My retreat Experience

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.

My retreat Experience

Postby clw_uk » Thu Jun 18, 2009 4:19 pm

Hey everyone


Sorry i havent replied to any posts that have been put to me the last few days but i have been on retreat at Amaravati :D http://www.amaravati.org/abmnew/index.php

Had a fantastic time there, really learnt a lot about my meditation practice, the Dhamma, "my self" and Buddhism as a whole. In regards to my practice i really learnt how to let go more, how Dhamma is about letting go of things and not getting things. I used to have the attitude of "im going to get this, im going to understand that, i want to get rid of that" forgetting the 2nd noble truth while doing all this, that wanting to get something or wanting to get rid of something is craving and so dukkha. I understood the 2nd noble truth on an intellectual basis before but i always managed to slightly keep it out of my daily practice until now and although i still have that attitude remaining, im now at least aware of it :) .

Ive also learnt that i have a tendency to want to be right and not want to be wrong but that it isnt a case of being right or wrong or winning arguments (or losing them) all the time but to understand and go past dukkha. I found a deeper focus on the present moment as well thanks to Ajahn Anando, about how looking to past or future is a distraction to understanding Dhamma

Also had a few things come to the surface during the retreat that i didnt know where there before, doubt was one that surprised me, i never noticed it before but now im more aware of it now, its not a massive doubt more a subtle stream of it on occasions. It made me wake up to the fact that i dont know everything and that even though things may seem correct today they can turn out to be wrong tomorow and that all i can do is practice and learn as i go a long and not get caught up in grasping at views, opinions and ideas. I also learnt how to deal with sleepiness (thanks to people snoring lol) through mindfulness and how to be mindful while doing chores and everyday things. Walking meditation was another part of the practice i learnt, found it really helpful to clear ones mind and see things more clearly.



On the social level i had a wonderful exp. being around the monks and other laymen/laywomen. Even though there was noble silence (which i kinda liked) there was a real sense of community that was really nice to feel a part of, even if it was only for a few days. Also found the chanting by the monks to be really beautiful and emotional (felt close to tears at one point :embarassed: :lol: ). I also felt a strong increase in my love of the Buddha, Dhamma, Sangha and people in general as well :)


I also came away with a determination to now definitely seek ordination as soon as my current situation gets better :) and I also formally took the refuge and precepts :D



If anyone gets the chance i would recommend going to amaravati even if its for a day, its a wonderful Wat (the temple is so beautiful) really peaceful and welcoming


On a last note ive decided to leave Dhamma Wheel for a short time. I have realized that at the momen it would be of greater benefit for me to spend the time i use on here in meditation and study instead. Im not leaving for good and will be back at some point but in case i dont speak to anyone on here again for whatever reason i wish you all the best and hope you all find the deathless soon

With metta to everyone

Craig :anjali:
“ Your mind is likewise blocked. But the right road awaits you still. Cast out your doubts, your fears and your desires, let go of grief and of hope as well, for where these rule , then the mind is their subject." Boetius
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Thu Jun 18, 2009 4:40 pm

Dear Craig,

I'm so glad for you! I really am :anjali:

I didn't realize that you plan to seek ordination. That's wonderful.

Best wishes,
Laura
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Jun 18, 2009 4:52 pm

Excellent!

Retreats are often the place where many breakthroughs occur.

Keep us posted on your ordination; place and preceptor, etc., if you do decide to do that.
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby Rhino » Thu Jun 18, 2009 5:12 pm

Thanks for describing your experience.
clw_uk wrote: I used to have the attitude of "im going to get this, im going to understand that, i want to get rid of that" forgetting the 2nd noble truth while doing all this, that wanting to get something or wanting to get rid of something is craving and so dukkha. I understood the 2nd noble truth on an intellectual basis before but i always managed to slightly keep it out of my daily practice until now and although i still have that attitude remaining, im now at least aware of it .

Thank you for reminding. That's true but frequently forgotten. I'll try to reflect on it more often.
With best wishes

Only in a vertical view, straight down into the abyss of his own personal existence, is a man capable of apprehending the perilous insecurity of his situation; and only a man who does apprehend this is prepared to listen to the Buddha's Teaching.
Nanavira Thera - Notes on Dhamma
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby clw_uk » Thu Jun 18, 2009 5:52 pm

Rhino wrote:Thanks for describing your experience.
clw_uk wrote: I used to have the attitude of "im going to get this, im going to understand that, i want to get rid of that" forgetting the 2nd noble truth while doing all this, that wanting to get something or wanting to get rid of something is craving and so dukkha. I understood the 2nd noble truth on an intellectual basis before but i always managed to slightly keep it out of my daily practice until now and although i still have that attitude remaining, im now at least aware of it .

Thank you for reminding. That's true but frequently forgotten. I'll try to reflect on it more often.



Glad to help :)

i found it helpful to realize that understanding Dhamma is just that, understanding. Not wanting or adverting but being mindful and fully aware of the way things are in order to understand. When we are mindful we arent adding or subtracting from experience but understanding it, "gaining" insight into it


this quote by Ajahn Sumedho may be useful for you, it is to me

Awareness is your refuge:
Awareness of the changingness of feelings,
of attitudes, of moods, of material change
and emotional change:
Stay with that, because it's a refuge that is
indestructible.
It's not something that changes.
It's a refuge you can trust in.
This refuge is not something that you create.
It's not a creation. It's not an ideal.
It's very practical and very simple, but
easily overlooked or not noticed.
When you're mindful,
you're beginning to notice,
it's like this.




Metta
Last edited by clw_uk on Thu Jun 18, 2009 5:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.
“ Your mind is likewise blocked. But the right road awaits you still. Cast out your doubts, your fears and your desires, let go of grief and of hope as well, for where these rule , then the mind is their subject." Boetius
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby clw_uk » Thu Jun 18, 2009 5:53 pm

Thanks Drolma and TheDhamma, when (or if, anicca lol) i seek ordination i will let you know :)


Metta
“ Your mind is likewise blocked. But the right road awaits you still. Cast out your doubts, your fears and your desires, let go of grief and of hope as well, for where these rule , then the mind is their subject." Boetius
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby Rhino » Thu Jun 18, 2009 6:08 pm

clw_uk wrote:this quote by Ajahn Sumedho may be useful for you, it is to me

Awareness is your refuge:
Awareness of the changingness of feelings,
of attitudes, of moods, of material change
and emotional change:
Stay with that, because it's a refuge that is
indestructible.
It's not something that changes.
It's a refuge you can trust in.
This refuge is not something that you create.
It's not a creation. It's not an ideal.
It's very practical and very simple, but
easily overlooked or not noticed.
When you're mindful,
you're beginning to notice,
it's like this.

Great, thank you.

All the best for you. :namaste:
With best wishes

Only in a vertical view, straight down into the abyss of his own personal existence, is a man capable of apprehending the perilous insecurity of his situation; and only a man who does apprehend this is prepared to listen to the Buddha's Teaching.
Nanavira Thera - Notes on Dhamma
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My retreat Experience

Postby GrahamR » Thu Jun 18, 2009 8:15 pm

clw_uk wrote:Hey everyone


If anyone gets the chance i would recommend going to amaravati even if its for a day, its a wonderful Wat (the temple is so beautiful) really peaceful and welcoming



It's the aniversity of the Wat on 4th of July and there should be a big attendnace, also it's the weekend before Dhamma day.

I'll be there if anyone else is attending, see you!
With metta :bow:
Graham
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Jun 18, 2009 9:41 pm

Hi Craig,

Sadhu, Sadhu, Sadhu.
Thanks for the nice report. I'm very happy for you.

Metta
Mike
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby Dan74 » Thu Jun 18, 2009 10:45 pm

Way to go, Brother!!!!

:twothumbsup:

It's important, I find, to keep that attention after the retreat, so that when we begin to slip into the habitual mode of functioning, the awareness is there and then it won't be "the habitual mode of functioning".

_/|\_
_/|\_
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Jun 18, 2009 10:46 pm

Greetings Craig,

Some excellent learnings there and good luck with your plans.

:buddha1:

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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Re: My retreat Experience

Postby zavk » Fri Jun 19, 2009 12:12 am

I'm so glad that you did a retreat. All the best to you and may you continue to uncover the little wisdoms that speak so much.
With metta,
zavk
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