Thursday, November 7, 2013

Impermanence ~ Ven. Robina Courtin

"The very first level of reality according to the Buddha is impermanence - that things change moment to moment - and why do we have to think about that? First because it’s true, but second, because we don’t think it’s true. We think the opposite: that is permanence, so there’s a big conflict. So we are ignorant in other words, and that’s why we suffer. For example, I’ve got a beautiful cup, my grandma’s cup: beautiful, antique, so special, up on the mantlepiece. Everyday I look at it, having attachment, believing it’s going to be there - totally expecting it to be there because I’m so attached to it, right? Then one day I look, and it’s broken. Then I break; have a mental breakdown. Thinking of who I’m going to sue; I cry, freak out, feel guilty, anguish, sorrow - all the drama!

"Buddha’s saying, ‘Don’t be silly Robina, you’re not suffering because your cup broke. That’s just natural. Cups break; that’s their nature. You’re suffering because you didn’t want it to break; because you thought it wouldn’t break.’ So the reason we suffer is because our mind is full of misconceptions about the cup. That’ it; that’s all Buddha’s saying: the mind believing in non-truths is the cause of suffering.”

-Venerable Robina Courtin from teaching at Institut Vajra Yogini, 
  Nov. 6, 2013 Session 11 (lightly edited)

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