People go on retreat because it enables them to have insight, and access to inner resources, of creativity, intelligence and love that they can’t reach as easily at home. This has proven itself from generation to generation, and in every culture where Buddhism has become established. When on retreat, we ‘dig a channel to the ocean’, so to speak, and then our daily practice is a matter of keeping this channel open, and drawing forth resources we all have available to use in our daily life, relationships, and social work.
It is also called: Astral sound, Dharmata Swayambhu Nada, Divine Tremoring, Eternal Sound, Inner Sound, Music of the Spheres, Primordial Sound, Sacred Sound, Shabda, Sound of Creation, Sound of Silence, also Thunder of Silence, Soundless Sound, Transcendental Sound, Unborn Sound, Unstruck Sound, and The Word of God.
When we all are more aware of these innate principles or qualities in us, we are able to benefit ourselves and others through a deeper understanding and a more cooperative, non-dualistic way of being in the world. When we isolate or separate the two, there is division, tension and competition. This duality can create anger, aggression, hatred, fear, dishonesty and many other mental and emotional disturbances.
Scientists studying memories have found that memories are a most creative affair, morphing over time and with each recalling, until they bear little resemblance to an actual event. Like everything else, memories are impermanent, making the very idea of them a bit self-oxymoronic.
Go for the highest goal, the real deal: full buddhahood in this lifetime. I’m not saying lower goals aren’t needed. The simplest meditation attainments help, of course. However, going for the highest goal opens more possibilities and yields more benefits you are probably not aware of.
One of my first questions to a teacher was about emotions. In my mistaken view, Buddhists were people who had subjugated all their conflicts, and so they lived continually in a state of equilibrium, which, for me, made them unshakable, but also somewhat insensitive. If I practiced Buddhism, would I become a person in total self-control, cold and without emotions?
There is such a need for bigger hearts, vast minds, for more tolerance, kindness and attitudes that includes everyone. We have enough racism and so many other way to exclude each other. We all know how painful it is to be the left out, to be the excluded or even the suppressed minority. Sometimes for absolutely no reason.
When the self is seen to have no placement, no identity, and no enduring quality at all, the mind is sometimes elevated to Mind, and the error of a greater Self can occur. But if the self has no true reality, how can it be a place or thing from which, and in which thoughts, perceptions, and feelings occur?
When I hear that crows don’t have teeth, the world is flat, painted cows can be milked, energy equals mass multiplied by the speed of light squared, or nirvana is beyond extremes, I urge myself to have the discipline to examine and investigate what is being said, how those who’re saying it found their truth, and what their arguments and ways of thinking are.
The potential risk of the self-spirituality approach can be that nowadays the spiritual market is so rich that many seekers can get lost on the path, never reaching the genuine spiritual realization which could be marked with a bigger sense of inner freedom, a sense of inter-connectedness and compassion and a strong sense of personal integrity. Psychological immaturity involves many risks.