[SoG] 5 Hindrances to Mastery?

5 Hindrances to Mastery

Hello Hello!

I hope you guys are doing ok.

This lockdown is releasing a lot of me to me in many ways. For example, I always thought I would be absolutely ok with the idea of living by myself, with minimal contact. Every time I see a movie where someone was thrown in jail without any contact with the outside world (often called the solitary or the hole) I would tell myself that it could not be that bad. When I thought about Forrest (of the Forrest Gump fame), I tell myself that apart from the tooth surgery that he did, I could do everything else. When I think of the time when I was at Vipassana, I think about the times when we had to do those solitary sessions (and it's been more than a decade now, I must say I did not do as well).

The point is, this staying at home is getting to me now. While I am ok to work from home (that's something I have learned, thanks to the lockdown), I do need to go out for a walk to a nearby store. Grab a coffee. Or a Diet Coke. Or candy. And then walk back to where I work. Thankfully, after we are back to whatever is the new normal, I plan to do this. Work from home. Identify a nearby coffee shop and then make frequent "break" trips there.

Ok, after this blog-y update, here's what I mean to write to you about.

This TED Talk!

Sent to me by Satya (yeah, that's his ACTUAL name), in the talk, Master Shi Heng Yi talks about 5 hindrances to "mastery". He says these are...

  • Sensual: positive emotions coming from one of your "gateways" - see, hear, feel, taste, smell. Say you pass a mithaiwala. Your visual and olfactory sense makes you take note and then you lose the batter between having and not having.

  • Ill-will: these are negative emotions. Say, aversion, rejection, dislike. You don't like the idea of spinach soup, you know.

  • Loss / torpor: Things like sleepiness, lack of motivation, lack of energy. What a lot of us are going thru, thanks to the lockdown.

  • Restlessness: Our unsettled mind. Or monkey mind that jumps from one thing to another to yet another and so on and so forth. I think this is my biggest challenge.

  • Skepticalness: Indecisiveness. Too many doubts. On everything.

Oh, the above 5? I have described in my own words.
Please do see the video to hear about these from the master.

So, after I heard this talk, I spent some time thinking about it, and here are some of my notes / observations / lessons / comments. To myself. Hope these may help you meditate on your own self as well!

  1. Clarity is when you don't have to believe anyone else for actions that you have to take. You don't need to rely on anyone. You become independent of other people's inputs.

  2. I am already at a state when I am detached from a lot of things. Need to practice this more. Do re-see the part where he talks about detachment.

  3. As a person, I need to find stories that I could narrate to people. People remember stories more than they remember prose.

  4. There is no one singular correct path. Each one has to take a different path basis their respective make-ups. What works for me, need not work for you. I need to be mindful of this. I am the kind that often dismisses people that do not see the world the way I see it.

  5. Beyond a certain point, there is no value in seeking out knowledge about paths. Belief in making your own path is essential than the path itself. This is the most important lesson. I am yet to comprehend this fully.

That's about it for the time being.
Do share what your takeaways are.

And a couple of "announcements" before I close.

  1. I hope I get to send an SoG at least once every week now. Thanks to the lockdown, I have been able to put some semblance of a schedule and have slotted time for these! Wish me luck.

  2. I have made a Telegram channel (broadcast list) where I share these as and when they happen. Join it at https://t.me/ProfSG01.

Stay safe, sane, happy, and healthy!

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