Monday, August 7, 2017

Ajahn Chah on Reciting 'Buddho'

Ajahn Chah: Bud-dho, Bud-dho, Bud-dho...

Meditate reciting Buddho, Buddho until it penetrates deep into the heart of your consciousness. The word Buddho represents the awareness and wisdom of the Buddha. In practice, you must depend on this word more than anything else. The awareness it brings will lead you to understand the truth about your own mind. It’s a true refuge, which means that there is both mindfulness and insight present. Wild animals can have awareness of a sort. They have mindfulness as they stalk their prey and prepare to attack. Even the predator needs firm mindfulness to keep hold of the captured prey however defiantly it struggles to escape death. That is one kind of mindfulness. For this reason you must be able to distinguish between different kinds of mindfulness. Buddho is a way to apply the mind. When you consciously apply the mind to an object, it wakes up. The awareness wakes it up. Once this knowing has arisen through meditation, you can see the mind clearly. As long as the mind remains without the awareness of Buddho, even if there is ordinary worldly mindfulness present, it is as if unawakened and without insight. It will not lead you to what is truly beneficial. Mindfulness depends on the presence of Buddho – the knowing. It must be a clear knowing, which leads to the mind becoming  brighter and more radiant. The illuminating effect that this clear knowing has on the mind is similar to the brightening of a light in a darkened room. As long as the room is pitch black, any objects placed inside remain difficult to distinguish or else completely obscured from view because of the lack of light. But as you begin intensifying the brightness of the light inside, it will penetrate throughout the whole room, enabling you to see more clearly from moment to moment, thus allowing you to know more and more the details of any object inside there.

Note: The word 'Buddho' (a variant of 'Buddha') is often taught as a word to recite mentally in combination with the breath, by meditation masters of the Thai forest tradition. One recites the syllable 'Bud' on the in-breath and 'dho' on the out-breath.

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