If we really want to get rid of suffering, completely and totally, then clinging has to go. The spiritual path is never one of achievement; it is always one of letting go. The more we let go, the more there is empty and open space for us to see reality. Because what we let go of is no longer there, there is the possibility of just moving without clinging to the results of the movement. As long as we cling to the results of what we do, as long as we cling to the results of what we think, we are bound, we are hemmed in. Meditating on No-Self: A Dhamma Talk (Edited for Bodhi Leaves), by Sister Khema(1994)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Okay, not opium

12k today, a light rain for part of it.  Rain is of course impermanent and thus the enjoyment of it is in general going to go away, and for some people the irritant of it afterward is suffering.  For me, its good stuff.  Still 5k+ into a strong headwind and then about the same with the wind at my back made for an interesting type of run.  Basic into the wind, felt like I was an Olympian with the wind at my back.

Two things for certain.  Some of the running is very smooth and easy, some of it, especially when I pick up the pace feels like I am as graceful as an elephant.  With mindfulness it seems to be fairly nice.  If I lose it and move off into the streets of random thought I can tell that the running itself is not as fluid as it should be.

If I think back on all the year where I ran at a very quick pace in every workout, even 20+ miles were done at around 7:30 a mile, I think I can remember that there was a lot of involuntarily following the breath because I was working so hard.  Just thinking of the 5k I ran in Monticello in June I was focused on the breath because I was having to work so hard.  That is interesting to think about.

I didn't to the 5 bases today.  I tried to just follow the breath all the way around.  I would say I was mindful and concentrated for much of the run.  I used right/skillful effort to follow the breath and return to the breath when I got off track.  The one added element today was if the thought was unwholesome I went for a wholesome thought before I went for returning to the breath.

All this really shows is that its not opium for the mind.  But it requires daily practice and effort.

P.S.  Work went okay.  Mindful.

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