What if we like the practice,

but feel that we’re not making progress? 

The teachings make sense, we respect our teacher, we like the chanting. We might even enjoy visiting a center where the ceremonies are in another language! And yet, despite all this, we don’t feel like we’re making any real progress.

We hear accounts of people who are doing well in their practice, but we feel stuck in ours. And so we wonder “What am I doing wrong?”

Very likely we’re still clinging to our attachments. Attachment to what is familiar, to judging those around us, to meeting other’s expectations of us. Attachment to those we love, to all that we deem life-enhancing.

It’s like holding a cup brimming with Enjoyment tea and wondering why we can’t pour in any more. Might the problem be our ego? Our wanting to control, to please others, to reject that which we dislike, to hold on to what we enjoy while avoiding everything else. Are these what we really want? Or can we begin to see how they’re keeping us stuck when we yearn to move on?



Those who do not understand, ask “Why? . . . (Click image for video)


It’s time for our 

“Not Now” brush. 

Preparing to meditate, we turn down the lights, perhaps light a candle or some incense, assume our preferred sitting posture, and close our eyes. As we take a relaxing deep breath, our mind begins to settle.

Then, in an instant, our mind is again distracted. An idea for something we’re writing, a meeting we had forgotten to schedule, our overdue library books—these are all important, just not more than our meditation.

If we’re really concerned that we cannot remember the thought again, we can jot it down and return to our meditation.

What if it is yet another wandering thought? For these thoughts and others that pop up, we get our “Not Now” brush. Mine is like the dustpan brush we had when I was young: sturdy wooden handle, soft black bristles. With our virtual brush in hand, we gently, but firmly, silently murmur “not now” and brush the thought away.

Now we can return to our meditation, our “Not Now” brush ever ready.


Page 1 ... 4 5 6 7 8 ... 259 Next 5 Entries »