Why Formless Meditation can be difficult to relate to at first and why we should keep going

Formless meditation takes time to learn, Often people get discouraged along the way and think that they would rather have something more definite to do. Formless meditation produces shamatha but in a way that opens itself up to vipashyana (insight). It is the insight that brings about liberation at a very deep and complete level. Continue reading Why Formless Meditation can be difficult to relate to at first and why we should keep going

Meditating with physical pain – how can we make pain our practice?

If you can relate to your present suffering with some kind of sense of it being your path, then the suffering itself becomes your practice. Just being able to let go of negative thinking and struggling with the pain and being more simple about it, that already means you are making the suffering into the path. Continue reading Meditating with physical pain – how can we make pain our practice?

meditation coming back to the present

What is it that brings us back to the present in meditation? Is it the ‘Heart Wish’?

You are right when you link what brings you back to the present to the ‘Heart Wish’. It is a completely intuitive movement, isn’t it? You find you can do it and you find it feels good and right and satisfies your heart somehow. Your heart knows this is the right direction… Continue reading What is it that brings us back to the present in meditation? Is it the ‘Heart Wish’?

Meditation doesn’t mean withdrawing from the world, so how do we remain ‘resting in spaciousness’ while still interacting with the world?

…In order to manifest at all there has to be the story line – the time dimension to the manifestation… Taking Refuge and following the Bodhisattva path is a positive story line – it is important to have positive story lines or we wouldn’t get out of bed in the morning. Continue reading Meditation doesn’t mean withdrawing from the world, so how do we remain ‘resting in spaciousness’ while still interacting with the world?

connections with the love ones who've died

When someone dies, are our heart connections with others strengthened by our shared loss?

Each person is a mandala centred on the heart which continues through life and death and into future lives. Each person has a unique pattern of relationships with all other beings all of whom meet in the heart – all our hearts interpenetrate. Continue reading When someone dies, are our heart connections with others strengthened by our shared loss?

Depression and meditation, lama Shenpen Hookham

How can we practise with the energy of depression?

“In a way the whole of samsara is like blockages in the flow of the life energy – you could think of it like that! Depression is just a very intense experience of just how bad that kind of blockage can get… even if thinking of impermanence doesn’t help, all mental states are impermanent and so sometimes all we can do is hang on in there and learn how to navigate our way through them.” Continue reading How can we practise with the energy of depression?