Other Retreat talk
Reference book :
|Teoh WPCS 200329
|1st Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
When we are mindful, we are sensitive. Our mind can be aware of many things.
Mindfulness = Sati = Pure awareness before the knowing (before the aggregate of mind arise or come out)
Lost in thought => Heedlessness, lack awareness (sati).
A better word to develop the understanding is “attention”. When we are attentive, we listen without any distraction or thinking (no mental chattering, verbalisation and commentary). When we are paying attention or attentively listening, mind is silent and just awareness without any mental movement. Attention is listening attentively (without distraction). It is also termed, the Art of listening. Awareness of inattention is attention.
“Aware of what?” and “who is aware?” are wrong questions, as awareness is before the knowing. There is no subject to perceive in awareness. Hence, when we do the mental noting and verbalisation, that is the thought doing thought-based labelling/meditation. In awareness-based meditation, there is just an awareness within and mind is silent. But these 2 (the awareness nature and the thought) are very near to each other.
Attentively listening is not pure Sati because there is perception of what is being said and heard. That is, aware and perceive, awareness and perceive …. continuously with understanding. Attention without perceiving is true sati. I.e. it is just aware with specific phenomena awareness or spacious awareness.
To understand Truth, we have to be in a creative state of relaxed awareness to contemplate and reflect with a quite mind that is not actively thinking. With active thinking, it becomes knowledge.
Everything that arise is nature’s phenomena; including our mental states and emotions which constantly arise and pass away. Nature’s phenomena are just like that – not a permanent unchanging entity or something that one can grasps onto and control. They are dependent originating. They arise dependent on past conditions (main due to Karma) and when the conditions cease to be, they cease to be. There is no being within our 5 aggregates of form and mind; the 5 aggregates of form and mind are empty. But the 5 aggregates of form and mind is subject to Karma. So, it is very important for us to always be mindful of Karma so that our karmic nature will not fall. That is, to take care of karma via doing our right duties towards this law of karma well.
Is the body ‘Self’? If it is ‘Self’, it will not tend towards suffering. If it goes the way of nature and you don’t have control over it, how can it be ‘Self’. Similarly, are feelings, perception, sankhara and consciousness ‘Self’ or you? Are they permanent or impermanent? When feeling changes from pleasant to unpleasant, did you die? You did not die, right? Then how can feeling be you? The same goes for perception, sankhara and consciousness. That which is not ‘Self’ and impermanent, is it right to say, this is me and this is I?
There is an eternal (or oneness) nature within us (all living beings) which never die because it was never born. This oneness nature is the unconditioned and it needs a form and mind (a vehicle and a tool) for it to come to this existential world to enable it to live life.
When we meditate with the true mind, we will awaken to the truth and this truth (wisdom) which is connected to our form and mind will make it wise. You can say this form and mind is enlightened but it is not you because it is dependent originating following nature’s conditions and laws.
Always aspire to have these unique Dhamma understanding, life after life, so that we will understand these truths and not suffer whenever we arise. Always aspire to avoid the foolish and meet up with the Wise. Beings born outside the Sasana, will face great difficulties to come upon the Dhamma.
Question from Sister Tammy: How to develop all this understanding? Brother Teoh explained, now that you have the appropriate conditions to cultivate, so make full use of it and do not miss this golden opportunity to vow following the Bodhisattva vows that Bro Teoh had taught us/as stated in his printed yellow card. The Buddha also started of like this. Determine sincerely with the faith to have this Dhamma understanding life after life, whenever you choose to come or have to come.
Question for Sister Qinni: I am not able to make the Bodhisattva Vows every day. There are days when I will miss it, is that ok? Brother Teoh explained that you should try your best to recite the vows with faith until it is part of you. After that it is okay if you are not able to do it every day because of circumstances.
Brother Teoh also shares application of Dhamma in life. Please listen to the audio recording for details.
Sister Karen shares her experience on what she had learned. That is, one only needs to relax and maintain awareness via understanding, to accord and flow with conditions and act appropriately for things to arise. There is no need to yearn or crave for it.
“Unique Dharma Quotes” sharing in the 3rd Zoom Conference held during the Movement Control Order (MCO) dated 29 March 2020.
Brother Teoh went through the “Unique Dharma Quotes” book in his 3rd Zoom Conference. He started off with pages 22 and 23 where quotes 76 to 84 were shared. He then goes through the Preface and acknowledgement of the book followed by sharing of quotes no. 1 to 20. His explanations were very clear and beautiful. Please do view and listen to the video shared at the following link: https://youtu.be/NgJoSqVDuNE
Question from Sister Chwee: Is the true mind an awareness or a consciousness?
Brother Teoh explained that the true mind is just an awareness nature. It is not a consciousness, not even a pure consciousness without its content. When there is no sense data, the hearing consciousness will not arise but yet there is something (the unconditioned) that is capable of being aware of the silence. That is your true mind, your essence of mind.
Sister Alicia reported her meditation, both her recent and her earlier meditation done at Wu Pin Chen Seah before the lockdown. In her earlier meditation, she was able to realize her silent mind, then as that awareness stabilized, she was able to develop the understanding of how consciousness arises again after receiving their respective sense data. This understanding becomes clearer during her today’s meditation. Bro Teoh rejoiced and congratulated her for her rather good progress. That understanding which is very penetrative will transform her understanding. She will understand clearly what that ‘awareness nature’ and the form and mind is. The 2 are different. She will start to understand clearly who she is? And how she functions as a human being?
Sister Angie asked how to cope with the current Covid-19 pandemic as some said its transmission can be via airborne. Brother Teoh explained that no amount of fear, worry and anxiety or panic can be of help as explained by my quote no. 13. When we do not understand the dhamma, our mind will stir. The evil roots will condition negativity of mind states. We need to accept the reality of the moment and let the situation unfold via heedfulness and wisdom. Covid-19 is a reality and China is a good role model on how to handle the pandemic. When we can be at peace with every moment of sense experience, there is wisdom. We need to understand the causes and conditions that led to the pandemic so as to enable us to see things as they are and not with our knowledge. Later, with understanding, we will not be concerned with what other people say because this understanding can free our mind and enable us to act appropriately. Be heedful, and avoid un necessary conditions that can trigger off past Karma to work against us.
(Above outline short notes draft is by Sister Mun Yuen)
|Teoh WPCS 200405 What is Creative Contemplation and Reflection
(Short Notes pdf)
|2nd Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
|Teoh 200412 Unique Dharma Quotes Part 3
(Short Notes pdf)
|3rd Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
|Teoh WPCS 200419 Unique Dharma Quotes Part 4||4th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
Short note referenced in Bro Song’s sharing is available at https://broteoh.com/wp-content/uploads/Short-Notes-Teoh-Thu-190228.pdf
|Teoh WPCS 200426 Unique Dharma Quotes Part 5||5th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
Quote 68 – 79
Whiteboard referenced : https://broteoh.com/wp-content/uploads/Teoh-WPCS-200426-Buddha-saying-at-27min52sec-fr-31May2018-thurs-class.jpg
|Teoh WPCS 200503 Unique Dharma Quotes Part 6||6th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
Quote 80 – 89
|Teoh WPCS 200510 Unique Dharma Quotes Part 7||
7th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
The mind states of a true cultivators in daily life is always inner peace leading to inner well-being with inner awareness within. These mind states can be stabilized and perfected to cumulate into a very stable daily mindfulness with clear comprehension (Sati Sampajañña) within to insight into phenomena. The real meditation is Daily Mindfulness with clear comprehension.
The initial purpose of Formal Meditation is just to train the mind to be in sati, then stabilize it to make it ever-mindful. After that, continue to relax into all mind states that arise to deepen this stability of mindfulness until the mind enters Sati. This First Purpose of Formal Meditation to train the mind until it enters Sati is most important and immediate to help one progress in meditation.
The Second Purpose of Formal Meditation is to stabilize this Sati (an awareness before the knowing) until one can illuminate one’s Self Nature (SN). That means seeing Self-Nature with clarity within. This SN then becomes very clear to you. One can understand deeply what that SN is or what that True Mind (TM) is all about. With this clear and deep understanding within, one keeps on seeing the Mundane Mind (MM) arising from this SN (or TM). And how everything created by the Mundane mind (MM) ceases, back to that SN/TM.
Without that SN, there is no Mundane Mind. Without that SN, there is no perfection of the Spiritual Faculties. The Mundane Mind that arises from this Self-Nature is for one to understand that, this Mundane Mind is dependent originating, conditioned arising and a causal phenomenon; hence not a permanent unchanging entity. That is why the Mundane Mind is impermanent, not real, not you, not what you think.
All of meditation is to see these clearly!!! To see these, one has to stabilize one’s mindfulness. One has to have the ability to illuminate or realize one’s Self Nature very clearly until it becomes so stable, so clear that one understands what that Self-Nature is. It is so stable and clear that most of the time, one is with that awareness nature within; always one with that Self-Nature, with that True Mind. Then only the Real Penetrative Understanding can arise, and the higher meditation/cultivation of the Bodhisattva way can be developed. [This second purpose is for those who wanted to understand more of the Self-Nature, True-Nature or True Mind to go the Bodhisattva way. To do that One needs to stabilize one’s wisdom to go through the whole process so that the Real Cessation of Form and Mind, Nibbāna, can be realized!!! If it is for the sainthood way, a glimpse of it (or a momentary cessation) to realize it is relatively easy, but to realize the more stable cessation, Nibbāna, for a longer period leading to deep understanding of the SN is not so easy. One needs more wisdom, more clarity, stability of mindfulness and more wholesome conditions.
(Above short notes were prepared by Sister Eng Bee. Sadhu! X3)
|Teoh WPCS 200517 Unique Dharma Quotes Part 8||
8th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
Bro Chong, new cultivator.
|Teoh WPCS 200524 Unique Dharma Quotes Part 9||
9th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
Bro Chong sharing.
|Teoh WPCS 200531 Unique Dharma Quotes 10||
10th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
|Teoh WPCS 200607 Unique Dharma Quotes 11||
11th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes
|Teoh WPCS 200614 Unique Dharma Quotes 12||
12th Lesson. Unique Dhamma Quotes