IT RAINS HARD ON A COVERED THING
IT RAINS HARD ON A COVERED THING
IT RAINS NOT HARD ON AN OPEN THING
Today we shall talk about how to end dukkha(suffering) according to Buddhism. The Buddha taught that each of us could come to the very important point of the cessation of dukkha. So I shall talk about a simple and direct method of practice according to my own experience. I can assure you that this method can really release you from dukkha.
When we talk about a method to end dukkha, the words are one thing and the practice is quite another. The method of practice is a method of developing sati (awareness) in all positions: standing, walking, sitting and lying. This practice has frequently been called satipatthana (the grounds of awareness), but whatever you call it the point is to be aware of yourself. If you are aware of yourself, then moha (delusion) will disappear. You should develop awareness of yourself by being aware of all your bodily movements, such as turning your hands, raising and lowering your forearms, walking forward and back, turning and nodding your head, blinking your eyes, opening your mouth, inhaling, exhaling, swallowing saliva, and so on. You must be aware of all of these movements, and this awareness is called sati. When you have awareness of yourself, the unawareness, which is called moha, or delusion, will disappear.
To be aware of the movements of the body is to develop sati. You should try to develop this awareness in every movement. When you are fully aware of yourself, there arises a certain kind of panna (knowing) in the mind that knows reality as it is. To see yourself as you are, to see Dhamma (actuality; the way things are; the truth of nature, of existence). To see Dhamma isn’t to see deities, hell or heaven, but to see oneself turning the hands, raising and lowering the forearms, walking forwards and back, turning and nodding the head, blinking the eyes, opening the mouth, inhaling, exhaling, swallowing saliva, and so on. This roop-nahm. Roop is body, nahm is mind. Body and mind are dependent upon each other. What we can see is roop, and the mind that thinks is nahm. When we know roop-nahm, we know reality as it is. When you see with the eyes, you should be aware of it. When you see with the mind, you should also be aware of it.
Dhamma is yourself, everyone is Dhamma, whether male or female, Thai, Chinese, or Westerner, each is Dhamma. The practice is with us, and the Teaching of the Buddha can really lead us to the extinguishing of dukkha. Individuals are Dhamma, Dhamma is the individual. When we know Dhamma, we will understand that everything is not as we think it is. Everything is sammuti (supposition). This is the panna that arises so that the real Teaching of the Buddha can be realized. Whether the Buddha existed or not, Dhamma is there. When you really see this you will be beyond your superstitions, once you that Dhamma is yourself; it is you that lead your own life, not anything else. This is the beginning of the end of dukkha.
Next we try to develop sati in all our movements in daily life. For example, when we make a fist or open it, we are aware of it. And when we are aware of all our movements, then not knowing, or moha, disappears by itself. When there is awareness of our self, there is no delusion. It is like pouring water into a glass. As we pour the water in, it displaces the air; and when we have filled the glass with water, all the air has gone. If we then pour the water out, air instantly goes back into the glass. Just so when there is moha, sati and panna cannot enter. But when we practice the developing of sati, doing awareness of ourselves, this awareness displaces moha. When there is sati, moha cannot arise. Actually there is no dosa – moha – lobha (anger – delusion – greed). Why not? As you are listening to me talking, how is your mind? Your listening mind is natural, and free from dosa – moha – lobha.
Now we come to know sasana ("religion"), Buddhasasana ("Buddhism"), papa ("sin"), and punna ("merit"). Papa is stupidity, punna is cleverness or knowingness: when you know, you can relinquish. Sasana is the individual, and Buddhasasana is the satipanna (awareness-knowing) that enters and knows the mind. The word "Buddha" means one that knows. In developing sati in all our movements we develop total awareness in the whole body. When thought arises we see it, know it and understand it. But in the case of common people, they are part of that thought, so they cannot see the thought. Suppose that we are in a mosquito net, which is inside a room of a house. We must first come out of the room and the house to see that we were also inside them. Thought is the same. We cannot see it if we a part of it. We must come out of it in order to see it clearly. When we see it, thought stops.
It is just like bringing a cat into our house to get rid of the rats that are disturbing us. Cats and rats are enemies by nature. At first the cat may be very small and very weak, while the rats are large and full of energy. So if the cat pounces on a rat, it is dragged along as the rat runs away, and, after holding on for a while, it must let go. We cannot blame the cat, but we must feed it. We feed the cat often, and soon it is very energetic and very strong. Then, when the rats come, the cat can get them. When the rats are caught they die of shock at once, before the cat eats them. Thought is the same. If we develop sati, then when thought arises we become aware of it, and it stops. The thought does not continue, because we are aware of it. It disappears because we have sati, samadhi (setting up the mind; steadiness of mind) and panna all together at that moment. Sati, or awareness, means to be alert like a cat watching for rats. When thought arises we do not have to be a part of it. It will arise and disappear by itself. When there is sati, there is no moha. When there is no moha there is no dosa – moha – lobha. This is called nahm-roop; nahm thinks, and we know the deception, we know it in time, we know the protection, we know the cure: just this is sati.
Sila ("keeping moral precepts") is normality. Sila is the result of a normal mind. This is the same as sati – samadhi – panna. The method to develop the total awareness that can end dukkha, as I understand it, and as I believe the Buddha taught, is to practice in our daily life. So we need not sit cross-legged with eyes closed. If we sit like that we cannot work. If a thief comes, he will succeed in robbing us, so we should open our eyes, and then we can work at any kind of work and all the time we can practice the developing of sati. Whether we are students, teachers, parents, sons, daughters, policemen, soldiers or government officials, all of us can fulfill our responsibilities while practicing developing sati. Everybody can do their duty practicing developing sati. How? Since we do not sit with eyes closed, we can go on with our duties and see our mind at the same time.
The mind has no real self. As soon as it thinks, we see it, we know it, we understand it. To develop sati is to shake the knowing element of a person. Everybody has the reality in their own mind, but if we cannot see it we do not understand it, but it is still there. Now if we look we see it. When we see like this, it is called seeing Dhamma. Seeing this kind of Dhamma can get rid of dosa – moha – lobha.
Magga (the noble path) is the way of practice leading to the cessation of dukkha. The way of practice is to be aware of thought. Our body works according to our duties and responsibilities, but our mind must see thought. Dukkha arises and, because we do not see it, it conquers and enslaves us, it sits on our head and slaps our face, but if we can see it, know it and understand it, then it cannot defeat us. Dukkha is like a leech that attaches itself to us and sucks our blood. If we try to pull it off it is stubborn, it resists, and we hurt ourselves more. But if we are clever we simply use water mixed with tobacco leaf and lime, and squeeze the water onto the leech. The leech is afraid, and drops off by itself. So we don’t have to tear it out, or to force it, in order to get rid of it. This is the same. Those who don’t know try to stop dosa – moha – lobha, they try to fight and suppress it, but one that knows just has sati to watch the mind and see thought.
It is like turning on an electric lamp. A person who does not know about electricity will try at the bulb instead of the switch, so the lamp does not light. But someone that knows about electricity knows how to use the switch, and the lamp lights up. Dosa – moha – lobha is like an electric lamp, the thought is like the switch. The thought is the cause of this derangement. If we want to eliminate the derangement, we come to the thought. When we have sati watching thought, dosa – moha – lobha cannot arise. Actually, there is no moha, no lobha andno dosa. We touch the switch here in order to have light there. We develop sati here in order to end all dukkha. Dukkha arises from moha. When we have sati there is no moha and so no dukkha. When we move our hands we feel, and the awareness of this feeling is sati and when we have sati we are separate from thought and can see thought.
You should not pay so much attention to the movement, but use sati to watch conceptual thought. Just passively see the thought; do not "stare" at it. When thought arises, let it pass away. Actually there is no moha. Moha arises when we are not aware. It is like when we build a new house, there are no rats, but when we fill the house with things the rats come. Sometimes, when people criticize or blame us, we feel disappointment; in this practice, awareness of the disappointment will arise at the same time, like the cat catching a rat. When we can maintain our mind in this way, dosa – moha – lobha cannot arise. When thought, suffering, or confusion arise, do not try to stop it, but observe it, and we will understand its nature. As soon as thought arises, sweep it away immediately and come to be with the awareness: thoughts, suffering, confused mind, they will go by themselves.
Any time that thought arises we know it, even while sleeping. When we move our body while sleeping we also know it. This is because our awareness is complete. When we see thought all the time, no matter what it thinks, we conquer it every time. Those that can see thought are near the current to nibbana (extinction of dukkha). Then we will come to a point where something inside will arise suddenly. If the thought is quick, panna will also be quick. If the thought or emotion is very deep, panna will also be deep. And if these two things are equally deep and collide, then there is the sudden breaking-out of a state that is latent in everybody. With this occurrence the eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body and mind are detached from sights, sounds, smells, tastes, touches, and mental objects. It is like uncoupling the drive mechanism of car. When the parts become independent of each other, the car, although it still exists, can no longer be driven.
When this state occurs we do not die. We can still work according to our duties. We can eat, drink and sleep. But now, by the law of nature everything is void, and this is the unchangeable law. Suppose there is a rope drawn tightly between two posts, and we cut it in the middle, so that the rope falls apart. If we want to tie it together again, we cannot. If we untie it from a post to tie it in the middle, then we cannot tie it to the post again. This is like the six senses of one that realizes their original nature. When their eyes make contact with an object there is no attachment, just as a screw that is stripped, without threads, cannot become attached.
All of the Buddha’s Teaching aims to put an end to dukkha. If we do not understand this we will be in doubt about his Teaching, and speculation about rebirth, heaven, hell, and so on, speculation that should be ignored, will plague our mind. The Teaching of Buddha is timeless, and is not limited by language, race, nationality, or religion. According to the Satipatthana-sutta, if you practice satipatthana continuously, like a chain – that is, to develop sati at all moments – then arahatta (extinction of dukkha), or the attainment of the anagami ("non-returner"), can be expected within seven years, or in as short a time as seven month or even seven days. If you develop sati according to the method I have explained, and have sati continuously like a chain, then in at most three years dukkha will be diminished by sixty percent, and in some cases completely eliminated. Some may achieve this in as little as one year or even ninety days. There is no gladness or sorrow, contentment or discontent. This way to the cessation of dukkha is an easy way. It is difficult because we do not really know. Therefore we have doubt and lack of confidence.
When we are confident in every step of practice, it is not so difficult. You can practice it anywhere, but you should really know the practice. If you can assure yourself, then you have a refuge in yourself. Religion means this refuge. If you study books for many years, it will still be theory. But if you really practice, it will not take you so long, and you will know it much better than the theorists. In the Pali texts there are two important mental capacities: the first is sati, calling to mind, and the second sampajanna, awareness of oneself. When you are aware of the movements of your hand, you have both sati and sampajanna. The fruit from doing this is very great: it is incalculable. You cannot buy non-suffering, but must practice by yourself, until it arises by itself, because it is already there.
Making merit and keeping precepts are like unhusked rice, which is inedible, but useful because we can use it to grow next year’s crop. Making ourself calm is like husked but uncooked rice, and is still inedible. There are two kinds of calmness. The first is samatha (concentration; one pointedness) calmness, the second vipassana (seeing the true nature of personal existence)calmness. In doing samatha meditation you must sit still, close your eyes, and watch your inhalations and exhalations. When the breathing becomes very subtle, sometimes you are not conscious of the breath, and you feel very calm; but the dosa – moha – lobha cannot be eliminated, because there is still not-knowing, and you are not aware of thought. But vipassana meditation can get rid of dosa – moha – lobha, and this kind of calmness can be experienced anywhere and at any time. So we do not have to sit with eyes and ears closed. Our eyes can see, our ears can listen, but when thought arises we see it. This kind of calmness is latent in everybody.
Our mind is originally clean, illuminated and calm. That which is not clean, illuminated and calm is not our mind. It is kilesa (defilement). We try to conquer this kilesa, but in actuality there is no kilesa at all. So how can we conquer it? The only thing that we can do is just to see original mind clearly, to encounter the thought clearly. When we see the mind clearly, there is no moha.
The word "clean" indicates the mind’s natural state, not stained or covered by anything. We have satipanna penetrate into the mind and see it, knowing it to be stable and unaffected by anything. This is the cleanness of the mind. The illumination of the mind is like having a bright light that allows us to go in safety wherever we may go. In this radiance we see our life-mind all the time, every minute, every second, every instant. This is the illumination of the mind. "Calm" means cessation, the cessation of dosa – moha – lobha, of all agitation and difficulty; the cessation, too, of seeking any method or system. We need no longer look for a teacher because we really know, for and by and in ourself. When we really know the mind, we know it to be clean, illuminated and calm at all times.
When we know the mind, we know how dukkha arises and how dukkha ceases. We know thought every time it thinks. We are even aware of our heartbeat. And whatever our movements are, we know them. We know by watching naturally, without strain or tension. The knowing is very quick: it is quicker than lightning, quicker than electricity, quicker than anything. The knowing is the same as panna, the same as satipanna; sati and samadhi and panna, they are all the same. The panna really knows everything. Even when the slightest sound occurs, we know it. The wind touches our skin, we know it. Thought arising in any manner, we know it. When the thought is deep, the panna is also quick. However quickly thought arises, the panna knows the thought.
This is called paticcasamuppada (dependent co-arising).When there is no avijja (not-knowing), the structure that gives rise to dukkha is broken, because the knowing is there. You may have heard that the Buddha cut his hair just once and it never grew again. This is a riddle. When hair is cut, it cannot attach itself again. This is analogous to cutting off avijja so that it cannot arise again. This is the inviolable law of nature, just like the rope that, stretched between two posts, cannot be tied once it has been cut. When we see this point, we know that it is latent within each person. Then why is it so difficult? It is not difficult, but it is also not easy. It is difficult and it is easy.
There is a saying in northeastern Thailand, "the poor are rich, the rich suffer." Why suffer? Why poor? The rich are rich in money alone, but poor in not seeing their own nature. The poor are rich with law of nature. Money cannot bring anybody to this point. Every person has the same ability to reach this point, because everybody has it. It does not mater whether we are woman or man, Thai, Chinese or Westerner, and it is not dependent on religious belief. We all have the same original mind. This is the law of nature, just as everybody is composed of the same four elements. I can assure you that each and every person can practice, but you must have a sincere mind.
I believe the saying that Dhamma existed before the arising of the Buddha. The Buddha was the first one to discover it. Before the Buddha, Dhamma was concealed. The Buddha only uncovered Dhamma. This true nature exists in every person. When you stand up, this nature stands up with you. When you sit, it also sits. When you sleep, it sleeps along with you. When you go to the toilet, it accompanies you to the toilet. It goes everywhere with you, so you can practice everywhere. So you should know how to practice: you should know how to see thought. When you know the source of thought, this is a very important point. From this point the way will reveal itself.
When we have the right view and the right path, then certainly we will reach the goal. In listening to a Dhamma talk, in giving charity, in keeping precepts, in practicing samatha meditation or even vipassana meditation, if we do not reach this goal they are good only in a worldly sense, but not in the real sense. If we do not give charity or keep precepts or practice meditation, and still reach this point, then everything is done, like the sky covering the earth: it covers everything. So the eighty-four thousand discourses in the Tipitaka, the Pali Canon, which is the whole Teaching of the Buddha, are included in this point. If you study the entire Tipitaka, you should come to this point. If you finish the entire Tipitaka but have not come to this point, then you still have doubts, and therefore dukkha.
Now we do not have to learn any Sutta (the discourses of the Buddha), Vinaya (the code of monastic discipline) or Abhidhamma (the systematic analysis of the teaching found in the Suttas), which together comprise the Tipitaka, but we have to come to an awareness of this point. When we reach this point, we will know the whole of the Tipitaka. Once the Buddha, walking in front of the forest with a number of monks, grasped some dried leaves and asked those monks: "The leaves in the forest or the leaves in my hand, when compared which are more?" The monks answered: "The leaves in the whole forest are much more than the leaves in your hand, venerable sir." The Buddha then said: "Dhamma that I know is great, like the leaves in the whole forest, but Dhamma that I teach you is like a handful of leaves." Please understand the meaning: the Buddha teaches only dukkha and its extinction, nothing else. Studying texts, giving charity, keeping precepts, practicing samatha meditation or vipassana meditation should bring us to this point, otherwise they are useless. When we reach this point, everything is done.
SO OPEN UP THE COVERED THING
Because every person has doubts in seeking the method to be free from confusion, today I will talk about the method and about the practices that I developed previously.
Formerly, I learned many kinds of kammatthana (meditation; lit. working ground), such as inhale – "Budh", exhale – "dho", and sitting cross-legged with eyes closed, all sorts of methods like that. I learned internal recitation of "samma araham". And I practiced the method of the rising and falling of the abdomen: this is also a method of inhalation and exhalation. And then I came to the method of breath counting, yet another practice of inhalation and exhalation. Then I came to practice anapanasati (awareness of in- and out-breaths), knowing the short inhalation and the short exhalation and also knowing the long inhalation and the long exhalation. These kinds of methods that I practiced, I didn’t have any insight. These kinds of methods lead to calmness, but it was a different kind of calmness that I was seeking.
Most people are seeking calmness, but the sitting calmness is the calmness that is not calm. So I continued my seeking to encounter the truth. Truth is the reality that is latent in everybody, regardless of nationality, language or uniform. What is latent in everybody is what I was seeking, until I found it and could see it clearly, could understand it clearly: that is the real calmness.
There are two kinds of calmness. The calmness that is not-knowing needs to sit quietly and to sit alone. That is not real calmness. The calmness that I am going to tell you about today is the calmness that we don’t have to seek. Why don’t we have to seek it? Because we know the end of dukkha (suffering). This is called calmness. And we don’t have to learn from anyone else anymore. Now, everybody, please listen carefully.
First, the method that led me to find real calmness. Without paying any special attention to any point, I just do the movement, and just have sati (awareness)knowing all postures and all movements, such as standing, walking, sitting, lying, bending, stretching, and all the movements. When I have practiced in this way, and have awareness of all my movements, panna (knowing)arises within myself. Aware of myself, not others, I know roop (body), I know nahm (mind),I know the disease of roop, I know the disease of nahm.
There are two kinds of roop-disease – nahm-disease. Disease in the body, such as headache or stomachache, with this kind of disease we have to go to the hospital to see the doctor. The doctor will check the body and the cause of the disease, and, knowing the nature of the disease, can apply the medicine that cures it. Then we recover. Another kind of disease is when the mind thinks and we are content or discontent, glad or sad. This kind of disease cannot be cured by the doctor in the hospital, but you have to study yourself until you know the source of thought. To cure this kind of disease you have to study yourself until you really know.
When I know the source of thought, I have found calmness, but only a small amount of calmness arises. The real calmness is when we can cease to seek, when we don’t have to run around to find anyone else: that is called calmness.
I continue to do more awareness of myself, panna rises, and I know dukkham – aniccam – anatta (suffering – impermanence – not self), and I know sammuti (supposition). Whatever supposition exists in the world, know it completely, know it to the end, know it to the whole, and know everything that is in the world. What supposition is is called sammuti-pannatti (convention of supposing), paramattha-pannatti (convention of the touchable), attha-pannatti (the deep meaning of the Dhamma) and ariya-pannatti (agreement between those that have become Dhamma). We have to really know these four conventions completely, really know them to the end, and really know them to the whole.
After I know sammuti completely, I know sasana ("religion"), I know papa ("sin"), I know punna ("merit"), I really know these things. Usually we attach to sammuti, such as we attach to Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity or Islam. These things are only sammuti. The real religion is everyone. Buddhasasana ("Buddhism") is satipanna (awareness-knowing), which is in everybody. I can assure you on this point. When I know myself, I know everyone is like myself, because everyone can know.
Now I will talk more about papa. Papa is when one doesn’t know oneself. The most papa in the world is any person who doesn’t know her- or himself. Punna is somebody that is self-aware. If you are aware of yourself you are one that has punna,and are capable of really making yourself a noble individual (ariyapuggala) –this is called calmness. To be aware of oneself doesn’t mean that we are aware that we are male or female, we are Mr. A or Mr. B, but to be aware of oneself is to have sati in every moment. Whatever movement the body makes, we are aware of it. Whatever the mind thinks, we are aware of it.
This awareness really arises from the law of nature. When thought arises we see it, know it and understand it. When we see it, thought stops by itself. When thought stops, panna arises, and we know the source of dosa – moha – lobha (anger – delusion – greed), we know that dosa – moha – lobha is not in ourself. Whenever we cannot see our own life, cannot see our own mind, in that moment we are unaware of ourself, we forget ourself. When we are unaware of ourself, dosa – moha – lobha arises. When it arises we suffer. Everybody hates dukkha, but we don’t know dukkha – so we seek calmness.
Therefore we cannot have calmness just by sitting. That is not the way to calmness. The calmness that I mean is the calmness of freedom from dosa, freedom from moha, freedom from lobha,and this kind of calmness is in everybody without exception. Knowing this, I can guarantee that every person can attain this calmness. Whatever nationality, language or religion, whether you are a Hindu, a Buddhist, a Christian, a Muslim or whatever religion, you can learn yourself, because everyone has body-mind. All of you sitting here now and listening to my talk, the mind of everyone is like this. Our life-mind is already clean, illuminated and calm, but when we say that the mind is clean, illuminated and calm, we just imitate the words of others, we don’t really see it. When we really see it, we will be able to guarantee that it is already there in everybody and that anybody, if they really practice, they must know it, they must see it, and they must have it.
When we know it and see it, we can guarantee that this teaching can apply to everybody in any social class and of any age. A millionaire can practice; somebody who doesn’t even have one coin can practice. An educated person with many degrees can practice; the illiterate can also practice. I can really guarantee this point, but we have to know the correct method, and see into our mind.
Now, all of you listening to my talk, just look into your own mind, and you will know the characteristic of the mind. Here is a parallel. The seed of any kind of fruit, if we plant it in well-watered soil, under good conditions, it will have issue. And ordinary rice or sticky rice or whatever kind of grain we plant, it too will have issue and grow up. This is like every person. If you listen, and understand it, and bring it into practice, you will know. When we don’t know and we don’t understand, it is like the thin grain, or the husk without any grain inside: when we plant it in the paddy field it has no shoot, it doesn’t grow up. This is the same as when people who come to teach don’t really know themselves; they teach others, so other people do not know.
I will raise another parallel. Suppose that during daytime the sunlight is dull, but actually the sun is always bright. Our mind is like the sun, it is clean, illuminated and calm, like the sun all the time. But whenever we lose our way from the source of our life-mind, we will not see where Buddha is, we will not know where Buddhism is, and we will not see where calmness is. When we don’t know, we seek teachers, but that is for somebody who doesn’t know.
If you want to have calmness, or Buddha, you don’t have to do many things. Just come to see the source of you own life. When thought arises, don’t enter into the thought, but cut away the thought and come out of the thought immediately. Do it like the cat and rat. When the rat emerges, the cat pounces upon it immediately. The thought is the same. When it thinks, sati or panna will know immediately: thought is stopped. Do it often in this manner. Or it is like boxers. When we face the fighter we have to fight, we punch to the eyes. The fighter will not be able to fight us. Dosa – moha – lobha is the same. When we come to this point, Buddha will arise within ourself.
Buddha is the mind that is clean, the mind that is illuminated, and the mind that is calm. Each of us, we are not angry for twenty-four hours, we are not greedy for twenty-four hours, but only moha, we do not know it. When we come to know this point, we will know more and more. Panna will arise and arise. It is like pouring water into a bottle. The water in the bottle will come up to the brim. When it is full to the brim, we cannot put anything in it. Sati – samadhi – panna (awareness – setting up the mind – knowing) is the same thing. This can be called calmness in Buddhism, or it can be calmness in Christianity, or we can call it whatever we like.
Truth is in everybody. When one knows it, one can live in the world without any dukkha, one can do any work without dukkha. Whether one is a teacher or merchant or parent or worker, only when one knows the method of practice, when one comes to the end it will decrease by itself. It is like a leech attached to our skin. We don’t have to force, to tear it out, but just bring some lime and tobacco-leaf mixed with water, squeeze it onto the leech, and the leech will detach by itself. When we come to know this point we will have no doubt, and we don’t need to seek any more teachers. We will know that the end of dukkha is here.
Today I have talked about truth, appropriate to the time. I will finish talking now. Anyone that has any questions, feel free to ask.
AUDIENCE: Why are people neurotic?
LUANGPOR: Because we think a lot and we never see thought. We only see outside ourself: that this person is rich, that person poor, this person beautiful, that person not beautiful; somebody who has a car only sees their car, somebody who has jewels only sees jewels, somebody with a watch only sees their watch. They never see their own life, their own mind; this is moha (delusion). To see our own mind clearly, without trying to do anything with or about it, simply seeing it and letting it go, this is the way to freedom from dukkha, freedom from all neurosis.
So we should develop sati. "Develop" means to make much of it. As sati grows, its ability to penetrate into and reveal the mind also grows. If we only practice keeping the precepts or doing calmness meditation, it is still not safe. It is like lighting a candle in a dark cave. The darkness shrinks a little but is still there with us, we are still in the dark, and when the candle goes out the darkness immediately covers everything again. So we should emerge from the cave by having sati all the time, in every movement. This is an easy method. Anyone can do it, and it can be practiced everywhere.
AUDIENCE: When we see thought and the source of thought, will suffering and all kinds of tension end or not?
LUANGPOR: Not end yet, because we only know it but we still do not do anything with it. We only know and see thought, we only know the source of thought, but sometimes we lose the way of it. For example, each day we may know it ten times, but the not-knowing is more. So it is not the end. But it is the beginning of destroying moha in the source of thought.
AUDIENCE: I would like to ask, during Luangpor’s practice, before coming to the end, was there any point where you had doubt arising, and was there any sign that released you from the doubt whether there was any more moha or not?
LUANGPOR: It has a sign, but not a physical sign. The sign is that you see yourself and you have no moha. It is as if an overturned bowl had been set aright. Or it is like uncovering something that has been covered over and hidden. Only anyone that comes to this point will know it, and will immediately have no doubt. We don’t have to talk about dosa – moha – lobha, because it is quite common, it is a shallow matter. When we talk about seeing thought, most people know thought but they do not see thought. When we know thought, thought will still continue, and we lose our way in the continuity of thought, we have moha in thought, then dosa – moha – lobha comes at this point. So this is why a person who knows thought still has dosa – moha – lobha.
AUDIENCE: In seeing the thought, does the mind talk inside?
LUANGPOR: No, not the mind talking inside. When we see it, it is detached. It is like the leech. When we know thought it is like trying to pull the leech out of the skin. But when we really see it, we don’t have to force the leech, but only put tobacco-leaf and lime mixed with water onto the leech, and the leech will detach by itself. So if we really know, we don’t have to listen to anybody. It is like we are sitting here now, we don’t have any dosa or lobha, and we only have moha, because we do not see our life. When we see and know our own life all the time, dosa – moha – lobha cannot arise. So our mind is clean, our life is not dirty; there is no external sign, people cannot see, but we know and see ourself.
AUDIENCE: Luangpor says that when we see thought, thought will stop immediately. I am not sure about this. If it is true I would like to ask, when we see thought and thought stops, do we know what the next thought is?
LUANGPOR: Don’t pay attention to the next thought. Only see the thought: it will stop by itself. Don’t pay attention to where the thought comes from. When we see it, dosa – moha – lobha cannot arise.
AUDIENCE: Luangpor teaches to see thought. Who is the one seeing the thought?
LUANGPOR: Don’t seek the subject, and we will see that one is the refuge of oneself. And that is the real refuge. We can either say the person knows, or we can say that satipanna knows, whatever we may say, because there is no self that we can catch and take a look at. Because to see and to know are two different things. To know is entering into thought, and thought continues.
AUDIENCE: I have listened to Luangpor, and have the feeling that thoughts, and emotions like gladness and sadness, are something external. They are like rice and curry, which we can make use of, we can eat them, and we can see them. But when these things arise in us, we cannot see them, either thoughts or emotions. This is not a question, but I would like Luangpor to make it clear.
LUANGPOR: To see thought is one thing, to know thought is another thing. When we see thought, we can detach from thought. When we know thought, we still attach to thought. So knowing thought is the knowledge that belongs to avijja (not-knowing), the knowledge of a person who has no panna. But with the knowledge of one that has panna, to know and to see can be separated. It is vijja (knowing) or panna. Panna and vijja will separate thought apart, and that is the end of dukkha. So one that has panna knows like this. But I can assure you that all of you here can do it. Please try it yourself. Just to listen you cannot know it. It is only memorizing. If we practice it, we will come to see clearly, to know really. This is our own knowledge, so it is called Buddho, which means to see, or to detach.
AUDIENCE: When we know truth, and we know it clearly, is there any guarantee that, after knowing the knowledge will not disappear again? When we know, do we know for good, or can it disappear?
LUANGPOR: It is something inside us. It does not disappear. Suppose we know our eyes. We have our eyes all the time. This is the symbol that everyone has it and can teach it to others. I can assure you that all of you here, practicing this method, will not take longer than three years to know.
AUDIENCE: Luangpor, would you please give a blessing to all those here.
LUANGPOR: When a monk gives people the moral precepts and a blessing, that is one kind of goodness, but the real morality and real blessing is alertness and awareness of yourself. Please, each of you, practice the awareness wherever you are, at home or the office, in all movements, and that will become the real morality, the real blessing. The real morality, the real blessing will occur when you know, you see and you understand by yourself, and when you respect yourself.
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