Books and Movies

There are good books and movies that you can enjoy. That’s okay—it’s good to enjoy them. But sometimes the quality of the film or book is not good at all, yet you don’t turn it off because if you do, you will have to go back and experience the suffering inside you. That is the practice of many people in our society. Many people cannot be with themselves. They have pain, sorrow, or worries inside, and they read or watch or listen to cover this up, to run away from themselves.

Consuming media like that is just running away and it doesn’t have a lasting effect. You can forget your suffering for some time, but eventually you have to go back to yourself. The Buddha recommended that we should not try to run away from ourselves, but learn to take good care of ourselves and transform our suffering.

– Thich Nhat Hanh.

Thoughts

There was an example where a monk approached Ajahn Chah and complains that as he sits and meditates thoughts of lust just take over his mind. 

“I just don’t know what to do.” Said the monk. 

“That’s easy,” replied Ajahn Chah, “when the next Wan Phra comes we’ll have you get up into the sermon seat, and we’ll get you to describe to all the visitors to the monastery all of your sexual fantasies from the past week.”

The monk suddenly found it a lot easier to put the thoughts aside. 

– Thai Forest Tradition, Theravada.