utilize both conceptual and ultimate realities at the same time and this can appear very confusing if the student doesn't understand the dance between conceptual reality and ultimate reality. The purpose of conceptually reflecting on death is to increase motivation so we can ...


2

There is no pretending. It is the fact that you are not sure if this is the last period or not hence what needs to be done in case you die. No one can plan the time of death and many die unexpectedly. This is what you have to look at. So consider each breath your last as there is a chance that it is very well your last breath hence establish your self in ...


2

Ways to be conscious in all situations Just like anything else, to be good at martial arts, at playing the piano, at math, etc... the only way is to practice, practice, and practice. Practice mindfulness meditation diligently and one will be able to have very sharp awareness/mindfulness any time, any place. For a straightforward and practical advise on the ...


1

For day to day activities the ideal is: SN35.95:10.1: “In that case, when it comes to things that are to be seen, heard, thought, and known: in the seen will be merely the seen; in the heard will be merely the heard; in the thought will be merely the thought; in the known will be merely the known. But this is also quite difficult, since day to day ...


1

It is not pretending, like Suminda said. One way to very truly understand this is to enumerate the number of X you have. You have X amount of breaths in your current life-body-mind. You have X amount of times you will be able to visit Buddhism SE in your current life-body-mind. You have X number of smiles you will give to another person in your current ...


1

It's a metaphor, another one of these is "you should strive as if you had your head on fire". Doesn't mean we have to pretend there's fire on our head! We often procrastinate meditation and/or reading, as if we had endless time - which we don't.


1

According to Abhidhamma, we can do only one thing at a time. (mind or thought-moment) However, as we are not paying attention we think they all happen at once. When you practice Satipathana you will understand this. When you practice Samatha you keep your attention only on the meditation object. In Vipassana you keep your attention only on one bodily ...


1

Great achievement, congratulation. Most don't archive it even after lifetime practice. It's just that it is mostly not for sure, so continue further to a point where possible joy in ordinary work or association with others also fade away and developing Dhamma remains as refuge. The younger the better. No need to follow the old never ending practitioner. [...


1

Anhedonia is a diagnosable medical condition. Please consult a doctor for evaluating your condition. Your spiritual practice might have revealed a medical condition, especially if nothing gives you pleasure. Spiritual practice does lessen craving, yet normally other joys blossom accompanied by happiness in seclusion and meditation. Continued practice should ...


1

I think at times it can be helpful, and at times, harmful. The teachings of the Buddha are his experiences. By sharing his atainments, he helps us all walk the path. Unfortunately, if you are too descriptive, people will seek your experience in their practice. They may come to false conclusions that make guiding themselves toards the next attainment much ...


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