This time on the Pilgrim Heart Podcast, Krishna Das focuses on the basics of spiritual practice and the power of will needed to change our lives for the better.
What is Practice? (Opening) – What exactly is spiritual practice? Krishna Das gives definition to spiritual practice and why it is so important in stopping the habits and programming that are at the root of suffering. After leading a two-minute meditation on the breath, KD explains how spiritual practice allows us to cultivate compassion in our hearts.
“A practice is something that helps us get here because we are so used to just being caught by our thoughts all the time and taken away. So many thoughts come and go, but you just keep coming back to the breath. This is the root of all practice; whether it is mantra, chanting or visualization you have to develop some ability to put your mind somewhere and let it stay there without all the stuff.” – Krishna Das
Sharon Salzberg shares a conversation with George Mumford about why we practice and the two offer insight to those who are still new to meditation on Ep. 71 of the Metta Hour Podcast
The Will to Change (8:35) – Krishna Das reflects on the essential role that will power plays in spiritual practice and how will factors into the way we manage our thoughts.
“I saw that I was crippling myself every step of the way – every day. I wasn’t going after the things I wanted in life. I had all kinds of excuses why I wasn’t doing this or wasn’t doing that. There were so many programs that were preventing me from finding happiness in life and I was doing it to myself, I didn’t need any help. I started to recognize that and just begging to recognize that really changed a lot in me.” – Krishna Das
Disarming Our Karma (17:05) – Spiritual practice allows us to remove our projections and afflictive emotions. For this to happen though we must put 100% of the work into applying that practice – but that doesn’t have to be difficult. Krishna Das talks about how the simple practice of chanting brings us back to the moment and allows us to naturally cultivate awareness.
“The good news is that we can disarm those karmic landmines. The bad news is that only WE can do it. Nobody can do it for you.” – Krishna Das