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.

Inquire into the conditioned behavior pattern of the mind

Under the influence of different family background, educational background, cultural background, religious background, spirituality background, social, philosophical or political background, of all kinds of input coming from everywhere apart from the basic instinct of living beings, human minds are being conditioned to think, feel, believe, act and react or behave in certain way, conditioning the mind to analyze and judge everything based on the conditioned thinking, belief and practice about what is good or bad, right or wrong, positive or negative, happiness or unhappiness, meaningfulness or meaninglessness, appropriateness or disappropriateness, and etc, although most minds aren’t aware of it under the veil of ignorance.

When something happens, whether it’s happening onto oneself or others, autonomously, the mind will react based on the conditioned thinking, belief and practice, and would expect others would also react in the same way, and would be puzzled, disturbed, offended and annoyed by others who don’t react in the similar way as one would be reacting, because the behavior pattern of other minds are being conditioned differently under different thinking, belief and practice influenced by different types of background.

In certain society and culture, minds are being conditioned to react towards what the conditioned thinking and belief categorized as bad, wrong, terrible, painful, sad, sorrowful or undeserving, with the reaction of, “Oh no! Poor me/you.” and either feel sorry for oneself if it happens to oneself, or feel sorry for others if it happens to some others, as well as expect sympathy/empathy from others to also show similar sympathetic/empathetic reaction. But, what a mind feels and doesn’t feel, or how it perceives and reacts towards the similar happening, can be very different from one another. Something that appears to be bad and terrible for one culture might be nothing bad or terrible for some other cultures.

It’s neither right nor wrong about all kinds of different conditioned mind behavior pattern under the different thinking, belief and practice under the different societies and cultures. But most of the conditioned minds functioning under the influence of ignorance and egoism will be disturbed and puzzled by the different reactions or non-reactions of the others towards the similar happenings.

In many different society, something happen that most people would be angry about, that they think and believe that it is something that deserves the reaction of anger, or to be condemned, and they would tell themselves and others that “We should be angry and feel angry. This is bad, wrong and terrible. Why would anyone not react with anger towards something like this? One must be crazy if one doesn’t feel angry for such happening.”

That is how the so called ‘sympathetic’/’empathetic’ society comfort themselves and others about how everyone ‘should’ feel and react under such and such circumstances, and would categorize those who don’t feel or react the same as ‘lack/void of sympathy/empathy’, ‘crazy’, ‘mad’, ‘insane’, or ‘psychopath’. If that’s true, then all those past enlightened saints and sages, who renounced the world and ‘care-less’ towards the ignorance and the consequences of ignorance in the world, who remained equanimous and peaceful under any condition and situation, had their minds tamed being undetermined by ignorance and the consequences of ignorance, they all were insane and psychopath, while the worldly minded who think all their ‘reactions’ are something ‘normal’, ‘righteous’ and ‘healthy’, would perceive themselves as ‘mentally healthy’ for reacting in such and such way. Even many ‘yoga teachers’ in the world also would think and believe like that.

Everyone can feel and react as one desires, as one is, as it is everyone’s freedom on how everyone wants to feel and react towards everything, but in the path of yoga and Buddhism, those who have conquered their own mind, who are free from the influence of ignorance and egoism, have the will-power of choice towards how to feel and react, or not. It’s not about “One should autonomously feel and react in such and such way towards such and such circumstances.” That’s also how selfish greedy people in the world would manipulate people’s thinking and behavior, and make use of the ‘autonomous’ reaction of most human beings to create situations that would benefit them to get what they want.

Being undetermined by conditioned behavior pattern of the mind and being undetermined by the quality of names and forms doesn’t mean that one wouldn’t perform any necessary actions that would help and benefit others. One can be performing action selflessly and fearlessly, without being conditioned to react in certain way according to any particular thinking, belief and practice about how everyone should feel, act and react.

Yoga and Buddhism practice is about freeing the mind from ignorance and the conditioned behavior pattern of the mind. The world will have less human beings constantly feel annoyed, disturbed, offended, angered, frustrated or unhappy about this or that. There will be peace in those who are free from ignorance and the conditioned behavior pattern of the mind, who respect everyone as they are, not necessarily agreeable to one’s particular thinking and belief to analyze and judge everything, and naturally, it helps to bring more peacefulness into the world.

The important and effective practice to free the mind from being conditioned into a particular behavior pattern is non-attachment and non-identification towards one’s family, educational, cultural, religious, spiritual, social, philosophical or political background. While for the minds that feel it’s difficult to practice non-attachment and non-identification, but are still interested in transforming one’s mind, then they can practice renunciation or moving the mind away from such environment that empowers attachment and identification with all kind of qualities, names and forms.

Those who have strong foundation in non-attachment and non-identification don’t need to renounce the world of egoistic identification with all kinds of quality, name and form, and live in the world as it is, but without being influenced, affected, disturbed or determined by any qualities, names and forms.

Those who are not (really) interested in peace, they don’t have to practice yoga or anything that is about changing and transcending one’s mind behavior pattern, where it’s not about trying to control, influence and change other people’s thinking and behavior to be the way that one thinks and believes how it should be, the way that one can agree with, based on one’s particular family, educational, cultural, religious, spiritual, social, philosophical or political background.

Inquire the root cause of separateness and discrimination

In many different society, community and nationality with different ethnics and cultures in the world, there’s something in common that everyone think and believe as something good and right, “You must be grateful to your own family, tribe, culture, community and country, and you must give back to your own people and protect your own people from any external threat/intimidation/invasion/hostility.”

Human beings are being brought up in such way at home, at school, at work, in the community and country, for how they think and what they believe as good and bad, right and wrong, positive and negative, should and shouldn’t, appropriate and inappropriate, being trained to be ‘loyal’, ‘patriotic’ and ‘caring’ for their own people/family/ethnicity/tribe/culture/community/country.

There it goes and expands, separateness and discrimination exist everywhere in the world, even in those who think and believe that they are going against ‘discrimination’ and fighting for ‘non-discrimination’.

As even the identification of “We are citizen/human beings of the world. The entire world is our home, and we shouldn’t discriminate one another in the world”, is not free from the idea of “We need to be grateful to our own beings. We must give back to our own beings and protect our own beings and our home” that generates separateness and discrimination towards ‘non-citizen/human beings of the world’, or ‘outsiders’, or ‘foreigners’, or ‘aliens’, as there are countless worlds in countless universes.

Those who truly know what is the source of ‘discrimination’ and ‘non-discrimination’, there’s no need to go against ‘discrimination’ or fight for ‘non-discrimination’, as ‘discrimination’ doesn’t exist in those who are free from any sort of identification, and ‘non-discrimination’ doesn’t exist upon the absence of ‘discrimination’.

Everyone without ‘any identification with any names and forms’ can be contributing or giving back to the world, and can be kind and compassionate and helpful towards anyone without any ‘discrimination’ towards anyone under different names and forms, without the idea of “I need to be grateful to give back to my own people/beings and protect my own people/beings.” Unfortunately, not many minds can truly understand this.

It’s common reaction that most people would get offended upon coming in contact with this teaching, and categorized this kind of teaching as ‘bad’, ‘wrong’, or even ‘dangerous/threatening’ towards what they think and believe as ‘we, us and ours’, of their own particular family, ethnicity, tribe, culture, community, or country, as they feel threatened by such teaching that they think would ‘destroy’ their ‘bubble’ of ‘a strong family/ethnicity/tribe/culture/community/country, where they believe it’s essential to have ‘strong identification as one of us’, ‘loyalty’, ‘patriotism’ or ‘caring for our own people/beings’ in order to protect one another within that family/ethnicity/tribe/culture/community/country from any ‘external’ threat/intimidation/invasion/hostility from ‘outsiders’, ‘foreigners’, ‘aliens’, or ‘those who are not one of us.’

If people really want the world to evolve or progress ‘healthily’, people need to free their own minds from ignorance and egoism, and see the truth of the root cause of all ‘humanity problems’ in the world.

It’s okay if many people don’t like to hear this, and the world continues to evolve as it is, under the influence of ignorance and egoism. In less than 150 years or so, all kinds of people existing now, regardless of whether under the influence of ignorance and egoism, or not, whether people think and believe themselves are good or not good enough, selfish or unselfish, contributing to good or bad happenings, will all be gone. Although the left behind damages derived from ignorance and egoism might last a little longer in the world for the next generations to deal with. Just like now, we all are dealing with the damages derived from ignorance and egoism that left behind from the previous generations.

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.

Gratitude and peace amidst global pandemic

Being able to have a home/room to practice social distancing/physical isolation, have access to clean water and soap to wash hand and/or body, have home toilet/bathroom, have access to get enough grocery and daily needs once every few weeks, have a kitchen and gas access to be cooking (even just for having instant noodles or a cup of hot drink), have electricity to be storing food for weeks/months in a fridge/freezer and enjoying all sorts of comforts, conveniences and entertainments at home, have internet access to be continuing mentally/emotionally (socially) active, have enough physical/mental space to be continuing physically/mentally active, have access to face mask and sanitizer, have ‘the sense of humour’ to entertain and/or uplift oneself and others, being able to breathe effortlessly, being able to continue generate income by working at home or have enough savings for surviving a few more months, and etc, are inaccessible ‘luxury’ for many others around the world.

Need not be disappointed/upset towards travelling restriction, favorite food items or beauty products or entertainments non-available, accessibility to clean eating and specific food trend is disrupted, personal/family/business/social/cultural/religious/spiritual/leisure meetings, gatherings, events, festivals and celebrations or favorite outdoor interactive/non-interactive activities are cancelled or non-available for a period of time, and etc.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (14)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (13)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (12)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (11)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (7)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (6)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (5)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (4)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020 (2)

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Video – My daily asana practice 2020

This is part of my daily asana practice.

Wishing everyone peace during this time being.

Lockdown expose mental state of many people

After many days/weeks of observing lockdown in many different countries, not just that the process of lockdown could help to contain the global epidemic effectively, but unintentionally, it also helps to expose the mental state of many people, where many people themselves are not aware of their own mental state that is not so well. Some people appreciate and enjoy the many days/weeks being with their family/relative/friend physically under the same roof at this time being, but there are also many more people are starting to behave in the way that is not how they usually behaved due to being physically constraint in a limited space all the time being with the family/relatives/friends.

People are worried about those who lives alone during this time being, and encourage companionship of family, relatives or friends staying close together under the same roof during the lockdown for a prolonged period of time, but actually, that could be generating or exposing more ‘human interactive problems’ among one another physically/mentally/emotionally than those who lives alone.

Some people are developing momentary mild mental stress/instability due to anxiety towards the present situation, but some are already suffering from mental illness/breakdown even before the lockdown that never been treated properly as they weren’t even aware of it, but now, it’s being ‘forced’ to be exposed due to there’s not enough personal time and space where two or more people are being ‘stuck’ together physically sharing the same limited living space under the same roof being refrained from their many out of the house social leisure activity with some other ‘beings’ or just to be having some personal time and space being alone by themselves to ‘escape’ the ‘tension/stress’ built up at home being with the people that they live with.

The accumulating tension, stress, frustration and dissatisfaction are not only deriving from anxiety generated towards the pandemic situation, but also from dealing with the ‘normal yet abnormal’ human’s behavior of the other members living in the same house undergoing the process of lockdown. People under stress are starting to loose their limited patience/tolerance and behaving aggressively towards one another who live under the same roof. It’s not strange that there will be more and more family/relationship problem brewing slowly/rapidly and domestic abuse are increasingly happening everywhere.

Meanwhile there will be somewhat ‘mentally/emotionally healthy’ people are appreciating the ‘enforced’ time and space being with their loved ones and learn how to be more patient and tolerant under this lockdown situation for a prolonged period of time.