Making The Dhamma Your Own
"A recurring theme in the teachings of the Forrest Ajahns is that you have to make the Dhamma your own. In other words, you can read about it, you can hear about it, think about it, if that's as far as you go, that's still the Buddha's Dhamma -- somebody else's Dhamma. You can practice it a little bit, but unless you really push yourself you don't really know how true that Dhamma is and it's not really your own...
I noticed a lot of people who get interested in the Pali Cannon, but if they don't really practice it or if they practice just in their ease and comfort, their interest begins to wane. They start getting cynical about the whole thing, but it's the people who tested the teachings, those are the ones who maintain their confidence, maintain their conviction, about what the Buddha taught is really true. That's because they've seen these qualities arise within them, they've seen that they can actually develop them in ways they wouldn't expect it...Your mind becomes Dhamma, you've made it your own. And that's not by imposing your idea about the Dhamma on it, it means you basically make yourself in the Dhamma...
there's a nice passage in the cannon where someone says even if the whole world rose up against the Buddha, he'd still side with the Buddha, from what he had seen in his own practice. The Dhamma gets bigger in your heart, the world gets smaller, becomes less and less of an issue because you realize the issues outside are nothing compared to the issues inside and you start straightening out these issues inside. The battle is won."
"He, the Blessed One, is indeed the Noble Lord, the Perfectly Enlightened One;
He is impeccable in conduct and understanding, the Serene One, the Knower of the Worlds;
He trains perfectly those who wish to be trained; he is Teacher of gods and men; he is Awake and Holy. "
--------------------------------------------"The Dhamma is well-expounded by the Blessed One,
Apparent here and now, timeless, encouraging investigation,
Leading to liberation, to be experienced individually by the wise. "