2021-11-12-Mindfulness of Mind (5 of 5) Awareness Releases Itself
3:54PM Nov 12, 2021
So mindfulness of mind mindfulness of awareness. Awareness has the simplicity of it has no weight, no color, no shape. Awareness in itself has no history and no future. And to free awareness, from all the ways in which we burden it with our desires, and wishes and fears and projections, and so that awareness becomes simple is one of the great possibilities in this practice of mindfulness. And awareness is released, awareness is set free, and even of ourselves. And this is one of the more radical things about this practice, the way in which it can free or free ourselves from ourselves. And so if you engage in mindfulness practice, or meditation practice, and you're able to kind of really give yourself over to just being here, just being mindful in the, in the current of the present moment, the current of breathing, some sensing, feeling, whatever is going on. And then it's, we get, at some point, we get absorbed, this becomes all we're doing. And in the other, all we're doing absorption and just being present, self concern, self preoccupation, falls away. We're still here and if fully fall away, but I like to, for some reason, I like to liken this to basketball players, that it's if you watch someone playing basketball professionally or something, and, you know, there's no time to wonder about, how's that fan thinking about me? Is my shirt tucked in properly? The did I, you know, did I do well, did I snap my fingers right at that last shot, I mean, all kinds of preoccupations and thoughts, there's no time for it. And there's a kind of complete, losing what's a giving oneself over to what they're doing. And not most of us are not basketball players. But it could be cooking or playing music or reading a book or, you know, there's activities that we do that we kind of forget ourselves, we lose ourselves in a healthy way in the activity. Some people say that time stops, as the when we lose ourselves in the activity. We don't really lose ourselves, because there's, but we there's a wonderful self forgetting, or stepping out of this, the closed of self that we were and, and to have this wonderful, getting out of our own way. And being free from self concern, self preoccupation, referencing everything to self also begins to free awareness. It frees our presence, our ability to attend to what's here, there's a freedom, there's a lightness, there's an ease in that. And so then as that we continue the practice, there's more and more of this kind of self forgetting are more and more the shedding of anything that's extra. And, and there's a kind of sensitivity that arises to what's extra. So sitting quietly, being with a breath being with something, and and then you have the thought, You know what, that breath wasn't as good as the previous breath. But rather than believing it or getting involved in that thought, it's so clear that that's extra that thought the goodness of the moment doesn't need it. And so we don't get involved in that thought we don't pick it up. And we just kind of stay with the flow, the activity of here and here. And, and and so then awareness gets simpler and simpler. We get simpler and simpler. Or maybe we don't get simpler anymore. We've receded from the picture. And awareness gets simpler and simpler and simpler. And at some point, awareness releases itself.
Awareness, just like there's a self forgetting, there is an awareness forgetting awareness forgets itself. And, and what is that like, when it gets that simple, that free, that safe that settle that just being alive is enough just here. And even awareness doesn't have to do anything doesn't have to accomplish anything. It's not directed anywhere or. And there's a self forgetting in the awareness to just awareness is so smooth and operating. So simply, it just kind of forgets itself, sometimes it's called a dropping away. Sometimes it's called a, a ceasing, the ending of something. And then it comes back. But to have that experience of awareness for getting itself awareness. Getting out of its own way, is teaches something very profound about clinging, and the possibility of non clinging. So the final step for this week about awareness is the release, not only the release in awareness, but the release of awareness itself, both of those. So we respect our minds or awareness. We were We begin by just relaxing and that was the first day. And then there's recognition, a huge part of awareness is its capacity to recognize, and we're building on that capacity. So the recognition becomes simpler and simpler and simpler, less baggage, less associations, just the simple knowing, just in breath, just a thought, just hearing. Just being and, and then there's this deep respect for this whole process of being aware of being present respect for ourselves, I think there's dharma practice is kind of founded on a very deep respect that borders are, is a kind of reverence for all this. And so of course, we want to be present and attentive and, and, and find a way to be with everything that the being with is simple, just there with it, we don't interfere with anything. And then there's a kind of restoration of a wonderful kind of freedom of mind, they can just know whatever's happening, freely, openly, like, like, there's no barriers, no boundaries to anything, just it just known as free. avenues, no one simply nothing sticks. And then as we continue this process of deepening the awareness, and just kind of getting the flow of awareness, just relaxing in the simplicity of being there's this greater and greater process of simplification. And that might be a nicer word for some people to hear the breath and then letting go. Releasing, because letting go can seem like we're dismissing things or we're abandoning things or we're, you know, we're going to be without anything. But the simplification is simplifying into the most the part of ourselves a part of life that is most reverent, most respectful, deepest, most sacred. And, and to trust it so deeply and so well, that there's a self forgetting, and then an awareness forgetting. And then you'll know something new, something different about this life. And you'll probably never believe that clinging is important again, you might you're probably still clinging, but you will no longer believe in it. And that that's what's important. And so, the Buddha talks about awareness, he used the word citta. So maybe mind but awareness, liberated through non clinging so and then you get yourself in the simplest, most beautiful and profound way that you can be that paradoxically wonderfully, wondrously also involves a self forgetting. So it might seem like You're not going to be there to appreciate this wonder.
But maybe part of you is not there. The part that's extra. So thank you for this opportunity to teach you this stuff and appreciate their time together. And so as I said, yesterday, next week, I'm teaching retreat. And we're very fortunate to have Matthew Brent silver, teaching the 7am. And he'll do that together with some other things he does for the week. So if you want to get a deeper immersion in the practice and the teachings and with Matthew, check out there what a house described on the IMC website, and on the calendar and includes the Saturday a Saturday day long next Saturday. And then on Wednesday, next Wednesday evening, the 17th of November, a few of the senior practitioners, teacher trainees here at IMC both have done chaplaincy training, spiritual caregiving training involved with that very, very intimately are going to offer a grief circle. And so sometimes we've done sometimes the end of the year to, to kind of honor or respect commemorate, engage in the losses of the year. And there's been a lot now because of, you know, all kinds of losses with the pandemic and COVID. And, and, and so it'll be on Zoom, and they'll have a protocol on Zoom, you should read the description because you need to come with something for the the ceremony, the ritual they'll do. And so that's this, this coming Weinstein with Ying, Ying Chen and Don Neil. So, thank you all, and I'll see you, I guess in a couple of weeks. Thank you.