Posted by: Michael Rickicki | 05/23/2019

Stretching My Limits

As imperfect as I am I still intend to make of my life something of use to others and myself in an ultimate sense. Yes, feeding others and assisting then materially are important but clearing the morass from my heart and learning to embody the Dhamma is a goal work which I can find no fault. Both now and in the future, the Dhamma and vinaya are wholesome and worthwhile but it’s the getting there that’s been a problem for me.

I find that when I’m tired and stressed I more easily lose the thread and have a tendency to snap. So, what if instead of trying to create the perfect conditions to practice I decided to make things difficult in purpose? It certainly seems that the body needs constant stress for its health and maybe training the mind is no different.

I’ve been working on a regular routine of daily physical exercise goals along with contemplative practices that I also try to perform every day. I have been doing things that don’t work and adding things as they seem fit. Much of my practice boils down to giving up sense pleasures like food and sexual activity and, now, trying to limit sleep so that I can find a way to be unperturbed in a controlled situation. When I find I can’t take it I can quit for a day or a few hours and it won’t mean a thing and it will prepare me for those times when escape is not an option.

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Shillelagh Studies

A hub for the music, culture, knowledge, and practice of Irish stick-fighting, past and present.