So continuing with the theme of this week, which is to be ready for change, to be able to been willing to change in a good way, by the life that we live and to dharma practice is walking on the path of being changed, to being changed for the better, being changed out of the ways that we live that are harmful for ourselves and harmful for others, into a way of living, that is beneficial for ourselves and beneficial for others. And so, to prepare, or to help the mind or the heart or who we are, be available for change to for beneficial growth, there are these five different areas. One is it to date already just a readiness to be ready for something new, ready and available to be receptive. The second is we talked about yesterday is to have a mind that's malleable. Mind which is a workable that you're you're not holding on to ideas, opinions, identities in such a way that things are stuck or hard. Holding a stance, we're stubborn, we're resisting, we're asserting. But instead where there's a softness or some malleability, there's a workability, where we're a work of art that we can work on ourselves. And today, the topic of these five is being free of hindrances. And the hindrances are major preoccupations that we have that we get caught in. They're kind of like you know, like vacuum cleaners, so that we get close to it, then we get sucked into this vacuum cleaner. And we swirl around inside if this until somehow we find our way out that these are very powerful forces that keep us preoccupied, churning, ruminating, caught up wanting, not wanting to clamped down, shut down, frozen, agitated, spinning, all kinds of things. And there are five of them, but the shorthand is that they're preoccupations of the mind. And they're also the Pali word Neva Rana, who translated as hindrances also means coverings. And sometimes I think of them as there's this wonderful greenhouse that maybe because of was going to be a freezing night, it was covered with big blankets, big blankets. But then the farmers forgot to take the blanket off. And it stays that way for months, and the plants inside can't grow and the warmth of the sun can't get in there really. And they shrivel and dry and, and get really thin and eat related until you know they all fall over the plants. So this idea that we have these coverings that cover something precious, that we don't see when we're preoccupied. And to let go of these preoccupations, the image of just like pulling the blanket off, so that something gets deeper within the seeds that the seed beds and seeds getting getting again growing something beautiful can begin to happen. We do have beauty within us beautiful capacities beautiful potential beautiful attitudes, motivations, thoughts, feelings, and to be available is to, uh, to be unprepared, occupied and available. So allow something deeper to happen. That can't happen when we're preoccupied. So one of the really important features of doing the pasta practice insight meditation practice mindfulness practice, is to really become an expert on the hindrances on sensual desire after viciousness wanting greed. Ill Will hostility resentment And then kind of, I call it resistance and frozenness stiffness, it's usually called sloth and torpor. But these are more strategies of not being present that shut us down. And then agitation and resentments regrets, and then doubt. So there are these five and there's dharma talks about them their essays on them, I have a little book about the hindrances called, it's called the unhindered that it's important for people who do this practice here, to not be discouraged turn away from these, when they occur for occur to us, but rather, really take them on as a worthy area to study to understand how this works, to until we really be able to see and how the magic is done, that we no longer tricked by the magic into thinking that something is real there. And we start seeing how the, the, the sleight of hand of the hindrances of why we get caught in it and why we think is so important and so valuable, and they're just a trick of the mind to get us preoccupied and caught. And, and to find ourselves without the hindrances is one of the great delights. So to begin having an NP occupied mind is a pleasure. So one of the ways to be prepared to change and to grow is to begin appreciating valuing and joining, being inspired by the degree to which we are on preoccupied and that's a hard thing to do because of the preoccupation seems so important. Being untrue. preoccupied can seem like nothing and you know, women that's not any good. It what's good is doing things and thinking about things and, and, but this unfree occupied mind that's available that's present for the fullness of this life, the fullness of our hearts and our minds, just here and present on preoccupied. And to appreciate that take the time to appreciate it take the time to value it when it's there. And, and rather than having it all or nothing, it's either preoccupied or and preoccupied. It's a matter of degree. And hopefully we're tipping the balance towards more, being unprepared, occupied, then preoccupied. But begin appreciating the degree to which you're NP occupied the degree to which you're available and present, then and that also then allows you to have the same kind of attitude of availability of receptivity of, of the kind of a softness around the ways which we are preoccupied. It's not like setting up a battle between them. The more we have this availability of attention, we can hold all the ways that we are caught and attached and involved, hold it generous generously. Hold it non assertively, non donut fans upon it to blow it away or fix it. Be available to know it fully. In meditation, maybe everything difficult within us is something that is a door to a deeper understanding of, of life and ourselves. So this so that if you if you really want to be to change in a beneficial way, begin appreciating at the NP occupied mind. And make time for it. Begin learn to recognize a when you're preoccupied when you're spinning out when you're kind of you know being carried away by the trains of thought. And it really kind of oh, that there it is, there it is again, and then step off the train, take off the blanket. Let the thought bubbles kind of drift away. Let the tension in the pressure. The need to solve and fix and judge and and remember and plan. Settle for a while. So you can be here in a deeper and fuller way. So as the mind so that you're available. You're receptive. You are maybe start to becoming softer in a place where creativity can occur. are in a place where deeper wisdom and deeper understanding can arise. It isn't like you lose your ability to take care of your life.
If you're no longer preoccupied with your concerns, you gain an new vantage point in which to take care of your life when you're not preoccupied and it's possible to have the important issues of your life come into your mind to be thought about without it being a preoccupation. It's just something to think about in a light way, an open way and a peaceful way and have tea with your thoughts and think what needs to be thought about. So for today, the the topic now is to appreciate non preoccupation. Appreciate when you're not caught up in your thoughts and appreciate the alternative. Appreciate what that's like to not be preoccupied. Caught, appreciate the the openness, the subtleness, the availability, the receptivity, appreciate, maybe even the delight and the joy of not having lost yourself to your thoughts. There is a way in which we lose ourselves when we get too preoccupied. And then we gain ourselves when the preoccupations the clouds part, the preoccupations part, and we're all we're here back, here I am. And for the Buddha, the absence of hindrances the absence of preoccupation is a source for gladness for delight for a kind of happiness. So what today I'd like to suggest to you as you notice the times that you're not preoccupied where you're available rather than asserting yourself and see if you can taste or find the hints may be or the small ways big ways in which there is something some gladness some happiness in this ability to be here and available way and think of it as micro moments sometimes think of it as a degrees but see if you can find that the well being and the delight the gladness the appreciation for not being caught up. Wow, not caught up. I'm just here for the second. Wow. And may you have a lots of WoW, today. They have lots of appreciation and joy. Oh, here it is. Here it is. I'm back. I'm back. We're back. Life is back. So thank you very much. And
may this be day that sprinkled with joy. Thank you