This talk is about what I would have liked to have heard when I got sober. It is an exploration of the ‘truths’ (Sajja/Sacca) that might lead to conviction, to directed karma, to mindfulness as ‘remembering-to-remember’, and to the path that leads to joy & beyond.
“My talk this evening is largely based on a formulation of the things that I would have liked to have heard, or been shown or taught, 21 years ago when I found myself ‘lost and adrift’ in life… and also a formulation of the principles and practices of Dharma – both orthodox and unorthodox – that I have found helpful since that time.”
“21-years ago, at the grand old age of 39, having spent 25 years of my adult life… that was most of my adult life then… not only drinking alcoholically but also behaving alcoholically, at that time I decided that things would have to change; I sat at my kitchen table, in Newbury, Berkshire in the UK.I filled a glass with lager – very consciously, you might even say very mindfully – and I set the solid intention that this glass of beer would be my last beer ever, my last taste of alcohol ever. This solid intention, this conviction was born out of the truth of stress and suffering of my addiction, the stress and suffering of my alcoholism… I made a vow, I promised myself… “I will never drink again”.
I didn’t know what type of life I wanted but I did know that I had to overcome my addiction and leave my old life behind. For the first 18 months of this ‘new’ life I struggled, I really struggled. I often thought that I was having a nervous breakdown, and in reality, I probably was. I think all that probably stopped me from ending up in a mental hospital was simply my determination to find a happy long life; and my conviction to stay sober and not to go back into what would probably be a very short and very unhappy life.”
Both video and audio versions are now available.
Sitting as an Embodied Intentionality – excerpt:
• The heart’s intention for sitting…
• To awaken…
• What is your heart committed to? Sajja – to move away from stress and suffering.
• To move away from stress and suffering.
• To move towards the end of stress and suffering.
• To find that perfect, unshakeable awakening of the heart:
o An awakening from craving.
o An awakening from aversion.
o An awakening from confusion
• Intention for moving away from stress and suffering – compassion versus aversion
• Intention for moving – compassion versus aversion.
I will welcome today with appreciation and joy.I will welcome today with friendliness and kindness.I will welcome today with generosity and compassion.I will welcome today with understanding and acceptance.