In this Dhamma talk Ahba answers some questions asked by two Dutch disciples during their visit to his monastery.
- 1. Meditation Ahba 24:04
- 2. Sati (Mindfulness) Ahba 8:17
- 3. Patience and Metta (Loving Kindness) Ahba 17:59
We realize that Ahba can be difficult to understand for people who do not know him, and that the greatest power of his words is in the energy he conveys while he speaks. Nevertheless, we want to share these lessons to give other people the opportunity to hear him speak. Here is a brief explanation of what can be heard:
- The first question asked to Ahba is about desire. In his answer, Ahba emphasizes the importance of meditation to slowly but surely put an end to desire and the suffering that accompanies it. He indicates that concentration (samatha) precedes insight (vipassanā). Concentration is the foundation. It is important to develop concentration slowly but surely, to an ever-increasing degree. You do this by trying againg and again during practice, but without desiring any result. Very slowly but surely. Then you will automatically understand how things work, based on your own experience. Understanding dukkha, anicca, anattā without concentration is not possible. The Buddha has worked many lives on his paramī’s, don’t think you can get the job done in one afternoon! Practice quietly, patiently. Talking is easy, real life is another story. Ahba also explains the meditation system to the sound of the word buddho.
- The second question is about mindfulness (sati). In his answer, Ahba explains sati and the importance of dedication and perseverance to practice sati at all times. Sati starts with believing in the system of meditation, which makes you like it more. If you like something you will do practice it more often. Don’t judge your practice, don’t think too much, just practice, just do it! Talking about mindfulness is easy but pointless if you don’t practice it.
- The third question is about cultivating patience. Ahba indicates that a cause for the lack of patience is a lack of loving-kindness (mettā). There is a lot of anger (dosa) and also a lot of fear in people. People quickly become angry in the world. Ahba makes a link with children leaving home early. He says that 18 year old children are not yet able to protect their own mind. Children no longer listen to their parents properly. This is dangerous for the mind. Ahba explains how to cultivate mettā. Mettā is often confused in the world with love accompanied by desire. However, mettā is a clean loving without desire, directed toward all beings. As you develop mettā, it also has an effect on your surroundings and your surroundings become more loving. Again, this begins with belief, trust in the meditation system. If you have faith in the system, you have the patience to practice it. Meditate for a clean and pure mind, then mettā is clean and steady. Ahba explains the practice of mettā as a wish for all beings that they will be happy in al their endevours.