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Monday, July 4, 2022

Want to learn and practice yoga? (21)

Opening the thinking faculty, or the perceptive cognitive assertive mind, is highly essential on the path of yoga for enabling the mind to perform self-inquiry or investigation towards the truth of names and forms.

Somehow, there are people of certain cultures/beliefs/spiritualities in the world are very fearful or superstitious towards 'open-mind'.

These different cultures/beliefs/spiritualities have a common element, where they all have the great aspiration, duty or mission of attracting/recruiting/converting as many people as possible to become their 'submissive', 'faithful', 'obedient' and 'contributive' members/followers/supporters, where the teachings, values and practice involved certain 'superior authorization', 'submissiveness towards the authority', 'non-disagreement and non-questioning towards the teachings and practices', 'blind-following', 'blind-believing', 'blind-practicing', 'blind-propagating', 'one big family-hood/brother-hood protecting each other from outsiders/non-followers', 'obligatory contribution', 'sinfulness', 'shamefulness', 'guilt', 'fear', 'threats', 'self-punishment', or 'fearful punishment from the superiority or authority', under the so called 'loving kindness' of 'We love you', 'We only want you to be good' and 'All these are for your own good'.

Most people are being taught from young that all and everyone need to develop and empower a self-identity and self-image that attached and identified towards certain names and forms that they 'inherited', 'possessed', 'be given' and 'belonged to', that rely on receiving love, agreement, acceptance, approval, acknowledgement, praise and support from 'the authority' or 'the superiority', or from all the others in the family/relationship/community/world, in order to feel love, good, happy, confident, proud, deserving, positive, successful and meaningful about oneself and life existence.

All these 'ideas', 'values' and 'practices' exist in different kinds of cultures/spiritualities/beliefs influencing the way of living, action/reaction and aspiration in the family, the relationship, the community, the school, the career, the business, the leadership, the political institution, and so on, with great ambition to be creating and empowering a personal and community world that they desire based on certain ideas, values and practices.

Non-attachment and non-identification is indeed 'unintentionally' going against all kinds of egoistic ideas, values and practices that exist and survive largely on the intense attachment and identification from everyone towards all those ideas, values and practices. The elimination of egoism in human beings is the highest threat towards their existence in the world.

'Open-minded to be inquiring towards the truth of everything' is being described by certain people as something 'wrongful', 'evil' and 'sinful', and it's 'punishable', where they relate 'being open-minded' to 'engaging in immoral and irresponsible way of living and behavior', where 'rebellious' people want to be experimenting as many 'things' as possible in the world without reasoning whether it would cause certain harmful and damaging consequences onto oneself and others as well as the surrounding environment. They propagate that 'inquiring or questioning the truth of everything, particularly towards their own belief, teachings, values and practices' means "Disrespectfulness, unfaithfulness, humiliation, ungratefulness and offensiveness towards the superiority or authority that 'love' and 'care for' all and everyone very much". But more importantly, is that they need to maintain and increase the amount of 'obedient'/'submissive' members/followers/supporters/contributors, and don't want to be loosing their 'army' and 'rice bowl' that give them 'the superior status and power'.

In certain culture/spirituality/belief, people believe and propagate that 'open-mind' is something extremely 'dangerous', as they propagate that 'the soul' would 'fly away' from the body upon the mind is opened, where 'the soul' might not be able to come back into the body. Not sure whether they are afraid of a soul-less body or a body-less soul.

Meanwhile, in certain cultural belief and practice, during a funeral, one needs to burn the left behind clothing that belonged to the dead person who was their beloved family member, so that the dead person can have some clothing to wear when they are in another world (so thoughtful and loving, BUT), however, one also needs to cut some holes in all the pockets of the clothing that are going to be burnt, so that the dead person won't be taking the wealth and prosperity in the family with him/her to the other world, while at the same time, one also needs to buy many different kinds of expensive paper made 'material objects and enjoyments' to be burnt as well, so that the dead person can have and enjoy all those 'things' in the other world (so that the dead person won't get too upset about all the pockets of the clothing are being cut deliberately).

There's a threat about if one didn't follow everything that supposed to be done during the funeral of one's beloved family member, then the dead person (particularly one's loving father or mother) will come back into this world to haunt or hurt oneself and the entire family. And most people from that culture, including some highly educated ones, would just blindly follow all kinds of 'practices', spending lots of money in funerals, and they will pass down such 'practices' to their next generations, as they don't want to risk loosing their wealth and prosperity, as well as they don't want anything 'bad' to be happening to themselves and their next generations, if they don't follow all kinds of 'practices' accordingly, or, they simply don't want to 'offend' or 'upset' any others in the family and community of that culture. This includes some 'yoga practitioners' and 'yoga teachers' who inherited or adopted any kind of culture, who might still attaching and identifying towards, and be determined by certain culture/spirituality/belief, and either wittingly or unwittingly, bringing certain ideas, values and practices from their culture/spirituality/belief into the world of yoga as well.

That's why 'open-mind' is being seen as something 'wrong' and 'evil' by some people of certain culture/spirituality/belief in the world. It's not good for many kinds of money making 'business' and 'superior status and power'.

That's why the importance of renunciation to move away from all kinds of worldly egoistic thinking, belief, values and practice, in order to allow the mind to be free from being influenced by all those ideas, values and practices, unwittingly.

Open-mind in yoga, is about unattached and unidentified towards any particular worldly egoistic social/cultural/spiritual/religious/philosophical/educational/political/commercial thinking, belief, values and practice, allowing the mind to see the truth of everything as it is, without being influenced by all those worldly egoistic thinking, belief, values and practice, to reason, analyze, judge, feel, act and react.

It's not about being curious, adventurous or fearless to be experimenting all kinds of experiences, things, elements, substances, practices and activities in the world, blindly and irresponsibly, without considering the side-effects of certain actions, that might cause certain harmful and damaging consequences onto oneself and others, and the surrounding environment. Instead, one should have right discrimination and self-control to not engaging in any activities that would be harmful to the well-being of oneself and others, and the surrounding environment.

It's about non blind-agreeing, non blind-disagreeing, non blind-following, non blind-believing, non blind-practicing and non blind-propagating.

It's not about being rebellious or skeptical, to be blind-disagreeing or blind-denying towards everything.

It's about allowing the mind to be opened to inquire or see the truth of everything as it is.

Inquire towards the truth of everything, including all kinds of information, knowledge and teachings accumulated from everywhere, regardless of agreeable or disagreeable based on one's existing thinking and belief, accumulated from the very beginning of learning and absorbing all kinds of inputs, coming from parents, caretakers, elders, school teachers, spiritual teachers and leaders, philosophers, political leaders, researchers, scientists, historians, famous people, community leaders, social medias, influencers, relatives and friends, including from the many different kinds of yoga teachers, yoga gurus, yoga schools, yoga courses or yoga books, as well as all the teachings here.

Some 'worrying' people say, "Oh, the world of ignorance needs such attachment and identification towards certain civilized belief, values and practice to lead and guide (more precisely, to control) all the ignorant beings to be good and do good (more precisely, conditioning everyone to be thinking and behaving in certain way). Or else, everyone will behave ignorantly (more precisely, want everyone to behave/don't behave in the way that 'I' and 'we' want them to behave/don't behave)." Really? Why not allowing everyone to be free from ignorance and none needs to be 'controlled' by anyone, instead of keeping everyone under the influence of ignorance and need to be 'controlled' by someone, so tiring? Did the world has less ignorant behavior and consequences of ignorance, after many thousands years of civilization under certain cultural belief, values and practice?

The minds argue, "Even in the teachings of yoga mentioning about the different types of students of different degrees of ignorance. There are many 'wet woods' that need to be 'controlled' by certain belief, values and practice, to behave and don't behave in certain ways, by oppressing their thinking and behavior, and planting fear in them so that they will be afraid of punishment and won't do anything that they shouldn't do, that we think is bad and wrong." Really? Wet woods will also have the opportunity to become dry wood if they are being away from moisture and be dried under natural element of heat or wind, but no, some minds deliberately want to keep them in moisture all the time, just because the minds with certain intention think that since they are wet woods, and hence, they should somehow always be keeping in wet environment and not allowed to be dried, and they would be threatened and punished by those minds, if they ever try to be dried. It's because wet woods are 'useful' for them, for helping them to achieve their certain ambition.

Those who would be 'disappointed', 'disrespected', 'humiliated', 'intimidated', 'offended' and 'angered' by others who question the truth of everything, by threatening everyone that they would be 'punished' by 'certain authority' for being open-minded to be questioning the truth of everything, particularly towards certain belief, teachings, values and practice, and they would act and react under the name of 'the authority' saying that "I am representing the authority to punish you for your bad and wrongful behavior", are nothing to do with Dhamma, or Teachers of Dhamma, or Yoga, or Buddhism, that is all about self-inquiry to be inquiring towards the truth of everything.

Intelligent successful inspirational and aspirational people/influencers - "Gain more knowledge and experience, and stay updated and connected with the world by reading as many books, newspapers and magazines as possible (except the banned ones), watching and listening to as many TV, radio and social media programs as possible (except the filtered out ones), and experimenting as many experiences as possible (except the prohibited ones). Be inspired by all those successful people in the world, and be aspired to become like them. Follow and support them, and you will be supported to become like them."


Swami Sivananda - "Stay away from television and movies watching, novels, newspapers and magazines reading, or radio listening. Renounce worldly affairs, activities, entertainments, interactions, connections and communications. Do not mix. Do not build ashrams. Do not hoard disciples. Live alone. Walk alone. Eat alone. Meditate alone. Inquire the truth of everything via self-inquiry and self-realization."

Ajahn Chah - "There's only one book to read, and it's this one within oneself. Inquire the truth of everything via self-inquiry and self-realization."

Inquire why such advice.

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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'. Non-blind believing, non-blind following, non-blind practicing and non-blind propagating, but be open-minded to inquire the truth of everything. Be free. Be peaceful. Be happy.

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