I am having a lot of anger come up. A lot of anger. I have a subtle feeling of wanting to grab people and shake them. I feel very impatient. I find myself getting angry when people don’t learn. I get angry at people’s stupidity. People are stupid. They are not in a permanent, fixed state of stupidity—people come in and out of stupid. Sometimes, my mind is like an animal too; especially, when I first wake up. They say during shamantha meditation that subtle laxity is the cause to be reborn in the animal realm. I think I have this mind a lot. I walk around aware, but dull. I get things done and attend all my classes, but not with total clarity. I guess I am stupid quite a bit too, but I feel like it is different with the people I am talking about.
I don’t understand how, but this seems like a different kind of stupid. I don’t get angry at a dog for being stupid, but sometimes I get angry at gnats or bugs that run into danger instead of away from danger. I get impatient while trying to save their lives. I feel like somethings should just be obvious, but I guess they are not. It is ironic because I used to be them. I used to judge the same way. I used to think I was doing pretty well for myself and it was only the constant beating from compassionate beings that helped me realize that I am really not that far in the path to enlightenment. In fact, I have haven’t even started.
Sometimes, I try to lead by example. I opened up to my discussion group about the trouble I have pertaining to samsara. In fact, I regularly do this with other Dharma practitioners to show them the importance of the basics. I often assume that they know the basics because I don’t want to judge them. We are talking an intermediate course. One person in my group revealed he is doing Tantra, and yet, I was the only person who knew what the eight worldly Dharmas are. No-one has ever put any personal reflection into attachment. One person, doesn’t know what taking refuge is, doesn’t know what the three sufferings are, doesn’t know the eight worldly Dharmas, has never heard of emptiness, and yet, is doing a practice that is derived from Tantra. Of course he is confused! Without a foundation in the basics, it would appear like we are worshiping deities and asking them to save us. It would look like praying to Jesus for salvation, but that is not how it works in Buddhism. You are responsible for your own salvation.
I don’t understand what the aversion to the basics is. I don’t understand the lack of self-honesty. I don’t understand why people don’t want to look at themselves. I can understand people not looking at themselves at times, but why do some people just never look? Why do they never look? It doesn’t hurt to look; in fact, not looking doesn’t make it go away. The only way to figure out how to make the pain go away is to find the source of suffering. Then, the cure becomes obvious. (I realized after I was re-reading this paragraph that they cannot look, because they have to first look at the heavier, blinding suffering first and make their way deeper into themselves)
My group is filled with people who know things. A lot of people in this group have knowledge, but I am not sure a single person has applied that knowledge. There is one person in the group that thinks he is the teacher. I know this because he referred to himself that way. There is one that is a teller. He likes to tell you how to solve your problem without understanding the problem in the first place. There is a person who is a judger. She sees everything as good and bad and experiences intense anxiety when something is “bad”. There is a provoker. He likes to ask questions to provoke others and shame people. There is a interpreter. He likes to hear from his own point of view, not from yours. Lastly, there is an impatient, frustrated person—me.
I don’t understand. Dharma looks like such a gift. Why are they not practicing? It would help if I remembered a previous life where I was the same—where I did not have any self honesty. Why is this painful for people? Why would you join Buddhism to inflate your ego? Wrong religion bro. Though, this is what people do. Now with Tantra opened up everyone can practice it. Anyone can do a retreat to feel important. Anyone can do advanced meditations in a cave for as long as they like. In this age, it is extremely important to examine the qualities of your teacher, because literally anyone can do any practice they like. I talked with one Geshe who without doubt had obtained an unbelievable amount of knowledge. He definitely knew his stuff, but when I talked to him I was troubled. It appeared that he didn’t have much insight into the topics. It also appeared that he didn’t put much thought into removing ego from his practice. This really concerns me because I met a young woman who I think said he was her guru. She thought he was really nice, so that made him a good guru. She is lucky he wasn’t putting on a show of kindness and would later ask her to have sex with him. Once someone is your guru, you have to always see them that way. If you realized you picked a bad one, your in trouble. You need to find a way of distancing yourself without seeing your guru in a negative light, so that you don’t create negative karmic imprints.
On the other hand, I met a humble monk teaching a beginner’s course and he seems to really get it. I asked him difficult questions about Buddha nature, emptiness, impermanence, and the mind and he re-explained it to me in a way I had never heard before. I was really impressed and am becoming more impressed as we go. I have only just met him, but I am starting to trust him.
Up until now, I have been ignoring events that I have seen by reminding myself that I am not clairvoyant and I do not know the person’s mind. I am sure there are plenty of things that I do that someone could think I wasn’t practicing Dharma at that moment, because Dharma isn’t external. I am starting to think this will no-longer cut it. The patterns are getting to common to ignore. I am seeing again and again the confusion of other practitioners and I think that it is time to help. I have confusion too, and I had their confusion before someone taught me. I am just not sure what to do. I obviously can’t lead by example. Talking about struggles just causes others to judge you. It doesn’t cause them to examine themselves like I thought.
I guess to feel content in the moment I can just feel compassion. I can understand without receiving teachings you are doomed to be ignorant and often prideful. Without learning tenderness, acceptance, and forgiveness, you are doomed to not be honest with yourself. If I did not have the teachers I have had, like my mom, grandma, psychologists, and Buddhist teachers, then I would be the confused people. The only reason why I can examine myself with honesty is because of the kindness of others in the past. I guess I can feel humble to be able to do this instead of angry that they cannot. I can take refuge in Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha to know that I can develop myself to be able to help the people who don’t know how to be self honest. If I walk this path long enough, I can learn how to help every problem of every sentient being and I am willing to do this.