Posted by: Upāsaka Subhavi | 02/12/2013

Fasting for Tuesday – Aditthana Practice

Fasting Buddha Statue at Lahore Museum

For some reason, when reflecting on today’s planned liquid fast the parami of aditthana or determination immediately sprung to mind rather than nekkhama which I would have expected. But, then again, it may very well be that resolve and determination came to mind precisely because there was so much resistance to fasting today. I suppose that is why the texts describe resolve as the basis for the development of the other perfections for without a firm commitment to cultivating skillful qualities, especially when you don’t feel like, it is almost certain that the kilesas would win the day.

Even now, an hour or so after I first wrote the above, I can feel my mind sputtering and flopping about like a fish out of water. And for what? Only because I have made the arbitrary determination to go without solid food for the day. And I guess that is the part of the practice that intrigues me: putting myself in situations that remove the myriad distractions of daily life to reveal the ever-present truth of dukkha. The fact that suffering lies so close to the surface of the skin of our ridiculously comfortable lives (at least, my life is ridiculously comfortable) and that it can be so easily provoked serves as good reminder for why I took up the practice in the first place. Then, too, are the tonic effects of renunciation (which I’ve mentioned before) and the idea of torturing one’s kilesas in order to cultivate the factor of Right Effort.

So, forgive for making so much of so little a thing but this just happens to be where I found myself today. May all beings have happiness and the causes of happiness!

Here’s a link that might be helpful in understanding how aditthana is regarded by the tradition: http://arahan.tripod.com/adhitthana.html

 

 


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