Self-inquiry – Try contemplate upon “What is this (I)?” instead of “Who am I?”

For those who are interested in the teaching and practice of Yoga or Buddhism, the main similar practice is about self-inquiry, to inquire the truth of individual being existence by contemplating upon “Who am I?” where most people interpreting as “Knowing who we really are, or who is the real ‘I’.”

Because of the literal meaning of the words being used in the question of “Who am I?” regardless of being translated into whatever languages, the mind takes it as there is a permanent self-existence (of who I really am) undergoing the process of reincarnation of being born in countless different life existence/transformation existing as different individual being under different names and forms, and I am trying to filter and drop off all kinds of imperfect momentary identity of different names and forms in order to uncover and reconnect with my real identity of who I really am, where many minds believe and desire that “who I really am” or “the real I” is something ‘spiritual’, ‘pure’ and ‘perfect’ that is imperishable, indestructible, unchangeable, permanent, absolute and infinite, with some kind of ‘transcendental superpower’ where all kinds of ‘miracles’ happen under my command/wish, having all my desired imaginations/wishes come true where everything will be exactly the way as I wish, with absolute unlimited freedom to be whatever I want to be, being with those who I want to be with, go wherever I want to go and do whatever I want to do, where there’s no limitation of hunger, thirst, old age, weakness, injury, sickness, death or suffering, but only desirable pleasant enjoyment.

And hence, the mind is ‘stuck’, couldn’t go beyond what it thinks it knows, where the mind is unable to transcend the selfless modification of the mind perceiving all kinds of names and forms of a worldly life existence, couldn’t go beyond the idea of ‘I’ where the mind thinks and believes ‘I’ exists as an individual being hoping/desiring to have better transformation in better world, hindering the mind from self-realization, to realize selflessness, or ‘I’lessness, or egolessness, to be free from the ego, or the idea of I of the existence of an individual being existing and experiencing (different) life existence or impermanent transformation.

Self-inquiry is more about contemplation upon “What is this ‘I’ that ‘I’ think and believe as an individual being existing and experiencing a worldly life existence that is comprised of all kinds of duality, where (I think) I experience desirable and undesirable experiences, where (I think) I feel happy/satisfied and unhappy/dissatisfied, where (I think) I try to learn many things to be able to survive and satisfy my desire of craving and aversion, to find and achieve the meaning of my life existence, to set goals/directions for my life, where (I think) I was born, where (I think) I live a life, where (I think) I have many different kinds of happy/unhappy relationship with different individual beings, where (I think) I enjoy and suffer, where (I think) I will die, and where (I think) I will be transforming into another name and form either in the same world or in a different world according to the good/bad deeds that I have been doing and accumulating.”

If the mind replaces the inquiry of “Who am I?” with “What is this ‘I’ that ‘I’ think is ‘me’ or ‘myself’, whom ‘I’ think and believe is existing as an individual being experiencing this life existence of happiness and unhappiness, who is doing all these thinking, who performs actions and enjoying the fruit of actions?” then this will allow the mind to ‘look at’ or investigate ‘itself’ from a different perspective, sort of like a (non-existent) third party to investigate/inquire the modification of the mind, or what the ignorant egoistic mind thinks and believes is the existence of an individual being perceiving/experiencing this and that, and without attachment and identification towards the selfless and impermanent modification of the mind perceiving names and forms of a worldly life existence, and be able to eliminate the ego/the idea of ‘I’ and egoism, where the mind can be free from the idea of ‘I’ and egoism, and absorbed into Silence/Samadhi (The annihilation of the modification of mind), transcending names and forms, births and deaths, actions and the fruit of actions, enjoyment and suffering.

There’s no ‘I’ am selfless, or I am performing selfless actions. There’s no ‘I’ am selfish or unselfish. There’s no ‘I’ am good or bad. There’s no ‘I’ am transforming into this or that. There’s no ‘I’ am enjoying or suffering.

The mind (or the thinking faculty as part of the function of this physical body,) is functioning and perceiving all kinds of names and forms in this present moment, restlessly acting and reacting, generating actions that bring along pleasant/unpleasant consequences of actions, and that’s all. The modification of the mind, or the thought currents, or the thought activities, ceaselessly arising and passing away selflessly, countless births and deaths happening, in this present moment. Neither it’s ‘I’ nor there’s ‘I’. There’s neither past nor future. There’s neither performer of actions nor the enjoyer of the fruit of actions.

Contemplate upon the teaching of “The world of names and forms is the by-product of the modification of mind. There is no perception of the world or life existence (in Silence/Samadhi/Annihilation of the modification of mind)” along with the process of performing self-inquiry.

Fearlessness and desirelessness are ‘the two sides of a coin’. Similarly, selflessness/oneness/non-separateness/attributelessness/namelessness/formlessness/birthlessness/deathlessness and fearlessness/desirelessness are ‘the two sides of a coin’.

As long as there is still the ego, or the idea of ‘I’ exists along with the modification of the mind, there’s ceaseless births and deaths (in this present), there’s an ‘individual being’ existing and experiencing the world of a worldly life existence being satisfied or dissatisfied with this or that, there’s egoism of attachment/identification/craving and aversion/judgment/comparison/expectation, there’s survival instinct, there’s separateness, there’s desire and fear, there’s possessiveness and protectiveness, there’s ceaseless actions and the fruit of actions, which gives rise to endless births and deaths (in this present) within the modification of the mind.

As Swami Sivananda mentioned in his teachings, “Kill the mind,” or in another term, “Annihilate the modification of the mind,” if the mind thinks the word ‘Kill’ is inappropriately used as the mind believes it’s representing the quality of violence, non-compassionate, unkind, unloving, negative, bad and wrong. This is nothing to do with ‘killing’, ‘changing’, ‘controlling’, ‘over-powering’, ‘influencing’, ‘uplifting’ or ‘inspiring’ other minds. It’s about this mind silencing its own modification, attaining Silence/Samadhi.

Want to reform the system of the world?

Human beings, regardless of one’s gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, belief and nationality, whom themselves, or who are aware of some others, have been experiencing certain kinds of discrimination whether coming from within their own ‘group’ or coming from some other ‘groups’, who have ‘good’ intention and aspiration of getting involve in different types of activism/protest with the intention/aspiration to reform the highly corrupted system of the world, who want to promote peace and harmony in the world, who really want the world to be free from all kinds of discrimination among the enormous diversities in the world, people need to work on reforming oneself first, by conquering one’s human nature that is under the influence of ignorance and egoism as well as the basic survival instinct, which is the mother of all kinds of corruption and discrimination either existing within the same ‘group’, or among the different ‘groups’.

All kinds of activism and protest are useless, if people think and believe that there are something wrong/incorrect with the world or with certain people’s thinking, beliefs and behavior, and trying to reform the world or certain people’s thinking, beliefs and behavior to be in certain way that they desire and agree with, that they think how it should be, but without reforming themselves first.

Once everyone knows how to reform oneself, free from being the slave of ignorance, egoism and survival instinct, there is no need of any kind of activism and protest to be existing, to go against ‘this’ or ‘that’ in any society, anywhere in the world.

Many people think and believe that education is the most important thing in the world for developing a healthy society and prosperity, and it’s true, but it depends on what type of education.

If it’s just education to have the knowledge, skill and qualification to be able to find a job/do a business, to make a living in the world of capitalism and consumerism, that supports the world economy and prosperity, as well as education that is under the influence of certain ‘morality practice’, ‘spiritual practice’, ‘religious belief’ or ‘political interest’, that is feeding egoism which empowers ‘personal/social identification’ which generates all kinds of separateness/comparison/discrimination between ‘I’ and ‘the others that are not I’, that encourages ‘greed’, ‘selfishness’, ‘possessiveness’, ‘the sense of belonging’, ‘pride’, ‘heroism’, ‘nationalism’, ‘loyalty’ and ‘patriotism’, where it doesn’t want or allow the people to question the truth of everything, or be able to think and live life independently, that would ‘threaten’ the ‘existence’, ‘power’ and ‘profits’ of all sorts of ‘authority’, it won’t stop/eliminate all kinds of corruption and discrimination in the world.

The education should be emphasizing on self-control, self-discipline, self-inquiry, self-investigation, self-realization, self-reliance, physical/mental/emotional independence and open-mindedness, of how to be free from ignorance, egoism and impurities – the root cause of all kinds of humanity problem in the world, besides developing the knowledge and skill to be making a living in the world of capitalism and consumerism, or to be able to live a self-contained/self-sufficient way of life that doesn’t need to depend on the society of capitalism and consumerism, or the economy/prosperity of the world.

The education on self-control, self-discipline, self-inquiry, self-investigation, self-realization, physical/mental/emotional independence and open-mindedness, of how to be free from ignorance, egoism and impurities, is universal. It has nothing to do with any particular ‘morality practice’, ‘spiritual practice’ or ‘religious belief’, as ignorance, egoism and impurities also exist in so called ‘morality practice’, ‘spiritual practice’ and ‘religious belief’, not to say, in ‘political interest’.

Corrupted education is sort of like ‘parents’ who want to ‘mould’ their children to be in certain way, to ‘train’ their children to be obedient and don’t question anything about their ‘authorization’ and ‘whatever they want their children to listen and follow’. If the children behave according to their ‘rules’, or achieve ‘what the parents want them to achieve’, which pleases them, then they would give their children some ‘praising’ and ‘rewards’, but if their children don’t behave according to their ‘rules’, or don’t achieve ‘what the parents want them to achieve’, then they would give their children some ‘disciplinary’ and ‘punishment’. And the parents want the children to become ‘somebody’ that they want them to become, and expect the children to ‘give’ the parents what they desire to be getting from the children. “Do something and be somebody that make us feel proud.” The ‘corruption’ of the entire society, of the ‘authority’, of the ‘system’ in the world, is deriving from this kind of ‘family relationship’.

Beware of anything that sounds like this, “Just obey. Do not question my authorization. This is the Truth and you must believe in this Truth. It’s sinful and punishable if you disbelieve in this Truth or have any doubt towards this Truth.”

In yoga and Buddhism, it’s all about attaining self-realization towards the truth of everything. It’s not a sin or punishable if one is ignorant towards the truth or is doubting the truth of something. The Truth is not a belief. The Truth doesn’t need anyone to believe in it nor doesn’t like anyone to disbelieve in it or has doubt in it.

“Do not blind believing, blind following, or blind practicing anything, even if it’s coming from your parents, elders, school teachers, religious teachers, best friends, members of the society, famous philosopher, or popular political leaders. Inquire and investigate the truth of everything, including all the teachings here.” There’s no ‘authority’ to ‘discipline or punish’ anyone for being ignorant under the influence of ignorance.

It’s about being aware of the ignorance in oneself.

It’s needless to be looking for a great teacher here and there.

None can teach, or discipline, or liberate anyone who isn’t aware of ignorance in oneself, while those who are aware of ignorance in oneself, then the impermanent and selfless modifications of one’s mind, as well as one’s actions and the consequences of one’s actions, is one’s greatest teacher towards knowing Thyself, and be free from ignorance.

Compassion is not something that can be obtained from receiving, learning, training or education. Compassion manifests as it is upon the annihilation of ignorance, egoism and impurities, upon the realization of selflessness.

Compassion is not about giving people whatever they like and want and desire, and don’t give them what they don’t like, don’t want and don’t desire, in order to make them feel good, satisfied, meaningful and happy, or so that people won’t feel bad, dissatisfied, meaningless and unhappy, though that is what most people understood as ‘compassion’ – give people happiness/convenience/comfort and take away their unhappiness/suffering/discomfort.

Compassion is there as it is, when the mind is free from egoism of attachment, identification, expectation, judgment, or desire of craving and aversion, ‘respecting’ the law of nature – Cause and Effect, Impermanence and Selflessness, ‘respecting’ the world as it is and everyone as they are (existing and functioning under the law of nature), ‘allowing’ everyone to take their own pace and effort to know their own minds, to know Thyself, realizing what is actually going on in their own minds, to realize selflessness, being free from ignorance, egoism and impurities, transcending the mind perception of a worldly life existence of impermanent and selfless names and forms, be able to deal with all kinds of pleasant/unpleasant, agreeable/disagreeable, desirable/undesirable experience, condition and situation independently and equanimously, being free from suffering deriving from ignorance and egoism of attachment, identification, desire of craving and aversion, judgment, comparison and expectation.

Feedback for yoga teachers?

In the last few months, there were hundreds of blog views coming from the search word “Feedback for yoga teachers”.

Looking at the pandemic lockdown and social distancing situation, it’s normal that many yoga teachers who used to conduct yoga classes to be making a living would move their classes onto the online social media platform. And hence, as the ‘new normal’, there are now many online (guided) yoga classes.

Personally, I neither encourage/support nor discourage/unsupport ‘the old normal’ yoga classes, or ‘the new normal’ online yoga classes, as it’s everyone’s freedom for what they do and don’t do, even though I myself am not interested in conducting ‘yoga classes’ in the past, not to say to be conducting ‘online yoga classes’ in the present. In the world of capitalism and consumerism, if there’s a demand requesting certain service and product, and there will be somebody offering the service and product, especially if people are interested in learning to do some yoga exercises as a healthy leisure activity, it’s something very good for the society to have ‘yoga classes’ or ‘online yoga classes’.

First of all, it’s a new thing for both the ‘yoga teachers’ and the ‘yoga students’. The process of teaching and learning yoga (asana) practice in a physical present yoga class is no doubt being quite different from teaching and learning yoga (asana) practice via online yoga class.

The teacher can’t be paying attention to many students at the same time in physical present yoga classes, not to say in online yoga class, where there’s a rather small computer screen with many different small windows of the different people joining the ‘online yoga class’. Unless it’s a one to one private yoga practice session, or private online yoga practice session.

Even though, in many of the physical present yoga classes, the yoga students are being advised not to turn/tilt their head to be looking at the teacher or the others while performing most of the yoga asana positions or exercises, as it might cause certain muscular sprain or injury around the neck and shoulder area, but many of the students would still be spontaneously turning/tilting their head while performing many of the yoga asana poses/exercises in order to take a look or glance at the teacher and/or the others under their own different intentions/motivations/reasons for doing that, mostly it’s curiosity, or trying to imitate, or trying to compare, or being unsure/unclear about the practice and being not confident towards one’s performance or execution. Not to say, in the online yoga classes, the entire attention is to be turning the head in a particular angle to be constantly looking at the computer screen, to be following some instructions and imitating the teacher and/or the others to be doing the yoga asana poses or exercises.

Of course, there will be many opinions coming from different participants who want to ‘improve’ their experience on the online yoga class, and want to give feedback/advice/suggestions to the yoga teachers who conduct the online yoga classes, and most of the teachers also welcoming ‘feedback’ from the participants to improve the experience on teaching online classes and to improve the quality of their online classes. Mostly it’s either about the positioning of the camera so that they can have a better view angle to see more clearly towards how the teacher demonstrates the practice/exercise, or something to do with the usage of microphone and volume control, or the pacing/intensity of the particular practice/exercise/routine, or the format and contents of the yoga class, or about the background and the layout of the room use for giving the online class, the impact of the surrounding environment, the music (most commercial yoga classes use music to create certain atmosphere), and etc. It’s all about the whole experience or the mind perception of names and forms of different qualities that are agreeable or disagreeable to the minds of everyone.

Yoga practice is about freeing the mind from such attachment and desire of craving and aversion towards the mind perception of names and forms through the senses, of what the eyes see, what the ears hear, what the nose smells (in this case, what the participants smell or don’t smell is nothing to do with the yoga teacher or the online yoga class), what the tongue tastes, what the body or skin senses, as well as what the mind experiences, thinks, feels, acts and reacts.

Yoga practice is about dispassion, renunciation, silence, solitude, seclusion, non-attachment, non-identification, non-craving, non-aversion, non-judgment, non-comparison, non-expectation, self-control, self-discipline, self-reliance, self-inquiry, self-realization, inquiring the truth of names and forms, inquiring the truth of ‘I’, knowing thyself, the elimination of the root cause of suffering – ignorance, egoism and impurities, the annihilation of the modification of the mind, transcending the wheel of birth and death, cause and effect, or attaining liberation or Samadhi. All these has nothing to do with ‘qualified/certified yoga teachers’, ‘yoga teachers certification’, ‘yoga classes’, ‘different brands and styles of yoga school, lineage, practice’, ‘physical ability/disability/limitation’, ‘physical health condition’, ‘worldly condition and situation’, ‘surrounding environment’, ‘proper precise physical alignment while doing the yoga poses/exercises’, ‘yoga props’, ‘yoga mats’, ‘yoga attires and accessories’, ‘yoga scents’, ‘yoga music’, ‘yoga super food’, and etc.

If one is truly teaching or practicing yoga, it’s really not about whether the yoga teacher is good or not good; whether the many different details of the yoga class are good or not good; whether the practice/exercise/routine is good or not good; whether the contents of the yoga class is good or not good; whether the way that the teacher conducts the yoga class is good or not good; whether the instructions are good or not good; whether the result of the teaching, the yoga class and the practice is good or not good; or whether the teaching skill of the yoga teacher is good or not good; not to say, whether the students/participants/somebody’s performance, or execution, or physical alignment is good or not good; whether one’s body and mind feels good or not good, being comfortable or uncomfortable throughout the practice.

It’s about there’s an opportunity where someone is there delivering the teachings and practice of yoga that would lead the minds towards self-realization and liberation from ignorance and suffering, without attachment, identification, desire of craving and aversion, judgment, comparison and expectation, as well as someone is there receiving, learning and practicing the teachings and practice of yoga without attachment, identification, desire of craving and aversion, judgment, comparison and expectation, to transcend the worldly life existence of a body and mind that is subject to impermanence and selflessness; to transcend the mind perception of qualities, names and forms that are impermanent and selfless; to go beyond duality of good/bad, right/wrong, positive/negative, meaningfulness/meaninglessness, praise/censure, success/failure, heat/cold, pleasantness/unpleasantness, happiness/unhappiness, enjoyable/non-enjoyable, and so on; to go beyond the egoistic likes and dislikes, agreements and disagreements based on the worldly conditioned passionate egoistic social/cultural/spiritual/religious/political thinking and belief; to tame the outgoing tendency of the restless mind, turning the mind inward; to be in the present; to quiet, silent and annihilate the modification of the mind; to perform self-inquiry; to free the mind from the veil of ignorance, egoism and impurities; to realize the truth of suffering and the root cause of suffering; to realize selflessness and attain liberation from ‘mind stuff’, or ‘modification of the mind’, or ‘all that related to the mind perception of an impermanent selfless worldly life existence’, or ‘endless suffering deriving from the bondage of birth and death, cause and effect’.

In short, it’s about guiding the minds to be free from ignorance, egoism, impurities and suffering (upmost important), while in the process of doing or not doing some forms of physical and mental practice under many different names, brands, ways or styles (not important at all).

Either through physical present yoga session or online yoga class, whether the teacher is teaching yoga as it is, or not; whether the students of yoga will be learning and practicing yoga as it is, or not; with correct understanding, attitude and mentality or not; and realize yoga, or not, it’s their own effort and responsibility.

Feedback about the quality of the yoga teacher, the venue/environment/background, the technical issues, the teachings, the teaching skill, the interactive skill, the creativity, the charisma, the atmosphere, the yoga class, the practice, the result, or the entire experience, is truly irrelevant in the process of eliminating ignorance, egoism, impurities and suffering in one’s mind, or in the process of letting go/renouncing worldly conditioned passionate egoistic thinking, belief, values, practice, actions, reactions, expectations, desires, aspirations, inspirations, likes and dislikes, agreements and disagreements, and etc.

What to renounce and embrace in renunciation?

What to renounce in renunciation?

Renounce the idea of ‘I’, ‘my’ and ‘mine’.

Renounce action and the fruit of action. It doesn’t mean non-action or irresponsible towards the consequences of action, but performing action without attachment, identification, intention and expectation, and allowing the fruit/result of action being what it is, as it is.

Renounce egoism of attachment, identification, desire of craving and aversion, judgment, comparison and expectation.

Renounce qualities, names and forms.

Renounce past pleasant/unpleasant, desirable/undesirable, enjoyable/non-enjoyable, happy/unhappy experiences and future imagination/anticipation/projection.

Renounce day dreaming and building castle in the air.

Renounce scheming, plotting, planning.

Renounce petite mindedness and stinginess.

Renounce worldly social relationships, connections and interactions.

Renounce worldly affair, habit and activity that empower egoism and ignorance.

Renounce worldly ideas, values and objects.

Renounce worldly thinking and belief.

Renounce superstitious belief and practice.

Renounce healing and gratification of desire through superstition practice or superhuman power.

Renounce novel, magazine and news reading, TV and movie watching, and theater visiting.

Renounce self-righteousness based on particular social, cultural, tribal, racial, religious or political thinking and belief, values and practice.

Renounce physical/mental/emotional intoxicant and addiction.

Renounce pride, arrogance, greed, jealousy, envy, admiration, blaming, fault-finding, slandering, back-biting, gossiping, flirting, dissatisfaction, disappointment, offensiveness, defensiveness, anger, hatred, violence, fear and worry.

Renounce debates, discussions and arguments.

Renounce possessiveness, selfishness and protectiveness.

Renounce worldly passionate greed and ambition, desire and lust.

Renounce spiritual greed and ambition, students recruiting, ashram building, cult forming, follower and disciple hoarding.

Renounce the outgoing tendency of the mind.

Renounce interference towards others’ diverse way of living, thinking, belief, values, practice, judgment, action, inaction, reaction, non-reaction, behavior, and so on. What others do with their life, their energy, their body and mind, is their own freedom and responsibility.

Renounce the urge to change or control the world and everything to be the way that I like it to be, or the way that I think how it should be.

Renounce extremity of laziness/idleness and restlessness, over fasting and over eating, rigidness and slackness, austerity and indulgence, and etc, without comparing with one another, as what is extreme for one might be moderate for another, and vice versa.

Renounce chasing after sympathy, empathy, love, attention, support, recognition, acknowledgement, accreditation, appreciation, praise, compliment, agreement, approval, friendship, companionship, enjoyment of the senses, name, title, entitlement, fame, respect, authorization, power or wealth.

Renounce intention, aspiration and inspiration.

Renounce self-idolization, self-glorification, self-boasting, self-flattering.

Renounce duality of what the worldly social/cultural/religious/political thinking and belief categorized as good/bad, right/wrong, positive/negative, happiness/unhappiness, meaningfulness/meaninglessness, success/failure, praise/condemn, respectfulness/disrespectfulness, deserving/undeserving, and so on.

Renounce the sense of confidence, self-esteem, self-worth and meaningfulness.

Renounce the sense of humiliation, guilt and shame.

Renounce the sense of being hurt, intimidated, belittled, insulted, disrespected, bullied, piteous, ill-treated, and etc. Understanding that all kinds of human beings action and behavior that resulting in hurting/disturbing/violating some others are deriving from ignorance and mental illness/corruption, and hence, need not be determined by the products of ignorance existing in the world. Being ignorant is not a crime, or sin, or punishment deserving, but it would lead to many ignorant actions and reactions that bring along further ignorant consequences, and all minds perceiving this impermanent selfless worldly life existence of names and forms are under the influence of ignorance, unless the mind realizes ignorance in itself and be initiated to be free from ignorance.

Renounce grief and sorrow.

Renounce the sense of boredom, meaninglessness and loneliness.

Renounce clinging towards the world of impermanent selfless names and forms of the mind perception of worldly life existence.

Renounce ignorance and the consequence of ignorance.

Renounce physical, mental and emotional dependency, unless one is suffering from physical, mental or emotional illness/malfunction/disability.

Renounce worldly egoistic freedom or satisfaction deriving from the gratification of passionate egoistic desire of craving and aversion, by attaining/experiencing what I like and want or desire, and not getting/experiencing what I dislike and doesn’t want or doesn’t desire.

Renounce political involvement, power accumulating, leadership or grouping.

Renounce any form of ‘legal’ and ‘illegal’ gangsterism and its similarity, such like worldly authorization is one kind of ‘legally approved’ and ‘supported by most people’ gangsterism which seizes power, possession and control over certain land, space, resources and the people on earth, and then collect money in the form of tax from the people with the excuse in return with providing public services, certain kinds of benefit, legal documentation/recognition/privilege/rights and certain degree of protection, while generate separateness and discrimination in the society to create fear and hatred among each other, creating the best situation for the authority to be in business by keeping in power to dominate the society and exploiting natural resources and manpower, by harassing, oppressing, torturing, persecuting and prosecuting anyone who appear to be ‘illegal’, ‘disrespecting’, ‘disobeying’, ‘going against’ the authority.

x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

 

What to embrace in renunciation?

Embrace dispassion, solitude and seclusion in silence.

Embrace quieting and purifying the mind.

Embrace living/being in the present.

Embrace fearlessness.

Embrace open-mindedness and generosity.

Embrace patience, perseverance, determination, forbearance, tolerance, acceptance, adjustment, adaptation and accommodation.

Embrace calmness, clarity, correct understanding, contentment, simplicity, truthfulness, straightforwardness, non-violence, non-possessiveness, non-authorization, non-separateness and non-discrimination.

Embrace non-attachment, non-identification, non-craving, non-aversion, non-judgment, non-comparison, non-expectation.

Embrace selfless compassionate kindness that is void of attachment, identification, intention and expectation.

Embrace self-inquiry and investigation towards the truth of everything, being uninfluenced by personal likes and dislikes, agreements and disagreements deriving from worldly social/cultural/religious/political thinking and belief.

Embrace physical, mental and emotional independence as much as possible unless due to deform, injury, sickness or old age, one has no choice but has to be dependent on some others physically or mentally for certain things in this limited impermanent and selfless life existence.

Embrace right discrimination or wisdom that removes the veil of ignorance and leads to non-separateness and non-discrimination.

Embrace peace and harmony.

Embrace tranquility.

Embrace nature and the law of nature.

Embrace the truth of impermanence and selflessness.

Embrace everything as it is, not necessarily the way that I think how it should be and the way that I desire it to be, respecting the perceived names and forms, conditions and situations as they are, not necessarily pleasant or desirable, without being determined or disturbed by pleasant/unpleasant, desirable/undesirable perception of names and forms or experiences.

Embrace the yearning for liberation.

Embrace true freedom or liberation, being free from ignorance, egoism, impurities and suffering.

Embrace unconditional peace, being free from ignorance, egoism and impurities, being undetermined, unaffected, uninfluenced, undisturbed by the mind perception of different qualities of impermanent and selfless names and forms perceived through the senses.

Embrace self-effort, self-control, self-discipline, self-introspection and self-realization.

Embrace oneness, non-separateness, namelessness, formlessness, attributelessness.

Embrace annihilation of the modification of the mind.

Embrace silence.

Positive thinking vs dispassion and non-attachment

Positive thinking might be able to make the mind feels a little bit better momentarily, but it’s not the end of practice, as it doesn’t really help the mind to transcend ignorance and be free from suffering, as the mind is still being determined by the qualities of names and forms, where there’s craving/clinging/grasping towards the quality of names and forms that is likable, agreeable, pleasing and desirable for the mind, and there’s aversion towards the quality of names and forms that is dislikable, disagreeable, unpleasing and undesirable for the mind. There’s intentional egoistic tendency of changing something that the mind doesn’t like into something else that is less dislikable for the mind, as the mind is being affected/determined/disturbed/influenced by the quality of names and forms that the mind perceives through the senses. This mind is not free, even though by thinking positively might give momentary relief to the mind from continuously drowning in negative thinking.

While dispassion and non-attachment would allow the mind to transcend ignorance and be free from suffering, being aware of the mind perception of different qualities of names and forms regardless of what the worldly minded perceived or recognized as good/bad/positive/negative quality of names and forms, but without being affected/determined/disturbed/influenced by any quality of names and forms, going beyond all the pleasant/unpleasant and desirable/undesirable or good/bad and positive/negative qualities of names and forms that the mind perceives through the senses of a worldly life existence.

By telling worldly egoistic passionate people to think positive in the midst of pandemic, lockdown, political tension, economy downturn, discrimination, fear, hatred, violence, unjust, corruption, worry and uncertainty, would most probably inflict further disappointment and frustration in the passionate egoistic minds that are being affected/determined/disturbed/influenced very much by the quality of names and forms or the unpleasant/undesirable condition and situation in the world. Such as “Things will get better for sure.” or “Everything will be fine in the end. Don’t worry.” or “We are good people. God will take care of us. Nothing bad is going to happen to good people like us.”

In yoga or Buddhism, it’s okay even if everything is not going to be fine in the end, and regardless of whether one thinks and believes oneself is a good person or not, whether one believes or disbelieves in God, it still doesn’t change the truth of impermanence and selflessness.

While the practice of dispassion and non-attachment is about seeing the truth of things as it is, even if it’s something really bad and terrible for the worldly egoistic passionate minds, without intentionally denying, or pushing away, or trying to change the unpleasant/undesirable condition or situation of the world, although one can perform kind and beneficial compassionate actions for oneself and/or others in the world selflessly at anytime and anywhere, but without expecting everything will be good and nothing bad, or expecting more good and less bad, knowing clearly that all is impermanent and selfless, without attaching onto the impermanent and selfless function of the body and mind or the perception of a worldly life existence of all kinds relationships and experiences that is being conditioned by actions and the consequences of actions, and hence, the mind is not being affected/determined/disturbed/influenced by it, remain equanimous and at peace as it is, even when disaster and death is approaching. This mind is free as it is, it doesn’t need to think positive at all, to be hopeful, wishing everything will be positive and good the way that the mind would like it to be.

It’s okay and there’s nothing wrong to react and feel negative, depressed, sad, angry, dissatisfied or disappointed towards the worldly condition and situation that the mind perceives and recognizes as unpleasant/undesirable/bad/negative, allowing the mind to react and feel as it is, but the mind knows clearly that even this feeling is impermanent and selfless, it’s not ‘I’. Need not be influenced or over-powered by this feeling to perform more actions that would most probably bring further unpleasant/undesirable consequences of actions.

Positive thinking is like leadership or having a leader, regardless of good or bad leader, who is being given the responsibility or power by a group of people (or the majority of the people under the system of democracy) to lead them, where these people need a leader to decide for them what to think and what to do, and be responsible for all the actions and the consequences of actions, as they are unable to think and act independently and incapable to take responsibility for performing action and the consequences of their action fearlessly. But, that is not a solution to all the problems in the world. Or else, the world would already be free from all kinds of problems since long time ago when leaders started to be existing in the world to lead a community or nation, if by having leader to lead a community is the way to a better world.

A really efficient community of the world doesn’t need any leader at all, not even a good leader, as everyone can think and act independently, wisely and responsibly, being free from ignorance, petite mindedness, separateness, discrimination and fear.

The teaching and practice of yoga doesn’t propagate leadership, or to create and train good/magnificent leaders that lead a group of followers who are dependent on the leader to give them a set of rules and regulations on what or how to think and act, or to live life and behave. It emphasizes on training/practice that would allow each and everyone to be able to be thinking and acting independently, wisely and responsibly, where none needs any leader or a set of rules and regulations to tell them what to think and act, or how to live life and behave, being free from ignorance, petite mindedness, separateness, discrimination and fear, by realizing selflessness, oneness, namelessness, formlessness, attributelessness.

Somehow, most of the worldly education/cultural/social/political system emphasized on producing great leaders to lead a bunch of followers to create a world that they think how it should be. While a very rare good and wise leader might bring some goodness to its community, but for how long this good leader can serve the community? What happen when this good leader is gone? Unless this good leader abandons leadership and transforms into a great teacher that would teach and train all and everyone to be independent, wise and responsible.

A truly great teacher never try to be a leader who leads a group of followers of a community and receives the power to hoard/guard/guide/protect that particular community. He or she will teach and allow all and everyone to become independent and wise, and be responsible for their own action and the consequences of action, to be free from ignorance and egoism, to be free from suffering and the cause of suffering.

Some would argue that there are too many people who are under the influence of ignorance, and hence, there is an inevitable need to have wise leaders to lead the huge amount of ignorant people. Just like many people emphasize on the importance of cultural/religious/community dependence and support, where many people believe that people would be lost and can’t live without depending on a particular culture/religion/community support. There’s nothing wrong with that, but even the enlightened Siddhartha Gautama Buddha never intended to be a wise leader leading a group of ignorant followers (as that would be so exhausting, going everywhere to help to solve everyone’s never ending problems due to ignorance.) He taught all and everyone about how to be free from ignorance and be independent, even though not all and everyone would attain success. Just like an ignorant leader can’t do anything to influence a group of wise people, a wise leader also can’t do anything to influence or change a group of ignorant people, not to say to take away or remove other’s ignorance. It has to come from each and everyone to be aware of ignorance and be self-initiated to be free from ignorance.

When someone fell and got hurt, a Buddha, or a great teacher, doesn’t go and comfort this person, “Oh no! Poor you. Such a bad thing happened to you. You don’t deserve this. But hey, I’m here for you. I will heal you and make you feel better.” Instead, they suggest, “If you want, you can see the truth from this experience. Falling and wounded is neither good nor bad, neither positive nor negative. Look into the action and the consequence of action. You fell, and there’s a wound, and there’s painful sensation. And look at the impermanence and selflessness of it, regardless of whether you like it, or not.” and “Whether you think and feel it’s okay or it’s not okay, of how you react towards this experience, it’s your own responsibility. It’s nothing to do with what you think and believe as right or wrong, or who’s responsible for the fall and the wound.” And this is true compassion, but most people would prefer the first version than the later one.

One can be living closely with a wise man for many many years, obeying and following the guidance/discipline of the wise man about how to think and act, live life and behave, but oneself never investigate the truth and is being comfortable with somebody else being there to tell oneself what to think and act, or not, but still one is not free from ignorance, where one doesn’t know what to think and act, how to live life and behave independently once there’s no more guidance/discipline from the wise man, unless one realizes ignorance in oneself, investigates the truth of everything, realizing the truth of things and eliminating ignorance through one’s own effort, and becomes independent.

Living in the present

The minds that know how to ‘live’ in the present, time doesn’t exist, but only a reflection of impermanent selfless changes. These minds are fearless and worryless being free from craving towards particular desirable/agreeable/pleasant condition and aversion towards particular undesirable/disagreeable/unpleasant condition. The function of the thinking mind or the state of the mind will go through impermanent selfless changes, but the nameless/formless/attributeless universal consciousness beyond the egoistic self-cognitive thinking mind, is birthless/deathless/changeless/infinite.

The mind can make use of the existing available condition, knowledge, talent, skill, experience and opportunity in the present moment to be performing actions looking after the well-being of one’s life and/or others, without attachment towards the actions and the fruit of actions. Passionate optimistic people even propagate that people can create/develop the desirable condition, knowledge, talent, skill, experience and opportunity intentionally, if they aren’t existing/available in the present. There’s nothing wrong with that. The only difference is that there’s no satisfaction/dissatisfaction, pleasure/disappointment, happiness/unhappiness, success/failure, pride and arrogance/shame and guilt/regret in the minds that are free from attachment towards the actions and the fruit of actions.

The minds that know this, all actions are being performed out of selfless compassion, intentionlessly. It’s nothing to do with attaining the sense of goodness, happiness, righteousness, positiveness and meaningfulness or getting rid of the sense of badness, unhappiness, wrongfulness, negativeness or meaninglessness. As the minds that are free from the ego and egoism don’t need to attain the sense of goodness, happiness, righteousness, positiveness, or meaningfulness, to feel good, happy, righteous, positive, or meaningful, as these minds are void of the sense of badness, unhappiness, wrongfulness, negativeness, or meaninglessness, regardless of all the impermanent selfless changes of names and forms that the mind perceives through the senses. There’s not even the idea of “I am a selfless compassionate being performing selfless compassionate actions that are beneficial to the world.” not to say, “I want to be a kind and compassionate human being who performs kind and compassionate actions that will benefit the world.”

The worldly passionate minds that are being conditioned to think and believe that all human beings need to live life and perform actions in the way that would give rise to the sense of goodness, happiness, righteousness, positiveness and meaningfulness, couldn’t comprehend this. These minds are being ‘troubled’ by the absence of the sense of goodness, happiness, righteousness, positiveness, or meaningfulness, and would be ‘disturbed’ by the presence of the sense of loneliness, lovelessness, badness, wrongfulness, unhappiness, negativeness, or meaninglessness. The practice of silence, solitude, seclusion and renunciation from worldly affair and relationship is extremely painful, wrong, lonely, loveless, negative and meaningless to them.

“Being alone, living alone, without coming in contact or interacting with family and friends and the society for a prolonged period of time is something unhealthy, sad, wrong and terrible.”

For the worldly minds, everyone should be physically/mentally/emotionally closely ‘connecting’ to one another, be able to love and care for one another, be able to give and receive love from one another, (sort of) being free from loneliness/aloneness by being with some others, to be physically/mentally/emotionally connecting and interacting with some others, is the highest meaning and the joy of life existence. There’s nothing wrong, but it’s not freedom in yoga.

In yoga, (regardless of whether being by oneself alone, being physically distant from any other beings and without interacting with some others physically/mentally/emotionally, or being physically/mentally/emotionally surrounded by some other beings and constantly interacting with other beings,) the realization of unconditional peace of namelessness/formlessness/attributelessness/selflessness, being free from ignorance and egoism, being free from attachment and longing towards the sense of goodness, happiness, righteousness, positiveness, or meaningfulness deriving from certain quality of names and forms of the companionship of others and interaction with some other beings physically/mentally/emotionally, is indeed a great liberation. Though the worldly passionate minds don’t appreciate this liberation. For them, this is not the liberation that they want, because they think and believe life is so sad and loveless if nobody needs to depend on one another to feel love, to be giving and receiving love physically/mentally/emotionally among one another. And that’s everyone’s freedom of thinking, belief, feeling, action, reaction and desire.

Even many ‘yoga teachers’ who think they love practicing and teaching yoga would also think and believe in such way. They are not interested in dispassion, renunciation, silence, solitude, seclusion, or celibacy. Whether intentionally or unintentionally, some yoga practitioners aren’t working on silencing and annihilating the modification of the mind, but they are working on empowering egoism, desire of craving and aversion, passion and lust, and stimulating the modification of the mind. There are such saying – “Change what you don’t like until you are happy and satisfied.”; “If you don’t like how you look or how you feel, change it!”; “If you don’t like your eyes or your skin colour, change it to be the way that you like!”; “If you aren’t happy or satisfied with your life or relationship, change it!”; “If you don’t like the world, change it and make it the way that you like and prefer!”; “Be strong! Be in power! Be in control! You deserve everything that you desire!” And that’s their freedom. But that’s not yoga practice.

Any tiny or huge ‘amount’/’measurement’ of physical/mental/emotional distance makes no difference for the mind that realizes oneness/non-separateness/selflessness. The adept yogi is never lonely even when being alone, or non-coming in contact and non-interacting with some other beings physically/mentally/emotionally for a short while or for a prolonged period of time. Those who don’t know this, even after ‘practicing yoga’ for a long time, would feel lonely, sick, unhealthy, bad, wrong, unhappy, meaningless or depressed, when being physically/mentally/emotionally distant from some other beings for a prolonged period of time.

Many people can’t live without coming in contact and interacting with some others even for a few hours/days/weeks, not to say, for months/years. They would be suffering from loneliness and sadness, because the untrained egoistic mind perceives time and separateness, where time without actions or interactions (silence), is dulled, boring, empty, lonely and meaningless. Even many medical professionals think that in order to be ‘cured’ from loneliness and sadness, is to be with and interacting with some other beings physically/mentally/emotionally as much as possible. Though there’s nothing wrong with it, that is not yoga practice, but indeed a huge obstacle on the path of yoga towards liberation from ignorance and egoism.

Many people including some ‘yoga teachers’ believing in and promoting “Do what makes you feel good, happy, righteous, positive and meaningful” while encouraging people to be kind and do good by propagating “Be kind and do good or help others because it makes you feel good, happy, positive and meaningful.” Though there’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s not yoga practice. It doesn’t help the mind to be free from the ego and egoism, but actually empowering the ego and egoism. The yoga teachings taught, “Stop doing what your mind likes that makes your mind (the ego) feels good, satisfy and happy.” in order to know Thyself, to realize unconditional peace as it is, which is not coming from doing/achieving something that the mind thinks it will make the mind (the ego) feels good, satisfy and happy.

Just be kind. Just do good. Just help others. Not because “I need or want to be kind and do good and help others because it will make me feel good, happy and meaningful.” In yoga, that’s no freedom at all.

Those who truly practice yoga, there’s no need to do/achieve something to feel good, happy or meaningful, but just being peaceful as they are, being free from ignorance, egoism, desire of craving and aversion. Imagine a world where all and everyone realize this unconditional peace, in stead of thinking and believing that all beings need to attain and feel love from some other beings, longing to be loved or touched by some other beings to feel good, happy, satisfy or meaningful, and people would perceive dissatisfaction, disappointment, badness, unhappiness, sadness, loneliness or meaninglessness upon the perception of lacking love and interaction from some others. Though it’s everyone’s freedom for what they think, believe, feel, act and react.

For those who truly want to practice yoga, must work diligently on the elimination of the ego and egoism, removing the veil of ignorance, silencing and annihilating the modification of the mind.

Truthfulness?

The path of yoga and Buddhism is about realizing the Truth and respecting the Truth as it is, regardless of whether the Truth is being perceived as something pleasant or unpleasant, agreeable or disagreeable, desirable or undesirable to the worldly impure egoistic minds.

Many minds/people like to talk about ‘truthfulness’ and see it as an important value of life, but then ironically, most minds/people don’t welcome and can’t handle certain ‘truthfulness’ or ‘the truth’ being something that they don’t like and don’t want. Many people prefer themselves and everyone else to be playing a game of ‘untruthfulness/lies/hypocrisy/pretension/acting’ in all forms of relationship that would portray “Everything being the way that they like and want, that would appear to be all good and positive and nothing bad and negative”, or they would try to ignore, or deny, or hideaway whatever that they don’t like and don’t want, such as “Don’t tell me about it. I don’t want to know anything about it.” so that they can have ‘the peace and harmony’ in their lives, in their relationships with their family, relatives and friends. There’s plentiful of untruthfulness/lies/secrets/manipulation in all kinds of human’s relationship except in the rare ones that are free from the influence of the ego and egoism. Back-biting exists in many relationships as well, where people pretend to be nice to one another in front of everyone, saying only nice and positive things in front of people in order to maintain ‘peace and harmony’ in the family, work place, friends circle, personal relationship and the society, but then, many minds/people couldn’t avoid back-biting behind people’s back to express and/or release their frustration, dissatisfaction and disappointment towards what they don’t like and disagree with.

The mind can never avoid some kinds of interaction that involve certain ‘untruthfulness/lies/hypocrisy/manipulation’ dealing with all kinds of human’s relationship.

There’s nothing wrong with trying to present many different images of certain ‘quality’ on different occasions that conform to the many different thinking and beliefs of the many different minds/people that one comes in contact with and interacts with, in order to please everyone, to not offending anyone, to not making anyone feel unhappy, dissatisfy, disappointed or upset, to maintain ‘peace and harmony’, or to be surviving in a competitive world of names and forms, or to gain love, liking, help, support and comfort from others, but that would be supporting and empowering ignorance and egoism in oneself and others, while yoga practice is mainly to free the mind from ignorance and egoism.

The minds that would be disturbed, offended and upset easily by what the minds don’t like and disagree with, or what the minds perceive as unpleasant, disagreeable, bad, wrong, negative or inappropriate, is due to ignorance and egoism. None need to be untruthful, hypocrite, lie, pretend or act while being or interacting with other minds that are free from ignorance and egoism, as these minds won’t be disturbed nor offended nor upset by all kinds of name and form that are being perceived by the worldly impure egoistic minds as unpleasant, disagreeable, bad, wrong, negative or inappropriate.

In Buddha or Satguru, or any beings that are free from ignorance and egoism, the mind is undetermined and undisturbed by all the selfless impermanent names and forms, being free from the desire of craving and aversion and expectation towards all and everything to be in certain way. All kinds of suffering/unhappiness/painful sorrow/hurts/depression/loneliness/meaninglessness don’t exist in them, as there’s neither craving for something pleasant and agreeable nor aversion towards something unpleasant and disagreeable. And hence, there’s needless of the existence of any other being or family and friends being there to be loving/liking/supporting/helping/comforting them, although they would allow anyone to be kind and friendly supporting or helping them and/or other beings in many ways, while without encouraging or empowering the ignorance and egoism in the beings, but allowing the beings to also realize selflessness and compassion, being free from all kinds of suffering/unhappiness/painful sorrow/hurts/depression/loneliness/meaninglessness, being undetermined and undisturbed by all the pleasant/unpleasant, agreeable/disagreeable, desirable/undesirable names and forms that the mind perceives through the senses, where the need of gaining love, liking, support, help or comfort from some others is absent, and without egoistic intention to be making and accumulating ‘family ties and friendships’, they can be ‘kind’ and ‘friendly’ towards all and everyone unconditionally without discrimination of ‘friends or not friends’, ‘family or not family’ and ‘good or bad beings’, without the need or craving of gaining love, liking, help, support and comfort from others.

Real peace and harmony is unconditional, derived from the absence of ignorance and egoism, being undisturbed by the mind perception of names and forms through the senses that is subject to impermanence and selflessness. It’s being free from all kinds of suffering, restlessness and impurities upon the annihilation of ignorance and egoism. ‘Peace and harmony’ that is subject to the existence and non-existence of certain quality of names and forms, being determined by certain condition and situation that the mind desires, likes and agrees with, that is achieved and needs to be maintained through certain actions, is not real.

Those who are free from being conditioned by worldly thinking and belief would understand this and are free from the sense of loneliness and meaninglessness. Those who are being conditioned strongly by worldly thinking and belief wouldn’t or couldn’t understand this and would be perceiving the sense of loneliness and meaninglessness from time to time or most of the time. And hence, the importance of renunciation to free the mind from being conditioned by worldly thinking and belief for sincere yoga practitioners.

One can choose to perform certain actions in the world and be engaging in certain forms of relationship and interactive activity with some others selflessly without any attachment, but not because of one thinks and believes that one has to perform such actions in the world and must be engaging in certain forms of relationship and interactive activity, as one would think and feel bad, wrong, negative, meaningless, unhappy or suffering if one doesn’t or couldn’t perform such actions in the world, or doesn’t engage in certain forms of relationship and interactive activity with some others. That is freedom in yoga or Buddhism.

The essence of silence

Passionate worldly egoistic minds that attached strongly onto the impermanent and selfless function of the body and the modification of the mind and identified strongly with all the impermanent qualities of names and forms of conditions, experiences, actions and the fruit of actions, and all kinds of connections/relationships as ‘I’ or ‘This is who I am’, who attached strongly onto worldly social and cultural thinking and belief to live life, act and react or behave, will not be able to understand or appreciate silence, where they can’t live without talking, chatting, socializing, communicating, engaging and interacting with some other human beings or some other forms of living being, where the observation of solitude, seclusion and silence is being perceived/recognized as a form of ‘meaningless and negative way of life’ or a form of ‘abnormal, inappropriate, wrong, mad, selfish and unhealthy way of behavior’.

Due to deep rooted ignorance and egoism, many minds including yoga practitioners and yoga teachers, would think and feel that it’s terribly bad and wrong for them or anyone to be observing solitude, seclusion and silence, without coming in contact, talking, chatting, socializing, communicating, engaging or interacting with any other people/beings.

The worldly passionate egoistic minds would feel ‘offended’ or ‘disturbed’ by those who are observing silence, where the minds are rendered silent, who don’t engage in social conversation/interaction/activity with them, who don’t response to their ‘sociable friendliness’ in the way that they expect how all human beings should be responding or behaving. And that’s their freedom of thinking and expression. Autonomously and naturally, most people spend most of their life time and energy into ‘making connection of family ties, friendships and relationships’ and ‘maintaining the connection of family ties, friendships and relationships’.

Yoga practitioners, especially those who identify themselves as ‘yoga teachers’, who really want to practice and realize yoga of selflessness/oneness/non-separateness, can contemplate or perform self-inquiry upon the essence of silence with this question.

“What do you do or say, or how do you behave or react, if an enlightened Buddha or ‘what/who you think is your Satguru’ is here in this space with you?”

Do you astounded by their presence by shouting and crying and praying to Buddha or Satguru desiring to be blessed, or be touched/hugged, or be helped, or be sympathized, or be healed, or be loved, or be understood/accepted/acknowledged?

Do you want to be engaging in a social conversation talking about yourself and what’s happening in your life and in the world, and also expect Buddha or Satguru to chit-chat with you, to say something to you or talking about themselves and all the good and bad, right and wrong that are existing in the world?

Do you want Buddha or Satguru to be acknowledged about how many and which type of ‘Internationally recognized yoga teacher certification’ that you have, or how much and what kind of selfless service, charity and contribution that you have done, and looking forward to be praised and recognized by them, and then can’t wait to tell all your family and friends that you have been praised and recognized by Buddha or Satguru?

Do you hope or expect Buddha or Satguru will be removing all your ignorance and impurities, and liberating you and everyone that you love from painful sorrow or suffering, and grant you with long life, comfortable living, good health, success, wealth/prosperity, all the helps that you ever need, or all desires come true?

Do you try to socialize and befriend with Buddha or Satguru and planning future ongoing get-together, outings, interactions and activities with them?

Do you have many complaints/unhappiness/frustration/suffering that you need to complain to Buddha or Satguru, or bitch to them about those whom you dislike and disagree with, whom you think they have been hurting you, whom you think they have done something terribly wrong to you and/or others, whom you think they are unloving, uncaring, unnice and unkind to you and/or others, whom you think they are bad people or terrible beings?

Do you think you need to say many nice things to praise and glorify about them, and do something special to please them to make them happy and satisfied, or you shouldn’t say or do anything that would be offensive, hurtful or disrespectful to them?

Do you think they are there judging you ceaselessly that you need to be good enough to gain their love, acceptance and acknowledgement, as you think and believe that you need to be loved, accepted and acknowledged by them or by certain people/beings?

Do you think Buddha or Satguru will be condemning/punishing you if you are not free from ignorance, or if you think you are not a ‘perfectly good’ human being according to certain worldly social/cultural/spiritual/religious/ecological/environmental values and practice, or you can’t do handstand and headstand or Trikonasana and Paschimottanasana in perfect alignment, or you don’t know what are the name of the yoga poses and their benefits, or you don’t know much about the organs, nerves, muscles and bones in the body?

Do you feel disappointed if Buddha or Satguru doesn’t turn out to be the way that you expect them to be, or the way that you think and believe how they should be?

Do you think Buddha or Satguru would be offended, or be disturbed, or be upset, or be confused, if you don’t make any verbal speech/sound or make any body gesture to show respect to them, if your eyes are closed, if you are not looking at them or anything, if you don’t say/express anything, if you have nothing to say/express, if you don’t say “Hello! Nice to see you! How are you? Are you okay?”, if you don’t go towards them and give them a hug or a kiss on their face, if you have nothing to admire or condemn, if you have nothing to complain about, if you have no desire of anything, as your mind is silent, void of ignorance, egoism, impurities, identification, duality, separateness, dissatisfaction, depression, desire, disturb, painful sorrow, fear, worry, hurts, or suffering?

The minds that are free from ignorance and egoism are void of all these worldly egoistic thinking, practice, values, action and reaction. The ones who are being conditioned by all these worldly egoistic thinking, practice, values, action and reaction is the ego, derived from ignorance and powered by egoism. To eliminate the ego and egoism, to realize selflessness/non-separateness, the mind must be free from being conditioned by all those worldly egoistic thinking, practice, values, action and reaction, which is possible through the observation of solitude, seclusion and silence.

Be free.

Looking for yoga school or yoga teacher training course?

Imperfection exists in all and everything including different yoga schools or yoga teacher training courses and the people involving in running the yoga schools and yoga courses.

With an open mind, without expectation, be ready to inquire the truth of everything, including all the teachings and practice presented by the yoga school or in the yoga teacher training course, and without regret towards one’s decision of choosing the particular yoga school or yoga teacher training course.

Dealing with all the pros and cons or imperfections existing in the yoga school or the yoga teacher training course with an open mind, and be able to make decision without regret, is indeed the practice.

Follow one’s conscience towards finding which lineage of yoga that one would like to explore and experience. It’s okay if one finds that after experiencing a particular lineage of yoga, one realizes it doesn’t suit oneself. If so, be open to experience some other kind of lineage of yoga, until one finds the most suitable one. In the end, it’s not about which lineage of yoga or yoga school that is the best among all, but it’s whether the mind is being unattached towards and unidentified with the particular lineage of yoga, the yoga school, the teachers, the yoga teacher training course, and all the desirable/undesirable or agreeable/disagreeable experiences.

Above all, it’s not about getting the best ‘Internationally recognized yoga teacher certification affiliated with such and such yoga alliance/organization’ from the best yoga school and yoga teacher, but it’s about being open-minded upon coming in contact with the different kinds of teachings and practice from the different lineage of yoga, to be purifying and quieting the mind, inquire towards the truth of all the teachings, and the truth of ‘I’ or ‘who am I/what is the ego’, realizing selflessness/egolessness, be free from ignorance, egoism, impurities, restlessness and suffering.

Attending many yoga teacher training courses in certain yoga schools and attaining many yoga teacher certifications and teaching many hours of yoga classes doesn’t determine whether the mind is free from ignorance, egoism, impurities, restlessness and suffering, or not.

In the end, one will realize the greatest teacher and the greatest ‘yoga course’ is the mind itself upon being rendered pure and quiet through the different kinds of persevered practice, being unattached towards and undisturbed by all the mind perception of names and forms or the activities/modification of the mind, of all the agreeable/disagreeable, pleasant/unpleasant, desirable/undesirable experiences, and be able to see the truth of things as it is, be free from ignorance and the by-products of ignorance.

Those who are free from ignorance and egoism don’t need to attend yoga teacher training course or attain ‘Internationally recognized yoga teacher certification’ to be peaceful and compassionate, or to disseminate the knowledge of yoga to those who are in need of the teachings and practice to be free from ignorance and egoism.

The ‘real’ Guru/teacher is the one without a ‘certificate’/’recognition’, without a ‘school’/’ashram’ and without giving ‘certification’/’recognition’ to anyone.

Love?

The minds that haven’t realize unconditional desireless dispassionate love or compassion of selflessness/oneness/non-separateness, would keep hurting oneself and others, whether wittingly or unwittingly, even when everyone thinks and believes that one loves oneself/others and others love oneself, or everyone desires/hopes for a loving community where everyone would be loving and kind to one another.

The ‘problems’ that people relate to ‘insufficient of love/touch/hug’, or ‘loveless’, or ‘unloved’, or ‘loneliness’ has nothing to do with the absence/non-existence/insufficiency of ‘I love you’, ‘You love me’, ‘We love each other’, ‘Developing a loving community’, or ‘I love myself’.

It’s whether the mind realizing unconditional desireless dispassionate love or compassion, beyond quality of names and forms, of selflessness/oneness/non-separateness/namelessness/formlessness/attributelessness, free from desire and passion, free from ignorance, egoism, impurities, restlessness and suffering, or not.

‘I love you’, ‘You love me’, ‘We love each other’, ‘Developing a loving community’, or ‘I love myself’ present/exist only in duality or separateness under the veil of ignorance. They don’t mean anything and don’t exist in selflessness/oneness/non-separateness/namelessness/formlessness/attributelessness.

The presence/existence/acknowledgement of ‘I love you’, ‘You love me’, ‘We love each other’, ‘Developing a loving community’, or ‘I love myself’ without realizing unconditional love or compassion of selflessness/oneness/non-separateness doesn’t guarantee that one doesn’t hurt oneself or others out of ungratified desires/expectations, dissatisfaction, disappointment, defensiveness, offensiveness, pride, anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, hurt, guilt, regret, grief, sorrow, fear and worry deriving from ignorance and egoism of attachment, identification, desire of craving and aversion, expectation, judgment/action/reaction based on certain worldly social/cultural/religious/spiritual thinking/belief/values/practice.

Even without the presence/existence/acknowledgement of ‘I love you’, ‘You love me’, ‘We love each other’, ‘Developing a loving community’, or ‘I love myself’, but one doesn’t hurt oneself and others if the mind realizes selfless/nameless/formless/attributeless/desireless unconditional love or compassion, being free from ignorance and the by-products of ignorance – Egoism, impurities, restlessness and suffering.

Neither there is the idea/identification/acknowledgement/presence/existence/attribute of ‘I am compassionate’, or ‘I love you unconditionally’, or ‘I love all compassionately’, or ‘Developing a compassionate community’, or ‘I am being kind and compassionate towards myself’ in oneness/non-separateness/selflessness.

‘Building/developing a loving community’ is unnecessary when the minds are free from ignorance and the by-products of ignorance, realizing compassion of selflessness/oneness/non-separateness, where none would hurt oneself or others, where there’s absence of the desire to give love and receive love, to attain/feel love, goodness, righteousness, positiveness and meaningfulness, to avoid lovelessness, badness, wrongfulness, negativeness and meaninglessness.

Just like drugs/medicines are useless/needless if there’s absence of sickness/injury. But still, some people hang onto drugs/medicines using them as a pleasurable enjoyment.

Desireless and dispassion leads to the realization of selfless compassion is LIBERATION in yoga/Buddhism, but it would be perceived by most passionate minds that are under the influence of ignorance and egoism as ‘lovelessness’, or ‘meaninglessness’, or ‘joylessness’, or ‘selfishness’, or ‘inhuman’, or ‘wrong and negative’. And hence, the idea of “Everyone needs love/Everyone needs to love one another/Everyone needs to give love and receive love/Without love, life is meaningless” is widely propagated in the world and empowering the passionate desire for love in everyone that directly/indirectly bring along the consequences of all kinds of suffering/’problems of humanity’ deriving from ungratified desires (lack of love, loveless, not enough love, unloved, not the love the way that it should be). That’s their freedom of thinking, belief, action and reaction. Out of love towards what they love, people would hurt anyone/anything that would hurt what they love. Out of desire/aspiration/intention/expectation for achieving/building/developing a world that they desire, that complies to their certain ideal of a world of ‘all good/positive/happiness and nothing bad/negative/unhappiness’, people would strive to achieve what they want to achieve and eliminate any obstructions/obstacles in their way to achieve their ‘desire’, at all costs.

The sun doesn’t think and feel ‘I love you’ or ‘I am compassionate’ and hence it gives light and heat and energy to the world ceaselessly.

The immune system in the body doesn’t think and feel ‘I love you’ or ‘I am compassionate’ and hence it protects the physical body from potential health risks until it breaks down.

The heart and the lungs don’t think and feel ‘I love you’ or ‘I am compassionate’ and hence they keep working all day all night giving life to and maintaining life of this physical body until they ceased functioning.

The plants don’t think and feel ‘I love you’ or ‘I am compassionate’ and hence they turn into food or nutrients or energy for the physical body to consume to be surviving.

‘Bondage of desire and passionate love’ is being perceived as something ‘meaningful, right, good and positive’ while ‘Liberation of desireless and dispassion’ is being perceived as something ‘meaningless, wrong, bad and negative’ for the worldly minded society, including many ‘yoga enthusiasts’.

Opening the mind by freeing the mind from being conditioned by certain worldly social/cultural/religious/spiritual thinking/belief/values/practice to allow the mind to inquire the truth of everything, to see the root cause of all kinds of suffering or ‘problems of humanity’ – Ignorance and the consequences of ignorance, is what yoga and meditation practice is about.

There’s nothing wrong with the idea of ‘I love you’, ‘You love me’, ‘We love each other’, ‘Developing a loving community’, or ‘I love myself’ existing in the world, and there’s nothing wrong either without any of these ideas present/existing under the manifestation of compassion, or selfless unconditional love.

If the mind insists on thinking and believing that “Without the idea/presence/existence/acknowledgement/propagation of ‘I love you’, ‘You love me’, ‘We love each other’, ‘Developing a loving community’, or ‘I love myself’ in the world in life, it would be so bad, wrong, negative, terrible, sad, piteous, meaningless and joyless,” then this mind is being ignorant towards itself is being conditioned by worldly social/cultural/religious/spiritual thinking/belief/values/practice, even if one has been ‘learning’/’studying’/’practicing’/’teaching’ yoga for some time or a long time.

“We need to give and show love to people and tell people ‘I love you’ so that they’ll know they are loved (by others/by so many people), so that they will feel love and have love, so that we can build/develop a loving community that love one another.” That’s widely propagated in the world, for the sake of love.

In yoga or Buddhism, that’s not freedom at all.

In yoga, the greatest gift is giving dhamma/wisdom that allow people to reflect/inquire the truth of everything and realize selflessness and compassion, be free from ignorance and egoism, be free from the suffering from endless passionate desire for love, or craving/longing for love and clinging onto love.

Do not blind-believing, blind-following, blind-practicing, blind-propagating, or blind-agreeing/disagreeing.

Be opened. Inquire. Reflect. Contemplate. Realize.

Realize unconditional selfless intentionless desireless dispassionate compassion.

Yearning for liberation / Longing for freedom / Survival instinct

Longing for freedom or yearning for liberation is a basic instinct that exists in all beings of different names and forms that are subject to impermanence and selflessness. It’s related to survival instinct of to be free from, or to be protected from, or to avoid hunger, thirst, injury, illness, weakness, loneliness, meaninglessness, pain, unpleasantness, sorrow, suffering, aging, decaying, death, the unknown, lacking, ceased existing, extinction or non-existence, as much as possible. Survival instinct gives rise to the desire of grasping/holding onto life and relationships as well as the desire to procreate/reproduce/multiply, which also give rise to fear, worry, dissatisfaction, disappointment, frustration, anger, jealousy, painful sorrow and so on, where the mind is unwittingly restless and peaceless, or ‘not free’, which also leads to the longing for freedom/liberation from restlessness/peacelessness.

All minds (the projector/perceiver of a worldly life existence that is subject to impermanence and selflessness) that are under the influence of ignorance are longing for freedom or liberation (from the ‘undesirable/unwanted experiences’ of a worldly life of uncertainty that the minds perceive/recognize as unpleasantness, bad, wrong, unhappiness, negativity, poverty, difficulty, hardship, failure, ungratified desire, painful suffering, meaninglessness, aloneness, separation from the loved ones, or coming in contact with the hated ones), where most minds acknowledging but not knowing why the sense of ‘being not free’ or ‘being limited/restricted/bound by something’ is always there, either consciously or subconsciously, even when all kinds of worldly desire are being gratified, or everything in life seems to be ‘all good and nothing bad’.

Most minds aren’t interested to ‘know thyself’ or to ‘be free from ignorance’ even though they might be fighting for freedom of thinking, belief, practice, living, way of life, education, movement, rights, action and speech in the world, as either they are ignorant towards ignorance, or they don’t feel the need/importance for that until great suffering/disappointment/painful sorrow arise, while some minds are initiated and be determined to ‘know thyself’, to ‘be free from ignorance’, as they are aware of ignorance and the by-products of ignorance.

Yoga of self-inquiry and self-realization is to free the mind from such ignorance. Ignorance is the root cause of all suffering/doubt/fear/limitation/bondage, and hence, there’s the ‘need’ or ‘longing’ for freedom/liberation, to be free/liberated from ignorance. Ignorance is the source of all kinds of ‘bondage’. Ignorance is not what most people think as ‘lack of knowledge’ or ‘unintelligent’ or ‘lazy/unwilling to learn’. Ignorance exists even in the highly knowledgeable or intelligent or righteous minds/people/beings where the minds are determined and influenced by impurities and egoism of attachment, identification, desire of craving and aversion, judgment, expectation, agreements/disagreements based on certain cultural/religious teachings, beliefs, values and practice.

The mind that is free from ignorance, is void of ‘bondage’ being free from attachment, or grasping, or longing. It doesn’t need to be free or be liberated from anything, as it is free, as what it is. It’s ignorance that gives rise to attachment/grasping/longing that give rise to all kinds of suffering/disappointment/painful sorrow and the sense of ‘being not free’ (bondage), which give rise to the longing for freedom or the yearning for liberation.

As long as the mind is functioning under the influence of ignorance and perceives/experiences ‘suffering’ due to ignorance, there’s the ‘need’, or ‘urgency’, or ‘importance’ to free or liberate the mind from ignorance, as the mind keeps generating actions that would ‘hurt’ oneself and others, whether wittingly or unwittingly, due to ignorance and the by-product of ignorance. Upon the annihilation of ignorance, there’s neither suffering nor the end of suffering. There’s neither ‘hurts’ nor ‘the need to be healed from hurts’. That’s compassion and freedom.

Those who are interested to free the mind from ignorance can contemplate on this –

Whatever the mind believes or disbelieves, desires or doesn’t desire, agrees or disagrees with, it’s all part of the modification of the mind.

There are all kinds of different culture having their own teachings, beliefs, values and practice, that are different from one another among all the different cultures in the world.

Just like all the different religions also have their own way of teachings, beliefs, values and practice.

It isn’t about which one is true/false or better than the others, and it doesn’t matter whether the mind believes or disbelieves in ‘God existence’ or ‘self-existence’, but it’s about going beyond all kinds of teachings, beliefs, values and practice, to allow the mind to see the truth of ‘the mind perception of a worldly life existence of uncertainty that is subject to impermanence and selflessness’.

All kinds of teachings, beliefs, values and practice have their own purpose serving the many minds of different temperament and characteristic to ‘live life and behave in certain way’ and ‘have certain goal/direction in a worldly life of uncertainty’, that allows most minds to continuously living/existing under certain ‘purpose/meaning’ by constantly striving to perform actions and reaping the fruit of actions, to attain the sense of purpose, well-being, love, accomplishment and satisfaction in personal and universal achievements, that would produce constant improvements/innovations which give rise to the sense of motivation, liveliness and meaningfulness to ‘life existence’. Just like most people need to live life ‘passionately and actively’, continuously, or else, life would appear to be ‘meaningless, empty and lifeless’ for them.

There’s neither good nor bad in all these different kinds of worldly cultural/religious teachings, beliefs, values and practice, just that the minds are not free, being conditioned/limited/bound to think, expect, judge, act and react in certain way. The mind is ‘limited’ or ‘not free’, being bound by the modification of the mind under the influence of ignorance, being bound by all kinds of attachment, identification, desire of craving and aversion, expectation, judgment, likes and dislikes, agreements and disagreements based on certain cultural/religious teachings, beliefs, values and practice. And there’s great aversion and fear towards ‘going beyond’ or ‘letting go’ all those teachings, beliefs, values and practice.

Whatever being perceived by the mind as ‘positive’ or ‘negative’, ‘good’ or ‘bad’, ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, ‘meaningful’ or ‘meaningless’, ‘belief’ or ‘disbelief’, ‘agreeable’ or ‘disagreeable’, ‘pleasurable enjoyment’ or ‘painful suffering’ and so on, is in the mind, from the mind. Suffering arise and pass away in the mind, from the mind. Countless births and deaths of countless thoughts of different states arise and pass away in the mind, from the mind. And there’s nothing wrong with different minds perceive/judge things differently based on different teachings, beliefs, values and practice, just that it’s not the truth of names and forms. There’s nothing wrong with whether the mind thinks and believes “Be positive. Be optimistic. Everything is good. Nothing is bad.” or “This is positive/good/right/meaningful. That is negative/bad/wrong/meaningless.” or “I have so much love and support from so many people/beings. (My) Life is so good and meaningful.” or “I don’t have any love and support from anyone. (My) Life is so sad and meaningless.” or “Life is wonderful/painful. The world is good/bad.” Just that it’s not the truth.

Do not blind-believing, blind-following, blind-practicing, blind-propagating, blind-agreeing/disagreeing about anything.

Those who know, they don’t need to think positive, or be optimistic, or feel meaningful, or receive love, or fight for freedom, or attain peace. They are free as it is.

Contemplate, reflect, inquire, and realize.

Want to learn and practice yoga?

Yoga practice is preparing the mind for self-inquiry, inquire towards “What is yoga?”, or “The truth of names and forms.”, “What is life/worldly life existence?”, “What is suffering/the cause of suffering?”, or “Who am ‘I’, or who/what is this ‘I’ or self cognition/self-existence/self-identity/individual being?”

People could be talking about yoga according to what the Yoga Scripture stated about yoga – “Yoga is the union of the individual consciousness and the universal consciousness.” or, “Yoga is the suspension of the modification of the mind.” but without direct experience of knowing Thyself, or knowing Yoga.

When people identify and introduce themselves as “I am an experienced yoga practitioner/yoga teacher”, or “I have learned/studied/practiced yoga for how many years under such and such Guru/teacher/school”, or “I am 200/500 hours certified yoga teacher.” it only shows that they don’t really know what is ‘yoga’. And there’s nothing wrong with that. There’s nothing wrong with being ignorant towards many things under the influence of ignorance. If human beings can be free from ignorance easily, there won’t be so much ignorance and the consequences of ignorance in this world.

The realization of selflessness/’I’-lessness/egolessness, or non-duality/oneness/non-separateness/namelessness/formlessness/attributelessness/birthlessness/deathlessness, has nothing to do with whether one had been practicing ‘yoga’ for how long and how much, or whether one had attended ‘yoga teacher training courses’ and attained certain ‘Internationally recognized/affiliated yoga teacher certification/qualification’, or whether one is educated and can converse, read and write in certain language, or not.

Most of the time, when people talk about ‘yoga’, that they are practicing yoga, that they love yoga, they are talking about the ‘yoga’ as a form of exercise consists of positions/movements/breath control/concentration/relaxation that gives many physical and mental health benefits, that can help to improve physical and mental health and fitness condition, or talking about some kinds of ‘energy channels/centres cleansing technique’, or ‘sound/vibration/mystical/mantra/energy healing’ practice or ‘energy exchange’, or ‘love sharing and hugging’, or ‘yogic diet’, or ‘clean eating’, or ‘organic living’, or ‘yogic lifestyle’, or ‘yogic attires and accessories’, or ‘yoga mats/blocks/straps/cushions/etc’.

When people visualize ‘someone practicing yoga’, most people would think of someone on a ‘yoga mat’ wearing certain brand of ‘yoga attire’ holding a particular ‘yoga posture’ or doing a set of yoga movements consist of different ‘yoga postures’ or ‘stretches’ with or without some yoga accessories such as block and strap, or doing some ‘breathing exercises’, ‘chanting/praying/clapping/dancing/singing with music’, or ‘meditating in a cross-legged sitting posture holding a particular hand gesture’ with incense burning or meditative music background in an out of the world beautiful and peaceful environment, or a group of people happily chatting, cooking and eating ‘organic produce’, or something to do with ‘positive thinking/empowerment’/’relaxation and de-stress methods’/’healthy lifestyle’/’the sense of happiness or meaningfulness’, or even, visualizing people with certain appearance such like ‘tattooed body’, ‘dreadlocks’ and ‘smoking pot’. Just like what people see in the ‘yoga videos’/’TV documentary on yoga or yogi’/’yoga posters/advertisements/arts’, or in the ‘yoga classes’ in the ‘yoga centres’, or on the streets of certain famous ‘cities of yoga’ in India.

We often hear many ‘yoga practitioners’ say, “I didn’t practice yoga for some time because life was too busy in the past few years/months/weeks/days and I didn’t have enough space for the yoga practice. Now that I have more free time and free space, I want to start practicing yoga again.” It shows that they have no idea what is yoga and yoga practice even though they might have been doing some ‘yoga practice’ either by themselves or attending ‘yoga classes’ for some time.

Yoga and yoga practice is unlimited by name and form, time, space and causation.

Then there are also many ‘yoga competitions’ that are about ‘how good/well one performs some ‘yoga postures’ or ‘yoga movements’. “This person performs the postures/movements better than the others, this person endowed with the strength/the flexibility/the techniques/the artistic/the creativity/the grace/the flow/the endurance/the focus/the effort, and so, this person is the best ‘yogi’ and the champion/winner of this ‘yoga competition’.” There are also many ‘yoga events’, ‘yoga festivals’, ‘yoga shows/performances/demonstrations’, or ‘yoga international day’, and etc.

All these ‘names and forms’ don’t determined that one is practicing yoga, or one knows yoga, or one is a yogi. Those who truly practice yoga, or who know yoga, there’s no such idea/identification of “I know yoga”, “I practice yoga for how long for how regular”, “I meditate for how many years for how many hours/times per day”, “I can hold my breath for how long”, “I am a yogi”, “I am a yoga teacher”, “I am a 200/500 hours certified yoga teacher”, “I participate in such and such yoga events/festivals/courses/yoga competitions”, “I am celebrating yoga international day”, “I am a champion of yoga”, “I am the best yogi”, “This is how a yogi looks like”, “Yoga is so good”, or “I love yoga.”

If someone thinks one knows something about yoga but doesn’t really know what is yoga, and wants to approach a teacher asking to be learning and practicing yoga under this teacher, one must ’empty’ thyself of what one thinks who/what one is, of what one thinks one had learned/practiced/experienced/known/achieved. Actually, just by ’emptying’ thyself, or abandoning the ‘self-identification with such and such quality of names and forms’, one has already opened the ‘door’ of yoga, even without a teacher’s guidance.

Karma – Cause and effect – Action and consequences of action

Those who know karma, or cause and effect, or action and the consequences of action, and have realized non-duality, selflessness, namelessness, formlessness, attributelessness, there’s no craving towards ‘good’ karma and there’s no aversion towards ‘bad’ karma. There’s neither ‘good’ karma nor ‘bad’ karma. Karma is not a belief. It’s just how things are. Whether people understand or don’t understand, agree with or disagree with karma, impermanence or selflessness, the truth of karma, impermanence and selflessness is still what it is. Just like all kinds of names and forms exist and cease existing due to cause and effect, and they are impermanent and selfless, all actions and the fruit of actions are also impermanent and selfless. All actions bring consequences of actions, maybe pleasant experiences, maybe unpleasant experiences. Karma/cause and effect is just being what it is. It’s neither good nor bad, neither right nor wrong, neither positive nor negative, neither agreeable nor disagreeable, neither enjoyment nor suffering, neither happiness nor unhappiness.

Those who think they know karma, and they haven’t transcended/gone beyond the modification of the mind that gives rise to duality, egoism, names and forms and quality, there’s attachment and identification towards actions and the fruit of actions, or cause and effect, or karma. There’s craving towards ‘good’ karma and aversion towards ‘bad’ karma. For them, karma is a belief where they think they believe in karma. They would think and believe that the accumulation of ‘good’ karma will bring happiness and pleasurable enjoyment and will be void of unhappiness and painful suffering, while the accumulation of ‘bad’ karma will bring unhappiness and painful suffering and will be void of happiness and pleasurable enjoyment. And what is good and bad for them is based on their particular social/cultural/spiritual/religious thinking and belief.

To those who are free from ignorance and egoism, karma or cause and effect is not a belief but it’s the truth of things along with impermanence and selflessness. There’s no attachment towards action as well as the pleasant or unpleasant consequences of action. The minds that are free from ignorance and egoism are undisturbed and undetermined by the actions and the fruit of actions, or cause and effect, or karma. There’s no judgment towards this and that action are good or bad, right or wrong that based on a particular social/cultural/spiritual/religious thinking and belief. There’s no expectation towards this is good action that will bring pleasant fruit of action, and that is bad action that will bring unpleasant fruit of action. It’s just action and the fruit of action, regardless of pleasant or unpleasant.

Only those who are not free from ignorance and egoism will have such idea or thinking about “This is my good/bad action, and this is my good/bad fruit of action. I am enjoying the pleasant fruit of good action and I am suffering from the unpleasant fruit of bad action.”

An apple seed brings the fruit of an apple tree.

An orange seed brings the fruit of an orange tree.

Apple seed won’t bring the fruit of orange tree and orange seed won’t bring the fruit of apple tree.

Neither apple or orange is ‘good’. Neither apple or orange is ‘bad’.

Different apple trees bring the fruit of different tastes and textures apples. Some like it sweeter and softer, while some like it tangier and crispier. Neither sweet and soft apples or tangy and crisp apples are ‘good’ or ‘bad’.

Different orange trees bring the fruit of different tastes oranges. Some like it sweeter, while some like it tangier. Neither sweet oranges or tangy oranges are ‘good’ or ‘bad’.

Some people like and enjoy eating apples and don’t like/don’t enjoy eating oranges, while some like and enjoy eating oranges and don’t like/don’t enjoy eating apples.

Neither the apples or oranges have the quality or intention to bring happiness or unhappiness, enjoyment or non-enjoyment to anyone who like or doesn’t like eating apples or oranges, who enjoy or doesn’t enjoy eating apples or oranges.

Many people who think and believe that they have been doing many ‘good’ actions and believe that they should be enjoying the fruit of ‘good’ karma derived from ‘good’ actions are not necessarily peaceful and happy being free from disturbs, hurts, disappointment, anger, fear and painful suffering. Peaceful and happy, or not, and being free from disturbs, hurts, disappointment, anger, fear and painful suffering, or not, is undetermined by actions and the fruit of actions, or cause and effect, or karma. It’s whether the mind is free from ignorance and egoism, or not. Some people have to go through many unpleasant experiences and don’t experience much pleasant experiences, but still can be peaceful as they are. Some people go through many pleasant experiences and don’t experience much unpleasant experiences, but are not necessarily peaceful.

Even if one strongly believes in one has lots of ‘bad’ karma as life is full of hardship, obstacles and difficulties, one can still be free and have peace, if one knows how to be free from ignorance and egoism. Even if one strongly believes in one has lots of ‘good’ karma as life is easy and comfortable, one won’t be free or peaceful, if one doesn’t know how to be free from ignorance and egoism.

Siddhartha Gautama Buddha, Gurus, and many saints and sages in the past had to go through many difficulties, challenges, threats, or unpleasant physical/mental/emotional painful experiences before they attained liberation, does that means they all had had lots of ‘bad karma’? If so, it’s not a bad thing at all having ‘bad karma’.

Inquire the truth of everything. Do not blind-believing, blind-following, blind-propagating, or blind-practicing anything.

Be free.

“He who is devoid of ‘mine-ness’ will not be bound by Karma whether he dwells in his house or wanders in a forest.” – Swami Sivananda

Social conversation / talking / sharing / caring?

Most people need/like/love to talk to some other people most of the time, or even talking to themselves if other people are not available. Talking is a normal thing to do, and a common way to know, learn, express and share, or to have an activity to pass time to chase away boredom and to gratify curiosity. In many cultures in the society, it’s considered ‘rude’, or ‘impolite’, or ‘inappropriate’, or ‘wrong’, or ‘something is wrong’, if there’s silence among people (especially for a prolonged period of time), or if someone doesn’t interact with other people or doesn’t get involved in a conversation with other people around, especially those who know one another, even if someone who can’t hear or speak, or don’t speak the same language, or those who are new comers/complete strangers showing up in a place with some other people around, are also being ‘expected’ to have at least some sort of body language/facial expression/sign language/gesture to be conversing/interacting/communicating with other people. People would feel offended, or disrespected, or mistreated, if they don’t get any ‘expected’ response from people whom they talk to, where either people didn’t give any response or people talked about something that they don’t like to hear.

Many people aren’t satisfy with some people just giving a friendly non-intimidating smile to acknowledge or greet other people, but they believe and expect that all human beings need to have certain physical/mental/emotional conversation/communication/interaction/involvement with each other to build a ‘healthy’ and ‘caring’ society. Someone who keeps to oneself, who has no unfriendly discrimination or intimidation towards everyone else, but doesn’t interested in engaging in any kind of physical/mental/emotional contact/conversation/interaction/communication/involvement with anyone, is being seen as ‘wrong’, ‘selfish’, ‘unhealthy’, or ‘sicked’, by all the others who ‘expect’ certain ‘normal’ and ‘healthy’ behavior/action/reaction/interaction among ‘normal’ and ‘healthy’ human beings.

Many passionate/sociable/friendly/caring people couldn’t understand or respect there are people who prefer complete quietness/solitude or some quiet/alone time/space for themselves. People would either feel ‘bad’ or get ‘offended’ when other people reject or don’t accept their friendly invitation to meet up, or get together, or to chat.

People need/want to share ‘what I think is who I am’ and ‘how I think and feel’ with other people and they want other people to share with them ‘what they think is who they are’ and ‘how they think and feel’. Majority of the worldly so called ‘normal’, ‘healthy’, ‘friendly’ and ‘caring’ society is all about developing and empowering that ‘self-identity’ which attached and identified with certain qualities of names and forms and ‘the modification of the mind of impermanent thinking and feelings’ as ‘this is I’, that is not ‘I’ in yoga of selflessness/namelessness/formlessness/attributelessness.

For those who know each other, mostly the conversation begins with “How are you?” and then naturally will be followed by talking about the past and the future, “What have you been doing and where did you go and what’s next?” while for those first time meeting/knowing each other, it’s mostly talking about self-introduction of each other about “Who I am/who you are.” or “This is me and my name/my nationality/my life/my family/my relationship/my friends/my experience/my knowledge/my interest/my ambition/my passion/my vision/my point of view/my ideas/my talent/my skill/my achievement/my non-achievement/my success/my failure/my pride/my shame/my good/my bad/my happiness/my unhappiness/my guilt and regret, and so on. This is who I am, where I come from/where I live and what I do for living and at free time, and what I think/believe/feel/like/dislike/agree with/disagree with/want/don’t want, my good/bad/happy/unhappy experiences, and what I did in the past and will be doing in the future.” as well as talking about “This is good/better/right/positive/excellent/happy/funny/meaningful/encouraging and that is bad/worse/wrong/negative/terrible/unhappy/sad/meaningless/discouraging.” or ‘obligated manner’ of pleasant words, praise and compliment. And sometimes there will be scheming, plotting, cover-up/made-up stories telling, or hypocrisy, or lies, or gossip, or mocking, or teasing, or flirting, or criticism, or condemn, or slander, or back-biting, or argument, or intimidation, and etc.

Social conversation or talking is an intense physical/mental/emotional energy consuming process that keeps the mind ceaselessly busy and restless receiving/processing inputs and generating/delivering outputs, while all these ceaseless mind inputs and outputs generate further random mental/emotional imprints that doesn’t allow the mind to be quiet, and unwittingly empowering egoism of worldly/spiritual attachment, identification, desire of craving and aversion, judgment, comparison and expectation that feeds ignorance in oneself and others.

For those who sincerely want to meditate or practice yoga to be free from ignorance, it’s all about freeing the mind from being unwittingly empowering all those names and forms, of duality, attachment, identification, past experiences/future anticipation, passionate desires, craving/aversion, judgment, comparison, expectation, restlessness, impurities, and etc, to stop feeding egoism and ignorance. And hence, the important practice of silence, renunciation, seclusion and solitude.

Without renunciation from the worldly society, one is being ‘obliged’ to meet up/get together/communicate/interact with many other people of family/relatives/friends circle/community and spend so much energy into social conversation/interaction/communication/activity with all the others around in order to ‘build’ and ‘maintain’ a ‘healthy, caring and friendly society’ that might make the mind feels ‘love’, ‘kindness’, ‘acknowledgement’, ‘goodness’, ‘positiveness’, ‘liveliness’ and ‘meaningfulness’. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it doesn’t help to free the mind from ignorance and egoism, to quiet/annihilate the restless modification of the mind. Instead, the mind might attached stronger onto the sense of ‘love’, ‘kindness’, ‘acknowledgement’, ‘goodness’, ‘positiveness’, ‘liveliness’ and ‘meaningfulness’ deriving from the impermanent and selfless worldly names and forms of all kinds of attachment and egoistic identity and actions/the fruit of actions.

From the perception/achievement/notion of “Life in this world is good and meaningful.” there arise the desire of “We need to preserve and protect life in this world to stay good and meaningful.” and then there arise ‘dissatisfaction’, ‘frustration’, ‘hurts’, ‘depression’, ‘unhappiness’, ‘anger’, ‘disappointment’, ‘fear’, ‘worry’, and etc, when things are not being the way that the mind desire it to be, when there’s obstacles/difficulties/circumstances that hinder the gratification of that desire to be building/maintaining/protecting what the mind think and believe as ‘good and meaningful life in this world’. This is attachment/clinging/craving/expectation.

First, there’s an idea/thought arise in the mind, then there arise attachment/clinging onto that idea/thought and there arise desire to materialize that idea/thought to become action/creation, and then there’s possessiveness/identification/expectation/protection towards that action/creation and the result/fruit of that action/creation. If things turn out to be the way that is not what the mind desire/expect it to be, the mind feels disturbed/dissatisfied/disappointed/hurt/sad/unhappy/depressed/frustrated/angry/aggressive/violent and so on. And ceaseless random ideas/thoughts arise to counter those ‘tension’ accumulating in the mind. Restless.

Those who have firm foundation in non-attachment/dispassion, or those who know thyself/selflessness, or maybe those who think and believe “I have done and achieved everything that I desire and I can die in peace without regret.” can mix into the worldly society and perform many actions to help to build a ‘caring and friendly society’ in the world, but without being distracted or influenced by the constant restless physical/mental/emotional interaction/activity, being undetermined by the actions and the fruit of actions, being free from disturbs, hurts, disappointment, dissatisfaction, frustration, or guilt/regret. This is non-attachment/non-clinging/non-craving/non-expectation.

One can mix with many people and constantly talk about “This is my name, my nationality, my family, my friends, my relatives, my community, my past, my present, my future, my actions and fruit of my actions, my thinking/belief/culture/point of view/feelings/emotions/experiences, or this and that is happening/has happened/will be happening here and there, and so on.” as all these names and forms are what most people talk about in any conversation and where people identifying with all these names and forms as “who they think they are”, but all these names and forms are not “who I am” or ‘I’ for the minds that know thyself/selflessness.

When someone is being alone or in silence being in their own ‘space’, people around will ask, “Are you okay? Is there something bothering you? You can talk to me. I’m here to listen.”

There’s nothing wrong when people feel sad, or unhappy, or depressed, or disappointed, or frustrated, or negative once in a while, and most people feel they need to talk to someone to share their feelings and what’s bothering them, to release some tension or to get some advice. People don’t have to be okay, or satisfy, or happy all the time. But those who know what is going on in the mind, there is nothing to be sad, unhappy, depressed, disappointed, frustrated or negative about, that need to be talking or sharing with someone else, or to release any tension, as there’s no tension built up, or to get any advice, as there’s no problems.

Those who know this, they can be happy as they are, no matter what.

Those who don’t know this, they don’t have to be happy all the time and they can’t be happy no matter what. It’s okay sometimes the mind is not okay and not happy with certain things. There’s nothing wrong with that. But when they think no body is being there to share their thinking/feelings/problems, to be talking to other people, or to be listening by other people, they might feel more sad, unhappy, disappointed, depressed, frustrated, or negative. And hence, people believe that “People should be available to be talking to and listening to other people all the time. It would make people who need to talk feel better and it brings the sense of meaningfulness to those who listen.” There’s nothing wrong with that but it doesn’t free the mind from ignorance/attachment/craving/expectation. Just like giving an unhappy and crying child the sweets and sugary drinks that the child wants every time to make the child stop being unhappy and crying if the child doesn’t get the sweets and sugary drinks, doesn’t really help the child at all. There’s no freedom.

“It feels so much better talking to you. Let’s meet up regularly and talk more.” and “Talking to me can make you feel better and make me feel so meaningful. Let’s meet up and talk more often.” If for some reasons that these two people are not possible to meet up and talk as expected, both would feel bad, sad and disappointed. There’s no freedom.

Just like practicing yoga exercises and teaching yoga to other people would generate the momentary sense of well-being, goodness and meaningfulness, and if for some reasons one couldn’t practice yoga exercises or teach yoga for a prolonged period of time, one would feel frustrated, disappointed and meaningless. There’s no freedom.

Most people/minds don’t like to hear this.

“Compassion is not about giving the mind what it likes and wants, or what it craves for, to be empowering the ignorance and egoism in the mind to make it feels better, good, satisfied or happy. Compassion is allowing the suffering unhappy disturbed mind to inquire into the truth of suffering, unhappiness and disturbs, by freeing the mind from ignorance, egoism, restlessness and impurities, to see the truth of the root cause of all suffering of disturbs/hurts/unhappiness/disappointment/dissatisfaction/fear/worry, where all suffering is deriving from one’s ignorance and egoism or ceaseless egoistic mind reactions towards the gratification/non-gratification of the desire of craving and aversion. If one’s desire is being gratified by getting what one likes and wants, and not getting what one doesn’t like and doesn’t want, then the mind reacts and feels good, satisfied and happy. And when one’s desire is not being gratified, where one is not getting what one likes and wants, but is getting what one doesn’t like and doesn’t want, then the mind reacts and feels bad, dissatisfied and unhappy. It’s nothing to do with the experiences/names and forms being ‘bad’, ‘wrong’, ‘terrible’, ‘disturbing’, or ‘hurtful’.

The teachings/practice/process of freeing the mind from ignorance and egoism, it’s not something pleasant or agreeable to the ignorant egoistic mind at all, but it can free the mind from suffering deriving from ignorance and egoism.

It’s everyone’s freedom for what they want to practice, or not.

Be free.

Yoga practice and practice yoga?

What is yoga practice and practice yoga?

Yoga practice is a combination of different ‘mind cleansing’ tools and techniques to ‘clean up’/’purify’ the restless/impure egoistic mind to free the mind from ignorance and the by-products of ignorance. One who practices yoga is practically using those ‘mind cleansing’ tools and techniques to be engaging in a ‘mind cleaning up process’, constantly, inexhaustibly, determinedly and diligently, until the mind is free from ignorance, knowing the truth of impermanence and selflessness, knowing thyself.

Many yoga enthusiasts who identify themselves as ‘yoga practitioners’/’yoga teachers’ might have the ‘knowledge’ of the ‘yoga practice’ and might be doing some kind of ‘yoga practice’ or delivering the ‘knowledge’ of the ‘yoga practice’ to other people regularly, but not many are actually practicing yoga as it is (cleaning the mind efficiently, freeing the mind from restlessness, impurities, egoism, ignorance or suffering). There’s intense reluctance to let go worldly attachment/identification/thinking/belief/desire/relationship/objects/pleasurable enjoyments of the senses. There’s still attachment and clinging towards the world of qualities of names and forms with all kinds of ‘relationship’, ‘ties’ or ‘connection’, being determined very much by the presence and absence of certain qualities of names and forms, and the quality/condition of relationship/ties/connection to be confident/happy/meaningful, or not. There’s an identity/ego that longing to be empowered, acknowledged, understood, agreed with, empathized, pampered and loved. And there’s nothing wrong with it as that’s their freedom. But for those who truly want to practice and realize yoga, they will practice yoga as it is, to be determined to free the mind from ignorance, regardless of any amount of difficulties and obstacles.

Just like cleaning up a ‘rubbish dump’ that is full of rubbish. It’s not just about the cleaning process to clear away those existing rubbish, but more importantly, it’s about stop generating/bringing in more rubbish into that area as well.

The mind is sort of like a ‘rubbish dump’. The yoga practice is not just about ‘clearing away’ the existing ‘impurities’, ‘restlessness’, ‘egoism’, ‘ignorance’ or ‘suffering’ which is already a challenging task that requires great effort, discipline, initiative, patience, forbearance, perseverance and determination, but more importantly, it’s to stop generating/accumulating/empowering ‘impurities’, ‘restlessness’, ‘egoism’, ‘ignorance’ or ‘suffering’, to silent/annihilate the restless modification of the mind. And hence, the importance of the practice of silence and renunciation.

The difference between a ‘rubbish dump’ and the restless/impure egoistic mind is that the ‘rubbish dump’ can be cleaned up and maintained ‘rubbish free’ by many people working together, but, for ‘cleaning up’ the restless/impure egoistic mind, it can only be done alone by the mind itself, not even ‘God’, or ‘Guru’, or any amount of ‘good friends’ and ‘good teachers’ can help to ‘clean up’ this mind, to free this mind from ignorance and all kinds of suffering, as all the rubbish of ‘impurities’, ‘restlessness’, ‘egoism’, ‘ignorance’ or ‘suffering’ is ‘generated’/’accumulated/empowered’ from/by the mind itself, and no other can ‘take away’/’remove’/’eliminate’/’stop generating’/’stop accumulating’/’stop empowering’ those ‘rubbish’ except the mind itself.

Meanwhile, there are some benefits/side-effects/by-products of the yoga practice such as better physical health and fitness condition and the sense of well-being/confidence/goodness/meaningfulness/joyfulness/peacefulness that come along with the different yoga practice, but they are just like spraying a lot of air freshener and putting plenty of beautiful fragrant colourful flower petals that bring some freshness smell and appearance into the area of the ‘rubbish dump’, but it doesn’t really ‘clean up’ the ‘rubbish dump’.

Doing some form of ‘yoga practice’ regularly or teaching ‘yoga classes/courses’ to many other people for many years also doesn’t necessarily means that one is practicing yoga. Some even take the ‘image’ or ‘characteristic’ of certain ‘yogis’/’sadhus’ with a particular ‘yogi’/’sadhu’ appearance in particular position and gesture while enjoying the momentary ‘intoxication/hallucination/highness/calmness’ from taking certain drugs/substances or certain ‘yoga practitioners’/’yoga teachers’ enjoying intimate relationships with random people as what ‘yoga practice’ and ‘practice yoga’ is about.

Freeing the mind from being conditioned by worldly thinking and belief

The minds that are under the influence of ignorance, that are ignorant towards itself is being conditioned by worldly egoistic social/cultural/religious thinking and belief, are being limited to be in certain ways and not to be in certain ways to feel good, happy and meaningful, or not. There will be judgment or identification of “If I’m like this, I’ll be okay, good and happy. And if I’m not like this, I’ll be not okay, not good and not happy.” or “If life is like this, it’s good and meaningful. And if life is not like this, it’s not good and meaningless.” or “Things/people should be like this or shouldn’t be like that, then it’s right and good, or else it’s bad and wrong.”

Such as many ‘yoga teachers’ would think and believe that they need to attend Internationally recognized ‘yoga teachers training courses’ and be ‘qualified’ and ‘certified’ to be ‘yoga teachers’, to be ‘authorized’ and ‘allowed’ to teach yoga to other people, and need to be attending ongoing ‘yoga courses’ to be upgrading one’s knowledge and teaching skills, and also believing that ‘possessing all these names and forms’ would also make them responsible ‘good’, ‘well-trained’ and ‘well-informed’ yoga teachers. Or, many ‘yoga students’ who think and believe that ‘yoga teachers’ who attended Internationally recognized ‘yoga teachers training courses’ to be ‘qualified’ and ‘certified’ to be ‘Internationally recognized yoga teachers affiliated with such and such yoga alliance/association/organization’ as well as attending ongoing ‘yoga courses’ to be upgrading their knowledge and teaching skills or those who have been ‘teaching yoga’ for such and such years, that they must be ‘good and responsible yoga teachers’, or else, they are not good or responsible yoga teachers. But yoga and teaching yoga to others are not determined by all these names and forms at all.

Such as many people including many yoga enthusiasts and physical/mental health professionals, who think and believe that ‘the practice of silence’, ‘seclusion’, ‘solitude’, ‘dispassion’, ‘renunciation from worldly affairs/ties/connections/relationships/activities/interactions/communications’, ‘refraining the mind from going out chasing after the objects of the senses that stimulate the mind and to gratify the desire of craving and aversion which empower the ego/egoism that feed the ignorance’, or ‘reducing/limiting mind imprints of ceaseless inputs and outputs to silent the restless modification of the mind’ are something ‘sad’, ‘bad’, ‘wrong’, ‘unhealthy’, ‘insane’, ‘mad’, or ‘meaningless’, as all these observances appeared to be contradicted with the ‘normal’ and ‘healthy’ worldly thinking/belief/values/behavior/practice/way of living. But, these are the observances that would free the mind from ignorance and suffering.

The egoistic minds that are under the influence of ignorance and egoism need the presence of someone else or something to be constantly acknowledging/validating one’s existence or purpose, or to feel ‘needed/wanted’ by other people, to be acknowledged and identified by oneself and others as “I am a lovable, knowledgeable, intelligent, generous, friendly, helpful, good, kind and caring person who is needed/wanted by other people to be there in their life.”

Meanwhile, the minds that are free from ignorance, that are not being conditioned by worldly egoistic thinking and belief, are free being anyway, being undetermined by the quality of names and forms, impermanent changes, time, space and causation (actions and the consequences of actions), without judgment or identification of “If I’m like this, I’ll be okay, good and happy. And if I’m like that, I’ll be not okay, not good and not happy.” or “If life is like this, it’s good and meaningful. And if life is not like this, it’s not good and meaningless.” or “Things/people should be like this or shouldn’t be like that, then it’s right and good, or else it’s bad and wrong.”

The selfless minds that are void of ignorance and egoism don’t need the presence of anyone or anything to be constantly acknowledging/validating one’s existence or purpose, or to feel ‘needed/wanted’ by other people, to be acknowledged and identified by oneself and others as “I am a lovable, knowledgeable, intelligent, generous, friendly, helpful, good, kind and caring person who is needed/wanted by other people to be there in their life.” even though they might be performing actions that are ‘helping’/’supporting’/’benefiting’ other people, without attachment, identification or association.

The minds that are void of ignorance and egoism have no ‘problems/troubles/disturbs/hurts/disappointment/dissatisfaction’ that need to be ‘shared with’ or ‘heard by’ other people, and don’t need other people keep asking oneself “How are you/Are you okay?”, to feel being noticed, acknowledged, heard, understood, sympathized, empathized, cared, liked, loved, helped, supported or touched by ‘other people’.

It’s everyone’s freedom for what and how they think/believe/behave/desire/don’t desire. Only those who have sufficient awareness to be aware of and acknowledge the ignorance in one’s mind would have initiative to free the mind from ignorance.

Being alone doesn’t induce the sense of ‘loneliness’. Being alone is not something sad, bad, or unhealthy. It’s the thinking that is under the influence of worldly social/cultural/religious thinking and belief about “Loneliness is deriving from being alone, and being alone is something sad, bad and unhealthy.” that causing the mind thinks and feels lonely, sad, bad and unhealthy for being alone. As there are many people who are not alone also would suffer from ‘loneliness’, while there are people who often being alone by oneself don’t suffer from ‘loneliness’, neither will they feel disturbed when surrounded by other people, just that they don’t associate/involve with other people’s actions and reactions, and they do not interfere with other people’s different ways of thinking/belief/behavior/practice/living.

Most mental health professionals would suggest and encourage people who suffer from ‘loneliness’ to be with other people, to talk to other people, to interact with other people, or to engage in some form of physical/mental/emotional activities with other people so that they will feel less lonely, and it might make people feel less lonely when their minds are being busy with the engagement with physical/mental/emotional activities with some other people, but it doesn’t really free the mind from the suffering of ‘loneliness’. Because ‘loneliness’ is not caused by being alone, or isolation from other people, or not engaging in any activities with other people.

It’s the egoism of attachment/clinging towards the presence of other people being around and the desire of craving for receiving acknowledgement, attention, empathy, sympathy, love, care, liking, understanding, or support from other people and the attachment/craving towards the mind stimulation of inputs and outputs derived from engaging in social physical/mental/emotional interactions/activities with other people, that the mind feels lonely/miserable/sad/wrong/unhealthy for being alone without any physical/mental/emotional contact with ‘someone’ or ‘something’ for an extended period of time. It’s like the addiction towards certain substances and the mind will feel great/satisfied/happy/relieved momentarily within the effectiveness of the substances, but once the effect of the substances is gone, the mind will crave for getting the effect of the substances again, and again, and it will feel uneasy/unhappy/dissatisfied/irritated/agitated/anxious/aggressive/sad/miserable/sicked if it’s craving for the effect of the substances is not being gratified over an extended period of time.

Just like low self-esteem, dissatisfaction, disappointment, hurts, anger, fear, worry, guilt, regret, pride, arrogance, unhappiness, meaninglessness and etc, ‘loneliness’ is the by-products of ignorance and egoism and being conditioned by worldly egoistic thinking and belief to think/feel/analyze/judge/behave/desire/act and react towards all the mind perception of names and forms or life experiences in certain ways, it’s not coming from particular environment, condition, situation, people, things or happening being sad, bad, wrong, negative, depressing, disappointing, disturbing, hurtful or unhealthy. Such as by giving the mind what it likes and wants and not giving the mind what it doesn’t like and doesn’t want would give momentary satisfaction to the mind, but it doesn’t free the mind from ‘dissatisfaction’. By doing what the mind likes to do and achieving what the mind wants to achieve might give the mind the momentary sense of confidence, happiness and meaningfulness, but it doesn’t free the mind from the sense of ‘low self-esteem’, ‘unhappiness’ and ‘meaninglessness’.

‘Loneliness’ doesn’t exist in the selfless/’I’less/egoless and silent mind. In silence and selflessness, who is there to perceive/experience/feel/identify with loneliness, low self-esteem, dissatisfaction, disappointment, unhappiness, meaninglessness, hurts, anger, fear, worry, guilt, regret, pride, arrogance and etc?

Be free.

Non-duality in silence

‘Silence’ is a very common yet important word/teaching/practice/observation/realization in yoga and Buddhism.

In silence, there’s neither right nor wrong, neither good nor bad, neither positive nor negative, neither meaningfulness nor meaninglessness, neither enjoyment nor suffering, neither satisfaction nor dissatisfaction, neither attachment nor non-attachment, and so on. What and who is there to be arguing/complaining/moaning/mourning/unhappy/angry/disturbed/offended/hurt/belittled/disrespected/suffering/enjoying/craving/liberated in silence?

As long as the mind is still being conditioned by worldly egoistic thinking, ideas, beliefs, values and practice to act and react ceaselessly towards all the perceptions of names and forms (of agreeable/disagreeable, pleasant/unpleasant, desirable/undesirable experiences), and is functioning under the influence of ignorance and egoism, the mind couldn’t go beyond the mind perception of names and forms that generates the impression of duality, which doesn’t allow the mind to see the truth of things as it is.

And hence, the importance of renunciation from worldly affairs/family ties/relationships/connections/interactions/activities and observation of seclusion and solitude for a certain period of time when the mind is ready, to free the mind from being conditioned by worldly thinking, ideas, beliefs, values and practice unwittingly, where the understanding of the mind is being influenced by the subjective judgment towards everything based on a particular thinking and belief that conditioning how the mind analyzes, judges, feels, acts and reacts, where the mind is being ignorant towards the ignorance and egoism in the mind, even if the mind is being highly knowledgeable, super intelligent, talented and skillful in doing something or many things in the world, and having the good intention to be doing something good.

Being highly knowledgeable, super intelligent, talented and skillful, and having the good intention to be doing something good, also doesn’t guarantee that the mind is free from ignorance and egoism, and hence, unwittingly be disturbed or determined by the mind perception of names and forms through the senses of what the mind sees, hears, smells, tastes, senses/feels and thinks/understands, where the mind is unwittingly being over-powered by the passionate desires of craving and aversion towards the different qualities of names and forms that the mind likes and dislikes, agrees and disagrees with, wants and doesn’t want based on a particular thinking/belief/values/practice, that generates and determines the sense of satisfaction/dissatisfaction, happiness/unhappiness, goodness/badness, positiveness/negativeness, meaningfulness/meaninglessness, rightfulness/wrongfulness, completeness/incompleteness, accomplishment/non-accomplishment, appropriateness/inappropriateness, unloneliness/loneliness, worthiness/unworthiness, pleasurable enjoyment/painful suffering, and so on. The mind is not free.

It’s everyone’s freedom whether they think there’s a need to free the mind from ignorance and the by-products of ignorance, or not. The minds that are ignorant towards the ignorance in the mind, they don’t think there’s a need to be free from ignorance, and that’s their freedom of thinking and action. There’s nothing wrong if the mind perceives/experiences suffering but it doesn’t think there’s a need to be free from the cause of suffering. Some minds are aware of suffering and knowing its nature of impermanence, and be unattached towards the perception of suffering, or it hasn’t get tired of restlessness while enjoying momentary satisfaction derived from the gratification of its passionate desire of craving and aversion, or prefer to be getting momentary relief from suffering through taking drugs/substances and getting help/sympathy/love/support/attention from others, and it doesn’t think there’s a need to be free from suffering.

Only the dispassionate ones who are aware of ignorance and the by-products of ignorance, can understand the greatness of liberation from ignorance, the root cause of suffering/restlessness, and would have intense yearning for liberation and be determined to silent the restless modification of the mind to transcend the selfless existence and function of the restless egoistic impure modification of the mind derived from ignorance.

Unfortunately, majority of the society (including yoga enthusiasts and health professionals), where the minds are not free from ignorance and egoism, where the minds think, behave, analyze, judge, act, react and live life in a particular way according to what the worldly egoistic social/cultural/religious thinking/belief/values/practice categorized as ‘normal’, ‘right’, ‘good’, ‘healthy’ or ‘sane’, they would think/believe/categorize/condemn human beings who think/behave/act/react/life life differently from the ‘normal’ human beings, who don’t think, behave, act, react and live life like the majority of the society are ‘abnormal’, ‘wrong’, ‘bad’, ‘unhealthy’, ‘insane’ or ‘mentally ill’. There would be strong criticism or disagreement coming from the majority of the society of family/friends/relatives/community/health professionals towards the practice of silence as they can’t perceive/understand beyond what their minds know/believe and are being ignorant towards their minds are being conditioned by worldly egoistic thinking and belief to think, believe, act, react and behave in certain ways.

Only those who are determined to free the mind from ignorance and the by-products of ignorance where the mind is functioning under the influence of worldly egoistic thinking/belief/values/practice/action/reaction to think, act, react, behave and live life in a particular way that the worldly minded egoistic society think and believe as something normal/right/good/healthy/sane for all human beings, can renounce the world effortlessly regardless of any amount of difficulties and obstacles. In the past, Siddhartha Gautama Buddha and many other saints and sages ‘had to’ renounce/retreat from the society to be in seclusion and solitude for many years, to be able to ‘conquer’ the restless modifications of the mind and successfully attained Silence or liberation, not to say in this era.

World saver?

Yoga teachings and the practices might appear to be ‘the best thing in the world’ for those who are seriously interested in transforming their own mind, to transcend ignorance, egoism, impurities, restlessness and suffering. But, not all and everyone else in the world would be interested in transforming their minds, or to transcend ignorance, egoism, impurities, restlessness and suffering, or be interested in the teachings and practice of yoga, or they are following/observing some other form of teachings/practices that also would lead them to be free from ignorance, egoism, impurities, restlessness and suffering, and they might not see yoga teachings and the practices are ‘the best thing in the world’, and there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s everyone’s freedom for what they want to think, believe and practice, or not.

Yoga practice is about purifying and quieting one’s mind, while allowing other minds to mind their own mind the way that they want, without intention/desire to be interfering with other minds, without expectation towards other minds have to be in certain ways. That’s real freedom in yoga. Freedom is not so much about “I am free to think, speak, act and live life the way that I want.” but it’s more about “It doesn’t matter if this body and mind is being restricted/limited to think/speak/act/live life in this world, but freeing this mind from ignorance, egoism, impurities, restlessness, desire, expectation, and all kinds of disturb and suffering, respecting and allowing all the others to be free to be what they are, without interference or control towards others’ thinking, belief, practice, behavior or way of life that are different from this one, is freedom.”

The one who identifies oneself as “I am a loving and compassionate being who love the world, and hence, I need to save the world from ‘badness’ and ‘destruction’, and I aspire/desire to make the world a ‘good place’ for all and everyone.” is the ego, desiring “I want the world to be like this and not like that.” or expecting “The world should be like this and not like that.” And above all, not everyone wants a world that ‘I’ desire, or the way that ‘I’ think and believe is ‘good for all and everyone’.

Those who truly love the world, they might be performing actions in the world for oneself and others, but there’s no such egoistic identification/attachment/desire/intention/expectation. They just perform actions, without intention to change the world to be the way that ‘I’ desire, without the idea of “I am doing this for the world and all and everyone” or “I am saving the world and all and everyone from badness and destruction” and allowing all and everyone to be free to think/believe/practice/behave as they are, and respect others’ desire for a world that they want, that might be different from what ‘I’ want.

Those who truly love the world, there’s no egoistic individual/group aspiration/desire to be achieving a world that has to be in a particular way according to what ‘I’ think and believe how it should be, but just do one’s best that one believes it’s good and beneficial for the world and allowing the fruit of actions to be what it is, and love the world as it is, even if it’s not the way that ‘I’ would like it to be.

There will be more peace and harmony in the world if everyone can let go their aspiration/desire to achieve a world that they think and believe how it should be.

Minds that have been conditioned by worldly egoistic and heroic thinking/belief/values/practice to think and believe in certain ways, to act and react in certain ways, to judge and expect towards everything in certain ways, to be empowered to aspire and inspire, to perform actions to achieve what ‘I’ and ‘my group’ want to achieve, to attain the sense of accomplishment, pride, righteousness and meaningfulness, they might not be able to understand this or agree with this. And that’s their freedom of thinking/belief/action/reaction.

Those who understand, they don’t mind if others don’t understand or disagree, and they don’t expect others to also understand or agree with oneself. It’s the ego that feels frustrated and offended if others don’t understand and disagree, and it would expect others to also understand and agree with its aspiration/ideas/vision/thinking/belief/desire.

World peace is not attained through ‘over-powering’, or ‘controlling’, or ‘defeating’, or ‘influencing’ all the others to be under one’s control/influence and to be adopting/supporting one’s desire/vision of ‘a good world for all and everyone’ about how everyone should or shouldn’t think/believe/practice/behave/live life, to create a world that ‘I’ and ‘my group’ desire. But, it’s letting go the ‘aspiration’/’desire’ to make/change/influence the world to be the way that ‘I’ desire, that ‘I’ think and believe how it should be.

Be free.

By-products of the thinking mind

Due to the function of the physical body processing all the physical inputs, there are some by-products (waste products), such as pleasant/unpleasant sensations, sweat, carbon dioxide, dead skin/tissues, pee and shit, and etc.

Similarly, upon the thinking mind processing all the mind inputs, there are also by-products, such as egoism, all kinds of impurity, emotions, feelings, actions, reactions and the consequences of action/reaction, and so on.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s the physical body and its by-products, or it’s the mind and its by-products, they all are impermanent and selfless. And they are not ‘I’.

Learn to be aware of the impermanent changes of the physical body and its by-products as well as the impermanent thinking mind and its by-products (all the mental/emotional modifications/activities), without attachment, identification, craving/aversion, judgment, comparison, or expectation. Allowing all these impermanent and selfless names and forms to be there as they are, arising and passing away.

Due to the function of the physical body, the body processes the food/liquid after eating/drinking, while the by-products of that, of sweat/pee/shit being generated has to be ‘letting go’, and one would just let them go and clean up the sweat/pee/shit and the body by oneself, to maintain personal and public hygiene and cleanliness, to help lower the risk of contracting or spreading diseases/illnesses in oneself and others in the surrounding environment. More importantly, when someone is sweating, peeing or shitting, one doesn’t need anyone being there accompanying/watching/listening or to help to clean up the waste products and the body, unless it’s a small infant/child or adult that is physically dependent on others for handling such matters. And there’s nothing wrong if someone wants to ask help from others for handling such matters, even when one is capable to handle it by oneself.

Similarly, due to the function of the thinking mind, the thinking mind processes all the mind inputs, while the by-products of that, of actions/reactions/emotions/feelings/the consequences of action and reaction being generated that need to be ‘letting go’. The mind would just let them go and ‘clean up’ the mind by itself, to maintain personal and public peace and harmony, to help minimize causing ‘disturbs’/’damages’ to itself and others in the surrounding space. When the mind is processing all these mental/emotional modifications/activities of the mind (the by-products of the thinking mind), it doesn’t need anyone being there accompanying/watching/listening or to help to ‘clean up’ the mind, unless it’s a mind that is mentally/emotionally dependent/disabled, whether due to genetic inheritance, sickness or injury. Though there’s nothing wrong if someone wants to ask help from others for dealing with such matters, even when one is capable to deal with it by oneself.

All the food, drinks and oxygen being consumed by the physical body and the by-products of all the sweat, carbon dioxide, pee and shit etc, are not ‘I’.

Similarly, all the mind inputs and the by-products of all the mental/emotional modifications/activities, are not ‘I’.

There’s no ‘I’ that can be found before/during/after the existence/function of this physical body and the thinking mind.

Infants/children can be trained to be physically independent as they grow up day by day, so does the mind can be trained to be mentally/emotionally independent. Yoga and meditation practice can transform the mind if being done with the correct understanding, perseverance and determination. Unfortunately, most minds are being ‘conditioned’/’educated’ by the worldly egoistic society to think and believe that all minds (human or living beings) must depend on ‘something/someone else’ mentally/emotionally. Quite many yoga practitioners/teachers also think and believe that all human beings need to be there for one another to look after one another mentally/emotionally all the time, or else, it’s so sad, terrible, lonely, helpless, joyless and meaningless, if one is being alone by oneself.

Do a self-check on whether the mind is being conditioned/educated to think and believe in certain way, such as, “Being alone, living alone, walking alone, eating alone, doing things alone, or solving problems alone by oneself is so sad, terrible, lonely, helpless, joyless and meaningless.” Most minds will say ‘yes’. But how true is that? It’s not necessarily so. Although people don’t necessary have to be alone by oneself, but minds that are mentally/emotionally independent have no problem/difficulty being alone, living alone, walking alone, eating alone, doing things alone, or solving problems alone by oneself, and are happy and peaceful as it is.

Look after this mind, before it’s too late where it really needs to depend on others/substances to be able to function/think/behave properly.

Be free.

Be strong and feel empowered?

Many people want to be ‘strong’ and feel ’empowered’, as they think and believe that if they are ‘weak’ and ‘vulnerable’, they will be ‘belittled’ or ‘intimidated’ by those who are stronger than them, and if they are strong, they won’t become a ‘target’ or ‘victim’ of other people’s ‘intimidation/belittling’.

In yoga, one doesn’t need to be ‘strong’ or feel ’empowered’ so that one doesn’t become a ‘target’ or ‘victim’ of what most minds think and believe as a form of ‘intimidation/belittling’.

One just needs to stop seeing/thinking/believing/identifying oneself as ‘weak’ and ‘vulnerable’ and one is naturally a ‘target’ or ‘victim’ of other people’s ‘intimidation/belittling’ that needs to be toughen up and be empowered. One also needs to be free from self-pity as well as expectation or longing for receiving sympathy, empathy, protection, acknowledgement, support, attention, understanding, praise, liking, appreciation, encouragement, or empowerment from others.

It’s stop thinking/believing that oneself or ‘all human beings’ should be treated in certain ways and shouldn’t be treated in certain ways, or oneself deserves to be treated in certain ways while doesn’t deserve to be treated in certain ways.

If the mind is not free from such thinking/belief/identification of “I am weak and vulnerable and being a target/victim of other people’s intimidation/belittling.” then even though other people are not being intimidating/belittling oneself at all, but one will always feel ‘intimidated’ or ‘belittled’ by other people’s confidence, courage, credibility and straightforwardness, which the perception of being intimidated or belittled is not coming from others, but from within constantly feeling “I am weak and vulnerable and being a target/victim of other people’s intimidation/belittling.”

Even if other people’s action/speech/behavior is truly unpleasant/unreasonable with the intention to intimidate or belittling oneself, one won’t be intimidated/belittled by that at all, if oneself is free from the thinking/belief/identification of “I am weak and vulnerable and being a target/victim of other people’s intimidation/belittling.” and would allow other people to act/speak/behave the way as they are, but one is not determined or disturbed by it. Neither does one need to be ‘protected’ from it.

One would stop seeing/perceiving ‘intimidation/belittling’ here and there, but just being aware of people are either being confident, courageous, credible and straightforward as they are which is nothing ‘intimidating/belittling’, or people are acting/speaking/behaving in the way that reflects their state of mind under the influence of ignorance, egoism, impurities, unhappiness, or suffering. Instead of feeling being a ‘target’ or ‘victim’ of other people’s intimidation/belittling, one will be compassionate towards other people’s unhappiness and suffering.

One will understand that one doesn’t need to be ‘strong’ or feel ’empowered’ at all, as the one who feels weak and vulnerable, who is highly sensitive, who is longing for attention and understanding from other people, who has expectation towards other people’s treatments towards oneself has to be in certain ways and not to be in certain ways, who thinks oneself deserves certain treatments/reactions and doesn’t deserve certain treatments/reactions, who constantly feels intimidated/offended/bullied/victimized/belittled/unattended/unheard/discouraged by other people, who wants to be sympathized, be protected, be heard, be understood, be noticed, be attended, be encouraged, be supported, be liked, be praised, be appreciated and be acknowledged, or who doesn’t like to be unnoticed/unattended, unheard, disliked, disagreed with or criticized, is the ego.

Free the mind from this ego.

One will no longer identify oneself as a ‘target’ or ‘victim’ of other people’s ‘intimidation/belittling’. One stops seeing other people’s action/speech/behavior that one’s mind perceives/recognizes as unpleasant/unreasonable as a form of ‘intimidation/belittling’, while allowing other people to be free to act/speak/behave the way as they are, to express their unhappiness and suffering in the way that they are, that they know.

Those who understand this, they cannot be disturbed/hurt by other people’s ‘unpleasant/unreasonable’ action/speech/behavior, but they can choose to move away in silence. It’s not a weakness to move away in silence towards other people’s ‘unpleasant/unreasonable’ action/speech/behavior, as these people are in suffering/unhappiness, and they don’t know how to express their suffering/unhappiness in a less unpleasant/unreasonable way.

Be free.