Difficult life conditions and low education level don’t make a being bad or immoral

Difficult life conditions and low education level are neither something good nor bad. It doesn’t make a being good or bad.

People might easily relate crimes and criminals with those who live in difficult life conditions or have low education level.

There are people might use the difficult life conditions and low education level as an excuse to commit crimes or immoral conducts.

But, difficult life conditions and low education level don’t make anyone a bad being or a criminal, to commit crimes or immoral conducts.

Those who might have difficult life conditions or low education level, but are endowed with integrity, self-respect and self-control, they strive diligently to improve oneself and one’s life condition, through right livelihood, morally and rightfully.

There are those who might have easier life conditions and higher education level than many others are not necessarily be free from greed or won’t be committing crimes and immoral conducts. Out of greed, they would lie, cheat, steal and harm other beings. Out of pride and arrogance, there are those who believe they are more superior than other beings would discriminate and abuse other beings whom they believe are inferior than them.

One must be endowed with integrity, self-respect and self-control, so that one won’t be over-powered by greed to commit crimes or immoral conducts, disregard the living condition and education level that one has. One must be endowed with wisdom and compassion being free from ignorance and egoism, to be free from pride and arrogance, discrimination and abuse.

There’s no superiority or inferiority. All are merely composition of elements and will decompose into elements. All are impermanent and selfless.

Those who are free, are not determined by any life conditions or education levels, and they don’t need to plead any recognition or acknowledgement from any other beings, to be ‘somebody’ who needs recognition or acknowledgement.

And this is nothing to do with religion or spirituality.

May all be free.

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Be free…

There are people think they believe in God existence, and they believe in God.

There are people think they don’t believe in God existence, and they disbelieve in God.

There are people think they used to believe in God existence and they believed in God, but not anymore.

No matter which one we relate to what we think, it really doesn’t matter.

Why?

Because –

If God exists, and if the God that people believe in is almighty, selfless and compassionate, is all good and kind, then whether people believe in God, or don’t believe in God, or stop believing in God, it makes no difference, and it really doesn’t matter. This God loves all without attachment and expectation, without offensiveness, discrimination, anger and hatred.

If people believe God is the creator and destroyer of all and everything, then this God will still carry out the duty of creating and destroying no matter whether people believe in the existence of God, or not. As well as God will exist no matter whether people believe in the existence of God, or not.

If God doesn’t exist, then whether people believe in God, or don’t believe in God, or stop believing in God, it makes no difference, and it really doesn’t matter. God doesn’t exist, no matter whether people believe in the existence of God, or not, and whether people believe in God, or not. Everyone has their freedom for what they want to think and believe.

If the God that people believe in is NOT almighty or compassionate, it’s egoistic, arrogant, worldly minded, petty-minded, corrupt, bribery, bias, offensive, discriminating, angry and hating, full of attachment and expectation, and is NOT good or kind, then what’s the point of believing in this God?

Whether we think God exists, or not, and whether we think we believe in God, or not, it has nothing to do with one’s liberation from ignorance and suffering upon the self-realization of selflessness.

Be free.

Is yoga a religious practice? (3)

In most religious teachings, the followers or the practitioners are not allowed to question the truth of the teachings. Where else in the teachings of yoga, is all about self-inquiry and self-realization without blind-believing in anything, including the teachings of yoga. Even if there’s a vision of ‘God’ image appears in front of the practitioner, the practitioner is unattached, unmoved, undisturbed, and let it passes away.

In religious teachings, people must believe in God, or else it is regarded as sinful or evil if one disbelieves in God. Where else in the teachings of yoga, one can either believe or disbelieve in God, it makes no difference. In the end, liberation from ignorance has nothing to do with believing in God, or not. Beyond all the different selfless and impermanent names and forms, all is one.

In religious teachings, people will be condemned and criticized for having inappropriate or wrong conducts based on what the teachings categorize as appropriate and inappropriate conducts, right and wrong conducts. Where else in the teachings of yoga, there’s no condemn or criticism even if the practitioners do not practice yoga correctly according to the Scriptures, or their thinking and behavior are not perfect, or they abandon their practice. It’s one’s freedom and responsibility for what we want and don’t want, what we do and don’t do, what we think and don’t think, what we feel and don’t feel, what we know and don’t know, what we achieve and don’t achieve, and how we act and react.

In religious teachings, people will be judged by ‘God’. If one is ‘good’, one will be rewarded with all kinds of goodness blessed by ‘God’, and if one is ‘bad’, one will be punished with painful punishment accordingly in the name of ‘God’ or sanctioned by ‘God’. Meanwhile in the teachings of yoga, there’s no judgment or punishment from ‘God’, but each and everyone either suffer or enjoy the consequences of their actions. There’s no ‘God’ interference with the consequences of one’s actions. For those who have gone beyond egoism, all actions being performed are selfless and are not bound by the fruit of actions, or karma. There’s no doer of actions and there’s no enjoyer of the fruit of actions.

In religious teachings, ‘God’ is the controller of all manifestations, being extremely ‘busy’ minding all big and small life events of all beings. Whether it’s something good or bad, people would put the responsibility onto God, saying that it’s God’s will. In the teachings of yoga, the universal consciousness exists in all and doesn’t control anything, but all and everything exist, change and stop existing in accordance to the law of impermanence. Good or bad is deriving from each individual egoistic impure mind. It’s nothing to do with God.

Above all, yoga is about dealing with the mind and its modifications that are under the influence of ignorance, impurities, egoism, attachment, desires of craving and aversion, where restlessness and suffering arise due to all these defilements, and yoga shows a way to transcend the mind, ignorance, impurities and suffering. Yoga is universal or non-discriminate, beyond all kinds of religions and cultural beliefs and practices.

All minds, except those that are already free from ignorance and suffering, are under the influence of ignorance and impurities and would experience suffering, disregard whether the minds are religious or non-religious, spiritual or non-spiritual, highly intelligent or less intelligent, highly knowledgeable or less knowledgeable, good or bad personality and behavior, positive or negative thinking, happy or unhappy mood, and so on.

Be free.

Is yoga a religious practice? (2)

No doubt that in the history of yoga, there are many Hinduism influenced sources, stories, sages and teachings, and many past and present Gurus came with Hinduism background and they practice(d) Hinduism, but, upon the realization of selflessness, one’s liberation has nothing to do with Hinduism or non-Hinduism, spirituality or non-spirituality, religious beings or non-religious beings, good beings or bad beings, good karma or bad karma.

One might think that “Since I have done many good actions accumulating lots of good karma, I will be free from suffering.” But, it’s not necessarily so. One might still experience suffering even after performing many good actions accumulating lots of good karma, as long as the mind is not free from ignorance, egoism, attachment, identification, craving and aversion, and be over-powered by impurities like anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, dissatisfaction, disappointment, animosity, ill-will, feelings of hurt, fear and worry.

Yoga is the annihilation of the mind and its modification, transcending all the names and forms, it doesn’t matter what types of qualities of names and forms that keep arising and passing away, influencing the impermanent existence, condition and function of the body and the mind.

Suffering and the end of suffering (liberation) is all in the mind, it is not in a particular name and form that the mind perceives through the senses.

When we think we are not peaceful or are suffering, ask ourselves, why we are not peaceful or are suffering.

One starts practicing yoga when one starts to be aware of what is going on in the mind, and the mind takes full responsibility for all the actions and reactions of the mind towards all the names and forms that the mind perceives through the senses.

Suffering and the end of suffering (liberation) doesn’t discriminate towards all the different qualities of names and forms which the mind thinks that is who and what it is.

It is due to ignorance, egoism, attachment, identification, craving and aversion towards all the impermanent qualities of names and forms, that generate suffering in the mind.

It is knowing the truth, egolessness, non-attachment, non-identification, non-craving and non-aversion towards all the impermanent qualities of names and forms, that free the mind from suffering.

Suffering and liberation is nothing to do with different types of religion, spirituality, culture, education, society, tribe, race, gender, sexual orientation, worldly success and achievements, physical condition and abilities, and etc.

Be free.

Feel free to practice yoga, or not…

Yoga practice is not a religious practice.

There’s no judgment or condemn towards anyone whether good or bad, happy or unhappy, ego-less or egoistic, wise or ignorant, compassionate or compassionate-less, peaceful or peace-less.

There’s no sin or punishment from anyone or ‘God’ if someone didn’t practice correctly according to the Scriptures or teachings, or when someone wants to stop practicing yoga, or when someone doesn’t agree with or doesn’t like some parts or all of the teachings and practice of yoga, or the Truth, or the Dharma.

‘Heaven and hell’ is in the present moment now, in our mind. It’s in this moment now, whether our mind is influenced or uninfluenced by ignorance, egoism, attachment, identification, desires, craving, aversion, unhappiness, painful sorrow, anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, dissatisfaction, disappointment, feelings of hurt or guilt, ill-will, ill-thinking, restlessness, fear and worry, and all kinds of impurity and suffering, that determines whether we are in ‘heaven’ or ‘hell’ within our own mind. It is not about how much good or bad we do or don’t do in this life existence, and then we will be judged and either go to ‘heaven’ or ‘hell’ after death, or when this life existence comes to an end.

We can be doing a lot of good actions and don’t do any bad actions according to what the religious teachings said or judged as good or bad actions, but we still can be experiencing unhappiness and suffering, if our minds are not free from ignorance and all the by products of impurities that derived from ignorance.

Yoga practice is about free the mind from ignorance, egoism, attachment, identification, desires, craving, aversion and all sorts of impurities. In this present moment now, peace and compassion is there when the mind is free from ignorance. We won’t be peaceful nor compassionate if our minds are not free from ignorance and all the impurities even though we have been performing rituals and prayers frequently, or studying and memorizing all the teachings in any religious Scriptures, or we have been performing yoga and meditation practice frequently, or studying and memorizing all the text in the Yoga Scriptures.

Yoga practice is about perform all our actions, duties and responsibilities without egoism, attachment, identification, intention or expectation towards the actions and the fruit of actions. It’s not about “Do good as it makes us feel good and happy”, or “Do good and don’t do bad, so that we will go to heaven and not going to hell”, though there’s nothing wrong in this to encourage more people to do more good in this life existence.

If our minds are not free from ignorance, egoism, attachment, identification, desires, craving and aversion, and all sorts of impurities, then even though we think we have done many good actions and didn’t do any bad actions, we will still be influenced, be disturbed and be determined by whatever the mind perceives through the senses, as the mind unceasingly reacts towards all the names and forms based on what the mind believes what things are, and won’t be peaceful nor compassionate.

Being able to show sympathy or empathy towards other people’s suffering also doesn’t guarantee that we are free from ignorance and impurities. We can still be disturbed and influenced by anger, hatred, dissatisfaction, disappointment, feelings of hurt, fear and worry towards names and forms that our minds don’t like and don’t agree with. This is not the same as compassion, as compassion is being aware of the reality as it is, without being disturbed or influenced by the reality that our minds don’t like and disagree with. There won’t be any impurities derived from the mind reaction towards any unpleasant or undesirable condition and situation. Compassion is free from discrimination influenced by the likes and dislikes, agreements and disagreements of the impure egoistic mind.

Feel free to practice yoga, or not. It is our own freedom of choice for what we want to do with this body and mind, or this life existence.

Om shanti.