Author Topic: Kindness towards yourself  (Read 1427 times)

Offline Chaz

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Kindness towards yourself
« on: January 19, 2019, 04:10:45 pm »
A friend on Facebook, Ethan Nichtern posted this:

Quote
You can't step out of s negative habitual pattern until you get to know it very, very well.

This is why the path of awakening is gradual and sometimes painful.

This is why kindness towards yourself is everything.

This is something my teachers have been telling me and my fellow students for years - take it easy on yourself.  You can't have compassion for others if you are not compassionate to yourself. 

this is why practices that cultivate bodhicitta, such as Tonglen, are conducted where the practice first involves yourself.

The Buddha beat up both his mind and body with austerities and other cruelties for years but didn't achieve enlightenment untill he became kind to himself first.

It's good advice to remember.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2019, 05:10:19 pm by Chaz »

Offline stillpointdancer

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2019, 04:40:36 am »
A friend on Facebook, Ethan Nichtern posted this:

Quote
You can't step out of s negative habitual pattern until you get to know it very, very well.

This is why the path of awakening is gradual and sometimes painful.

This is why kindness towards yourself is everything.

This is something my teachers have been telling me and my fellow students for years - take it easy on yourself.  You can't have compassion for others if you are not compassionate to yourself. 

this is why practices that cultivate bodhicitta, such as Tonglen, are conducted where the practice first involves yourself.

The Buddha beat up both his mind and body with austerities and other cruelties for years but didn't achieve enlightenment untill he became kind to himself first.

It's good advice to remember.
It's why the first step in Metta Bhavana practice is to wish yourself well.
“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” Franz Kafka

Offline Dairy Lama

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2019, 02:26:12 am »
It's good advice to remember.

It's good to be reminded, I sometimes forget when things get tough.   I think of that saying "charity begins at home". 
"My religion is very simple - my religion is ice-cream"

Offline Skylar

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2019, 02:57:45 am »
Thanks for this excellent (and timely) reminder, Chaz.
Instead of leaving (to my loss) I am ignoring rude,and/or arbitrarily dismissive members (to their loss)

Offline paracelsus

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2019, 09:04:14 pm »
Also to remember that kindness toward others is also kindness toward ones self.

My mother used to say to the sour faced little boy beside her (me) "Smile at people, darling ..."

Much later in life it became obvious, the smile on my face automatically put smiles on the faces around me. and lo! I was in a society full of smiling people. A bit simplistic but .....

Offline Chaz

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2019, 11:29:53 am »
Also to remember that kindness toward others is also kindness toward ones self.

My mother used to say to the sour faced little boy beside her (me) "Smile at people, darling ..."

Much later in life it became obvious, the smile on my face automatically put smiles on the faces around me. and lo! I was in a society full of smiling people. A bit simplistic but .....

Be that as it may ..

It remains, the the instruction for compassion-building practices such as Tonglen and Metta, are to begin the practice with youself; develop compassion for yourself first.  You can't truly be compassionate to all sentient beings until you are compassionate to yourself.

Offline paracelsus

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2019, 06:45:29 pm »
Also to remember that kindness toward others is also kindness toward ones self.

My mother used to say to the sour faced little boy beside her (me) "Smile at people, darling ..."

Much later in life it became obvious, the smile on my face automatically put smiles on the faces around me. and lo! I was in a society full of smiling people. A bit simplistic but .....

Be that as it may ..

It remains, the the instruction for compassion-building practices such as Tonglen and Metta, are to begin the practice with youself; develop compassion for yourself first.  You can't truly be compassionate to all sentient beings until you are compassionate to yourself.

Quite so ... and of course the people smiling back at me may have been doing so out of compassion for the weird fellow grinning at them ....

But also consider the practice of internal and external contemplation of sameness, as described in the Satipatthāna Sutta, where we see that our precious individual "being" is so essentially dependent on others, and of the same nature and substance as the rest of the cosmos, that we are in fact not "self" but are really a part of an indivisible whole  (if that isn't a contradiction)... so developing compassion internally and/or externally is essentially the same once this is understood, but before it is understood, of course, be kind to yourself.

I kick myself for not having learnt this a long time ago ... :teehee:

 :om:

Offline Chaz

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2019, 07:10:07 pm »
Also to remember that kindness toward others is also kindness toward ones self.

My mother used to say to the sour faced little boy beside her (me) "Smile at people, darling ..."

Much later in life it became obvious, the smile on my face automatically put smiles on the faces around me. and lo! I was in a society full of smiling people. A bit simplistic but .....

Be that as it may ..

It remains, the the instruction for compassion-building practices such as Tonglen and Metta, are to begin the practice with youself; develop compassion for yourself first.  You can't truly be compassionate to all sentient beings until you are compassionate to yourself.

Quite so ... and of course the people smiling back at me may have been doing so out of compassion for the weird fellow grinning at them ....

But also consider the practice of internal and external contemplation of sameness, as described in the Satipatthāna Sutta, where we see that our precious individual "being" is so essentially dependent on others, and of the same nature and substance as the rest of the cosmos, that we are in fact not "self" but are really a part of an indivisible whole  (if that isn't a contradiction)... so developing compassion internally and/or externally is essentially the same once this is understood, but before it is understood, of course, be kind to yourself.

I kick myself for not having learnt this a long time ago ... :teehee:

 :om:


Where in the Satipatthāna Sutta, is sameness discussed?   I have a passing familiarity, mainly focused on the 4 foundations.  The sources I've looked at have no mention of "sameness".

Help me out?

Offline paracelsus

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2019, 09:09:38 pm »
Also to remember that kindness toward others is also kindness toward ones self.

My mother used to say to the sour faced little boy beside her (me) "Smile at people, darling ..."

Much later in life it became obvious, the smile on my face automatically put smiles on the faces around me. and lo! I was in a society full of smiling people. A bit simplistic but .....

Be that as it may ..

It remains, the the instruction for compassion-building practices such as Tonglen and Metta, are to begin the practice with youself; develop compassion for yourself first.  You can't truly be compassionate to all sentient beings until you are compassionate to yourself.

Quite so ... and of course the people smiling back at me may have been doing so out of compassion for the weird fellow grinning at them ....

But also consider the practice of internal and external contemplation of sameness, as described in the Satipatthāna Sutta, where we see that our precious individual "being" is so essentially dependent on others, and of the same nature and substance as the rest of the cosmos, that we are in fact not "self" but are really a part of an indivisible whole  (if that isn't a contradiction)... so developing compassion internally and/or externally is essentially the same once this is understood, but before it is understood, of course, be kind to yourself.

I kick myself for not having learnt this a long time ago ... :teehee:

 :om:


Where in the Satipatthāna Sutta, is sameness discussed?   I have a passing familiarity, mainly focused on the 4 foundations.  The sources I've looked at have no mention of "sameness".

Help me out?

“In regard to the body one abides contemplating the body internally, or in regard to the body one abides contemplating the body externally, or in regard to the body one contemplates the body internally and externally …”

I used the word “sameness” to describe a result of the contemplations where one has taken internally to indicate contemplation of one’s own body, externally to indicate the contemplation of the bodies of others, and the contemplation of the body both internally and externally to be an equalising insight, revealing that there is essentially no “difference” between self and other, especially when the elements of the body are considered.

Naturally in samsara I seem to be me and you seem to be you, and should be respected as such, but one result of contemplations such as these, I think, should be a dissolving of the ego wall, not only between people but also between self and world. Compassion will naturally develop and respect for nature increase when our interdependence is recognised..

As Eihei Dogen is said to have said: “ The dharmas should be grasped so that the mind and object become one”. Sameness.

I hope this is not misleading, my own thoughts after all …      :om:



 




Offline Chaz

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2019, 05:36:14 pm »
Also to remember that kindness toward others is also kindness toward ones self.

My mother used to say to the sour faced little boy beside her (me) "Smile at people, darling ..."

Much later in life it became obvious, the smile on my face automatically put smiles on the faces around me. and lo! I was in a society full of smiling people. A bit simplistic but .....

Be that as it may ..

It remains, the the instruction for compassion-building practices such as Tonglen and Metta, are to begin the practice with youself; develop compassion for yourself first.  You can't truly be compassionate to all sentient beings until you are compassionate to yourself.

Quite so ... and of course the people smiling back at me may have been doing so out of compassion for the weird fellow grinning at them ....

But also consider the practice of internal and external contemplation of sameness, as described in the Satipatthāna Sutta, where we see that our precious individual "being" is so essentially dependent on others, and of the same nature and substance as the rest of the cosmos, that we are in fact not "self" but are really a part of an indivisible whole  (if that isn't a contradiction)... so developing compassion internally and/or externally is essentially the same once this is understood, but before it is understood, of course, be kind to yourself.

I kick myself for not having learnt this a long time ago ... :teehee:

 :om:


Where in the Satipatthāna Sutta, is sameness discussed?   I have a passing familiarity, mainly focused on the 4 foundations.  The sources I've looked at have no mention of "sameness".

Help me out?

“In regard to the body one abides contemplating the body internally, or in regard to the body one abides contemplating the body externally, or in regard to the body one contemplates the body internally and externally …”

I used the word “sameness” to describe a result of the contemplations where one has taken internally to indicate contemplation of one’s own body, externally to indicate the contemplation of the bodies of others, and the contemplation of the body both internally and externally to be an equalising insight, revealing that there is essentially no “difference” between self and other, especially when the elements of the body are considered.

Naturally in samsara I seem to be me and you seem to be you, and should be respected as such, but one result of contemplations such as these, I think, should be a dissolving of the ego wall, not only between people but also between self and world. Compassion will naturally develop and respect for nature increase when our interdependence is recognised..

As Eihei Dogen is said to have said: “ The dharmas should be grasped so that the mind and object become one”. Sameness.

I hope this is not misleading, my own thoughts after all …      :om:

It was a little mispleading.  Just a little.

My guru as well as others teaches on the Satipatthāna Sutta and it's one of the most studied, and practiced sutras out there.

Without a mention of "Sameness".

So, you'll fogive me if I asked for some clarification.

I can't say I agree with what you posted, but I don't want to drag this thread off topic to argue about it.  Just not that important.  If you want start another thread entitled, "Why is Chaz Such A Dick About The Satipatthāna Sutta?"
 :lmfao: I might just join in :om:

Offline paracelsus

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2019, 08:59:34 pm »

[/quote]


Where in the Satipatthāna Sutta, is sameness discussed?   I have a passing familiarity, mainly focused on the 4 foundations.  The sources I've looked at have no mention of "sameness".

Help me out?
[/quote]

“In regard to the body one abides contemplating the body internally, or in regard to the body one abides contemplating the body externally, or in regard to the body one contemplates the body internally and externally …”

I used the word “sameness” to describe a result of the contemplations where one has taken internally to indicate contemplation of one’s own body, externally to indicate the contemplation of the bodies of others, and the contemplation of the body both internally and externally to be an equalising insight, revealing that there is essentially no “difference” between self and other, especially when the elements of the body are considered.

Naturally in samsara I seem to be me and you seem to be you, and should be respected as such, but one result of contemplations such as these, I think, should be a dissolving of the ego wall, not only between people but also between self and world. Compassion will naturally develop and respect for nature increase when our interdependence is recognised..

As Eihei Dogen is said to have said: “ The dharmas should be grasped so that the mind and object become one”. Sameness.

I hope this is not misleading, my own thoughts after all …      :om:
[/quote]

It was a little mispleading.  Just a little.

My guru as well as others teaches on the Satipatthāna Sutta and it's one of the most studied, and practiced sutras out there.

Without a mention of "Sameness".

So, you'll fogive me if I asked for some clarification.

I can't say I agree with what you posted, but I don't want to drag this thread off topic to argue about it.  Just not that important.  If you want start another thread entitled, "Why is Chaz Such A Dick About The Satipatthāna Sutta?"
 :lmfao: I might just join in :om:
[/quote]

I don't think you're being a dick, people like me should be challenged at every opportunity.

My point is that seeing others as being essentially the same as oneself can be a useful part of laying the ground for a natural development of kindness/compassion. One outcome of my practicing from the "Satipatthāna Sutta" seems to be just that. It may have different effects on you. Can you say in not too many words what the intent and result of the practice is? Or commentaries on it etc? I'd welcome any guidance.

I'm not saying that that is the only effect of the practice or that it is even the main intent, just in terms of practicing kindness toward oneself it can work in either direction ....

The sutta may not use the term "sameness" but if the interpretation of "internally, externally, and both internally and externally" is taken as I suggested above then one effect is exactly to see others physically and emotionally, and in terms of mortality, as of the same nature as oneself, hence sameness.

 :om:

 

Offline Dairy Lama

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2019, 02:32:28 am »
My guru as well as others teaches on the Satipatthāna Sutta and it's one of the most studied, and practiced sutras out there.
Without a mention of "Sameness".

That's correct, sameness isn't directly referred to in MN10.  MN10 does make the distinction between "internal" and "external", which in context appears to mean inside and outside the body. 

However sameness with regards to the internal and external elements is referred to MN140:

"And what is the earth property? The earth property can be either internal or external.... Now both the internal earth property & the external earth property are simply earth property. And that should be seen as it actually is present with right discernment: 'This is not mine, this is not me, this is not my self.'"
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.140.than.html
« Last Edit: March 02, 2019, 02:34:55 am by Dairy Lama »
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Offline Chaz

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2019, 05:17:31 am »
My guru as well as others teaches on the Satipatthāna Sutta and it's one of the most studied, and practiced sutras out there.
Without a mention of "Sameness".

That's correct, sameness isn't directly referred to in MN10.  MN10 does make the distinction between "internal" and "external", which in context appears to mean inside and outside the body. 

However sameness with regards to the internal and external elements is referred to MN140:

"And what is the earth property? The earth property can be either internal or external.... Now both the internal earth property & the external earth property are simply earth property. And that should be seen as it actually is present with right discernment: 'This is not mine, this is not me, this is not my self.'"
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.140.than.html

But isn't that a teaching on no-self?

And I'm still not comfortable with the idea of sameness.  In the passage you quote,  the words sameness is not present. The term seems to be imputed and I dont trust imuted terminology in the study of dharma.  In our case it seems to have lead to a "everything is one" view- one that I think is unsupportable. 

Offline Dairy Lama

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2019, 03:51:05 am »
My guru as well as others teaches on the Satipatthāna Sutta and it's one of the most studied, and practiced sutras out there.
Without a mention of "Sameness".

That's correct, sameness isn't directly referred to in MN10.  MN10 does make the distinction between "internal" and "external", which in context appears to mean inside and outside the body. 

However sameness with regards to the internal and external elements is referred to MN140:

"And what is the earth property? The earth property can be either internal or external.... Now both the internal earth property & the external earth property are simply earth property. And that should be seen as it actually is present with right discernment: 'This is not mine, this is not me, this is not my self.'"
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.140.than.html

But isn't that a teaching on no-self?

And I'm still not comfortable with the idea of sameness.  In the passage you quote,  the words sameness is not present. The term seems to be imputed and I dont trust imuted terminology in the study of dharma.  In our case it seems to have lead to a "everything is one" view- one that I think is unsupportable.

Yes, the MN140 passage is saying that the elements which make up your body aren't yours, they're just elements - the same elements which make up the "external" world.   Perhaps not so much about sameness, but more about chipping away at our sense of being separate and self-contained. 
"My religion is very simple - my religion is ice-cream"

Offline paracelsus

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Re: Kindness towards yourself
« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2019, 08:27:12 pm »
The thread has become tangled and gone off course by my use of the word sameness. I think it has been given far too tight a meaning.
It was not meant to imply that everything/everyone is the same but that we share characteristics due to our composition and that this is good reason for,  as well as having an involuntary effect of, having us become more sympathetic to others. This is not the subject of the thread (Kindness to ourselves) but was an attempt to point out that we can use a sense of kindness to others to help develop kindness to ourselves.

 :chill: :om:







 


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