Taming the Monkey Mind
by Venerable Thubten Chodron©
Amitabha Buddhist Centre, Singapore
Thur, 7 Nov 2002

An Excerpt:

"Who is imprisoning us in suffering? Your mother? Your father? Your boss? The person who cut you off on the highway? Are they the ones who are imprisoning you in suffering? No! We are our own jail-keeper. We construct the prison, we put ourselves inside the cell, we lock it up and throw away the key. And then we blame the world for it."

[RealAudio files]

What is the monkey mind? Why is the image of a monkey used? Our mind is expert at creating 'videos'.
Taming the monkey mind:
recognizing it for what it is, without excuses, without rationalization.
The 'poor me' video
[20 min] : Download | Listen

Planning and day-dreaming about a wonderful future: Anything wrong with this?
What is real Dharma practice?
Saying mantras, taking refuge, making offerings - are these Dharma practice? Dharma practice requires courage; it means being very clear and very honest with ourselves.
When doubts arise about our Dharma practice...
[17 min] : Download | Listen

Questions and answers [28 minutes] : Download | Listen

Questions asked:

  • When we do the sadhanas and visualize ourselves as the deity, isn't this bringing ourselves into more fantasy? To quote Lama Yeshe, "What's the difference between visualizing yourself as Chenresig and visualizing yourself as Mickey Mouse?

  • Please elaborate what you mean by the deity is dependent arising.

  • Feeling pressured by the commitments we have to do after taking initiations.

  • Doing commitments with joy vs doing them with fear - fear of the grave consequences of not fulfilling the commitments. It's helpful to understand the cultural context in which teachings are given.

  • What's the difference between a religion and a philosophy? It seems that Buddhism is more of a pilosophy of how to live our life. Is it really a religion?




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