be free, be happy, be peaceful

May all find the teacher within to guide oneself towards unconditional love and peace

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

About Anger And Hatred

We were told that anger are bad, negative, not good. But how true is that? Anger is an expression of upset, frustration, irritation, disappointment and dissatisfaction. Anger is a very normal feeling that everyone has just like feeling happy and feeling sad. When we feel happy we will laugh, when we feel sad we will cry, when we feel angry we will shout. It is a natural way of expressing how we feel. Who says that we can only express happiness and cannot express unhappiness? Who says that we can only have positive feelings and expression and cannot have negative feelings and expression? Who says that having positivity is “good” and having negativity is “bad”?

If we think that anger, sadness, low energy, sickness, poverty, fat, ugliness, or anything that is being labeled as “negativity” as bad and not good, then we will be told that we are not good to have any of these negativity, and that we are not suppose to have anger, sadness, sickness, being poor, fat and ugly. Because it is something “bad” and make us a bad person. And we will be so unhappy when we encounter any of these so called negativity, and not able to express anger and sadness because we were told not to, that it is bad, and we are not good if we express our anger and sadness. But these anger and sadness are being suppressed into our body and the mind, and become a huge burden or tension in the body and the mind that will explode one day and cause larger damage to ourselves and to others. And it is worst when suppressed anger had turned into great hatred because we are not allowed to confront or express any of our unhappiness. Due to our conception that anger and shouting is something negative and not good, we will be so annoyed, upset, unhappy or angry when someone express their anger towards us or shout at us when we had say or do something that made them unhappy. We will be so annoyed and feel insulted when people confront with us about why they are being angry and unhappy with us. It makes us think that “we are bad”, “we did something wrong”. And our ego really doesn’t like this.

We will think that we are the victim of somebody’s anger. Even if we did cause the unhappiness in other people but they should not express any anger or unhappiness towards us at all, because it is bad and not good. Or we will think that we are not good and bad because someone is angry with us because we did something wrong or bad. And thus we don’t like other people to be angry with us. We will be very unhappy if people tell us that they are angry and unhappy with us. And so, it will become “I am bad, I am not good” because someone is angry and unhappy with me, and as well as “you are bad, you are not good” because you are having anger and you are expressing anger and unhappiness onto me whether I did something that caused you angry and unhappy or not.

This is very unhealthy for the body and the mind.

It is actually the ego feeling being insulted when someone is being angry or unhappy with us. We think that we are not responsible for what we have done that had caused somebody’s unhappiness. We think that even though we did something wrong, nobody should be angry with us because they are not suppose to have anger. They are bad if they have anger and especially if they are angry with “me”.

When we stop thinking that anger, sadness and all those so called negativity are “bad” and “not good”, then we will see all these “negativity” are very normal phenomena that happens in our body and in our mind. It is very normal and nothing wrong to have feelings of frustration, disappointment and dissatisfaction just like having other feelings of joy and happiness.

But not let the anger turns into hatred is the most important thing. We should be able to confront with the person who might or might not have inflicted the unhappiness in us, and tell them why are we feeling angry or upset about, which has got something to do with that person. And after expressing our unhappiness, we should forgive and forget, and let it go. Not let this unhappiness or anger carry forward into the next moment. This will stop us to have any further misunderstandings, confusions and conflicts that is due to the unexpressed frustration and suppressed anger in our heart, in the body and in the mind.

Most of the time if we did not confront our anger and unhappiness with that person who have inflicted the frustration but in stead we will tend to express these anger and unhappiness onto someone else or something else as substitute. This is a common mistake we all are making. When we are angry with the boss but due to our job, we don’t want to express our anger and unhappiness towards our boss, but very naturally we will express that anger onto someone else who are at lower position than us, or someone on the street, or when we go home to our family, we will find some excuses to express our anger and unhappiness within the family members as a target of our frustration.

And if we did say or do something that had inflicted other people to be angry and unhappy, then it is nothing wrong that these people are confronting with us and express their anger and unhappiness onto us. We should be responsible for their reactions and accept the consequences of our own actions. We shouldn’t be angry or upset about people being angry and upset with us because we had caused that anger and unhappiness in these people. In stead we should ask for forgiveness from them and let them express their anger and unhappiness so that they won’t save hatred towards us. We should dissolve any conflicts and misunderstanding immediately and let it go.

And even though if we did not cause anybody’s pain and unhappiness, but they take us as a target to express their anger and frustration, and due to compassion and selflessness, we should be able to forgive and being compassionate towards these people and let them let out their suffering and unhappiness. We are just a listener or an instrument for other beings to let go their suffering. These anger and unhappiness cannot hurt us or affect us or contaminate us, because we are selfless without an ego there to receive any insults, humiliation or negativity.

We just need to know how to deal with this anger and not let it turn into violence and deep hatred.

It is just like everything else, anger, sadness, happiness and joy are just a fleeting momentary names and forms. They all are the creation of the mind and the ego. If we can detach from any thoughts and feelings that arise in our mind doesn’t matter if it is “positive” or “negative”, happy or unhappy, just be aware of it and not give any values to all these thoughts and feelings, then no matter what is happening to us or in our life, there is no reason for us to be frustrated about, unhappy about or to be angry with.

Be happy.

About Selflessness And Compassion

The center of Buddhism and Yoga teachings is selflessness.

We know that all suffering arise from ignorance. It is true. But ignorance exists only when there is a selfish ego for it to attach to. When we become completely selfless, there is no stage for ignorance to perform anything.

Suffering or unhappiness or dissatisfaction occurs when we have impurities like anger, hatred, jealousy, lust, pride, greed, depression, cravings and aversions. And all these impurities arise from ignorance. And ignorance is empowering the ego, while the ego is feeding the ignorance at the same time.

To be free from suffering, all we need to do is understand what is selflessness and learn how to become selfless. We all know that the opposite of selflessness is selfishness. So, selflessness can also mean unselfishness. It means we are not thinking about our owns benefits, comforts and happiness, but being thoughtful for others and serve those who are in need of helps. But there is a deeper meaning than just being unselfish.

Without compassion, it is not easy for us to understand what is selflessness and very difficult for us to become selfless. If we have great compassion, naturally we will become selfless also. And being compassion towards all beings also include compassion towards our own self. This “self” is also a being. Without compassion, it is not easy for us to forgive others and not easy to let go of unhappiness and difficult situation (problems).

Compassion and selflessness are together not separate from each other. When we are compassionate, we will be selfless. When we are selfless, we will be compassionate too. It is like the mind experiencing everything through the senses. Without the mind, there is no use of the senses. Without the senses, the mind cannot perceive anything – names and forms (colours, sounds, tastes. smells, feels and thoughts).

When we are truly selfless and compassionate, we will also becoming fearless. When we are compassionate towards all living beings, we will not have any fear at all, not even death or painful injury towards this physical body of us. When we are not afraid of death (the unknown), what else that we can be afraid of? We will be loving and forgiving. When we are truly loving, we will not have hatred or ill-will towards any beings who had inflicted pain or injury onto our body and our feelings. We will forgive whoever or whatever that have been being unkind to us or hurt us whether intentionally or unintentionally.

When we are selfless, we don’t see any differentiation between us and others. It doesn’t mean that we are not existing anymore but we have become one with all. We are not separate from everything and every beings. Good is us, bad is also us. Ignorance is us, wisdom is also us. Birth and death have no differences as well as God consciousness and this consciousness.

Take away all the names and forms, what do we have? What are the differences? Where are the boundaries? What are the limitations? What is good? what is bad? What is happiness? what is suffering? What is real? What is unreal? What is beautiful? What is ugliness? What is praise? What is censure? What is big? what is small? What is fast? What is slow? Who are you? Who am I?

It doesn’t matter who we are, what we are, where we are, how we look, what we do, what we like and dislike – we all are the same when we are happy or unhappy, angry or jealous, laugh or cry, compassionate or wicked. And we all are the same when we have fears and worries, dissatisfaction, frustration, disappointment, doubts and confusions. Without any of the elements – fire, water, air, earth and space, we all are nothing, we won’t be exist and be here. What is the meaning about having lots of money, accumulation of wealth and taking care of the health, having sensual enjoyments, material comforts or accumulating the knowledge of the world if the nature didn’t or couldn’t provide us with the basic essentials for life existence? The nature doesn’t have differentiation of likes and dislikes, good and evil when they provide everything to every beings and everything for being here. It is us having the mind which has the differentiation of likes and dislikes, good and evil, love and hatred. We will pray for more water when it is not enough for our needs but we will condemn the water when the water is too much and causing damages and inconvenience for us. We complain about the sun and dry weather when we feel too hot, and we complain about the rainfalls and cold weather and wish for the sun when we feel too cold. The mind is never satisfied and forever changing of likes and dislikes. But the nature continues to provide without asking any rewards or repay, and never have hatred even though we have caused so much damages onto the nature. The nature is never tired nor having any intention to give or take, but just provide without limits and unconditionally and are not attach to its actions and the fruit of actions. And this is selflessness.

How to become selfless?

We need to practice patience, forgive and forget. At the same time, we also practice giving and sharing without asking any form of rewards in return. And then we go beyond all names and forms and practice detachment and indifference towards duality, treat all are equal. Slowly we will be able to not attach to our body and mind, the intellect, the ego and all the senses. Our mind will always be having unceasing thoughts (negative and positive), feelings (good and bad), judgment, comparison, criticism, competition and expectation. It is the habit and characteristic of the mind to be like that. all minds are having this same thinking habits when the senses come in contact with the object. But if we do not attach to these phenomena in the mind, they cannot affect us to do good or bad, and it doesn’t disturb the peacefulness in our hearts.

When we can detach from comforts and discomforts, we will be free from likes and dislikes. When we are free from likes and dislikes, we are free from cravings and aversions. And so, we will be free from discontentment, disappointment, irritation and frustration. We will be free from happiness and unhappiness. We don’t crave for happiness nor rejecting unhappiness. We watch all the feelings and thoughts passing by in our mind and not being contaminated or disturbed by them. All the feelings and thoughts are very temporary. They arise, stay for a while, they change and they will disappear. We can practice concentration and meditation to help us stilling the mind or slowing down the thought waves. But even that stillness state of the mind is not permanent. We will have to come back to life and the senses are continuing receiving inputs and the mind is continuing creating thoughts and sending outputs. We have to come back to life because there are still some karma for us to work on until there is no more karma left. And we will be resting in the complete stillness or silence of namelessness and formlessness.

Because of the unchanging law of impermanence, and thus it is the same as birth and death. It is a continuous cycle of births and deaths due to the cause and effect. By knowing this, we will know that we actually exist eternally, infinitely. And we will find that having this physical body and the unrest mind is not a great suffering anymore when we have eliminate the ego and ignorance. Without attaching to the body and the mind (not identify with them), the body and the mind have become an instrument for us to experience everything – up and down, within and without, and for us to learn what is selflessness (compassion and wisdom) and go back to pure existence (beginningless and endless), pure compassion and wisdom, pure consciousness and peace (without names and forms, attributes, limitations and conditions).

When we are selfless, there is no anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, lust, good, bad, insult, humiliation, compliment, censure, success, failure, irritation, disappointment, fears, worries, happiness and unhappiness. When there are no more such impurities and duality, true compassion takes over the whole consciousness.

May all beings be happy.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

About Appreciation

Everyday there's a different sunset...

There won't be another one exactly the same on every evening...

We can't find a perfect sunset because every sunset has its very own unique beauty...

Sometimes it is more beautiful and sometimes it is less beautiful...

The sky and the sun is always still the same one but due to the different forms of the clouds and moisture in the air, the sunsets are different every evening...

We can record each sunset in photos or in video clips, but it cannot be compared with that spectacular moments when we perceive the grand scenery of a beautiful sunset through our eyes at that present moment...

We can only admire... appreciate... and watching it disappear into dark night... and let it go.

Until tomorrow, there's another completely different scenery will appear in front of our eyes again...

Life is the same as this beautiful sunset...

Every moment is a different scenery, different experience...

Sometimes it is up and sometimes it is down...

The Self is always still the same one but due to the different layers of impurities, the consciousness is experiencing different modes and feelings...

There is no "take two" in life...

We can record our everyday lives in photos or in video clips, but it is not the same when we are actually experiencing every moment in our lives, especially the moments being with our loved ones... When we lose someone who we love so much, all the photos and video clips cannot bring back the same happiness...

We can only appreciate our lives and our loved ones while we all are still here, being able to love, care and share with each other... and do our best... Savour every moment we are having at this present moment now and live to the fullest... And let it go...

Be Happy...

Friday, November 20, 2009

About The Meaning Of Life

Love is the one thing that we all are learning in this life existence. Love is the basis of everything. Love (true love) is the only meaning for us to be here.

True love such as selfless love or unconditioned love or compassionate love without attachment will bring warmth, peace and joy to ourselves and other beings. Selfish love or conditioned love or lustful love which attached to names and forms, and likes and dislikes will bring unhappiness to ourselves and to the people who we love or who we want them to love us.

When the love is pure, there is no unhappiness. True love doesn’t end or die when our relationship ends or our body meet death. We are love itself when we know what is true love and we don’t need to ask for love or crave for being loved by someone else, when we know that we are not separate from all (love is not limited only in relationships) and we can share this love unconditioned without lust and selfishness. There is no need to detach from this true love, because there is no attachment at all in this true love. Just pure love and kindness, without selfishness, anger, hatred, lust, jealousy, greed, likes and dislikes, fears and worries.

It is like this love is part of us, it is not separated from us, it is not something that we gained or accumulated from outside. It is unlimited and inexhaustible from within. Just like our hands and feet, they are part of our body and are not separated from the body. We don’t need to detach our hands and feet from the body to be free from doing bad actions or going to bad places. It is our pure intentions and pure thoughts that will lead us to have self-control over our body and our actions, and not doing anything that will harm ourselves or other beings. We don’t need to stop doing good when we say “detach from the fruit of doing something good”. But it is the inner detachment that we are not looking for any good in return when we do something good which gives us the true freedom and unlimited love to share love with many others without getting tired or frustrated when everything “goes wrong” or things are not the way that we like it to be…

Love and peace to all when we love selflessly. But it will be “love” and hate to all when we love selfishly.

Thanks for sharing your love with all.

All religions talk about love. Everyone is in search of love. Everyone needs love. Or else life is empty. But when we realize that love is always within ourselves and not by looking or getting from outside, then we will know that we are love itself and we are never lonely even though we are being with oneself alone. Because we are no more separated from anything in the entire existence. We are no difference from the sun, the space, the air, the water, the earth, the trees, the flowers, the grass, the insects, the animals, and all living beings.

May all beings be happy.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

About Detachment

The real detachment is about non-attachment towards what the mind perceives through the senses.

We stop identify with the body, the mind, the ego and the intellect.

Whatever feelings, sensations and thoughts arise in our body and mind, we don’t identify with them, not associate with them and not attach to them.

Whatever we see, hear, smell, taste, touch and think, we treat all equally and remain equanomous.

Detach from praise and censure, success and failure, gain and loss, heat and cold, like and dislike, good and bad, positive and negative, elation and depression, happiness and suffering, birth and death…

Detach from duality and names and forms is the real detachment.

May we all attain true freedom by practice detachment. Free from ignorance, anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, lust, fears, worries, cravings and aversions.

Friday, November 13, 2009

About Advaita - Non-dualism

Yoga and Buddhism’s teachings are the same – Advaita, non-dualism.

When we are not pure full of ignorance and impurities, we are the impure consciousness – the lower self. But when we purify ourselves until there is no more ignorance and impurities, we are the pure consciousness – the higher Self.

And this lower self and this higher Self is still the same consciousness but when we are impure and attached to the body, the mind and the ego, we are being projected as the lower self, and when we are pure and not attached to the body, the ego and the mind, then we are being projected as the higher Self – the pure consciousness which is the same as the universal consciousness and not different from all other beings consciousness.

When we are impure, there is a separateness of the pure God consciousness and our impure beings consciousness – there is a God and there are beings. But when we had purified ourselves and being pure, then there is no more separateness of the pure God consciousness and the pure beings consciousness – the beings and the God are One, there is no “God” and there is no “beings”. It is because when everything is pure, there is no names and no forms, there is no separation and no differences at all, just one Being.

When we are impure, we have ignorance, selfishness, separation and differentiation from other beings. And these impurities and wrong identification that we are a separate individual self from other beings, had create duality in our mind. Our mind is being conditioned with the concept of dualism. And this dualism is creating good and bad, likes and dislikes in our selfish egoistic identification with the body and the mind. And thus we are having lots of cravings for the things that we like and aversions for the things that we dislike. And so, irritation, frustration, dissatisfaction, disappointment, anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, desires, unhappiness and suffering occur in us when we can’t get the things that we like and when we are having the things that we dislike, also when we lost the things that we like and can’t get rid of the things that we dislike.

When we are so caught up in duality, we will perceive everything as “this is good”, “that is bad”, “this is success”, “that is failure”, “this is meaningful”, “that is meaningless”, “this is happy”, “that is sad”, “this is compliment”, “that is condemnation”, “this is comfortable”, “that is not comfortable”, “this is beautiful” and that is “ugliness”. And so, we are creating lots of conditions for ourselves and for other beings. We will be chasing after something that we are agreeable with and which make us feel good and meaningful about ourselves and at the same time, we are resisting something that we are not agreeable with and which make us feel bad and worthless about ourselves. And thus, “pride and arrogance” and “low self-esteem and depression” are being generated in us.

To be free from all these impurities and “side effects”, we need to know what is Advaita, non-duality. We need to apply the concept of non-duality in our lives.

We stop identify ourselves with the thinking mind, the selfish ego and the analytical intellect which create the concept of duality. When we come in contact with any objects that we perceive through our sense organs – the eyes, the ears, the nose, the tongue, the skin and the thinking faculty, we learn to be an observer or witness. We will learn that any sensations that arise when our senses come in contact with an object whether pleasing or unpleasing, that they are very momentary, they will changed and don’t last long. And so we don’t have to attach to any sensations at all whether good or bad sensations. And we will not give any values or meanings to all these sensations and stop categorized them into “good” and “bad”, “pleasing” and “unpleasing”, “comfortable” and “not comfortable”. And so, we will stop generating likes and dislikes. When we have no strong liking and disliking, there will be no strong cravings and aversions towards all the things out there. And thus, we are peaceful, and content most of the time.

Due to the understanding of Advaita – non-dualism, we see everything and all beings are equal in the essence of consciousness. There is no differences of superiority or inferiority. We all depend on the five elements to be exist in this universe, it doesn’t matter if we are being labeled as “good” or “bad”, “kind” or “evil”, “healthy” or “not healthy”, “fat” or “thin”, “pretty” or “not pretty”, “short lived” or “long lived”, “happy” or “sad”, “peaceful” or “not peaceful”, “patient” or “impatient”. We respect each and everyone’s different thinking, cultures, languages, beliefs and personalities. And so, we stop having judgment, comparison, competition, criticism and expectation. Everything and everyone has to go through birth and death – forming, sustaining, decaying and disappearing. And by knowing this impermanence, we are free from attachments towards all the phenomena and objects in the world. When there is no attachment, we will be free from greed and lustful desires, and thus, free from fears and worries. And so, there is only pure love, peace and compassion in our heart.

We will accept ourselves as we are, accept other beings as they are, accept all the changes that are going on unceasingly, accept the law of impermanence, accept and forgive all the imperfections in this world. We are content and grateful for all the good things that we are having now. We are still breathing, we are still able to experience, to see, to hear, to smell, to taste, to feel, to think, to move, to act and to express through speech and actions. But may all our intentions, thoughts, actions and speech be pure.

It is due to dualism, we have selfishness, we have love and hatred, we have happiness and suffering, we have wants and don’t wants. And all these differentiations bring so much problems and unhappiness for ourselves and for other beings.

May we all be free from duality and find peace and true happiness in our heart.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

About Avidya - Ignorance

It is because of ignorance, we are here in this body with this ego and this mind. Due to ignorance, we have attachment to this body, this ego, this mind and everything that the mind perceives through the organs of sense. We attached to what we see, what we hear, what we smell, what we taste, what we feel and what we think. And so we generate lots of likes and dislikes, cravings and aversions which bring us lots of irritations, frustrations, anger, hatred, desires, jealousy, greed, depression, dissatisfaction and disappointment. And thus suffering occurs.

Due to ignorance, we don’t know what is real and unreal, what is right and wrong, what is should do and shouldn’t do. We take right as wrong and take wrong as right.

Due to ignorance, we do not know that we are so ignorant and think that we are so smart and intelligent. We also think that we know a lots and being proud and arrogant, thinking that we are better than someone else and we deserve some kind of respect from other living beings.

The cause or source of suffering or unhappiness is non other than ignorance.

The only tool that can remove ignorance is wisdom.

To attain wisdom, one must go through purification and self-control over the thoughts, actions and speech. One must first endowed with humility and letting go of selfishness, pride and arrogance.

Then one will learn to develop detachment, dispassion and discrimination. And then one must practice concentration, calmness, peacefulness and equality. Then it will follow by meditation and develop insight and self-awareness. And then wisdom will appear to us naturally.

The wisdom is always within us. But due to the veil of ignorance, we are ignorant of it. It is the same with all beings with different names and forms, we all are having the same wisdom – knowledge of the Truth within us.

When wisdom arise, there is no more ignorance. It is like when a dark room is filled with light, the darkness will disappear.

The sun is always there shinning all the time, but due to the spinning rhythm of the earth, we have the experience of night and day.

The moon is always round but due to the shadow of the earth projects onto it, it seems not round some of the times.

Movement itself is not slow or fast, but when the mind start to have comparison, the conception of this is slow and that is fast is being produced.

Appearance itself has no quality of beautiful or ugliness, but when the mind is being conditioned by the conception of an image being valued as beautiful and which is different from that image is ugliness, then the mind will perceive this image as beautiful and that image as ugliness.

If the mind just being aware of all the differences but not generating likes and dislikes, positives and negatives, and cravings and aversions, then there shall be no attachments, no problems and no suffering. But the mind doesn’t act this way, not until we have reconditioned the habits and characteristics of the mind.

And so, Yoga and all its practices are here to help us to have the ability to control over the mind – which leads to the control of the actions and speech, and ultimately lead us to purification of the mind and to return to the state of unconditioned, pure and attribute-less.

May we all attain wisdom through Yoga practice and free from ignorance.

About Karma

Not everyone will believe in Karma. It is fine, because everyone are free to have their own faiths and beliefs. We should respect that not everyone will believe in what we believe. We cannot force anyone to believe in something that they don’t believe in.

To know the Truth, it is not by reading books and philosophies, and it is not because the scriptures say so or our teacher says so. It should be from our own insight or experience that we see the Truth as it is, then it is the real Truth.

For example, maybe we don’t really know what will happen to us after the death of this physical body but we have heard that Buddhas and Yogis – the enlightened Self, talked about reincarnation for many lifetimes in many different names and forms happened accordingly to different Karma and intentions that we all had created for ourselves in the past and from the present moment. Due to ignorance, there are many things that we don’t know but we have had heard lots of different types of talking about them. And we cannot say that it is true or untrue because we are ignorant about it. But if we have found out the Truth through our own practice, meditation insights and self-realization, then we can say that it is true or untrue. Even though an enlightened Being told us all about the Truth, we still have to find it out ourselves through self-realization.

Yoga and Buddhism teach us about the law of Karma – cause and effect which is the main force that is forming our life, our personality and our worldly life’s experiences through our past accumulated Karma according to our past intentions, thoughts, actions and speech. And our present intentions, thoughts, actions and speech will form the Karma that will determine our future lives, personality and life experiences. Good and positive Karma will bring good and positive experiences while bad and negative Karma will bring bad and negative experiences.

From the surface, we are not free because we are bound by this law of Karma. But it is not really like that. It is because we can see that it is our own self that is creating the Karma for ourselves.If we do good, we will create good Karma. If we do bad, we will create bad Karma. So, if we want to have good life and happiness in life, we can actually work on our intentions, thoughts, actions and speech to create the type of future life that we want.

But Yoga and Buddhism teachings do not stop at this level.

They teach us how to transcends Karma through selflessness, purity and renounce from the fruit of actions.

Yoga and Buddhism teach us to go beyond good and bad Karma, detachment from duality, and to go beyond all names and forms. They teach us that we don’t need to runaway from suffering or to crave for happiness. They teach us to go beyond suffering and happiness, and to regain our eternal bliss, unlimited wisdom and unconditioned existence.

May we all transcends both good and bad Karma and be really free.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Upcoming Yoga Retreats Langkawi Malaysia 2011


We will be having some yoga retreats in Langkawi, Malaysia.

Langkawi Yoga Retreats Dates 2011

Other dates beside these retreats dates can be arranged to suit your holidays.

Hope to see you here if you are interested in one of these yoga retreats in the beautiful island of Langkawi, malaysia.

Please contact us at or please visit our website for more details on yoga retreat’s outlines and prices.

Om shanti,

Meng Foong

Monday, November 9, 2009

About Vairagya - Dispassion

Vairagya – dispassion is a very important quality that a yoga practitioner need to have along side with Viveka – right discrimination of the real and the unreal, if we really want to walk the path of Yoga.

We are living in the world and we are human beings. Very naturally and there is nothing wrong about us having passion about many things in life.

Many people think that dispassion means we cannot enjoy life at all. But it is not true.

When we know what is real and unreal, we will naturally not chasing after the fleeting material enjoyments or the sensual pleasures. We will appreciate a simple life with very minimum needs and wants.

We actually enjoy life very much meaningfully but without the craving for love and affection from family and friends or from anyone. Without the need of any material enjoyments or sensual pleasures to give us happiness. Without the need of social status, or success, or agreement from others, or positive feedback from others to give us self-confidence and sense of self-worth.

We enjoy all the things that we have in life at the present moment, but without the clinging towards all these things. When we don’t have them anymore, we will not feel unhappy or refuse to let go.

We also don’t need to pay too much attention onto all the things accept for the basic maintainance of living and the basic needs for us to move on in the path towards self-realization.

We don’t need much actually in this world. We don’t need fancy clothing, exotic food and drinks, sensory enjoyments, extreme fitness and good physics, too many hobbies and activities or get involve in lustful sexual activities or indulge in drugs and alcohols abuse.

We don’t need branded things, luxuries comforts, big cars and big houses, a lot of money to buy the things that we “want” and “like”, “beautiful” appearance, titles, worldly success, accumulation of wealth and things or longing for love relationships or friendships to be meaningful in life or feel good about ourselves.

We will learn to let go our attachment, cravings and clinging towards things, passionate love and affections in life bit by bit until one day we can let go of them easily.

We don’t feel lonely being with oneself because we found peace and contentment already with the Self. And all are not separate from the Self. How can we still feel lonely when we are not separated with everyone and everything? We don’t have to own a single thing, or having a relationship or friendship to feel love and belonging, because we are the love itself and we don’t need to ask for love and attention from anybody. We are receiving unlimited love from everything and are sharing this love with all. There is not even a separation of “love” and “me”. There is no “receiving” and “giving”. There is no “needs” and “wants” of love and affections.

It doesn’t mean that we are cold hearted beings without love and feelings. We are love. It’s just that we don’t need to crave for love or crave for receiving love from the outside to make us feel loved. It is because we are content and at peace with our true Self. This doesn't mean that we don't want to have any friends or relationships, but it is not a necessity anymore. Everything and every living beings has become our friends. Our happiness doesn't depend on love and affection from friendships and relationships, but we are sharing the love and happiness with all the beings whether we know them or not, whether they know us or not, whether they do good or not, whether they like us or not. And everyone and everything has become "us" because we don't see any difference between us and all the things and beings out there anymore.

All our unhappiness and suffering are deriving from our own greed, unsatisfied cravings, strong attachments and clinging. It is our strong attachment towards the likes and dislikes about what we see, hear, smell, taste, touch and think, that is causing us cravings and aversions. We feel frustrated and irritated when we don’t get the things that we like, or are having the things that we don’t like, or we are losing the things that we like and can't get rid of the things that we dislike.

We can enjoy lots of things but without the attachment towards likes and dislikes. But how many people can really do so when even a yoga practitioner who suppose to practice detachment and dispassion will also unconsciously gets attached to his or her likes and dislikes, and having cravings and aversions in the spiritual path itself and not to say there are so many diversities and distractions in worldly life.

The real Yoga is only one. Although there are many paths in Yoga to suit every individual with different personality but definitely not about changing the original practices especially the Asana practice into something totally not the same idea and same perspective anymore. And nowadays many people who wants to learn “Yoga” but not want to follow the traditions of Yoga, they wants something different and something special or new invention of names and forms to satisfy the ego and the mind. And the dis-satisfactory tendency of the ego and the mind will continue to look for something new and different, it is never satisfy or it gets bored easily.

People don’t want the traditions of Yoga because they don’t like to know about dispassion and detachment. They don’t like self-control and self-discipline. They don’t believe in simplicity. They have no idea of what is non-identification with the body and the mind. They don’t like the idea of ego-less. They don’t want to give up the cravings and clinging towards worldly enjoyments and sensual pleasures. They want short cuts to get momentary good feelings or excitement. There want “happiness” but not intend to give up the source of unhappiness. There is nothing wrong about that. Everyone are free to do what they like to do as long as they are responsible for the consequences of their actions. If people want to do modernized “Yoga”, or luxury “Yoga”, or sensual “Yoga”, or Bhoga “Yoga”, or easy “Yoga”, or fitness “Yoga”, or branded “Yoga”, or many different types of “Yoga Asana classes”, or not want to do chanting and prayers, let them be. As long as they are not harming anybody. It’s just like there are many people like to do different types of activities, or eating different types of cuisines, or enjoying different types of pleasures, or enjoying varieties of movies or musics, or looking for success and achievements in life, and there is nothing wrong about that. Be happy. It is better than to do lots of harmful activities and hurting other beings.

But for people who are looking for true happiness and self-realization, we will still stick to the traditions of Yoga.

May we all be free and at peace.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

About Saucha - Purity

Saucha is the purity or cleanliness of the external and the internal of our body. But what does it really means? Does external cleanliness means keeping the environment clean and wash our body until it is clean and wear neat and clean clothing to cover up our body – maintaining good hygiene and good health? Does internal cleanliness means cleaning our body systems – the circulatory system, the digestive system, the elimination system, the reproductive system, the hormonal secretion system and all the organs?

From the surface, yes, this is what it means and there are many Yogic practices to help us to achieve that.

But there are more deeper meanings in Saucha beside all these practices of purification of the internal and the external of our body.

When we were told to clean our eyes, ears, nostrils, tongue and skin, it is not just about cleaning the physical side of the sense organs but it is asking us to purify the inputs and outputs of these five senses, and then followed with the purification of the thoughts in the mind as well. That is what real internal cleanliness or purification is about.

If we have clear eyesight, good hearing, good sense of smell and taste, and good sense of touch and thinking, but if we are attached strongly to the things that we see, hear, smell, taste, touch and think, and have differentiation of comfort and discomfort, and have categorization of good and bad, and we are generating likes and craving towards things that we feel comfortable and agreeable with, but generating dislikes and aversion towards the things that we feel uncomfortable and disagreeable with, then these good functioning of the senses is not conducive to us at all, instead they are bringing us a lot of cravings and aversions – dissatisfaction and unhappiness for the things that we don’t like, and greed and addiction to the things that we like.

And so, what is the meaning of cleaning all the internal body systems and the organs but we continue to have so much of likes and dislikes, cravings and aversions, dissatisfaction, irritations and complains about the things that we don’t like?

What is the meaning of doing so many yogic cleansing exercises maintaining the good functioning of the organs and the senses but continue to have so much anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, arrogance, frustration and depression in our heart or our mind?

What is the meaning of sharpening the function of the senses and develop higher sensitivity of the senses to feel the internal and external energy fields and also being sensitive towards the sensations in our body but we are always being disturbed by the phenomena of the energy fields within and without our body, and generating strong likes and dislikes towards the sensations that we feel, and being so sensitive all the time towards energy and sensations until we feel the need of protection or runaway from bad and negative energy, or being so irritated and intolerant with certain things and people?

About the external cleanliness, it is not just about the cleanliness of our physical body and the living environment, but it is about the purity of our intentions, thoughts, actions and speech that we are sending out there. As well as the company that we are mixing with is whether they are wise beings (Satsanga) that can uplift us morally and spiritually or they are unwise beings (Kutsanga) that can pull us down, if we are still being affected by the outside conditions of good and bad.

There is a teaching from from our ancient Gurus saying that – if there is no good company (Satsanga), then it is better to be alone (Asanga) than to be with bad company (Kutsanga).

What is the meaning if our body is clean and healthy, our house and the garden is clean and beautiful, but inside our hearts and the mind is not peaceful, unhappy, depress, selfish, angry, hatred, greedy, arrogant, jealous, discontent, suffering and ignorant of the real and unreal, of what we should do and shouldn’t do?

The real Saucha is the purity of our intentions, thoughts, actions and speech. And this will bring us peacefulness, compassion and wisdom in the heart. It is stop doing bad, and do a lot of good but not identify with what we do and not do, and not attach to the fruit of actions.

Even when we are not doing any so called cleansing exercise for the physical body, but if we have self-control and the awareness of what is pure and impure, which is real and unreal, then we are really cleaning and purifying the internal and the external of this temporary physical body.

The house and the temple that we need to keep clean and beautiful is our hearts or the mind. The body that we need to keep clean is the inner self, wipe away the dirt (the ignorance) and we will be back to our original pure Self and be free from all the attachments towards the body, the mind and all the phenomena in the world.

Even though someone might be very filthy and untidy from his appearance, but maybe he is a saint in his heart and is pure in his mind. The outside appearance really can’t define the purity of a person’s heart. And a pure heart person doesn’t need to justify himself or advertise himself or to have some sort of images to clarify that he is pure and saintly.

May we all attain true purity.

Friday, November 6, 2009

About Purification

Purification is the main practice of yoga and also the fundamental practice for all other religions and faiths. All the asana practice, pranayama, concentration and meditation are to help us to purify the mind.

We need to clean our body once or twice everyday as well as our house and the living environment for hygienic reason and comfort.

But the cleanliness of our mind is far more important than the cleanliness of the body and the environment. The process of cleaning the mind is called purification. Be wise not to be cheated by the appearance of a person. A person who looks neat and clean from the appearance, might be full of impure thoughts in the mind, while a person who looks messy and dirty on the appearance might be a pure saint inside the heart.

That’s why we can’t judge anybody from their looks, their actions and speech and even not what they do and not do. An impure person can be a very good actor. And a pure saint cannot be recognized or defined from his appearance or his behaviors. It is a huge ignorance to judge a person and labeling people with good and bad tags.

We need to sweep away those impurities in our mind from moment to moment and yet there is still impurities arising all the time. It is like when we had finished sweeping away the dead leaves on the ground in the garden, immediately there are others dead leaves lying on the ground again because the trees are still there continue to produce new leaves – liked wise, the ignorance in us continues to produce impurities in our mind unceasingly. And with great patience, we are repeating the sweeping and cleaning action again and again unceasingly and without feeling frustrated and tired.

This is an on going practice for everyone until there is no more dead leaves being produced, the root of the tree is dead and stop producing leaves – liked wise, the root of ignorance is being rooted out and no more impurities are being produced in our mind.

Some people think that if they go to a temple or sacred places for a trip, do some prayers or take a sacred bath, and their sins or bad luck will all be washed away. But in their hearts are still full of impurities and ignorance, and when they went home, they will still continue to have impure thoughts, actions and speech. This doesn’t really help at all.

If we really want to have good luck in our lives, we need to have self-control over our impatience, anger, hatred, jealousy, arrogance, greed and lust. We need to stop speaking harsh words and lies, mocking, teasing, slandering, gossiping, condemning or indulging in impure and meaningless conversations. We need to check our thoughts before we act and speak. We must take care that our actions and speech are bringing benefits and harmony for other people and for our own self. If we are not able to bring any benefits or harmony to other people or to our own self through speech and actions, then it is better that we remain non-action and speechless, but sending our good-will and compassionate thoughts to all the living beings out there.

If we always have ill-will or evil thinking towards other people, we are actually gathering bad and negative energy in ourselves and in our lives. Definitely bad luck will happen onto us and in our lives. And if we only have good-will and kind thinking towards other people without discrimination of good and bad people or people who we like or don’t like and people who we know or not know, then we are gathering good and positive energy in ourselves and in our lives. Definitely good luck will happen onto us and in our lives.

The real purity is attribute-less without any qualities. It is pure without negativity or positivity. We don’t generate any negative energy and we don’t crave for any positive energy as well.

We don’t need any good luck or positive energy to give us good things and happiness in life. Because we are content and at peace if we don’t have ignorance and are wise.

We don’t see any things so called “bad” as bad or any so called “unhappiness” as unhappiness because we see beyond all names and forms. Everything that is being categorized into good and bad, happiness and unhappiness under the perception of duality in our mind, are being seen as same and no differences under the wisdom of impermanence, non-self, uncertainty, namelessness and formlessness.

May we all go back to the state of purity and be free.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

About Impermanence

Anything that has a beginning will have an ending. Anything that exists will have to go through forming, sustaining, decaying and disappearing. Anything that we are perceiving through our minds and the senses are constantly changing from moment to moment. This is the law of impermanence.

There is nothing wrong or bad with impermanence. If we know impermanence and know to accept the law of impermanence, there will be no suffering for us. The basic wisdom to transcend suffering is to know and to accept the law of impermanence.

Everything including the thoughts, the feelings, the emotions, and the things that we like and dislike about the taste, the smell, the touch, the sight and the sound are constantly changing from one moment to another.

The condition of our physical body and the happenings in our lives are changing from the moment we were born until the moment we meet death to this present physical body. We won’t be the same every moments – our health, strength and flexibility, what we can do and cannot do, and what we like and dislike.

By knowing the law of impermanence, we learn to be an observer to all the phenomena that are happening in the world, and also to our own mind, thoughts and feelings – whether good or bad, and not generating any likes and dislikes, cravings and aversions towards all these things. We learn to not attach to any of the sensations that we experience from the perception of the mind and the senses – whether comfortable or not comfortable.

We will stop judging anything because there is no certainty in everything. Everything is changing from good to bad, from bad to good, from non-existent to existent and from existent to non-existent. We will accept ourselves as we are in this present moment and accept other people as they are in this present moment – whether good or bad, happy or unhappy.

We will stop comparing ourselves with ourselves with our past performances because every moment the condition of our mind and the body, how we feel and what we can do and cannot do are constantly changing.

We will stop comparing ourselves with other people as well, because every individual has his or her own unique personality and talents, and everyone has different mentality and physical body. Even though spiritually, everyone is the same under the law of creation and destruction, and all are impermanent.

We will stop having any expectation towards anything and anybody because we know that everything are being govern by the law of Karma and impermanence. We just do our best to give and serve, but we will renounce from the fruit of actions.

We also know how to appreciate good things and good relationships with the people, other living beings and the nature. We will know how to be content and control our greed and desires.

If we really know impermanence, we will be free from fears and worries.

There will be no anger, hatred, jealousy, greed and arrogance. We know we don’t have to give any values or meanings to any praise or censure. We will not be disturbed by any good compliments or bad criticism from anybody. We will be full of confidence but remain great humility.

We will know that we are not this body, we are not this mind, we are not these feelings and thoughts, and this life and this body doesn’t really belongs to us and their existence is very temporary. This physical body and the function of the mind are just temporary being here to experience life and to learn about selflessness or egolessness. Our actions are being done selflessly and free from karma if we know what is namelessness and formlessness. We know that our true Self is untouched by impermanence, impurities, birth and death, good and bad, and names and forms.

Whenever there is any impurities arise in our minds, we will have self-awareness and have self-control over our thoughts, actions and speech. We stop identify with all the impurities and not react towards these impure thoughts and feelings.

We stop categorize things and happenings into good and bad. We can detach from what is good and what is bad. We will not do anything that will cause unpeacefulness and disharmony for other living beings and our own self. We will perform actions that will bring peace and harmony to other living beings and to our own self without identification with our actions and renounce from the fruit of actions.

We also don’t have the necessity to perform any actions as well if we already know what is action in non-action, and non-action in action. Whatever we do or don't do, is not a performance or obligation to show to ourselves or other people whether we are doing something good or not doing anything bad, or whether we are performing our duties or not.

We don’t have to prove to anyone to gain trust, confidence or respect.

We will live in harmony with all living beings in the world without the differentiation of good and evil. In the eyes of wisdom, there is no such thing called happiness or unhappiness.

If we truly know impermanence, we will be free from the craving and aversion towards happiness and unhappiness.

We don’t have to own/possess anything, or longing/craving for anything but still be able to enjoy what is there for us. We are at peace and content.

May we all know this great wisdom of impermanence and be free...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

About Yoga Teachers

There are many yoga teacher training schools and yoga teachers in the world nowadays. It is a good thing to encourage more people to involve in yoga practice and sharing yoga with many others.

Basically anyone also can walk the path of Yoga as well as sharing the journey, the joy and benefits of Yoga with other people. Not necessary that everyone who wish to share their very own personal experiences and insights that they acquired from their sincere practice of Yoga have to go through a so called recognized yoga school or ashram, to attain some paper certificates or recognitions to qualify or allow them to share Yoga with others. Because self-realization or enlightenment is not to be found in any school or ashram, but it is in our hearts, our inner Self and it cannot be issued or guaranteed by anyone or any organizations, but it depends on our very own sincere practice and self-inquiry. A person who doesn’t know how to read and write or speak any languages or hasn’t gone to any educational or training school may still attain self-realization within his or her heart.

The real school, real ashram, real teacher and real God is within our Self. There is no need any paper certifications, or recognitions, or qualifications for an enlightened Self to share Yoga or Dharma with any living beings within the world or out of the world. We don’t learn compassion and wisdom from a school or ashram but it is in our life and in our own practice. No one taught us about happiness and suffering, no one can give us happiness and suffering, it is all within our own self. Attachment and non-attachment, likes and dislikes happen every moment in our hearts, in our mind. It has nothing to do with our teachers, the schools or the ashrams.

But yoga schools and ashrams are a place for anybody who wish to learn about yoga and to build a firm foundation for our own practice, not so much about the skill of teaching yoga to others. Because as we advanced in our own practice and attain insights, very naturally we will know how to guide others into yoga practice and sharing the greatness of yoga with others. We all are naturally a “yoga teacher” if we want to call ourselves with such a name, if we have loving kindness, compassion and wisdom, and are sincerely and selflessly helping others to come out from miseries and to walk the path towards self-realization. In the journey of Yoga, we will learn how to go beyond all names and forms and become selfless.

Most important is that anybody who wants to become a yoga teacher must have a pure intention and compassionate heart for wanting to share the knowledge of yoga practice with other living beings. It doesn’t matter if we are not perfect yet.

But before we are able to share this knowledge with others, we should have had a deep understanding of the yoga philosophy and have had direct personal experiences in the yoga practice before we can actually guide others into the path of yoga. We should be teaching and not preaching.

Teaching yoga is definitely not a worldly profession or a job like being a fitness instructor in a fitness club teaching exercise classes for money and fame (though there is nothing wrong with this), but it is to be able to share the greatness of yoga with other people who are in search for true happiness and to guide them how to transcend suffering – as a selfless service to all the living beings even though we may be receiving some fees from teaching classes to maintain our living and for ourselves to continue learning.

Yoga classes is a spiritual path, self-purification and self-transformation disregard whether we are religious or not, having different religion or not, and not just stopping at the surface of physical trainings or activities.

The main practice is self-control, purification, concentration and meditation. All these will lead us to attain wisdom and self-realization.

Purification is about eliminate negativity and ignorance such like selfishness, anger, hatred, lust, greed, jealousy, depression, arrogance, attachment, evil thinking, actions and speech, and fears and worries.

The main teaching of Yoga is truthfulness, selflessness, non-duality, non-attachment and control of the mind which also lead to control of the actions and speech.

Selflessness is about eliminating the ego and non-identification with the body and mind, as well as renouncing from the fruit of actions.

Non-duality is about non-attachment towards the good and bad qualities of names and forms, the likes and dislikes or craving and aversion of the body and mind upon coming in contact with comfortable and dis-comfortable sensations through the senses. It is going beyond what the mind perceives as good and bad, positive and negative, success and failure, praise and censure, happiness and suffering...

And thus, as yoga teachers we should possess the positive qualities of truthfulness, cheerfulness, positive thinking, patience, loving kindness, compassion, wisdom, open-mindedness, self-independence, equanimity, courage, confidence, humility, gratitude, adaptation, tolerance, correct understanding, right effort, respect, acceptance, forgiveness, non-judging, non-comparing, non-competing, non-criticizing, non-expecting, calmness, peacefulness, selflessness, purity of thoughts, actions and speech, non-attachment, fearlessness and worry-lessness.

It is not so much about achieving perfection of the strength and flexibility of the physical body (because no matter how strong and flexible we are and can we perform highly skillful and complicated asana poses, this physical body will still have to go through old age, decay, illness and death (impermanence) – we should be non-identified with the physical body and the mind) but to appreciate the good health and the strong and flexible body to perform selfless service and for our own self-inquiry for self-realization.

And it doesn’t matter about what type of qualifications or certifications that a yoga teacher had acquired from which school or ashram, it doesn’t really indicate that we are good and genuine yoga teacher or not. It doesn’t guarantee us self-realization or enlightenment (it depends mainly on our own effort, understanding and practice). And it is not that someone has been giving yoga classes for a long time will be more experienced or is better than someone who had just started teaching. It depends very much on his or her own practice and correct understanding of the teachings of Yoga (insight), and also his or her pure intention to share yoga with all that define whether he or she is truly a yoga teacher or not. There’s no such thing as “good yoga teacher” and “bad yoga teacher”. There should be no comparison, competition, and criticism among yoga teachers. And yoga schools and yoga centers are not suppose to be a money making business and having competition and jealousy among themselves. Everyone are sincerely sharing the greatness of yoga with different people who have different karma, personalities, needs and wants. We all are the instrument to help spreading the teachings of yoga to other living beings who are interested in the path of Yoga. We all are learning from each other and whatever we do, it should be ego-less, renounce from the fruit of actions and to go beyond all the qualities of names and forms. There is no superiority as a yoga teacher or advanced practitioner and there is no inferiority as a yoga student or beginner practitioner. After purification of impurities and negating the ego, we all are the same one pure consciousness without attributes, beginning-less and endless, and whole.

May we bring peace and happiness to all living beings and move towards self-realization together. Our duty is to promote love, peace, happiness and harmony into the hearts of all living beings in the world.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Mauna - Silence

Mauna is not just about controlling the speech, but also it will lead to quiet the thoughts.

By limiting our actions and speech, it will lead us to slow down the thought waves. This will lead us into meditation.

Through talking, we are losing our prana especially if we are speaking harsh words and lies, slandering, gossiping, censuring, condemning, destructive speech and all types of negative complaints and criticisms.

If we need to talk, may it be kind words, truthful, constructive, motivating, encouraging, uplifting and cheering.

Speaking and sharing the truth of Dharma with all without any discrimination is still consider Mauna. If we need to speak Dharma to the people who are in need of Dharma speech, we should not be stubborn or attached onto observing silence and refuse to speak Dharma to desperate living beings.

Anyway, speech or languages are very restricted and conditioned. Most of the time misunderstanding occurs because of misinterpretation of the meaning of the words that is being spoken, because everybody might have different interpretations of words in different languages.

That’s why sometimes the best speech is being silent.

Dharma can never be fully explained or expressed through the limited speech and is difficult to be understood by the conditioned perception of the mind. Not many people can grasp the real meaning of Dharma through listening and reading the Dharma. The best way of understanding and knowing the Truth is through self-inquiry and self-realization. Despite that, we still can share the knowledge of Dharma with other beings through speech and writing, or else it will be less opportunity for people to come in contact with the valuable Dharma.

Any speech that is pure and intention-less does not contradict with the practice of Mauna.

If we are observing Mauna not speaking for many months and years, but we still have lots of impure and evil thoughts in our mind and performing lots of impure and evil actions, then that is not Mauna at all.

When other people are speaking lies and condemning us, or being unkind to us, and if we know how to forbear all kinds of insult or humiliation, and be patient, compassionate and forgiving, and remain silent and calm without the need of self-justification or react towards any unkind speech and actions, being undisturbed or undetermined by other people's freedom of thinking, action and speech, then this is the highest Mauna of all.

The real Mauna is inclusive of total self-control over all the impurities of thoughts, actions and speech. It's not just about not talking, but continue to express the ceaseless thoughts through the sign language, facial expression and body language.

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About Yoga

Know thyself. Everything is impermanent and selfless. There is no 'I'. There is no 'I am selfless'/'I am not selfless'. There is no 'I am hurt'/'I need to be healed from hurt'. Be free, be peaceful, be happy.

Om shanti

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