Joseph Goldstein returns to the show to help unpack a few challenging Dharmic concepts and opens our eyes to the subtle craving of becoming.
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The Craving for Becoming (Opening) – Joseph and Raghu get real about meditation by exploring some of the common, but incorrect, expectations around the practice. They discuss the tendency of the mind to want to lean too hard into practice in a way that is counter-productive. We learn to be mindful of how we practice so that the effort to awaken does not become another unskillful desire.
“The second kind of craving that the Buddha talked about is the craving for becoming. It is an energetic leaning into the unfolding process. Its like we are in this experience, but we are wanting it to become something else. This is very pervasive, the craving for becoming on that level has in many ways co-opted our meditation practice. We think that is what meditation should be, wanting to become more concentrated or more calm.” – Joseph Goldstein
No Choice (14:30) – Raghu shares the teaching of a great yogi around accepting things as they are, rather than engaging with desire for another outcome. He and Joseph talk about the idea of choice and letting go of that particular attachment.
“The Great Way is not difficult for those who have no preferences. Separate by the smallest amount, however, and you are as far from it as heaven is from earth. – 3rd Zen Ancestor, Jianzhi Sengcan
Listen to Ram Dass read “The Great Way” by Jianzhi Sengcan here: Ram Dass Reads the ‘Third Chinese Patriarch’
Understanding Karma (21:50) – Joseph helps us better understand the teachings around Karma and how Karma shapes our world. He shares new ways to think about Karma that encourages us to engage more deeply with our every thought and action.
“Just understanding that we are creating our inner mental environment can inspire us to take care with what is being created, knowing that it is going to have an effect. It is not something that happens from the rest of the unfolding process, each moment is actually conditioning the process.” – Joseph Goldstein
You can listen to Raghu’s conversation with Dr. Robert Svobodah on Ep. 218 of the Mindrolling Podcast.
Living With Reality (44:35) – The two dig deeper into our tendency to avoid reality. They share practices that address the way we shield ourselves from being in the moment as it is.
“Instead of the zero-center, we are living in the self-center.” – Joseph Goldstein
Understanding Causality (59:45) – Joseph helps clarify another difficult teaching of the Buddha, that of interdependent origination, the law of causality.
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