So, day 3. It's said of the Sentinelese islanders that they only count to two, and anything above that is called "many." While I think this is a very wise policy generally, it's unfortunately often true of our resolutions, too—we hold fast for a day or two, and then, well.... Don't let Day 3 be the day you fall off the cushion. Keep sitting! This morning I had a terrible sit. I was resentful and restless, and couldn't count above two, like the Sentinelese. But as Brad Warner writes in the new issue of Tricycle, it's like brushing your teeth: You just do it. Brad Warner, by the way, is helping us out by answering our meditation questions here: Ask the Meditation Doctor. If you have a question, asking a real, live meditation instructor is a good way to start.
Here's Tricycle's Daily Dharma for today, which I appreciated reading this morning:
Whether pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral, gross or subtle, every sensation shares the same characteristic: it arises and passes away, arises and passes away. It is this arising and passing that we have to experience through practice, not just accept as truth because Buddha said so, not just accept because intellectually it seems logical enough to us. We must experience sensation’s nature, understand its flux, and learn not to react to it.
Good luck with your sitting through the weekend!
Philip Ryan, Tricycle.com
Image: Broadway Buddha, in the window of ABC Carpet. He inspires (or reproaches, depending on your mind-state) passing meditators with his perfect posture.