Your Personal Silent Retreat

You know, I think this is the first time in weeks, maybe two or three months, but I know the first time since the first of August when I recorded the last series of weekly messages, that I have had 36 hours where I didn’t have to get on the plane, get on the train, get on the bus, pack something, take care of someone, be with someone. And so I’m really thankful for this break, this intermission from my wonderful life.

Your Personal Silent Retreat

I think that’s what the Buddhists were trying to tell us, that if indeed the Four Noble Truths, everything is “dukkha” or “dakkha,”. You know, I’m not sure, but I’m sure I’ll be corrected in the next few days, which is another word for suffering or anguish, anxiety. If that is everything, then it’s a matter of how you deal with it that makes it all right.

You can buy into the suffering of everything. You can buy into the pain or you can just know that is the general energy, and rise above it, and explore your own craving or desire to change that suffering, or you can just be with it.

I hope as we are in Thailand, as we are awakening the Buddha that is within that I’ll have a greater understanding of the Four Noble Truths, because those Four Noble Truths are very powerful. They are the foundation of Buddhism, which is not a religion, it’s a practice. And through the Eightfold Path, you reach Nirvana or Heaven on Earth, right understanding, right thought, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. I want to memorize all those.

Acknowledging dukkha

So, it is my right effort or right resolve that is causing me to acknowledge dukkha, or suffering, or anxiety that I’m experiencing and to embrace all aspects of it. You know, as you heard in the last two messages, I got emotional. I may get emotional again. But, you see, I think it is very important for us to be transparent in this day. It is very important for us to acknowledge who we are, how we are, and to honor that part of our self that is that feeling human experience.

The root of that suffering is the craving or desire that something is different than it is.

So, this week I’d like you to just feel into those Four Noble Truths, that everything is dukkha, everything is suffering, anxiousness, anguish, anxiety. The root of that suffering is the craving or desire that something is different than it is. The possibility of Nirvana or Heaven on Earth is real, and that the way to that Nirvana or Heaven on Earth is through the Eightfold Path. So, let’s just explore those a little more deeply.

Sit in the stillness

I am not Buddhist, and I am not an expert on any of those traditions. However, I’m going to Thailand. While you are listening to this, I’m in Thailand, and I am searching to awaken some part of myself that will awaken the Buddha that is within me, the wisdom, the wise one that is within me. And because of who I am, I get to take you with me. So, let’s sit in the stillness today.

And if you can take a whole day this week of just complete stillness where you shut down all the electronics, shut down all the cellphones, shut down the telephones, shut down and just be, not distracting yourself with doing lots of things or reading lots of things, but just be in nature, and just sit, and just have your own personal silent retreat. That will help awaken the Buddha that is within.

So, I’m going to ask you to do that one day this week. Or, you know, if that’s too much to ask, take a specified period of time, two hours or three hours, and do that for your own personal silent retreat to awaken the Buddha within. Could be interesting.

Namastè Y’all!

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