Around this time 3 years ago I went to Japan with my partner and stayed in the oldest buddhist temple/monastery in Mt Koya, the birthplace of Buddhism. While there, we were able to attend the monks morning ritual and get an insight into the daily life of a Bhante with traditions dating back well over 1500 years. We were also fortunate enough to be given instruction on their style of meditaton and gain a deeper understanding of our own practice through their counsel. One of the first things the Bhante said was, ...when we go into the forest to enjoy the forest, we don't pick up a single leaf, stare at it and yell "I'm enjoying the forest", but rather we sit back and take in the whole forest.
This summed up my early mediation practice perfectly. I would sit to mediate and id inevitably get frustrated at myself for my inability to stop thinking whenever I'd try meditating. Eventually I came to the realisation that my mind is one of many necessary processes within the body and that I was not my thoughts. Rather than focusing on the individual thought that blew in and out of my mind, I reframed to be consciously aware of my entire being. #meditation #japan #mtkoya #shojoshinin #buddhism #buddhist #monk #bhante #understanding #awareness