SESSION 4 NOTES
GUIDED MEDITATION “MIND AS KNOWER”
You can also read and study the following chapters from the book Buddhism in a Nutshell: Essentials for Practice and Study.
• What is Renunciation? (pages 159‐168)
• How to Serve Others (pages 169‐187)
• The Good Heart
• The Life of a Bodhisattva
THE MEDITATIONS FROM THE READINGS
There are three meditations from the book Buddhism in a Nutshell: Essentials for Practice and Study for this session:
• Renunciation (page 167)
• Bodhichitta (page 179)
• Perfection (page 185)
After you have calmed your mind and generated an altruistic motivation, do the actual meditation for at least fifteen minutes. Conclude the meditation with a dedication.
THE POINTS FOR REFLECTION
You can contemplate as many of the following points for reflection as you like at any one time, either in the form of an analytical meditation while sitting on your meditation seat or by writing out your thoughts while sitting at a table. It would be good to begin each session of reflection by generating an altruistic motivation, and to conclude the session by dedicating the positive energy you have created.
The points for reflection for this session are:
- What are the delusions that arise most often in your mind? How do they make you feel?
- Are there any “samsaric pleasures” that you are particularly attached to? Does the attachment to these pleasures make you suffer? If so, how can you develop a more “renounced” relationship with these pleasures?
- What are some concrete steps you could take to simplify your life? Would you want to take them? What might prevent you from taking them, even though you would like to?
- How many people do you feel close to? How many people do you dislike? Are there people who you used to like and now dislike? Are there people who you used to dislike who you now like? Would it be in your interest to have a more balanced relationship with the people in your life? If so, what could you do to achieve this?
- Bring to mind someone to whom you feel grateful. Can you think of times when that gratitude helped protect your mind from anger and helped you be more patient and kind with that person? How would it affect your relationship and reactions to others if you could see them as having been your mother and having been kind to you in a past life?
- Which of the six perfections do your regularly do in your daily life? Which of them do you need to put more effort into? What kinds of activities could you do to practice them?