Conversations with a Monk
Updated: Feb 21, 2019
Sharing a perspective gained from conversing with the monk under whose guidance I undertook Vipasana, as well as insights gained from research online and else were.
What the Monastic Life consists of from my understanding, whether that individual ventured into adopting that life based on factors and influences stemming from a dogma or through the conscious choice and independent will of the individual are, in short, the following:
- A daily set of chores, rituals, tasks that instill within you discipline, form productive habits. With the purpose: conducting our daily life chores, tasks with full focus, intent and attention will prevent the mind from dwelling on dull, unimportant, minuscule matters rummaging . We fail to realize, especially those of us privileged enough that to afford the time to contemplate in itself is a luxury. This has been the case throughout majority of human history. Let us consider the story of Buddha who lived a part of life as a Prince. There are many similar stories which can be referred, referenced.
- Reading of a scripture, philosophy, knowledge that has been passed on for centuries, that will enable you to better understand, navigate, deal with life and make you knowledgeable enough to make informed decisions, to a certain degree, but the responsibility of further pursuit is still on you. Consider the words of the Dalai Lama who states that if there are things addressed in Buddhism that stand contradictory to what Science has discovered, proven then Buddhism must change, accommodating the fact.
- Practicing of meditation, similar or varying contemplation methods. Mediation for instance entails building the capacity to focus not on the thoughts that run around in your mind but on the most essential element of life, in many ways the source of existence for most living beings: your breathe, air, oxygen that goes in out of you naturally without you even having to consciously think about it.
We need not adopt the life of a monk to discipline our minds and in turn ourselves. There are numerous methods, one just has to make the conscious effort to adopt and actively implement the method in their life. The sooner you begin the more practiced you become, it is similar to developing any skill set.
Useful resource for insight: