“All experiences are preceded by mind, having mind as their master, created by mind.” ~ Buddha
I’ve recently taken up the practice of meditation. I have meditated in the past, but it never became a practice. A ritual if you will. This time I turned to meditation as an alternative therapy for high blood pressure. But, even with my practice in it’s infancy, it has brought about something much greater than the simple act of reducing stress and anxiety and prompting relaxation. There has been an awakening of my mind.
This awakening is the inspiration for Conscious Becoming.
On my personal journey of conscious becoming, I strive to create every action I take with mindful volition. To be aware of the intent, the doing, and the consequences of my actions. By definition volition means “the act of willing, choosing, or resolving; exercise of willing.” [dictionary.com. Web. 12 September 2019] Thereby, I intend to be mindful of my actions. And in order to be mindful, I meditate.
When I adopt a new practice, a ritual, or even a particular view it is extremely important to me that I do so with the upmost level of authenticity. I’ve already seen in just a short time the great things that meditation has done for me. Yet, I know there is more to the power of meditation. Much much more. I have an intense desire to know the practice. To be authentic in my practice.
When I learned that meditation is a staple in the Buddhist tradition, I decided to learn more about Buddhism and the Buddha. That lead me to a series of lectures given by Bhikkhu Bodhi, which are available to listen to via the Internet at http://www.buddhanet.net/audio-lectures.htm. I find great wisdom in these lectures.
Which brings me back to the subject of this first post in Conscious Becoming – wisdom. Take it upon yourself to investigate, to learn, to gain wisdom and then take action – apply what you have learned with volition. To be conscious in the becoming of your truth.
What I would like to share from my introduction to the teaching by the Buddha on wisdom is recorded in the Kalama Sutta. I learned first of this in the lectures mentioned above. But, when searching for a translation to include in this post, and looking to share the true nature of the intent, I found there are many variations available. But, the one I believe to be closest to the intent of what was shared in Bhikku Bodhi’s lectures is this translation published on the University of Pennsylvania’s website:
” The people of Kalama asked the Buddha who to believe out of all the ascetics, sages, venerables, and holy ones who, like himself, passed through their town. They complained that they were confused by the many contradictions they discovered in what they heard. The Kalama Sutta is the Buddha’s reply.
|–||Do not believe anything on mere hearsay.|
|–||Do not believe in traditions merely because they are old and have |
been handed down for many generations and in many places.
|–||Do not believe anything on account of rumors or because people |
talk a a great deal about it.
|–||Do not believe anything because you are shown the written |
testimony of some ancient sage.
|–||Do not believe in what you have fancied, thinking that, because it is |
extraordinary, it must have been inspired by a god
or other wonderful being.
|–||Do not believe anything merely because presumption is in its favor, or because |
the custom of many years inclines you to take it as true.
|–||Do not believe anything merely on the authority of your teachers |
|–||But, whatever, after thorough investigation and reflection, you find to agree |
with reason and experience, as conducive to the good and
benefit of one and all and of the world at large, accept only that as
true, and shape your life in accordance with it.
The same text, said the Buddha, must be applied to his own teachings.
|–||Do not accept any doctrine from reverence, but first try it as gold is |
tried by fire.
In the same fashion, it is with the same intent, that the information I share at ConsciousBecoming.com is provided in order in to inspire you to take up your own investigation. To find your truth. And to shape your life in accordance with it.
For the benefit of one and all.