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Practicing when your Attention is Like the Weather

Venerable Khemako discusses how calmness and stillness associated with meditation is a means to a higher end, not the end itself. He describes how one’s attention is variable like the weather, and how one can start with a coarse object of meditation and then see whether the mind can observe more details of, for example, the subtleties of the breath. (Dhamma talk recorded at OBS Arnprior retreat on 25 November 2019. Duration 31:34).

How to Disempower Difficult Mind States through Contrasts

Ajahn Viradhammo explains how to disempower difficult states of mind. He discusses how instilling contrasting states of mind can be helpful in becoming aware of and bearing with, for example, the self-critical mind. These contrasting states include body awareness and the Brahmaviharas. The talk concludes with a question and answer period. (Dhamma talk via Zoom recorded on 19 September 2020. Duration 48:00)

Ajahn Viradhammo – Thailand – Zoom Retreat – November 2020

This retreat at Rai Poonyavee, Thailand was conducted via Zoom with Ajahn Viradhammo. It included both guided meditations, Desanas (brief comments prior to the meditations), and Dhamma talks. Many thanks to the Angel Group Thailand for hosting the retreat and editing the recordings. Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!

  1. Nov. 22 – Desana and Guided meditation
  2. Nov. 23 – Desana and Guided meditation
  3. Nov. 24 – Desana and Guided meditation
  4. Nov. 25 – Desana and Guided meditation
  5. Nov. 26 – Desana and Guided meditation
  6. Nov. 27 – Desana and Guided meditation
  7. Nov. 28 – Desana and Guided meditation
  8. Nov. 29 – Desana and Guided meditation

A. Nov. 21 – Dhamma Talk
B. Nov. 22 – Dhamma Talk
C. Nov. 23 – Dhamma Talk
D. Nov. 24 – Dhamma Talk
E. Nov. 25 – Dhamma Talk
F. Nov. 26 – Dhamma Talk
G. Nov. 27 – Dhamma Talk
H. Nov. 28 – Dhamma Talk
I. Nov. 29 – Dhamma Talk
J. Nov. 30 – Dhamma Talk

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Let Go of Self-criticism by Trusting in Change

Ajahn Viradhammo discusses how our misperceptions of ourselves are strongly conditioned, and feel very real. However, through trusting in the changing nature of mental phenomena, trusting in awareness, and patiently bearing with these difficult self-perceptions, we find the space to appreciate the beauty in our lives. (Dhamma talk via Zoom recorded on 12 July 2020. Duration 31:50)

Investigating how Opinions Underlie Uncertainty

Venerable Khemako describes how views and opinions are quick sketches and shortcuts for the fullness of the present moment. Once we see this, we can hold our opinions more tentatively and recognize their uncertainty. He encourages us to investigate how the process of constructing opinions unfolds, and thereby providing an opportunity to see something new. (Dhamma talk recorded at Arnprior Retreat 30 November 2019. Duration 47:38)

Opening the Heart in Difficult Times

In this question and answer session, Ajahn Viradhammo discusses how to overcome biases by opening the heart. He also describes how to be socially relevant in difficult times, while inclining the mind towards silence. He also comments on practice-related questions on using the end of the out breath and visual images arising during meditation. (Dhamma talk recorded via Zoom on 16 September 2020. Duration 38:32)

Trust in Awareness

In this wrap up of the online retreat, Ajahn Viradhammo encourages us to trust in awareness, rather than defaulting to a habit of, for example worry. He explains that a willingness to witness our reaction to being in an emotionally vulnerable (but safe) situation is a form of Metta. He encourages us to use meditation as a practice of purification, where we cultivate open-hearted awareness of difficult states of mind. (Dhamma talk recorded via Zoom on 17 September 2020. Duration 30:24)

Question and Answer: How to Investigate the Root of Fear

In this Question and Answer session,Venerable Khemako explains that while part of what we experience as fear is primal and rooted in our human physiology, part of the experience is rooted in a self-schema driven by desire (e.g., wish to remove perceived threats to ego). He also describes how meditation practice can help in the investigation of what triggers our unwholesome desires and mental activity. (Dhamma talk recorded via Zoom on 20 August 2020. Duration 37:14)