Future Bhikkhu wrote:Hi jack
Could name the five worst things that you experienced physically and the five worst things you experienced mentally. I know that the physical is born in the mind but you know what I mean. Example: It was cold (physical). No family (mental).
You've answered your own question when you said that the physical is born in the mind. There's no real need to differentiate between the two, because the negative or positive feelings associated with the physical are in fact entirely mental in nature. So really there's only mental 'worst things'.
But to satisfy your curiosity:
1. Mosquito bites (of which I was extremely susceptible)
2. Monkeys (mostly frustrating and humorous, but can be quite dangerous if you act in any way aggressive)
3. Ants (If you leave any food out at all, or even if an insect dies in your kuti, they will swarm in. On several occasions the small biting ants decided to nest under my jandals (flip flops) which I left outside my kuti. When I went to put them on in the morning the ants swarmed over my feet and bit the living daylights out of me. The bites sting too, a bit like a wasp sting. There's a larger 'bull ant' which bites too, the bite hurts a bit more than the small ants, but bull ant's are more docile, and generally not a problem.)
4. Scorpions (Found one in my toilet once and spent a couple of hours trying to coax the deadly thing out.)
5. Other assorted dangerous wildlife (Including snakes, especially the young small ones, which you have to be very careful of - I almost stepped on a deadly baby once, fortunately the monk infront of me on the path pointed him out just in time. Centipedes are also pretty bad, but not generally deadly. You just have to be very careful where you put your feet. I once mistook a deadly tarantula for a leaf while sweeping the path one morning. I only saw another once during my stay, so they weren't that common.)
Some might reckon me a bit of a wuss. That's not really true, I dealt with most of it at the time with a smile and a reflection that it's just the way it goes. By the end of my time there, I had grown quite accustomed to all of it. It was only with the idea of being rid of all of that, that these things stood out again as distinctive and unpleasant parts of my day. But I've grown up in the deep south of New Zealand where the only insect of note is the common house spider which you might only see once every 5 or 6 months. We only have two dangerous mammals - Drunken men and badly trained dogs.
Truth be told, in the end life is stressful whether you're a monk or a layperson. When I was young I thought that one would give up a substantial portion of one's suffering just by leaving the householder life. For some this might prove true, not for me, not last time around anyway.