THEN IT WILL NOT RAIN HARD ON THAT
Today is an important day, that we gather to listen to my talk on truth. What I am going to talk about is what I experienced. I have practiced it, and the result it has given me is that I have no doubts. All of you here want no dukkha (suffering), like myself I suppose. In reality, in actuality, there is no dukkha; we suffer only because we don’t know it. All of you listening to my talk right now have no dosa (anger), no lobha (greed), and no moha (delusion). The origin of the mind of human beings in every nation and of every language is as such. Please set up the mind to listen, and bring it into practice.
First of all, we have to practice awareness. Most people do not understand, so they try to find calmness, but without success. I did that also. I sought calmness, but I didn’t know where calmness was. Now I would like to talk about another kind of calmness. The calmness of freedom from not-knowing, because we know and because we are alert. The calmness of freedom from uncalm, of freedom from doubt, because when we practice the correct method of awareness we will know the supposition of everything there is in the world, because the awareness of ourself will bring panna (knowing).
There are four kinds of panna: knowing by memorizing, knowing by recognizing, clearly knowing and really knowing. And all these panna are in every person. Sacca means truth. There are four levels of knowing Dhamma: to know sammuti-sacca (conventional truth), paramattha-sacca (directly-contacted truth), attha-sacca (the deep truth) and ariya-sacca (the fundamentally transforming truth). And this can make anybody become a noble individual, regardless of social class or language. The first step is sotapanna, the second step sakadagami, the third step anagami, and the fourth step arahat (the four stages in the change from being hopelessly deceived to fully freed).
Now in the beginning stage of practice, we know vatthu (thingness), we know paramattha (mind touchable), we know akara (changingess). The mind will change to be ariya (noble), because we have clearly seen the source of dosa – moha – lobha (anger – delusion – greed) and then clearly known the source of vedana – sanna – sankhara – vinnana (feeling – percept – conceiving – knowingness). This is called to clearly know and to really know with nana-panna (the knowledge of full awareness-knowing) that arises from the developing of sati (awareness).
Next, we use sati to see the mind: panna will arise, and we will know the source of kilesa ("defilement", stickiness), tanha ("craving", heaviness), upadana (attachment) and kamma (action). Next, use sati to see the mind again; whatever thought arises see it immediately, and we will know the deception, know in time, know the protection and know the cure. We will know how to conquer conceptual thought. Sila ("moral conduct") will occur within our own mind.
It is not the person who observes sila, but sila observes the person. Sila means normality. Whenever the mind thinks abnormally we see the thought immediately: this is called sila observing us. People who only keep the precepts will not know this mind’s occurrence. So sila is a tool to get rid of crude kilesa, to destroy dosa – moha – lobha, to destroy kilesa, tanha and upadana. Then sila appears.
Samadhi (steadiness of the mind, setting up the mind) is the tool to get rid of the median kilesa. Median kilesa is the attachment to calmness. I have done breathing meditation, which brings calmness, but it is the kind of calmness dependent upon moha. I did that because I didn’t know the real calmness at that time. Now I know calmness. Real calmness is clearly seeing, really knowing and really understanding. This kind of calmness, everyone can do it when they know the source of moha. Whether you are a teacher, student, merchant or homemaker, you can do it. Everybody needs calmness, and this kind of calmness; whatever kind of work you do you still have it, because you know the source of moha.
We don’t have to sit with eyes closed to get calmness, but we can have calmness in this very society. Whenever conceiving thought arises, samadhi will see it immediately. Samadhi doesn’t mean to sit with eyes closed. Samadhi means setting up the mind to see our own mind, to see our own work.
Now panna gets rid of the subtle kilesa. We know the subtle kilesa when we know the source of thought whenever it arises. Whatever we do now, we have normality in speech and mind. When all these conditions gather, there will arise a kind of nana (insight knowledge) and it will break apart from the person. Only the one that practices will know. All of you sitting here now have as yet no nana, but the non-suffering and non-happiness is already there. When we don’t have nana we don’t know it, so we seek calmness. Now, as you are sitting here, look at your own mind. You don’t have jealousy, ill will, and aggression; now your mind is indifferent, not suffering and not happy, beyond good and evil. This state is in everybody, and this is the calmness that everyone is seeking.
Somebody who doesn’t know comes to teach people. A lot of people follow that person and sit with eyes closed, trying to find calmness. This is trying to get something that doesn’t really exist, trying to make something that cannot be real become real. It is impossible. So that is only the state of delusion. Now we come to know the real thing. It is called upekkha (indifference, equanimity). It is our own mind. It is like something that is covered over; now, when we come to see our own mind, it will be revealed.
So we don’t have to do anything with calmness, because it is already there. The only thing we have to do is know the method of practice. The method of practice is to know the movements of the body – we don’t have to watch the movements of our breathing – we have to know the movements of the physical body and then see the movement of the mind.
Breathing is never glad or sad; it never hates anybody or likes anybody. What is angry is the mind that is thinking. What is pleased is also the mind that is thinking. So we come to see only this point. To see this point is to be aware of thought. In order to see thought, don’t enter thought. As soon as it thinks, detach from thought, like a cat catching a rat. We don’t have to teach the cat to catch rats, but whenever a rat comes the cat will get it. The clear knowing and real knowing is the same thing. Most people understand panna only as memorizing and recognizing. Very few know clearly and know really. Anyone that will clearly know and really know must make an effort always. Wherever they go they always watch thought; going to the toilet, eating food, whatever they do they look at thought. When we watch thought a lot, like a cat watching for rats, then when thought arises sati or panna will clearly see immediately. This is called panna getting rid of the subtle kilesa.
When we come to this point it is like the hidden thing is revealed, and we will know all religion, we will see with self-understanding the teaching of any religion. We will understand Hinduism or Christianity. We don’t understand now because we just memorize from the texts. That is only a kind of history. Now we come to study at ourself. Reality is in us. Texts are only the words of other people. We come to see our own mind, and we will be another knowing individual.
I will stop now. Anyone that has questions can ask.
AUDIENCE: Luangpor teaches that when we go to the toilet we also watch thought. Shall we watch our walking, or shall we watch thought or what shall we watch?
LUANGPOR: Thought arises even when we do not pay attention to it. So when it arises we will see it, we will know it, we will understand it. If we pay too much attention trying to see it, it will not think. So we should practice in an indifferent, detached way. When it thinks we will know. Samadhi is also awareness. When you are aware of yourself, that is samadhi. When it thinks and you see thought, that is samadhi.
AUDIENCE: When I sit I can watch the thought, but when I walk to the toilet and intend to see the thought, when thought arises should I stop walking and see the thought or what should I do?
LUANGPOR: You don’t have to stop walking, just be aware of yourself. When we are aware of ourself, that is samadhi. Whatever movement we make we will know it. Unintended thought will arise by itself. If we do not see it we will attach to it, and this is dukkha. So we come to know the cause of dukkha. Normally our mind is indifferent. It can think without dukkha, and we know that it thinks without dukkha But when we do not see thought we follow thought, we enter thought, we enter the cave, and that is dukkha. To see thought is difficult for somebody who doesn’t understand, but it is easy for one that understands. To see thought doesn’t concern any kind of work. We can write and when thought arises we see it. When we walk to the bathroom, or when we are bathing, and it thinks, we just see it. So we don’t have to do anything with calmness, because calmness is already there. The real calmness is when we see thought.
AUDIENCE: So we don’t have to stop thinking.
LUANGPOR: Right. Just watch the movement of the mind. Don’t force the mind not to think, don’t try to prevent or force the mind not to think, don’t try to prevent or get rid of thought. Many people want to tranquilize the mind; they don’t want the mind to think. That is the understanding of others. But in my view we should let the mind think. The more it thinks the more we know.
It is like when we dig a new well; the water is at first full of dirt. So we have to empty out the water, bucketful after bucketful. We don’t have to stop up the hole out of which the water is flowing, but we let the water flow, as much water as possible, and we continue emptying out the dirty water. We clean the edge of the well and continue emptying out the water. We do it again and again. We do it until all the dirt is gone and the water flowing out of the hole is clear and pure. If anything were now to fall into the well we should see it and know it immediately.
So we don’t have to stop the mind from thinking. Sometimes it thinks this, sometimes it thinks that, but we just see it immediately, like cat catching rat, and the more it thinks the more we empty it out. When thought arises we see it, that is the important thing.
AUDIENCE: When we sleep and when we are awake, do we watch thought in the same way?
LUANGPOR: The same. When we cannot see thought, when thought arises during the day we don’t know it. At night when we dream, we also don’t know it. Now, when we see thought wherever we go, when thought arises we know it. At night we sleep, and when it thinks we also know it.
AUDIENCE: I am still puzzled. Should we see thought or should we see ourselves?
LUANGPOR: They are the same. We can call it seeing thought, and we are also aware of ourself at the same time.
AUDIENCE: I would like Luangpor to explain the difference between knowing thought and seeing thought.
LUANGPOR: When we know thought we enter into thought, and thought still continues, it doesn’t stop. But when we see thought, when thought arises it stops immediately. So we should practice often to see thought. There will arise nana-panna. Do it like boxers. Every boxer wants to be world champion. Boxers need to be very quick. Dosa – moha – lobha is quick in one way, sati – samadhi – panna is quick in another way. When we train sati – samadhi – panna to be very, very quick, it will be world champion, it will conquer the world. This conscious body is the world. Do we want dosa – moha – lobha or sati – samadhi – panna to rule the world? If dosa – moha – lobha rules the world, it is a world of endless sorrow, endless dukkha. If sati – samadhi – panna rules the world, it is a world of radiance and peace.
AUDIENCE: When we watch our movements and thought arises, how can we know it?
LUANGPOR: If you want to know, you have to practice yourself.
AUDIENCE: Is discovery of calmness the same as discovery of oneself?
AUDIENCE: If we can find calmness within ourselves, how can we keep it with us all the time?
LUANGPOR: It is there all the time. What is not there all the time is not calmness.
AUDIENCE: People have kamma and kamma disturbs us. So how can we be calm?
LUANGPOR: No, not in that way. We just think ourself. Kamma just means action, not those kinds of kamma that you did in the previous life.
AUDIENCE: If we don’t think about kamma then there is no kamma, is there?
LUANGPOR: Right, we don’t have to think of it.
AUDIENCE: People are seeking the same thing, but why are there so many thoughts?
LUANGPOR: Because there are many different teachings, many books, much talking, so all are mixed up, and this causes suffering. This way of calmness doesn’t concern studying books. It doesn’t concern anything. When we read many books, or listen to many teachers, we only have knowledge for talking, so we don’t have the experience of the real calmness.
AUDIENCE: How can it be there all the time?
LUANGPOR: If we add colored dye to water, people say that the water is red, or the water is black, or whatever color it is. But in reality water is colorless, and if what is not water is removed then we see it. Upekkha is the mind’s natural state. It is present in everybody without exception. When somebody becomes very angry, upekkha anchors that person just like a ship’s anchor and therefore they don’t die of shock. When somebody becomes very, very greedy and would like to take a great deal away from others, upekkha is like a ball and chain, holding back and moderating the greed, so that it doesn’t totally unbalance that person. So upekkha is already there, we don’t have to seek it. It is like the sun when it is hidden by clouds. Dosa – moha – lobha, when it arises, obscures upekkha. But when we clearly see our mind, upekkha is uncovered.
AUDIENCE: Luangpor said that gladness and sadness are the same thing. How can they be the same?
LUANGPOR: They are dukkha. Gladness is one kind of dukkha sadness is another kind of dukkha. Unknowing people live with dukkha, eat with dukkha, walk and stand and sit with dukkha, sleep with dukkha,wherever they go they bring dukkha along. When they see a movie they laugh; laughter is a form of dukkha. When they meet with sadness they cry; crying is a form of dukkha. Gladness and sadness, both of them are forms of dukkha. Just so, I imagine that there are two kinds of darkness, white darkness and black darkness. When we earn a lot of money we are glad. That is dukkha. It is the white darkness. When we lose money we are sad and the mind thinks angry thoughts. This is also dukkha. It is the black darkness. But both are dukkha.
AUDIENCE: In reality there is no gladness or sadness, they just arise from moha, don’t they?
LUANGPOR: Just like that.
AUDIENCE: Luangpor said that all kinds of gladness are dukkha. Is there some kind of gladness that is not dukkha, for example love between husband and wife?
LUANGPOR: All are dukkha.
AUDIENCE: How about gladness in Dhamma, or sometimes when we look at the sunshine we feel happy?
LUANGPOR: That is not dukkha, not suffering or happiness, not gladness or sadness. It is indifference, equanimity.
AUDIENCE: I would like Luangpor to explain the thing that is called love. For example, a woman and man who are going to get married.
LUANGPOR: Somebody who doesn’t know dukkha will approach dukkha,and dukkha will teach its lesson.
AUDIENCE: When we see thought, it stops. So during which time do we see the three characteristics, anicca, dukkha and anatta? Do we see them when we see thought, or before seeing thought, or when we think of them?
LUANGPOR: When we think of them that is not seeing with nana-panna, it is just memorizing or recognizing. After we clearly know and really know we don’t have to ask anyone.
AUDIENCE: How about the intention to do something? Suppose that somebody says something bad to us, and we have the intention to harm them.
LUANGPOR: To harm is stupid. When we know the states of suffering and of happiness, we do not want anybody to suffer. We will help all to live without dukkha.
AUDIENCE: When I am going to give money to beggar I know my thought, which is to give money. To see that thought, is that called panna?
LUANGPOR: That is not called panna, it is called knowing from memory. All of us have mind, so before doing or saying anything just look at our mind. Our real mind or real life doesn’t hate anybody and doesn’t love anybody. When we hate or we love, that is kilesa arising. So just come to see the mind at the beginning, and dosa – moha – lobha will be destroyed. After that, vedana – sanna – sankhara – vinnana will still be there, but they are pure and have no dukkha. Continue to see the mind. We will see kilesa. Kilesa is like gladness and sadness. When we like something and we give it to somebody, it isn’t that this is not kilesa – because we like the person that we give it to, we give it with kilesa, we don’t give with indifference. Phra (venerable; noble) is indifference. Phra means one that teaches others to be indifferent.
AUDIENCE: When we give charity we usually think of metta (loving-kindness) and Karuna (compassion). So where is karuna andwhere is metta?
LUANGPOR: Those are just words for talking. It is not Dhamma. It is social.
AUDIENCE: If we don’t have metta and karuna, how can we have the motive to do good for others?
LUANGPOR: That is the beginning stage, or the foundation for ethics of the world.
AUDIENCE: In the case of Luangpor, who is trying to help us to be free from dukkha, isn’t it the metta of Luangpor?
LUANGPOR: Not metta. Anybody that would like to have Dhamma, just accept it. We don’t have gladness or sadness. It is like when we see someone that is drowning, we jump into the water and help them without thinking anything.
AUDIENCE: When that person sees someone drowning and helps immediately, is it the result of social ethics or is it their own nature?
LUANGPOR: It is their own nature. But when we try to help other people we don’t see our mind, but the nature of the mind is already there, the indifference is already there, we never come to see it and we try some other way. That is why we don’t have real calmness.
VISIBLE HERE AND NOW
CALLING TO COME AND SEE:
THE DHAMMA OF AN INSTANT
Today I would like to bring to you the truth, as I have heard it from the elders, who passed this truth on from generation to generation. It may be that you’ve heard it; it may be that you haven’t. When listening, please set up the mind to listen: listen with sati – samadhi – panna (awareness – steadiness of mind – knowing). Consider these words, and find their actuality at last.
In everything that happens there must be cause and effect. For example, the cause is that we go to work, the effect is that we earn money; the cause is that we go to study; the effect is that we gain knowledge. So the knowledge is the result of the study. Therefore the cause is to be diligent and the effect will be truly useful.
The elders used to teach that the cause is developing sati (awareness), the result is the knowledge that arises. They have said so. Whether or not the Buddha talks in this way, or whether or not your parents and teachers talked in this way, make the experiment, and discover for yourself whether it is true or not. We have to consider and to really know it: the cause is called the developing of sati, the truth is called sacca. Whether or not we know it, it is still there, like something beneath an overturned bowl: we right the bowl, and what was concealed is revealed. Or it is like opening up what was closed. You should try it, and see for yourself whether it is like this or not.
You can sit with legs tucked back to one side, sit with legs outstretched, sit on a chair, or sit in half lotus. Rest your hand on your thigh. Now turn the hand up onto its edge, having awareness of doing it. Turning the hand is the cause; the awareness of doing it is the effect. Turn the hand back down, having awareness of it. The cause is turning the hand down; the effect is the awareness that coincides with the movement. Turn the hand up, being aware of the movement. Turn the hand back down, being aware of the movement in the movement. The cause is turning the hand up and being aware of it and turning the hand down and being aware of it, the effect is that the knowing will accumulate. So when you are doing this, are in the rhythm of it, developing sati, you can say it is the same as the Buddha’s Teaching, the same as the elder’s teaching. You should develop sati. When you develop sati, panna will arise.
The elders used to tell us that Buddha taught the four satipatthana (the bases of awareness), or the four major postures, which are standing, walking, sitting and lying down. You have sati in these postures, then you have the sati to know other, minor movements. In all minor movements, stretching, bending, and all other movements, have the sati to know it. The effect will be the knowledge that arises.
Some people may say that this accords with the texts; some may say that this does not accord with the texts, but please listen, and try to practice yourself. If it is useful we use it. If it is useless we cast it away. The knowledge that we have learned, we know it already, but the knowledge we have never heard, please try it and find it for yourself.
This is a practice I have done. Sit comfortably, back erect, hands palm-down upon the thighs. Now turn the right hand up onto its edge, being aware of the movement. Then raise the hand straight up to chest height, being aware of the movement. Then bring the hand down to rest on the abdomen, being aware of the movement. Now repeat these three movements with the left hand. Then, having sati in each movement, move the right hand up the chest, then swing it out to above the right leg, then lower it to rest on the thigh, and then turn the hand back down again. And now repeat these four movements with the left hand. This is rhythmic practice. It is called the minor movements.
Humans cannot stay still, so we find some work for the body to do and then use the sati to be with the movement. You can call it sati or you can call it samadhi. The feeling is called sati, samadhi is setting up the mind. When you do it, have awareness of it. If you don’t set up the mind, then you will not know. When you blink you know it.
We’ve blinked since our birth from our mother’s womb, but we don’t know it. When we look to the left or look to the right, we don’t know it. We don’t have sati-samadhi. We have only the usual sati-samadhi but we don’t set up the mind to know it. If we set up the mind to know it, the sati will be newly built sati. Samadhi is setting up the mind. We’ve breathed since we were born from our mother’s womb, but we don’t know it. Now we set up the mind, and breathe in and out, then we know it. When thought arises, then we know it. The knowing is caused by the developing of sati.
So I would like all of you to take this teaching and use it. Ordained, all right; not ordained, all right; believe any religion, all right; wear any uniform, all right; keep the precepts, all right; don’t keep the precepts, all right; give a lot of charity, all right; don’t give any charity at all, all right. If you don’t develop sati then you will not know, even though you make merit, keep the precepts or practice a lot of calmness meditation. The knowing will arise because of the developing of sati.
When we have more and more awareness, then the unawareness, which is moha, ordelusion, will fade away. When we have more and more sati, more and more samadhi, panna will arise.This is called panna-parami ("the perfection of wisdom"). I do not talk according to the texts: panna is already there; parami means the readiness to know, if we practice in the right way. If we practice in the wrong way, then we will not know.
Now if we know we know the real thing, not knowing outside ourself. We know within ourself. We know ourself. Sitting here we know ourself to be roop-nahm (body–mind). Turning the hand up is roop-nahm, turning the hand down is roop-nahm, continuing turning the hand up and down is roop-nahm. This is knowing roop-nahm.
Then we know the action of roop-nahm. When roop acts, nahm acts simultaneously. When roop-nahm acts we know it. We know it because of the developing of sati. Panna arises because of the developing of sati.
We know roop-disease –nahm-disease. This born roop has disease, like headache, stomachache, fever, and so on. Another kind of roop-disease –nahm-disease: thought is nahm, but when it thinks it is the roop. When some people talk and that makes us satisfied or dissatisfied, our mind has disease. Really know this thing. The developing of sati is cause; the arising of panna is effect.
After knowing roop-nahm, we come to know dukkham – aniccam – anatta (suffering – impermanence – not self). People have taught that dukkham – aniccam – anatta is white hair, wrinkled skin, broken teeth. That is true, but not true according to the developing of sati. The developing of sati will cause panna to arise; that turning the hand up is dukkham, lowering it is dukkham. Dukkham is with the roop. Roop is a kind of lump-of-dukkha. Dukkham is unbearable. Aniccam is unstable. Anatta is uncontrollable. It is like that all the time. If we know it, it is like that. If we don’t know it, it is also like that.
So Dhamma, which makes a person become a Buddha, is there before the Buddha. Dhamma exists in everybody. It depends on the "owner" of each body to make this knowing happen. If we are able to know it, then we will know it. It is like the overturned bowl: whether it is overturned or set aright is up to us.
Now we come to know sammuti (supposition). Know all kinds of sammuti completely. We know that money is just a kind of metal, just a kind of paper, but we conventionalize it. Woman and man are sammuti as well. When we don’t know it, we suppose it to be woman and suppose it to be man. But if we don’t suppose it, then we don’t know them. Ordination and disrobing, monk and novice, all are sammuti: just take a piece of cloth to wear. The knowing is sati – samadhi – panna and sacca is truth. If it is true by sammuti we know it. If it is true by sammuti, we know it. If it is true by paramattha (direct contact by the mind), we know it.
Ghosts and deities are all sammuti. Have we ever seen them? A ghost is a person who acts, speaks or thinks evil. The body doesn’t do anything: it is roop, like a doll. The thing that moves is the mind. Deities are the same, we suppose them. When we don’t really know sammuti, we don’t know. We really don’t know. I can guarantee that we don’t know. I myself didn’t know. But others may have, I don’t know.
I have done many kinds of meditation, like "Buddho", "samma-araham", counting breaths, the rise and fall of the abdomen, and sitting and observing the breath, but I really didn’t know, the knowing didn’t come, didn’t arise. It led to calmness and attachment to calmness. So calmness, or samatha-kammatthana (the working-ground for tranquility), is like putting a rock on top of weeds. When we take the rock off, the weeds will grow better than before, because the soil has been kept moist. Vipassana means clear insight, a complete uprooting. This is the real knowing. Anyone that does it will know it. Anyone that was born as a human being can do it, regardless of race, language or religion. But we have to understand the correct method.
Also we know sasana ("religion"). Sasana doesn’t mean temples. The temple is just the supposed sasana. This is called sammuti-pannatti (convention of supposing). Paramattha is the real thing, which exists in humans. Everyone is sasana. They say that sasana is teaching, they teach and the ear hears, then sati – samadhi – panna considers it, and becomes knowing. Really know that, "Oh, everyone is sasana." To destroy sasana doesn’t mean to destroy temples or Buddha-images or Bodhi-trees. To destroy sasana means to say bad things to people, to hit people, to kill people, which is great evil. So sasana is humanity. To curse someone is to curse sasana, to injure someone is to injure sasana: that is what evil is.
Now Buddhasasana ("Buddhism"). Buddha means one that knows. The body is like a doll. Sati – samadhi – panna is the knowing. So Buddha means sati – samadhi – panna, or the mind that is clean, illuminated and calm, which exists in everybody without exception.
Now we talk about papa ("sin"). Papa is not knowing, darkness, stupidity. We fear papa, but why don’t we make ourself realize, so that we will be free of that fear. Punna ("merit") is knowing clearly. People, when they come too close to monks, they fear papa. It is as if monks are the papa itself. That is just sammuti. Now we don’t have to fear papa. If we cannot conquer papa then we will have no chance and no time to conquer it. Don’t fear papa, but try to conquer papa. This doesn’t concern making merit, keeping precepts, or Vinaya (the code monastic discipline). The developing of sati is Dhamma, is Vinaya, is sila (normality), and is everything. We know all this because we develop sati.
If we do not develop sati, but just study, that is only to memorize, not to see clearly or to see really. The developing of sati is to know clearly, to know really. When one knows, one can assure oneself and others. Anyone that does it will know it, because everyone knows the same thing. The knowledge is the shared object of developing sati. The result of developing sati can end dukkha: we don’t attach to sammuti, we will not fear ghosts, we will not fear deities. We don’t attach to any sammuti at all, because anything that does not exist we don’t have to fear. Ghosts and deities have no real existence, just sammuti. A ghost is somebody who speaks, thinks or does evil. A deity is one that speaks good, thinks good or does good. We know how to be human. Ghosts arise in people while they speak, think or do evil. When anger arises, and we can stop anger, that is human. When we can make our mind calm and clean all the time, that is deity, a mind worthy of respect. When we know like this, we can break through.
So vipassana has this object: the six sense-bases, eye, ear, nose, tongue, body and mind, the five aggregates – that is from the texts – the twelve bases, the eighteen elements, the twenty-two faculties, the four noble truths, and the twelve paticcasamuppada (dependent co-arising). We learn from the texts, we study it, but we don’t know it. We just know from memory. When we come to develop sati the knowing will arise, that is the real thing.
When we use sati to watch thought, whenever thought arises we know it, because when we move we have sati. Thought has no real self. When thought arises we have sati and know it, like a cat watching a rat. When the rat emerges the cat catches it immediately. This is the same. When we have sati in each movement, when thought arises we know it, see it and understand it. This means that we can untie it and conquer it. The elders said that to conquer others one hundred or one thousand times has not the benefit of conquering oneself just one time. To conquer oneself is to conquer thought. When thought arises we see it and know it. Then it cannot proliferate. Whenever thought arises we know it. When we develop more and more sati there will arise nana-panna (knowledge arising from full awareness-knowing), to know clearly, to know really.
Vatthu (thingness) means everything in the world and in ourself, we have to know it all. Paramattha means everything that exists in the world and in ourself, seeing it, having it, being it, right now in front of us, touchable with the mind, we have to know it all. Akara means that everything in the world and in us can change. When we clearly comprehend it, then we see, know, understand and touch dosa – moha – lobha (anger – delusion – greed), because it is vatthu – paramattha – akara. After knowing this the mind will be very cheerful, and can see vedana – sanna – sankhara – vinnana (feeling – percept – conceiving – knowingness) not being dukkha. The real phra (noble) inheres in this.
Phra doesn’t mean you shave your head, but means the quality of the mind. Paramattha means the real thing. The real phra is in everybody without exception. In this way of developing sati, the feeling of the movement is the cause, the effect is knowing all this. Phra means teacher, one that teaches. When they know this and teach this, there is no dukkha. A real phra knows sammuti-pannatti, paramattha-pannatti, attha-pannatti and ariya-pannatti (the four levels of designation). The mind has changed and we will really know this. If we know other things it is not correct.
We continue the practice. There will arise piti (rapture). We feel comfortable, the mind is light, it is like in darkness there arises the light or the dirty becomes clean again. Or like black and white, or the heavy becoming light. The mind changes from one stage to another. When the knowing arises the not-knowing disappears immediately. When the quality of the real phra arises the quality of not being a phra disappears immediately. When the quality of being deity arises the quality of being ghost disappears immediately. When the quality of being human arises the quality of being other disappears immediately. It arises and substitutes for the other. This is called to be born here and die here. Not being born from the womb of the mother and dying physically, that is another thing. That is also the supposing of dukkham – aniccam – anatta.
Continue the practice. It will be like a pot of water, which has filled to the brim, is now having water removed. When the knowing arises sati will be reduced, not full like the previous stage. In the practice our awareness is full, but when the knowing arises it will attach to the knowing, it will attach to the object. When the object arises we have confidence, and it enters into our memory in the brain and is never forgotten then on. I have known this since I was forty-six, but I haven’t forgotten even a little. I know roop-nahm in the morning and know the changing of the mind in the evening. I really know this, and I have the confidence to guarantee that it is the Teaching of the Buddha. The Buddha taught this thing. Making merit, giving charity, keeping precept, that is good in one way, but learning from the texts we do not really know how to practice developing sati, how to deal with mind.
A person who doesn’t know teaches a person who doesn’t know. The result is not-knowing. One that knows teaches, the result is knowing, because everybody has it, each can become the real phra, a noble individual. Woman, man, child, if they know it they become the real phra, a noble individual. Therefore the phra is a kind of blessing, because she or he teaches people to know. Blessing means noble. The noble knowledge is called giving Dhamma as charity, or giving knowledge as charity. This is the path of the real noble individual.
When we develop sati, and know the movements more and more, nana-panna will occur. When nana (insight knowledge) arises you will really know, you don’t have to remember from the texts. You will know kilesa – tanha – upadana – kamma (stickiness – heaviness – attachment – action). Seeing clearly, seeing really, kilesa – tanha – upadana – kamma will reduce or fade away. When we know this point, we don’t have to believe anybody. The one that sees it owns it. Suppose that the Buddha comes and tells you that this practice is not correct, you will also not believe him, because it is real. When nana-panna arises you have real confidence.
When you know this point, piti will arise again. When I knew this point during my practice, I went to sleep. After getting up, I started walking back and forth. The cause is walking back and forth, the effect is that the knowing arises again. I walk back and forth and have the knowing. At that time there is a centipede running across my path. The centipede is cause, the effect is that I see the centipede. I light a candle and try to find the centipede. When I cannot find it, I bring the candle back, and then begin to walk back and forth again. Walking back and forth is cause, the effect is knowing sila, silakkhandha – samadhikkhandha – pannakhanda (all that belongs to normality – setting up the mind – knowing). The knowing arises that khandha means vessel, container, to contain, to fight it. You can fight everything. It is like when the container is good and you go to get water, you can have that water to drink. But if the container is broken, when you go to get the water, you cannot get it.
In the texts they call this adhisilasikkha, adhicittasikkha and adhipannasikkha (the training in the higher morality, higher mind and higher wisdom). We can compare them, the texts and the experience. This is called sila has arisen; therefore sila is the tool to get rid of the crude kilesa. Sila is already there in us. So this kind of sila doesn’t concern keeping precepts, but only concerns the development of sati. When we practice this kind of developing sati its result will happen in this way. When we know this point, we will understand that sila can really get rid of the crude kilesa. When the crude kilesa is removed, sila will occur. It is like when we plant fruit trees, banana, coconut or palm, the shoots are already there, but to see them we have to wait until they come up. When we see them, that is the result.
Please work diligently and devotedly at developing sati. Whatever people may say, we don’t have to pay attention to it. Even though you make merit and give a lot of charity, you will never know this experience. Even though you study a lot, you’ll also never know. They do not concern this thing. This can really untie dukkha. When we can cure dukkha, wherever we are we are comfortable. If we are parents, teachers, children, police, soldiers, monks, novices, or whoever, we will be comfortable, because dosa – moha – lobha disappears, the attachment disappears. But we have to go over this object again and again, so as not to forget. But when you really see it you will never forget it. I have seen it, and I have never forgotten it.
Now we come to know samatha (concentration-calmness) or doing calmness. There are two kinds of calmness. Samatha calmness is the calmness of not-knowing. So samatha meditation is only a device to keep the mind calm. Vipassana (liberating insight) means to see clearly, to know really. It is also calmness, but a different kind of calmness. Developing sati, the calmness will arise by itself because it is already there. The arising calmness is the unattachment, not having dosa – moha – lobha.
When people say anything to us, sati will come immediately. It is like having only one chair but there are two people who are running to sit on it. When sati arises sati will sit there: dosa – moha – lobha cannot come because sati – samadhi – panna is already there. It is full. The fullness is already there. The voidness is also already there. It is like an empty glass, which has air inside it but we cannot see the air. When we pour water into it, water will substitute for the air, all of the air. The matter of sati is the same thing. I can really assure you. Suppose there is somebody who says bad things to us. Sati will come, and we can see it clearly. Parents teach us that if there is somebody cursing us or saying bad things to us, we should be patient and not get angry. But we cannot stay still because we don’t see it. When there is nobody to say bad things to us, we are already comfortable, because the comfortable is already there. It depends on what we suppose to be the owner of each body to practice and make it occur. When we practice, the clear knowing and the real seeing will occur. I can assure everybody. If somebody does not develop sati and does not make this thing occur, that person doesn’t have it, but it is already there. So we should respect each other.
After knowing sila we will know kama (sensuality). Kama means those things that make calmness. Kama is attachment. This is called kama-arammana (the object of sensual enjoyment). It is called kamasava, under the control of kama; bhavasava, under the control of bhava (being) or dukkha: this is bhava and jati (birth); avijjasava: avijja is not knowing. Now we come to know kama, which is deities, rich people, people with authority. They attach to reputation, money, honor, these people who have kama, but I do not blame anybody, I just teach directly. You can bring it into practice, or you might not bring it into practice, it depends on you. When we know kama we see that kama is dukkha, kamasava is dukkha, bhavasava is dukkha, avijjasava is dukkha, because of not-knowing. We also know samatha meditation. People may talk in any manner; we really know the matter of calmness. We know all the stages of it, because it is already in us. We right the overturned bowl, we open up what is covered over, that is to teach the method of practice, the method of arm-movements, the method of turning the hand.
This is one form of the most intensive practice. I have not taught this according to the texts. It may or may not contradict the texts, but I will talk in this way, because doing this way then you know this way. If you study from the texts, when asked about the truth, you don’t know. Many of my teachers didn’t know. The arm-movement is cause; its result is panna arising. Cause and effect go together.
After knowing this, we know about punna and papa. For any bad bodily action, we know how it is papa-kamma (harmful, benighted action), and, if there is really a hell, into which level we shall fall. For any bad verbal action, we know how it is papa-kamma, and, if there really is a hell, into which level we shall fall. For any bad mental action, we know how it is papa-kamma, and, if there really is a hell, into which level we shall fall. For any bad bodily, verbal and mental actions together, we know how they are papa-kamma, and, if there really is a hell, into which level we shall fall.
For any good bodily action, we know how it is punna-kamma (beneficial wise action), and if there really is a heaven or nibbana, to which level we shall go. For any good verbal action, we know how it is punna-kamma, and if there really is a heaven or nibbana, to which level we shall go. For any good mental action, we know how it is punna-kamma and if there really is a heaven or nibbana, to which level we shall go. For any good bodily, verbal and mental actions together, we know how they are punna-kamma, and if there really is a heaven or nibbana, to which level we shall go.
The shaking of the knowing element is already there in everybody. The developing of sati can apply to everybody. If you don’t believe it, just try it. I can guarantee that it will not take longer than three years and you will really know. It is like the fat, fertile grain that we plant in the field. If we practice incorrectly, it is like the empty husk. If you dig the ground, but not in the right place, then you cannot get water. If you dig into the ground in the right place, then you can really get the water. This kind of practice, if you do it correctly you will really get the result. If you do it incorrectly, you will not get the fruit.
When the occurrence happens we know about four elements, earth, water, fire and wind, they come together. When we know this, the occurrence arises. We know the end of dukkha. The end of dukkha is here; it will demolish all and everything. On this thing I do not believe anybody. When we come to the end we will have nana.
Sila is the tool to get rid of crude kilesa. When the crude kilesa comes to an end, sila occurs. Samadhi is the tool to get rid of the median kilesa. When we know the median kilesa, then we know samadhi. Panna is the tool to get rid of the subtle kilesa. When the subtle kilesa is discarded, panna then arises. That arising panna is called nana-panna. Because it is inside us, we know it. If it is not there inside us, then we don’t know it. I can assure you that everyone without exception can know it. Women, men, believers of any religion. When I was practicing this method I was not a monk. Sometimes I wore shorts, sometimes I wore trousers. After knowing this Dhamma, I taught brothers, parents, aunts and uncles for three years. They knew, but they knew little, but still they knew the real phra, knew the supposed phra,knew sammuti-pannatti, paramattha-pannatti, attha-pannatti,and ariya-pannatti. The mind changes from commoner to noble individual.
They say that nibbana is tadangapahana (abandoning by substitution of opposites), vikkhambhanapahana (abandoning by suppression), samucchedapahana (abandoning by destruction). Tadangapahana is to come to know oneself thoroughly. There are four levels of knowledge. First, we know until the end of dukkha, but we know only a short time, it doesn’t last long. Second, we know longer, like the light of a bigger lamp. Third, we know even longer, like the light of even bigger lamp. And fourth, when we know, we know the end of dukkha, but after we know it is there all the time. It is like the full flame of the lamp, or the light of the sun, the very brightest light.
There are four kinds of nana. We have to really know it. This is learning and practice. Learning means moving the arms. Practice means turning the hand up and down. After learning and practicing this method, the fruit will come, and we will have no doubt, because we know all. We also know the end of dukkha.
Paticcasamuppada (dependent co-arising) is just words. If we want it in our practice we have to come to the cause that is to practice movement until panna arises. When panna arises, when we talk about paticcasamuppada we know it immediately.
So now we come to the conclusion. We practice developing sati, and we come to see thought, we come to see the mind. We do the practice like a boxer: once in the ring, the boxer must box. We do it often, step by step. We do it like a ball in a field. When people do not stop kicking the ball, the ball must continue to roll. When they stop kicking it, the ball comes to rest by itself: it doesn’t have to fight nor to escape. We come out of thought, come out of the cave, and we live in the brightness. We see our life–mind at all times. When the mind moves we know it, satipanna (awareness-knowing) is there immediately, like a barrier against all harm. And though the world of others be turbulent and heated, with us the whole world is at peace. Be that way.
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